“Fucking fuck fuckfuckfuck!” He mutter-shouts to himself under his breath, “This is not going ‘according to plan’.'”
Ian was up to his Zeiss-Ikon implants in shit deeper than the Mississippi mud on the flood plains after it had breached it’s banks. In the microseconds it took him to jack out, he saw the ICE coming in fast and hard. Even as he pulled the ‘trodes off, his deck started smoking.
“I don’t know which trope will get us out of the fastest, Johnny, but ‘Fly you fools! Ride like the wind!’ and ‘Get the fuck outta Dodge!’ all work for me.”
Johnny had his foot to the floor before Ian had even said, “Fly”. He knew the plan had gone South. He didn’t know what kind of heat was going to be barreling down the causeway, but he knew they’d be there FAST.
Johnny and Ian were the men on the ground. Johnny was the pilot, Ian was the tech guy. Shane and Jean were back at home base. Shane was the business planner and Jean was the talker. Together they called themselves, “The 5 Johns”.
Johnny asks Ian if they should call it in, but it’s really a rhetorical question, even Johnny, the big dumb ox, knew that they had no secure lines of communication any longer.
Ian doesn’t bother answering and just glowers his deck. It still reeks of electrical burn, though Ian’s physical safeguards had served connections when the surge started melting some of the PCB. He motions to a side alley ahead, “Swing in there and kill the engine.”
Johnny looks at Ian like he’d sprouted an extra eye socket, but he does as he’s told.
“Sink anything that comes down this alley. I’ll be right back,” Ian orders as he jumps out of the sidecar of their Hondatsun X2000 Hybrid LAW (Land/Air/Water) cycle. Ian knows stopping anywhere this close to the hit source is a BAD IDEA, (in all caps, trademark.) But he’s got to dump his deck, and before he can do that, he’s gotta either wipe it or extract the remaining software and data. He can’t do either in its current state. This alley just happens to be home to his goto guru for hardware problems.
Johnny has two neural link sockets. One for the cycle (or any smart vehicle for that matter) and one for whatever smart weapon he happens to have on hand. He leaves the cycle plugged in, so he can get moving again with just a thought. The forward-mounted street-sweeper minigun is linked to him through the cycle, and Johnny routes the video feed to a small HUD in his helmet’s visor. He faces the rear of the vehicle with smaller version of the same gun, this one “hand held”. He is ready for incoming land traffic from either end of the alley. By periodically sweeping the sky, he’s mostly ready for anything coming down that way. Johnny curses to himself, “Dammit, I sure hope I don’t hafta to sink any civvys.” But he knows he will, if he has to. “Orders are orders. Mine is not to question why. Mine is but to do and die.” He dutifully repeats to himself.
Ian ducks into “Bytes and Bites: Computer Repair Service and Donut Shoppe.”
“Yo, Disco! I need an immediate extraction. You can keep the husk,” Ian shouts into the apparently empty space. “I was live and in progress when the ICE smacked me. I’ll need the RAM and any of the incidental chips that might be mineable. You can even keep the storage, I’ve got the code in my head, I just need everything else that might have recoverable data.”
“Disco Don” looked old enough to have been around during the *first* disco fever to have exploded