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zenphoenix

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sudo -rm -rf -2

X-Division, Omar Mukhtar Building, Constantinople - 6:30 PM

Angela and Anders entered the office. While Angela unlocked the file cabinet and began leafing through their case files, Anders reached under his desk and pulled out an ancient typewriter.

“What’s with that?” Angela said.

“Tesla Dynamic prototype,” Anders said, “Internet-connected peer-to-peer typewriter, capable of sending and receiving simple messages to other typewriters. Only ten were ever made, all in the mid-90s.”

“Yeah, because nobody wants to channel their inner Metternich when texting,” Angela said.

“The good news is, the Lone Gunmen and I bought all ten,” Anders said, “We sold six to allies. We were to use them in case something happened and we needed a way to contact each other through nontraditional means.”

“If the messages are sent over the internet, can’t they be tracked and read?” Angela said.

“Each message is encrypted in Morse code and sent directly to the destination typewriter,” Anders said, “Since it’s so basic, it’s swamped by the rest of the internet. You’d have to know what you’re looking for to find the message.”

“That…makes absolutely no sense,” Angela said.

“Hey, that’s our job,” Anders said, “Anyways, I probably simplified a lot because I’m not an expert in this sort of stuff. Rest assured it works and is safe.”

He plugged in the typewriter and put up the antenna for the modem. Several small lights blinked on the side as they heard the whir of the ancient modem booting up.

“It’s a lot like the typewriters the other side used to communicate,” Angela said.

“It stands to reason if they came up with the technology, we’d figure out something similar,” Anders said, “Minus the cross-universe communication part.”

The modem beeped.

“Alright, we should be good now,” Anders said, “Let’s get started.”

After loading a roll of paper into the typewriter, he pushed the function key and the number “1.”

“That will tell it to send a message to the Lone Gunmen’s typewriter,” Anders said, “Theirs is designated as 1.”

“How do you send numbers then?” Angela said.

“You push another button,” Anders said.

“That’s a terrible design,” Angela said.

“Blame Tesla Dynamic,” Anders said, “Now for the message…”

He began typing, the typewriter’s keys clicking as each keystroke was registered on the paper.

HELLO? ARE YOU THERE? CONFIRMATION LARISSA 9.

Anders stopped typing and leaned back.

“What now?” Angela said.

“We wait,” Anders said, “There should be confirmation coming with the message to be sure it’s actually them. Only we’d know the place where we first met, in Larissa in 1990.”

After a few seconds, the function key and the number “1” pressed themselves, followed by the other keys typing out a message on their own.

LOUD AND CLEAR. CONFIRMATION ARGISSA 0.

“That’s the industrial park where we ended up later that night,” Anders said, “It’s them.”

HOW ARE YOU?

SAFE. GOT OUT IN TIME.

HAVEN’T HEARD IN A WHILE.

TOO DANGEROUS.



WHAT DO YOU MEAN?

SOMEONE’S AFTER US. WE CAN’T GO HOME YET.


DON’T KNOW. FOR SOME REASON, WE RECEIVED WARNING OF THE HIT.

WHO WARNED YOU?

STRANGE. I THINK IT WAS SKYE.

Angela and Anders looked at each other.

“Skye?” Angela said. “Didn’t she die in 1997?”

“We didn’t see a body, Angie,” Anders said.


I THINK SO. HER FACE JUST SHOWED UP ON MY COMPUTER. IT WAS LIKE SHE WAS SPEAKING TO ME.

SPEAKING? HOW?

DON’T KNOW, IT HAPPENED SO FAST. SHE WARNED US OF THE ATTACK JUST BEFORE IT HAPPENED.

HOW IS SHE ALIVE?

I DON’T KNOW. FIGURE IT OUT.


MIGHT BE THE COS.


THAT WANNABE SKYNET? THE ONE THAT KILLED SKYE?

WHAT ABOUT IT?

