Saturday, September 3, 2011

Spanner 15.5: You Are the Demons

Believe it or not, in the first draft this important section was just a few paragraphs now scattered here and there. The rest is new, and the inspiration was downright wild. Also, there’s ten tons of embedded homages you could make a drinking game out of (just suspend the Winky Drinky Game for a while), and the introduction of one new character who was supposed to appear in Book 2’s Pretty City arc. My muse is now officially on a roll. Beware: your brain may explode! (Reminders: "Corpo" stands for "COnservative Revolutionary Party Operative,” and ethnic slurs designate Mafias such as [in this case] the Triad.)

...from previous

Chaos Angel Spanner — Chapter 15: Start the Violence
Part 5: You Are the Demons

5 october 2014.
Westlake Square.
Before the feeling of void subsides, the holoprojectors spin around jerkily as if possessed by demons. Sure enough, they begin to generate winged demons, swiped from pre-coup MMOs. The demons flap their wings, screech like dragons, and swoop down toward the Corpo crowd. Terrified pilgrims duck, scream, pee themselves, and pray for Jesus America to deliver them from the demon attack.

Standing in the middle of the plaza like a single tree standing against a hurricane, Billy Hunter observes the chaos, watches the once confident Conservative Revolutionaries start to flee in panic, records it all with the camera of his AR goggles.

yacht. The Wrecking Krewe watch Scope’s images on their monitors with utter fascination, laughing and cheering. “That hit the spot!” shouts Lars.

“Who’s yo’ daddy now?!” exults Deth.

El Kabong and Evil the Cat open the archive canoworms.tgz, make copies of the file wimpy that contains the worm, and unleash them on the COPCO system’s defenses. They clench their fists, raise their arms high, and in one voice let out a war cry: “Kuaaaaang!!

COPCO Seattle. Loud klaxons sound, all lights go red, the system announces: “WARNING. THE SYSTEM IS UNDER CYBERATTACK. REPEAT: THE SYSTEM IS UNDER CYBERATTACK. ALL CYBERSECURITY AGENTS MUST GO TO YOUR STATIONS AT ONCE. REPEAT: ALL CYBERSECURITY AGENTS MUST GO TO YOUR STATIONS AT ONCE.” Agents run in a panic all over the building as they try to reach their places in a battle that has already begun.

In the control room, Jack Becket demands of the nearest cyberagent, “Agent 140C! What’s attacking?”

“Not the standard DDoS; we’ve got filters for that. Not a standard virus or trojan or worm either.”

“It’s called an ICEbreaker,” says Radisson. “Our sources reported that the Chinese were developing a new cyberweapon designed to break down our cybersecurity systems, codenamed Kuang Mark I.”

Jack slaps his forehead. “Fucking great! First we get the devil bunnies, now we gotta deal with the Chinks too!”

“This little show was your fine idea!” scolds Radisson.

“Blame Wally!“ screams Jack. “He suckered me into it!”

Westlake Square. The demons disappear as suddenly as they appeared. Before the Corpos get time to sigh with relief, a young girl’s voice begins to sing a long, sustained, wavering, nearly deafening note. When people pick themselves up and look back at the platform, they find the flag behind it burning and scream. The Party leaders spring to their feet at the sound of the screams, spot the flag burning, respond with horror and rage. The King screams, “Find the terrorist who’s responsible for this horror! Bring him to me so I can rip out his heart myself!”

Above the platform, the holoprojectors shape a new image. A giant Rebel Styles manifests in her eight-year-old form, completely nude, writhing in what seems sexual bliss, appearing at last before the compound Eye of Jesus America.

The snipers run to the opposite side of their buildings to get away from the apparition. The media people cram into their booths. Most of the Conservative Revolutionaries and COPCO agents still here run away as fast as they can. Those foolish, arrogant, or unlucky enough to remain are transfixed by her. Just like in her videos, through sound and vision, she infects them with her corruption.

“My God!” gasps Drusilla Becket AMERICA! “She’s all reality distortion field!”

