The Turning Point

https://pixabay.com/photos/city-urban-future-technology-6885193/

Jax had always hated Cosmopolis with its plasfalt streets, adamantium tracks, and neon lighting. It was as if the city founders had built their idea of a city on bad sci-fi movies from the 20th century. Probably had, he thought with a grim tug at his sleeves. Back at the end of the 21st century, when the mission to settle Proxima business moon had launched, two generations would have been born and died on the ship carrying them across space. The generation that built their new home would have been raised on memories in an artificial world.

Now, of course, wormhole technology had linked systems much farther than Alpha Centauri into a “small universe.” With little distance and time between Earth and colony, the settlers of the last century or two showed little variance from modern Earth culture. Cosmopolis, however, remained apart, preserving their artificial world in a bubble of self-exaltation.

Jax sighed as he tugged on the sleeves of his bodysuit. It certainly wasn’t designed for comfort, but at least the dull coloring made him hard to spot in the dim street. Venturing out of one’s registered residence during curfew was risky, but his business could not be conducted under the suspicious eyes of Cosmopolitans.

“I see you made it,” a hard voice spoke behind him. “No, don’t turn,” it snapped as he jerked into motion. “You can hear what I have to say just as well with your back turned. If you are caught, or lying, you must have no information with which to give me away.” After a brief pause, the voice rasped even more harshly. “I know how to hack the AI. Cosmopolis will be ours within the month.”

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