MAYBE IT’S NOT DESTROYED.

WHAT DO WE DO?

There was a long pause.

WE HAVE TO GO NOW. KEEP YOUR MACHINE PLUGGED IN. WE’LL CONTACT YOU WHEN THE TIME’S RIGHT. WE’LL WORK ON IT ON OUR END.

The typewriter fell silent again.


There was no response. Sighing to himself, Anders put his hands down and stood up.

“Well, that was something,” he said, “Apparently our friend Skye’s still alive.”

“Anders, that’s impossible,” Angela said, “She was in the data center when it was blown to pieces by SVI. Even if she did survive that, it was 1997. We would’ve heard from her. Why is she reaching out now?”

“Remember the case we were working on when she died?” Anders said. “The COS, that artificial intelligence.”

“We uploaded the Kill Switch,” Angela said, “We destroyed it. Twice.”

“Maybe it still isn’t destroyed,” Anders said, “Maybe it was responsible for the drone strike.”

“Well, isn’t that just great?” Angela said. “Budget Skynet’s back for round 3?”

“But why would it go after the Lone Gunmen?” Anders said.

“And why isn’t it using SVI again?” Angela said.

“We all want answers, Angie,” Anders said, “We’ll get them soon enough.”

The typewriter began typing again. They slowly turned back to it, watching as a message appeared on the paper.

ANDERS? ANGELA? YOU THERE?

Anders sat at the typewriter again.

LANDER? FRONIKER? BIERS?

ANDERS? ANGELA?


IT’S ME. SKYE.



“Are you serious?” Angela said. “Is it really Skye?”

“Possibly,” Anders said.

HOW ARE YOU ALIVE?

UPLOADED TO COS.

“So it worked,” Anders said, “She did upload herself in the end.”

“Anders, there’s no way the internet in 1997 was advanced and powerful enough to upload and house an entire human consciousness,” Angela said, “This is ludicrous. Could just be Sentinel tricking us.”

HOW DO WE KNOW IT’S YOU?

HOW DO YOU DO, FELLOW HACKERS?

“That’s her,” Anders said.

WHAT ARE WE SUPPOSED TO DO?

HELP ME DESTROY IT.


FIND ITS DATA CENTER AND DESTROY IT AGAIN. TAKE IT OFFLINE FOR GOOD.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?

IT’S NOT ABOUT ME. IT’S ABOUT STOPPING THE COS AGAIN.

THE KILL SWITCH DIDN’T KILL IT COMPLETELY.

IT’S SPENT THE LAST SIXTEEN YEARS REBUILDING.

PLOTTING REVENGE.

IT’S TAKING OVER THE INTERNET. THE MILITARY. THE STOCK MARKETS.

WE NEED TO STOP IT FROM TAKING COMPLETE CONTROL.

“Did we just go full Eliminator?” Angela said.

“Maybe,” Anders said.

WHERE IS THE DATA CENTER?

DON’T KNOW. THERE SHOULD BE ONLY ONE THOUGH. IT HASN’T LEARNED FROM

The typewriter suddenly stopped typing. Anders sent a message.


There was no response.

“Damnit,” Anders said, “It must’ve shut her out.”

“So what do we do?” Angela said.

“It’s obvious,” Anders said, “We finish what we started. We shut down the COS. Again.”
 

zenphoenix

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I should mention that I had a hard time writing this COS arc, so I apologize if the pacing is off or other things feel weird.
 

TheAnguishedOne

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Round 3, COS! Let's go!