“Somebody’s decided to play a very hard game indeed,” says Richard Becket.

“There’s only one man who can play this kind of game,” says Colonel Tom Becket.

Walter Brinkman pulls his hair in panic. “Somebody stop her! She’s ruining everything!”

All Dr Henry Becket does is stare at the giant loli, grit his teeth, and growl, “No.”

Around the platform, Rebel-maddened Corpos and cops fight to the death, rip their own throats out, throw off their clothes and rape corpses— Shira grins wickedly. “Hail Eris.”

Deth pumps his fist. “All hail Discordia!”

“We got our distraction, now gimme the botnet.”

“Got it!” Deth turns to the Cockroach Twins. “Now hit it!”

Moon slips the MicroSD card into her phone, calls up a Nautilus window, makes a call to COPCO’s now defenseless cybersecurity system, and transmits. The three Cockroach twins link hands, raise their arms in victory, and cry out at the top of their lungs: “MIRV Griffin!!! Shira clips a USB interface onto her neck strap, inserts a thumb drive, and calls up her analytical. “AEGIS!”

Its owl avatar appears in her field of vision. “The MIRV Griffin botnet has been released. Is that your personality construct?”

“No. My public image. Link it.”

AEGIS connects Shira’s personal area network to the most accessible copbot computer; once linked to MIRV Griffin, it copies Shira’s construct into the botnet’s plugin system.“Complete.”

She fingers her AR goggles outside the lenses to switch back and forth among copbot and camdrone images. All copbots suddenly stop what they’re doing and stand rigid. To the others, she says, “Let’s get out now!” To the eight-bit image of a helmeted figure that pops up in a new window on her virtual screen, she commands, “Get ’em, Spanner!”

Westlake Plaza. Twenty-four suits of power armour surrounding the leaders of the Empire put their gauntlets to their helmets and start to pull them up. The men inside them scream for someone to stop it, but in vain. The power suits rip off their helmets, and with them the heads inside them off their bodies, and the twenty-four elite soldiers of the Presidential Guard fall to the floor, spurting blood, dead, leaving the Party leaders defenseless.

Tear gas canisters fly screaming and smoking through the air, and all the security androids within the metropolitan boundaries shout loudly in unison, “You’re under arrest!” King Patriot and the Party leaders look on in horror as the androids attack every cop, soldier, and pilgrim they can get their hands on. They yell “You’re under arrest!,” grab them, wrench their arms behind their backs, wrestle them to the ground, and handcuff them. When they protest and ask their attackers what they’re being charged with, the robots answer only, “You’re under arrest!” They jam their prisoners into the bombproof paddy wagons and rush them down to the King County Jail to cram them into the already crowded cells.

Cops shoot them. Soldiers pump bullets into them and try to blow them up. The robots shoot back, beat them with their cattle prods, throw them to the ground, bind them, and shout “You’re under arrest!”

Drusilla screams and faints into her brother Richard’s arms. A wall of hijacked copbots advance toward the platform, slowly and menacingly. The Party leaders slowly retreat toward the center. Above them, drone helicopters seek each other out and mate in fiery crashes.

The unblinking camdrones hover above and capture the disaster as it unfolds.

COPCO Seattle. Jack Becket watches the chaos consume the scene of his grandfather’s miracle. “Secure the building at once!” he commands. “Shoot any bots that approach!” The one-eyed man paces rapidly in front of the monitors.

“This was your idea, John!” screams Radisson.

“Chief, I had the techs set up firewalls and ICE! Our defenses were hackproof! How did I know Spanner would figure a way to slip through ’em with a botnet?

Radisson stares at him in silent rage for a moment, then storms out. Jack runs over to the hotline vidphone and calls his father.

“What is it now, John?” demands Dr Henry Becket over the com.

“Did your precogs warn you about this, Father?”

“I tried to convince your grandfather to stop, but he wouldn’t listen.”

“I’m convinced it really is Spanner’s jacked all my robots!”

“You mean hacked.”

“No, Father. Jacked. He is the robots!”

