Neo-Tokeyo 199X: M1
“Lexa, you got the coordinates for our probies first patrol?” asked Kix as he revved the engine of the prototype APC.
Beep! Toothbrush's holographic head popped up over the dashboard of the car.
“Lexa is busy with a task for the Chief. I will be your logistic contact in the HQ for today's patrol,” said Toothbrush, a little unsure what else to say.
“Great... two probies for the price of one. Young Tooth, make sure you give us the information quickly when we ask for it. We expect you to be on your 'A' game if we call for backup,” said Kix.
“Right! Understood. Your patrol assignment is Sector 10, Zone 3. You are in charge of the civilian district traffic control,” said Tooth quickly.
Kix frowned but nodded while saying, “We're heading out. Don't get lost in your paperwork.”
When the holo-call ended, Kix gunned the engine, causing them to fly up the large underground exit ramp, which had ten other ramps connected to it.
The exit was blocked by a thick parasteel metal wall gate that was slowly rising just enough for the APC to pass by.
On the sidewalls and the ceiling of the exit ramp were several holes for security drones to exit out of. If some uninvited guest got past the wall they would be in for a rude reception.
As they passed through the exit gate, the glowing city revealed itself. Kix drove past the large VIP parking lot. Next to the parking lot were several landing pads for M1's four aging hand-me-down Hover-helis that they had received from the army.
Kix slowed down to a crawl once again as he waited for the Security bots guarding the two different ramps to do their job. One of the ramps led to the lower ground traffic while the other was connected to the high-speed emergency highway.
A second later the two security bots moved aside after they had scanned the vehicle and its occupants.
With a roar, the engine of the APC was back to its maximum speed as they ascended the second ramp towards the high-speed emergency highway. There were already a few other hovercars traveling on it.
“I know that we are getting an easy task but why traffic control? Isn't that the police's job?” asked Arron.
“Hmph! Easy my ass. There are areas that even the police won't go to. Who do you think gets the pleasure of taking care of all the problems there? We do.”
“Is your visor all set up properly? It's one of the main tools that we all rely on due to its many functions and the secure encrypted line to HQ. Using our NerViz all the time is tiring and sometimes you might need it for something else so we use the helmet’s visor.”
“Is it that useful?” asked Arron as they passed several hundreds of buildings every minute as they headed towards the gateway checkpoint to enter sector ten.
“Of course! You already know the basic function of finding out a person’s information, there is also the radar, heat detection, and the v2 FairyNav which can lead us to any person that has their NerViz connected to the Holonet and not tampered with. Then you have the basic hacking software. Just pull out that other extendable cable on the back of your helmet and plug it into whatever, and then wallah! It's unlocked. Well, it only works on the regular hovercars, and basic locks. Which will cover 80% of the situations you will find yourself in on the first level. For everything else we need someone like Kat to break through.”
The APC stopped at the Sector ten gateway. Several green lights began scanning the vehicle obtaining all the information of its occupants, the equipment they wore and stored inside the APC.
Moments later, the green light disappeared and the large gateway big enough for at least 10 APCs, opened allowing them to pass through a small tunnel and exit out into a very dull-looking zone 2 of sector 10.
Tall gray rusty, dusty, and greasy buildings were everywhere. The air was noticeably less clean.
It was a startling change of scene from the glowing brightly lit central sector 12.
“Welcome to sector 10, one of Neo-Tokeyo's 4 industry sectors,” said Kix.
“Industry? Aren't we supposed to be going to a civilian district?”
“Zone 1 and 2 are all industry, while zone three is where some of the workers of sector ten live. If I had to guess I would say that the four industry sectors 7,8,9,10, employ nearly 80% of the first level. Most of the workers choose to stay in the other sectors due to the poor living standards in the 10th sector. It has some of the worst hospitals and schools. You'll find that the majority of people living in zone three have a D rank SCS or are C ranks who managed to claw their way out of the D rank.”
“That bad?” asked Arron, shocked.
“Sector ten's Zone 3 is not all that bad when you compare it to other places I know. In a way, they are freer on some things but more restricted on others. It's all about perspective, you have to do with what you have. If you only see the negatives you will go insane,” said Kix softly as he remembered such 'nice' places that were far harsher than sector ten's zone 3.
After a while of driving through the grungy tall factories of zone 2, they reached Zone 3.
The towering apartment buildings were just as gray and dirty as the factories, most of the walls were all covered with many advertising holo screens showing off all types of products.
Arron was shocked to see a metal zigzagging ladder staircase on the side of each apartment building. The staircases went all the way to the 300th floor of the towering apartment buildings.
Arron used the visor's simple map radar to get a better look at Zone 3. Even though Zone three was considered the smallest zone of Sector 10, it was still larger than any of the large cities outside of the Mega-city Neo-Tokeyo.
“Tooth, we've arrived at our destination and will start patrolling,” said Kix.
“Right! I see you on the radar. If you need anything contact me,” said Toothbrush, his face appearing on both Arron and Kix's visor. The voice was loud and clear coming out of speakers in the helmets.
“We'll cruise around zone 3's highway for a while and see what we find. After that, we'll head out on foot to the shopping district. Keep your head on a swivel and scan everything,” said Kix.
Just then, a loud blaring emergency warning sounded causing Toothbrush's holo-call to be cut short.
“This is a test of the 1st level’s emergency warning system.”
A booming male voice came from the APC speakers, their helmet speakers, and even the holo-Ad screens on every building outside.
On every screen that could be seen as well as the helmet's visors, were two people Arron had never seen before.
One man and one woman, both in their late 40's or early 50's. They were both wearing what Arron thought to be very expensive-looking custom-made flying clothes. Overall the two looked rather plain and forgettable.
“Stand by as the emergency message is sent,” said the middle-aged woman, in an equally loud echoing voice.
The blaring emergency sounded three times before a message was sent to everyone's NerViz mail.
The message only had one word. [Test].
Three more blaring emergency warnings sounded.
“This concludes the Emergency test system,” said the middle-aged woman.
Together the two said, “Remember! With Liberation, Inclusion, and Normalization. We will create a civilized world.”
The ad screens on the buildings all returned to advertising their wonder cures for multiple ailments and other useless gizmos.
“Who were those two?” asked Arron.
“Seriously? How can you not know who they are? I know you're from the country, but even so, you should know who they are!” said Kix.
“Well, I don't,” said Arron.
“They.. are Mother and Father!”
Before Kix could say anything more, they both received several dozen messages that popped up on each of their visors.
The simple map of zone 3 that Arron had open, now had more than 20 red dots.
“Seriously, how could our luck be this bad? Did they wait until we got here to do this? I knew it was too much of a coincidence,” said Kix.
“Are you talking about the emergency system? Isn't that a normal thing to do?” asked Arron.
“Do you really think they care about the emergency system? Just check the messages and you will see what I mean.”
Arron opened one of the messages.
[Warrant for Keef kutar, SCS C, 04-2-897658. Reason: Tampering with NerViz system. Instruction: Detain and wait for the Office of Reason to come and Normalize the situation.]
Each of the several dozen messages, were warrants for those who had tampered with the NerViz system.
The new red dots on the map were the locations of each person.
“They just use the emergency system as an excuse to randomly weed out those who are stupid enough to tamper or hack the NerViz system. Looks like your first day is going to be a busy one. Let's go and start rounding up the idiots,” said Kix, speeding off towards the closest red dot.