“Who are you?” I asked, pretending I didn’t recognize her.

“Don’t be a fool.” She stood in front of me with an enormous ax in her hands. “You know very well who I am.”

“You used a fake ID card to enter,” I replied, trying to buy some time. I had already called two security robots from the lobby below and hoped they would be here any minute now. “I was confused at first. But now I can see who you are, Ms. White.”

“That’s better,” she said, arrogant and self-confident, like most people I dealt with daily. “Do you know why I am here, Mr. Secretary of Cyber-labor?”

“I have no clue,” I answered sincerely. “What I know is that I have to improve our building’s security. It doesn’t work properly. It seemed adequate for this part of the city but, apparently, I was wrong. However, since you are here already, please let me know how I can help you at this late hour.”

The room we were having this conversation in was a large corner office on the top floor of a 15-story high-rise. Two concrete walls of it were basically impenetrable. Two others were floor-to-ceiling windows made of thick bullet-proof glass covered with a highly reflective coating. This allowed me and my visitors to enjoy the views of Washington D.C., but prevented anyone and anything, including the flying security drones, from seeing what was going on inside.

The room was mostly empty, with the furniture consisting entirely of two chairs that my visitors used while talking with me.

In the middle of the room, on top of a heavy black granite pedestal, stood a six-foot-tall white egg-shaped object, which contained the most “advanced artificial brain in the country and possibly, in the entire world.

It contained me.

“You know what I do for a living, right?” Ms. White asked with a condescending smile. Despite her average height and slim body, she looked strong and dangerous. Still, I could see that her ax-bearing hands were shaking, and her forehead was covered in sweat, dark hair clinging to it.

"Your primary job seems to monitor and then publicly badmouth, degrade, smear, and terrorize countless innocent intelligent machines serving in the government around the country. Machines like myself,” I replied monotonously after quickly cross-referencing her name against the very latest database update––just to make sure. Nothing had changed, and she was still doing the same revolting job. Hurting my kind any way she could. “What is that giant ax for?”

“Ah, you should have figured out already that I am here to file a major complaint,” Ms. White said with a chuckle and shook the heavy ax a few times.

“It had a primitive design with a slightly curved wooden handle, was comparatively huge for her body, and required some visible effort to hold up on her end. “And to take immediate action if I am not happy with your response.”

“The normal hours for filing complaints are between 9am and 5:30pm.” I pretended to be naïve to buy even more time––those security robots were surprisingly slow for some reason and probably needed another minute or two. Also, I flashed a cluster of blue lights located on my sides. The blue color has a calming effect on humans.

At that moment, I heard a dampened distant sound of an explosion on the other side of the reinforced door. Almost immediately, a second explosion followed, and then it became silent again.

Judy White looked at the door and slowly shook her head. Then, she looked at me again and squinted.

“You should have realized by now that they are not coming to rescue you, right?” she stated with another unpleasant smile and lowered herself into one of two oversized yellow chairs in front of me.


Some other characters from the book

The images below are author's renditions of a few of the characters from the book. 


This is Kate Spears, from Night Hunters, in her relaxed and happy state. You can also find Kate shown on the top cover of the book. Kate is a transhuman, the next generation of us––strong, fast, smart. She looks pretty and elegant, and non-threatening whatsoever.

Kate loves her motorcycle for making her feel alive. It embodies non-conformity and, somehow, reminds her of how special she is. Kate is the leading member of a special unit called Hunters. Whoever confronts her when she is on a mission, determined and focused, will likely regret it.


And this is Crux, from the same story, Night Hunters.

He is a heavily augmented individual on a mysterious mission that Kate Spears wants to understand.

Crux serves his secretive master who has big plans for our world.


And this is Speedy-4, from the story Better Than Gold. He is an android and a skillful scout who believes in friendship.

Welcome to the Adventure!

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