I should mention that I had a hard time writing this COS arc, so I apologize if the pacing is off or other things feel weird.
Feels fine so far.
 

zenphoenix

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CaptainAlvious

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“Yeah, because nobody wants to channel their inner Metternich when texting,” Angela said.
So, is this a reference to Hamilton the Metternich musical? If not, I’m still gonna play this song because why not.:D

Let’s hope the COS is defeated for good this time, imagine the head ache the X-Division would have a fourth round or more.:p
 

TWR97

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Man, the previous COS arc really felt like a long time ago given I read this portion of the AAR around January, that thing's back for one final round eh? Hope the X-Division crew can outsmart it again.
 

coz1

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Many congrats! I've nominated you for the next WritAAR of the Week. :)

Head over to that thread to accept your sure congrats for an excellent bit of work and start thinking of who you wish to nominate yourself next week. :D
 

zenphoenix

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So, is this a reference to Hamilton the Metternich musical? If not, I’m still gonna play this song because why not.:D

Let’s hope the COS is defeated for good this time, imagine the head ache the X-Division would have a fourth round or more.:p
Who knows? Maybe a fourth round might happen in Stellaris.;)
Man, the previous COS arc really felt like a long time ago given I read this portion of the AAR around January, that thing's back for one final round eh? Hope the X-Division crew can outsmart it again.
This is the last stand of the COS, and it's got some tricks up its sleeves this time.
Many congrats! I've nominated you for the next WritAAR of the Week. :)

Head over to that thread to accept your sure congrats for an excellent bit of work and start thinking of who you wish to nominate yourself next week. :D
A surprise to be sure, but a welcome one.:p

Thank you so much for the nomination!
 

CaptainAlvious

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A surprise to be sure, but a welcome one.:p

Thank you so much for the nomination!
I know I already said this in the WritAAR thread, but congrats Zen, you really deserve it!:)
Also, what are the odds that We Didn’t Start The Fire will show up in this arc or Stellaris? I remember @TheAnguishedOne making a joke about Skye making it into Stellaris and annoying crews on Spaceships with that song. I kinda hope she survives this arc just so that kinda thing happens in Stellaris.:D

Also, and I know this is late, but thanks for that homage to my interlude for We Didn’t Start the Fire in the previous COS arc. I didn’t even know you referenced my lyrics to the song there until I got to read it recently. Since you already said the quote, I’m just gonna say it’s a flattering surprise instead.:p
:)
 
Last edited:

zenphoenix

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I know I already said this in the WritAAR thread, but congrats Zen, you really deserve it!:)
Also, what are the odds that We Didn’t Start The Fire will show up in this arc or Stellaris? I remember @TheAnguishedOne making a joke about Skye making it into Stellaris and annoying crews on Spaceships with that song. I kinda hope she survives this arc just so that kinda thing happens in Stellaris.:D

Also, and I know this is late, but thanks for that homage to my interlude for We Didn’t Start the Fire in the previous COS arc. I didn’t even know you referenced my lyrics to the song there until I got to read it recently. Since you already said the quote, I’m just gonna say it’s a flattering surprise instead.:p
:)
I'm still considering it.;)

No problem.
 

CaptainAlvious

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Just a heads up, I may have have made some small edits to that interlude a couple months ago, luckily I don’t think it was the parts of the lyrics mentioned in the previous COS arc. I think I changed the Little Rock analogue from Gelsenkirchen to its British sister city (which I originally had as the analogue in an earlier draft), Newcastle, namely because it was the Little Rock analogue in the 50s update and because its Little Rock's Friendship city (I couldn't find a German sister city to Little Rock). I think I also changed the lyrics "Roman Kaferenmania" to "Anglo Kaferenmania", but I've changed it back recently. Aside from that and embedding a differnet video because the original video playing the song got taken down on Youtube, I didn't mess with it too much.
 

zenphoenix

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Just a heads up, I may have have made some small edits to that interlude a couple months ago, luckily I don’t think it was the parts of the lyrics mentioned in the previous COS arc. I think I changed the Little Rock analogue from Gelsenkirchen to its British sister city (which I originally had as the analogue in an earlier draft), Newcastle, namely because it was the Little Rock analogue in the 50s update and because its Little Rock's Friendship city (I couldn't find a German sister city to Little Rock). I think I also changed the lyrics "Roman Kaferenmania" to "Anglo Kaferenmania", but I've changed it back recently. Aside from that and embedding a differnet video because the original video playing the song got taken down on Youtube, I didn't mess with it too much.
Alright then, thanks for letting me know.
 