Westlake Avenue. As Alex drives the group toward the eye of the storm, dodging screaming maddened people dashing into the street, Sparks contacts mission control. Deth appears on his phone’s screen. “I need to borrow one of your Kuangs.”

Deth snaps his fingers and grins. “Dude! I knew you brought the game! Awesomesauce!” He sets his phone to copy and flicks a Kuang file into the Sparks window on his right-hand monitor; the computer transmits, and Sparks receives.


“No prob!”

“So what do you need a Kuang for?” asks Alex.

“Sometimes a de-base just ain’t enough.”

“You don’t mean—”

“Yeah. Then we cover our tracks.” Sparks starts an xterm window, slides out the keyboard, and starts the Kuang’s UI in a sandbox. Back in the xterm, he converts his debase program to a Kuang plugin, which he then loads into the Kuang. Shira watches him and decides to do the same; she syncs her phone with his and converts her unoseeme trojan into a Kuang plugin, which she flick-transfers from a Dolphin window to his Kuang UI. Sparks looks at her.

“Gotta cover our tracks, babe.” Shira winks.

Sparks uploads the Kuang into the COPCO system. The copy on his phone erases himself and the UI disappears. He closes the xterm, then contacts Deth. “Turn on the TV, comrades. The show’s about to get interesting.”

telesphere. The six official news networks are in the middle of denying that the disaster in Seattle is happening at all when suddenly they forget about King Patriot. The teleprompter feeds transmit nothing about him. The corporate computers erase all trace of his existence. The talking heads blather on as if he had never existed at all. Soon, coverage ceases altogether, replaced by frivolous stories normally reserved for slow news days.

technosphere. The Darknet is full of threads and eyes, signs of King Patriot’s presence. The Kuang infects them: eyes shrivel, rhizomes and tentacles burn. The paranoia of King Patriot vanishes, leaving nothing.

The Kuang follows the datalinks out of the Darknet into the mainframes of the Imperial American and Royal Texan governments. debase searches and wipes all files containing the royal persona, its CGI models, and its holy commandments. unoseeme datacloaks Roger Steele Becket so that Echelon will never see him again.

It sneaks debase, unoseeme, and a Minix microkernel into COPCO’s database to erase all trace of Team Spanner’s presence, mission, and COPCO contract. The entire mission to protect King Patriot vanishes, right in front of the horrified eyes of John Cameron Becket and Karl Radisson.

Westlake Center. Armoured COPCO agents try to stop Sparks and Shira. “What the fuck are you idiots doing?” screams Sparks. “There’s terrorists running loose!”

Shira spots a small group of ERF militants shooting at agents, Corpos, and random bystanders. She steals an agent’s blaster and fires it at the terrorists. They fall down and writhe in agony. She gives it back to the astonished agent and says, “Thanks!”

Sparks pushes him from behind. “Now get ’em! That’s an order!” The agents run to recapture the terrorists.

Above the platform, the holos project the three-dimensional shadow of a dying god. The image of King Patriot breaks up, flickers, broadcasts a chaos of shifting random memories taken from the minds of all those he brought here and the lives of Roger Becket and his sons and youngest daughter. The god’s life flashes before the eyes of all who dare to look. The patriarch himself watches in absolute horror, knowing that he placed his soul in the god’s image to free himself from the death of the flesh and become immortal, that once the god dies his soul will too, that Spanner knows. When the shadow of King Patriot drains out its last life force, it dissipates into a white blur in the shape of a giant, and then into shapeless darkness, and finally goes out.

Roger Steele Becket, born in 1916, a man who succeeded in abolishing the new world and bringing back the old — once again he is only a man, an old man from a world now dead, a wraith preserved in a clone body, a man without a soul. Once his ghost dies before his eyes and his soul with it, the old man stumbles backwards, lies down surrounded by his four sons and his daughter Drusilla, and gasps one final word: “Impossible...” Two years short of his hundredth birthday, Roger Steele Becket, founder of Dictel Corporation, creator of a savage and glorious new world out of the ashes of Western civilization, dies.

