Chapter 11: Seeking

His heart pounded as he navigated through the complex visual pathways blazed by the seeknet tracer. Flying swiftly through the fractal confetti of data flowing through stasis, he was hoping to pinpoint the location of CS #33, the phantom feed from several nights earlier. Silas had an above-average knowledge of three-dimensional virtual stacking structures, and a comfortable understanding of VR in general, having sat in with his father on various technical and development conferences over the past five years. Overwhelmed at first, his young mind began to absorb the information almost intuitively as if learning a new language. Deep inside, he knew his father was subtly grooming him for a future as one of Zenith’s elite, by making him inextricably connected to its power base, Darkstar Incorporated. He didn’t always enjoy being in this position, but it was the only time his father paid him any attention.

The layers of data cascaded around him like many rice terraces, undulating up and down in the virtual space. The algorithm was visualized in his mind’s eye as a type of lightweight glider, shuttling him through the maze looking for any tags or data traces related to his subject. The program highlighted related objects in varying colors from green to orange, distinguishing them from the rest of the chatter. So far, Silas had found nothing when to his surprise the chatter around him melted into a bleak whiteness. The only thing that remained in this empty construct was the message that floated before him…

SIMULATION PAUSED

Silas removed the dermatrode from the nape of his neck and lowered his VR goggles. Standing before him, shockingly, was his father. There was a serious expression on his father’s face, eyebrow raised, as if he had been waiting there for some time. He had hit pause on the console when his patience wore thin.

“Running a stasis simulation?” his father’s tone had an interrogative feel to it.

“Umm…nice to see you too father.” Silas said sarcastically.

“Have you heard about all of the commotion regarding the feeds last week?” His father began pacing around the couch, and sat behind him on a bar stool, staring at the back of Silas’ head.

“Yeah, I heard a little bit about it,” Silas said in a veiled tone, continuing on nonchalantly, “Jojo told me it was some stupid street doc simulation, probably some hong kong hacker or a pirate designer trying to get his name out there.”

“That’s all you heard?” Silas’ father paused waiting for anything else.

“Yeah, Dad,” he turned around and looked at his father, “why is there something we should worry about?”

“Leave that to me Silas, continue brushing up on your exercises, you need the practice, and forget we had this conversation.” Silas’ father got up and walked out the door without another word.

Good job, son, nice conferring with you on the state of affairs in Zenith land. Silas imagined his father’s adulations and let out a sigh as he knew they would never come. There was something going on though, because his father, a very deliberate man, looked worried for once.  His curiosity heightened, he jacked back into his simulation and flew through the inner structures of the Zenith mainframe. The algorithm was pre-fitted with external passcode skins that he secretly hijacked from his father’s company account allowing him to roam freely through levels regardless of security strength.  Jacking in from home made it seem as if it was his father accessing the mainframe instead.

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~ by artofpeace on August 20, 2008.

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