zenphoenix

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sudo -rm -rf -3

Frankfurt - April 4, 2014, 9:00 AM

The team’s red-eye flight into Frankfurt was beset with all sorts of issues. First, Angela had trouble calling Diana and Olga. The website for booking tickets briefly went down, and so did the customer helpline. But they got the tickets in the end. Half of the traffic lights on the way to the airport were broken. The sliding doors at the airport were also broken. The airpot experienced intermittent power outages. Their flight was rescheduled, delayed, and moved to different terminals at least five times. The security checkpoints had abnormally long lines because half of the transportation security staff had been given the night off and the other half had to fix faulty equipment on the spot. Finally, someone called in a bomb threat, and the airport was evacuated. It took until 3 in the morning before they could reenter the airport and then board the plane, which took off and landed without any difficulties. Leaving the airpot, there were no taxis waiting for them, as every taxi in Frankfurt had been called up for a random safety inspection at the same time. Fortunately, they didn’t have to wait long in the rain, because a limousine pulled up to the curb. Mina rolled down her window.

“Morning,” she said, “Let’s not wait any longer.”

The four of them got into the limo, which drove off.

“Alright, you said this was important,” Mina said, “What do you need?”

“Tesla Dynamic can monitor internet traffic,” Olga said.

“And what makes you think we have such capabilities?” Mina said.

“Damnit Mina, stop lying to us,” Diana said, “We’ve been through enough in the last four years. I’ve seen the tool in action. I used it a couple times in our cases.”

Mina sighed. “I apologize. Project Argus is a relatively new invention. The Bureau of Defense asked us to build it as part of the Patriot Act, but Wilhelm Tesla canceled the project.”

“And yet you kept it for yourselves,” Anders said.

“If we could build such a tool, someone else would eventually build another,” Mina said, “And it could come in handy in the meantime. It’s already helped with your cases, right? Besides, it can only monitor web traffic, not control it.”

“I can see so many things wrong with that already,” Angela said.

At that moment, the radio unexpectedly turned on and began tuning to random frequencies, spewing out a mix of static and garbled music and dialogue. The GPS screen went haywire, flashing randomly between the map and several menus and moving the cursor to random locations around the world, including in the middles of oceans.

“That’s weird,” Mina said, tapping the display, “It’s a Tesla Dynamic prototype. It shouldn’t be glitching this badly.”

They reached Tesla Dynamic’s headquarters and got out of the limo. Heading inside, they took the elevator down to the basement and into a computer lab, where technicians sat at workstations and monitored a large wall-mounted computer screen displaying streams of data overlaying a map of the world.

“Welcome to Project Argus,” Mina said, “I know the name isn’t that original, but it’s what the Bureau of Defense gave us. Blame them.”

“What are you guys doing here?” Angela said.

“As I said, we monitor internet traffic,” Mina said, “Ever since the Pattern, we’ve been checking if anybody else has been following in Jansen’s footsteps.”

“Mass surveillance,” Olga said, “Where have I seen this before?”

She looked up at the security cameras, which had all pivoted to focus on them, specifically her.

“Anyways, we can spare a few minutes for you,” Mina said, “What do you need?”

“That drone strike in Mayapan,” Anders said, “I need to see traffic on that day. Specifically anything that doesn’t fit the usual pattern.”

Mina motioned to her technicians, who typed on their workstations. The wall monitor beeped and highlighted a stream of data in red.

“Looks like we found something,” Mina said, “Around the time of the drone strike, someone gained unauthorized access to the KL’s drone network, using it to carry out the attack.”

Another data stream was highlighted in red, followed by another.