ESPNBC booth. Amanda Currie cowers inside, alone, her body wracked with terrified sobs. Her entire crew have left her, lost to the panic. She tries to pick up her company phone, but it slips out of her shaking hands. She takes a deep breath, then another, then another. She makes one more attempt to pick up the phone. It doesn’t fall out.

She feels a presence. Her inner alarms go off. She spins around to face the intruder, and finds — Shira Thomas, completely nude, grown-up and beautiful..

“Hello, Amanda. I missed you.”

“W-w-what are you d-doing here?”

“I’ve been in love with you all my life, and now we’re here alone together.”

Amanda tries to flee. “Please go away!”

Shira catches her in her arms. “You need me right now.” She plants her lips on Amanda’s and kisses her as passionately as she can.

Amanda writhes, struggles, tries to escape. Shira looks at her sharply, making her stop. With her Charmer power, she stares deeply into her eyes and commands, “Surrender to me, Amanda. I am going to make love to you. Take off your clothes now.” Helpless to resist her, Amanda unbuttons her dress and removes it, unfastens her bra and removes it, takes her slip and panties by their waistbands and drops them off her body, slips the sheer stockings off her legs.

She stands nude before Shira, blushing furiously in embarrassment and shame. Tears stream down her face. Weakly, she asks, “Why?”

Shira smiles. “Because you’re beautiful and I love you.”

She takes Amanda into her arms, kisses her hungrily, kisses down her neck and chest, drops to her knees to squeeze and suck her breasts, nibble and bite the hard nipples, make her scream with unbearable pleasure she doesn’t want yet craves. She sits on her heels, grabs Amanda’s soft buttocks hard, kisses her moist cunt, bites down on her clit, sticks her tongue in and out of her slit, drinks deeply of her nectar; Amanda, overwhelmed by her ardor, surrenders to an ecstasy so intense she fears it will drive her mad, one she hasn’t felt in years...

Westlake Plaza. The Army helicopters descend to the platform in time to pick up the surviving Party leaders. Below, around, all over the city, Jack Becket’s copbots are now chasing cops and soldiers and anything else that moves in order to beat them up, interrupted only by other bots intent on beating them up. The leaders swarm on, and the choppers fly away as quickly as they can. These people came to impose the will of their Lord onto this godless Babylon, only to watch his presence dispelled, and their leader slain, by an angel of chaos. The name of Spanner shall be on their lips for the entire flight back to Lewis-McChord, and from there all the way back to Holy City.

ESPNBC booth. Without waiting for Shira to command her, Amanda lies back on the desk and opens her legs to receive Shira’s body. Shira puts her nether lips against hers. As she inserts her fingers into both their cunts, Amanda asks, “Would you have done this to me when you were eight?”

Shira flashes her a beautiful smile and nods enthusiastically. “Mm-hmm! First chance I got.” She puts Amanda’s hands to her breasts, presses down hard on her and Amanda’s G-spots, rubs her clit on hers; together they scream and moan and cry in shared ecstasy.

Suddenly Talia bursts in, freezing in horror as she watches her young sister all but rape the television newswoman...
In The Civet, Reina Sterling is a beautiful and evil monster of pure hatred losing control of her ever growing powers, Rebecca Street is an idealistic and determined reporter constantly threatened by her own innocence, Melinda Wilde is dead, and the world is coming to an end. Reina is Leila Shelley, Rebecca is Amanda Currie, Melinda is Shira Thomas. But this is no longer the world Wesley Dent wrote. Shira is alive, the love of Leila’s life, yet Leila watches her making love to Amanda in front of her eyes. She realizes with a shock that Amanda’s despair is as deadly to the world as her own — but if both she and Amanda avoid giving into despair, the Bad Ending can be avoided
Talia yells at the woman who has just grabbed her from behind, “Let go of me!” At her sister: “Shira! Stop this crazy shit at once!” Shira ignores her and keeps her focus on making Amanda’s body writhe and moan harder.

