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The City: 25: Marcy

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Marcy, along with Commissioner Jenkins and a delegation of IT and QA people met Julia and the corpse in the City Morgue.  As far as she knew, it was the first time it had ever been used.  After pleasantries, one of them played coroner and conducted a thorough examination.  Aside from its already missing head, the corpse remained intact.
“Well, it’s certainly malicious code,” he said.
“Can you ID her?” Marcy asked.
“No, her credentials have been scrambled.  This is nasty stuff.”
“Can we boot the user?” Jenkins asked.
“The eject code isn’t responding.”
And then the corpse sat upright.

The City: 024: Hiro

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They gathered in Midas Park.  It stretched for miles, in the middle of The City, a patchwork of famous public spaces from a hundred terrestrial cities, and more so fanciful they could only have been designed there.
Hiro waited in front of Osaka Castle.  There, the cherry blossoms always fell, and it had an excellent view of both the Sphinx and Old Faithful.  Plus, he could see the building-sized screens covering the announcement.  A crowd of milling Daytrippers and uncertain Citizens was already gathering beneath them.  It was several hours before Dawn and the others arrived, looking completely frazzled.

The City: 023: Dorothy

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Dorothy was an assassin of improbable accidents.  She specialized in Houses, but had other tricks and devices.  She made her living off of a loophole in the laws of The City.
Even though it was a simulation, The City was a real place.  An avatar was fragile; subject to gravity, fire, trauma.  And an avatar only had one life to lose.  Dying in The City could be as financially devastating as anywhere on Earth.  Of course there were no guns in The City, but Dorothy had her methods.  On the morning Midas was sold, her email account crashed from overuse.

The City: 022: Norbert

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Melinda turned to Camera Two.
“And now, I’d like to turn to International Finance expert Norbert Finkelmeyer.  Good Morning.”
“Good morning Melinda.”
“What does this Midas deal mean?”
“It is effectively the sale of The City itself, because Midas Corp built and maintains it.”
“And why is that important?”
“Due to the hyper-realistic nature of The City, and the indulgent tax laws on the island nation where its servers are kept, Midas is the leading Financial Services firm in the world.  Trillions of dollars move through the city every second.”
“What effect will this sale have?”
“We don’t know.”

The City: 021: Zophia

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Zophia set her spiders to work.  Thanks to the anonymous email she received that morning, many were already prepared.  They made their webs in every stock market across the world.  And as the world spun and each woke up to the news that The City was changing hands, her programs feed on the panic.  As the girl watched her bank accounts fatten, she almost felt bad for Sizemore, and the foolish little brokers who were watching their charges’ retirements slip through their fingers.  Because they weren’t prepared.  Later, she would have to back trace the message.  For now, she fed.

The City: 020: Floyd

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The Meal Delivery Truck arrived at the house on time for breakfast.  Floyd readied the tray and rang the bell.  Sandra was one of his favorite clients.  She had seen a lot of hardships in her life, and a bad car accident had left her housebound.  She fought on though.  She had a job with Midas, and was so proud of the complicated rig of goggles and gear that let her lead a normal life in The City.  When nobody answered, he peeked in a window.  He saw her body sprawled in her office, and immediately he called emergency services.

The City: 019: Melinda

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Melinda looked into the camera like it was the face of every one of her hundred-million viewers.
“Once again, our top story this morning:  Augustus Sizemore, CEO and Majority Stockholder of Midas Corp has reportedly sold his shares and is stepping down from his role as management.  A statement released this morning did not name the purchasing party, and the Company itself has yet to make a statement.  Midas Corp is the operator of “The City,” a realistic virtual environment which employs hundreds of thousands of people and has millions of users.  Markets are reacting sharply to the announcement.”

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