“Appears the same person also attempted to hack into a major bank,” Mina said, “And unsuccessfully attempt to gain access to SVI.”

More data streams were highlighted in red. Mina’s face paled.

“Oh, no,” she said, “Hacking personal emails, social media, corporate databases, government archives, just about everything. How did we not catch this sooner?”

“You’re telling me,” Anders said, “I’m an idiot for not seeing where this is going.”

“When did this happen?” Diana said.

“Activity was continuous for as long as this tool was online,” Mina said, “We just didn’t catch the connections. It spiked after the drone strike and again…right now.”

“Who’s doing this?” Angela said. “Where are they based?”

Mina walked over to a workstation and began typing. The wall monitor zoomed in on Frankfurt and then on the Tesla Dynamic building.

“…right here,” she said, “What?”

Angela, Anders, Diana, and Olga all looked at her.

“Don’t look at me,” Mina said, “I’m just as surprised as the rest of you.”

The wall monitor suddenly glitched out, followed by the workstations. Their displays distorted with garbled data. The lights flickered, and the elevator doors opened and closed.

“What’s going on?” Anders said.

“I have no idea!” Mina said, typing frantically. “I’m trying to reboot the system, but it’s locked me out! I have admin privileges!”

“I hAvE aDmIn PrIviLeGeS,” a mechanical voice boomed from the monitor, using a distorted and garbled recording of Mina’s voice.

“Of course!” Anders said. “The tool was the COS all along! Why didn’t I figure it out?!”

“Right under our noses,” Mina said.

“YoU cAn’T sToP mE,” the COS boomed.

“Oh yeah?” Olga said. “Watch us.”

Electrical current surged through the workstations, and sparks flew. Mina stepped away from her workstation just in time. The other technicians, their hands still on their keyboards, weren’t as lucky and were quickly electrocuted. They screamed as the electricity surged through them, burning their hair and cooking their flesh. They fell over, the sickly smell of burnt flesh filling the air. Olga drew her gun and spun around, shooting all of the cameras in the room. Then she emptied her clip into the wall monitor, destroying it. The main doors slammed shut and locked, while the lights went out.

“Damnit,” Angela said.

She took out her smartphone to use as a flashlight, but her phone went dark and was replaced by an amalgamation of the corrupted red data streams.

“HaHa,” the COS laughed through her phone’s speakers.

Cursing, Angela dropped her phone and shot it with her gun.

“Your phones everybody,” Angela said, “That’s how it knew we were coming. It had access to our phones’ data.”

Everybody took out their phones, put them on the floor, and shot them.

“My phone bill’s bad enough already,” Anders said, rummaging around his pocket, “Fortunately, some good news.”

He took out a pocket flashlight and turned it on.

“In case of emergencies and we need to go old school,” he said, “Finally, something I expected.”

“Mina, where’s Tesla Dynamic’s data center?” Diana said.

“Lowest floor,” Mina said, “But you can’t get there. The door’s shut.”

“Not if I can handle it,” Olga said, taking out a pen from her pocket.

“What are you going to do, pick the lock?” Angela said. “Oh wait, it’s all electronic.”

Olga twisted the pen. Sparks flew from the edges of the door, and it opened.

“Emits a low-power electromagnetic pulse,” Olga explained, “Disables electronics in the area. It’s a KGB tool from the war. Putin gave it to me as a gift.”

The Putin?” Diana said. “Putin from The Matrix?”

“Yeah, him,” Olga said, “Long story.”

“Can you ask—” Diana began.

“We’re not close,” Olga said, “He doesn’t do autographs.”

They ran through the door and into the hallway, where they entered the stairwell. Mina began running upstairs.

“Where are you going?” Angela said.

“Got to make sure the rest of the building’s fine,” Mina said, “Just don’t destroy the data center! We got a lot of stuff stored there!”

They continued descending the stairs, their guns drawn. Above them, klaxons blared. Alarm lights flashed on the walls to accompany them, illuminating the cameras watching them. Diana aimed and shot one of the cameras.