Leila keeps hold of struggling Talia as hard as she can. “Get outta here, terrorist! This ain’t your business!”

“That’s my sister!”

“You killed Kira! She hates you!”

Talia throws a punch at her. Leila parries the punch and stomp-kicks her chest, sending her backwards smashing through the door and out of the booth. Shira continues to fuck Amanda. Blushing with excitement and lust, Leila strips off her gloves, runs up to Amanda, caresses her sweaty untouched breast, and brings her head down to suck the breast into her mouth as far as she can bring it.

Underground City. Deth Pussy directs Bremeloes, Slasher Hunters, and hackers into the jimmied-open doors of the underground clubs to steal sexbots. “Make sure you pick the best ones!”

Sparks holds his hand to his forehead and shakes his head in embarrassment. “Do we really have to make this side trip?”

Carpe diem, dude! We gotta seize the opportunity while Echelon don’t know we exist!”

Lars and Kio bring out a beauty. Jennifer bounces beside them breathlessly, points at it, tells Deth, “I want that one!”

“Babe, consider it yours!” says Deth.

Alex approaches the group carrying a sleeping child. The sexbot thieves all stare at her. “I found this one a block away. She’s real.”

The men gasp, stare at each other, surround Alex and the girl. Deth shakes his head in disbelief. “If that’s what I think it is—”

“—then somebody important’s about to find himself in deep, deep shit.”

ESPNBC booth. Amanda hurriedly slips her clothes back on. “I’ll never forgive you for this, Shira Thomas.”

Shira dons her clothes more methodically. “I don’t care. I love you anyway, Amanda, and nothing you can do can change that fact.”

Once she’s fully dressed, Amanda stares at Leila. She recognizes her from Wesley Dent’s vivid descriptions. “Aren’t you supposed to be evil?

Leila smiles sweetly at her. “I don’t care anymore. I know I’m capable of destroying the world, and I can see you know it too. But so are you, somehow. We can’t let ourselves lose hope. Shira won’t let you, and neither will I.”

Amanda glares at her, saying nothing, then starts to leave. Shira stops her with an embrace. She sighs. “Okay, Shira, I’ll kiss you. But I still hate you.”

Shira smiles. “I still love you anyway.” Amanda presses her lips to hers as hard and passionately as she can, showing her a love and desire as intense as her hate yet which she is still afraid to admit to herself. The kiss lasts for a full minute. After it ends, Amanda sighs. Leila puts her hand gently upon Amanda’s shoulder. Shira lets Amanda go. Amanda sighs again in resignation, lets Leila embrace her, holds her tight, kisses her with equal passion.

“I love you too, Amanda,” says Leila. Amanda stares at her, blushing deeply, tormented by conflicting emotions. Leila lets go of her. Amanda backs away from them slowly, staring back at them. Then she hurries out the booth’s shattered door.

yacht. Filled with fighters and hackers, laden down with sexbots, the boat Lansky won from Thorwald leaves port to return to Bremerton. The Shelley and Blair siblings stand together at the stern, leaning on the railing, watching the still dark Seattle skyline recede. Deth asks them, “Where’s Shira and J.T.?”

“He’s COPCO, remember,” Leila replies, “so he has to stick around for the debriefing. Shira says he’s joining him. She called her lawyer cousin to join her.”

“Sounds like they’re in trouble.”

“Knowing them, my guess is, they are trouble.”

The sun, heedless of the death and destruction below, creates a beautiful sunset behind the Olympics as throughout the city Jack Becket’s precious police androids continue their battle to the death. They box each other, punch and punch mercilessly, determined to destroy each other with their fists. Rumbling robots wreck windows, lampposts, vehicles, dumpsters, street sculptures, and each other. COPCO strike cops and imported National Guard soldiers try to bring the robots under control, but they can no longer be controlled. The robot riot lasts for hours, through the night and into the morning, until the last mechanical berserker runs out of power. Thousands of surveillance cameras in the sky capture the chaos and broadcast it to the world.

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Copyright © 2011 Dennis Jernberg. Some rights reserved.
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