“Don’t waste your ammo,” Anders said, “It can just track the cameras you destroyed.”

Angela heard a whirring sound coming from below. Peering over the railing, she saw a commercial drone flying up towards them.

“Duck!” she shouted.

They hit the concrete floor just as the drone reached their level and opened fire with a gun strapped to its bottom, striking the wall behind them. Diana aimed her gun and shot one of the drone’s rotors, destabilizing it. The drone flipped over and crashed into the wall, its components flying apart and the rotor blades bouncing off the walls. Just when Angela thought it was over, she heard another drone flying up.

“Move!” she said. “They got more!”

They ran down the stairs faster, passing the drone as it went up and passed them. When it came back down, Diana shot it. When another replaced it, she shot it again, and so on until they reached the bottom floor. The door to the data center was ajar, probably to let the drones out. Or maybe it was…

“It’s waiting for us,” Anders finished her thought.

He stepped through the door, but it immediately swung closed, hitting him on the head. As he stumbled back and cursed, Diana and Olga tackled the door, keeping it from fully closing. Angela joined in, and slowly the three of them pushed the door open again, allowing Anders to get inside. Angela then heard a quiet hum coming from the door, accompanied by the hairs on her hand and back of her neck standing on end. She, Diana, and Olga instinctively let go of the door and jumped through just as electricity surged through the door, which promptly slammed shut behind them.

“Everyone okay?” Angela said.

Anders shook his head and cursed.

“Let’s just keep going,” he said.

They walked down the hallway and through another door which thankfully wasn’t connected to any motors or computers. This led them into a large room filled with server racks, each of them filled to the brim with beeping lights, color-coded wires, and assorted electronic devices.

“Alright, we’re here,” Diana said, “What now?”

“We start shooting, regardless of what your cousin said,” Olga said, reloading her gun and firing at the nearest server rack.

Walking through the room, the agents opened fire on the server racks, their bullets tearing through the thin metal and sending sparks flying. The electronics beeped and flashed frantically before falling silent.

“Pretty inefficient, but seems to have worked,” Angela said.

“Mina’s going to kill me,” Diana said.

They lowered their guns and looked at the destroyed server racks. The wires had been either cut or shorted out. Not a single light remained on. Each server had sustained some damage.

“Alright, pack it up,” Olga said, “We’re done.”

At that moment, each server switched back on, rebooting with a light whir and the accompanying beeping and flashing of lights. Within seconds, the servers had gone back to normal as if the damage wasn’t there.

“Damnit Mina,” Anders said, “Tesla Dynamic wouldn’t be that stupid. They’d include contingencies for their servers in case anything happened.”

“Also, bullets don’t usually do too much damage on their own,” Diana said.

“So how do we destroy the COS?” Angela said.

Anders ran past the rows of servers.

“There has to be a way,” Anders said, “A way to destroy the COS without purging the entire server along with it.”

They heard a clicking and whirring sound in the distance.

“What’s that?” Angela said.

“Sounds mechanical,” Diana said, “Almost like it’s…”

A four-legged robot, resembling a dog, rounded the corner. Angela noticed the guns crudely strapped to its sides. She tried shooting it, but her gun was out.

“Damnit, run!” she shouted.

The robot opened fire, its poorly-aimed bullets striking the server racks on both sides. They ran back down the aisle and turned down the intersection, running to the back of the data center as fast as they could. Despite its awkward movements, the robot somehow kept pace with them, its uncanny run something between a horse galloping and a dog running. Diana reloaded her gun and fired back at the robot, which tried dodging. However, it was hard for Diana to miss, and she struck one of the robot’s legs, which was sheared off by the bullet. The robot stumbled and crashed into another server rack, flailing helplessly on three legs and a stump.

“That was easy,” Diana said.

They reached the back of the room, where three regular computer terminals sat. Anders sat at the first one.

“Alright, now if I can just log in, there might be something we could use on this,” he said.

He woke up the computer, which displayed a prompt for a password.

INPUT PASSWORD

ONE TRY ALLOWED

Everybody looked at Anders.

“What?” he said. “I told you, my bootup message was a joke!”

“Di, what would Mina set as a password?” Angela said.

“I don’t know, maybe 'Rita’?” Diana said, “Don’t use that, it’s too predictable. And I’m pretty sure she didn’t set this computer’s password.”

“What about admin privileges?” Anders said. “Anything I could use to override this prompt?”

“I don’t know, and we don’t have time to go upstairs!” Diana said.

“Well I can’t do anything unless you do that!” Anders said.

They heard the same clicking and whirring noise behind them. Angela and Diana turned around to see more of the robots approaching. They quickly reloaded their guns and shot the robots, making sure not to miss. The robots didn’t have time to get off a shot.

“Nice aim,” Diana said.

“I’m getting sloppy,” Angela said.

“Hello?” Anders said. “What should I do?”

“I don’t know, try something random?” Angela said.

“That’s the worst thing we can do!” Anders said.

“Should I risk going upstairs and getting Mina?” Diana said.

“We don’t have time,” Anders said.

“Don’t have time for what?” Diana said. “What’s the COS going to do? Nuke itself?”

“I’m more focused on the fact there are robots trying to kill us!” Angela said, shooting another advancing robot.

Suddenly, the password prompt disappeared and was replaced by the home screen.

“We seem to be in,” Anders said, “What just happened?”

They looked at Olga, who had plugged a flash drive into the terminal.

“Another of Putin’s gifts?” Diana said.

“Nah, made this myself,” Olga said, “Wanted to see if it worked.”

Anders opened a menu and scrolled down to the utilities folder.

“Aha,” he said, pointing to an executable file called “Reset,” “This might be just what we need.”

He ran the file, and another prompt appeared.

Reset servers?

[Y] | [N]

Anders prepared to click “Y,” but before he could do so, restraints suddenly appeared out of the sides of the chair and wrapped around him, restraining him. Wires, terminating in electrodes, snaked out from the chair and connected themselves to Anders’ temples and the tops of his head, jolting him with electricity. He struggled to free himself, but the restraints were too strong, and soon he fell unconscious.

“Anders!” Diana shouted.

She tried undoing the restraints, but they were actually made of lightweight metal and were impossible to loosen. She tried pulling out an electrode, but the others delivered an even greater electric shock, to which Anders’ body reacted violently. Angela rushed to the terminal and moved the cursor to the prompt, but Anders’ body reacted even more violently, and a light scream came out of his otherwise silent mouth.

“What the frak?” Angela said.

“It’s a hostage situation,” Olga said, “If we hit the reset button now, the COS takes Anders down with it.”
 

zenphoenix

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I'm posting this one early because I'll be leaving on vacation tomorrow and will be away for all of next week.
 

TheAnguishedOne

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The COS is being a smart enemy, as expected from an incredibly smart AI.

Also, I am consistently amused every time I'm reminded Putin is an actor in this timeline.
 

zenphoenix

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The COS is being a smart enemy, as expected from an incredibly smart AI.

Also, I am consistently amused every time I'm reminded Putin is an actor in this timeline.
Without access to orbital weapons platforms, it's forced to improvise.
 

TWR97

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I second AnguishedOne's statement, it's still hilarious that Putin is an actor in this universe.

Also the COS certainly has become a more trickier enemy to take down than in previous arcs :eek:
 

zenphoenix

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I second AnguishedOne's statement, it's still hilarious that Putin is an actor in this universe.

Also the COS certainly has become a more trickier enemy to take down than in previous arcs :eek:
It was too good of an opportunity to pass up on, Putin in John Wick and The Matrix.

It's learned not to blast everything from space as 20 years ago.