Tavo Is Dead

Michael Brin, Homicide Detective Series 8

eXtasy Books

Heat Rating: No rating
Word Count: 62,000
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A woman’s body has been found on a street in Unif, a town on Lasho, a newly constructed moon. She’s a victim without any ID that was shot in the back of the head with a laser beam. Detective Brin has been sent to Unif to solve this case.

Tavo Is Dead
0 Ratings (0.0)

Tavo Is Dead

Michael Brin, Homicide Detective Series 8

eXtasy Books

Heat Rating: No rating
Word Count: 62,000
0 Ratings (0.0)
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Cover Art by Martine Jardin
Excerpt

It was the year 4023. As the interplanetary transport craft I was in went into orbit around the planet Cirok, preparing to land, Tesk’s face, an incoming call from my supervisor, appeared in my contact lenses. He frowned. “A few minutes ago, a Qio humanoid found an Aito woman’s body on a street in downtown Unif and called Precinct Nine. Because its department is understaffed and inexperienced, they want our help.

“Your flight for Lasho leaves in four hours. According to the victim’s ID, her name was Tavo. It didn’t mention anything else.”

I frowned. “Didn’t mention anything else? Somebody must have deleted her address.”

“Unfortunately, most of Lasho’s towns, villages, settlements, and outposts don’t have enough hospitals, police, doctors, nurses, fire stations or other basic institutions. That makes it difficult to help most of the recently arrived refugees. Your new partner, Sultra, will provide more information regarding Tavo.”

Text, the result of a search engine’s recent probe, scrolled through my lenses. According to it, for unknown reasons, Sewo and other Unif Peace Officers in Precinct nine hadn’t sent me any other details regarding Tavo. “Why didn’t you bring in utility androids to solve this case?” 80 percent of the time, these robots, ones that worked day and night, solved them 90 percent faster than humans or Aito humanoids.

“Five weeks ago, when we first heard about a shooting in downtown Unif, we sent in three utility androids. Two hours after they arrived, in the late morning, Officer Henn, who noticed they weren’t responding to her calls, started looking for them.

“That evening, she found all three. A hacker, somebody she didn’t know, had sent computer viruses into their minds. The viruses destroyed every bio-circuit. Unfortunately, because Henn had only studied HTUC viruses’ computer code for eleven weeks along with the fact that her wrist scanner wasn’t designed to figure out how the code compiled data, she didn’t know how or why these viruses were so effective.”

My jaw muscles tightened in an irritated response to Henn’s terrible situation.

HTUC, hypertext utility code, one that millions of humans and humanoids on many planets, moons, and spacecraft used to create software, helped just about everybody communicate with each other via 3D holograms, text messages, and videos.

 

I stepped inside the spacecraft and sat down. Sultra’s text file appeared in my lenses. However, for unknown reasons, a 3D holographic replica of her face did not. I bit my lip, disappointed.

Nine years ago, while she was at Boon’s Police Academy, a school on Cirok, this undercover detective, an Aito humanoid, began studying thirty kinds of networked computers, forty types of forensic software, and psychology. Three years later, after getting straight A’s in every course, she was assigned to precinct D. Within eight months, she had arrested four drug lords and six hit men. All but one was convicted.

After the last trial ended, she was sent to Unif, an attempt to help its understaffed department. Within seven months, she had arrested six murderers, men who killed women because they wouldn’t work as sex slaves in Jeen, a dangerous town on Cirok. Unfortunately, all six broke out of their jail cells and escaped before they went to court.

During this time, four of Sultra’s partners disappeared. Ten officers and four detectives searched for them for seven months, using face-to-face interviews, neutrino probes, and wrist scanner analysis. Unfortunately, these professionals couldn’t find any trace of her missing colleagues.

I winced, shocked that so many of her former partners were still missing and sent her an email, introducing myself.

Her reply scrolled through my lenses. She was impressed by my ability to break through sixty-four types of cross-platform firewalls. She had worked with sixteen other detectives, colleagues who knew a lot about IT, Information Technology, but they could only break through fourteen kinds of these barriers.

She was also excited because I had cracked six-thousand- nine encrypted messages, making it possible to read sixteen drug lords’ files, eighteen murderers’ text messages, thirty-nine kidnappers’ emails, and fifty-three robbers’ holographic ID photos.

However, to some extent, this professional was disappointed with me. I hadn’t spent enough time learning more Nusp, the Aito language. This race’s speech, alphabet, and their numbers made it easier for them to study fractals, motion, Chaos Science, and DNA manipulation.

Her message scrolled. I look forward to working with you. However, I’m late for a meeting.

I blinked, irritated, wishing we could talk, not exchange text messages and sent this new partner one, saying that I looked forward to meeting her.

The screen went black, end of the call.

Although 91 percent of any police officer’s wrist scanners examined a computer, a robot or a spacecraft’s shape, and compared this information with eighty billion archives, the scanners could only store and analyze 900 terabytes of data. The other 9 percent broke down every few days for a variety of reasons.

I started thinking about my qualifications for this tough assignment. Six months ago, after I killed Veil by destroying his platinum spacecraft, my supervisor at MPStation-4’s homicide division, had transferred me from a moon called Wacev to Cirok for several reasons. First, I knew more about breaking through firewalls than most of this planet’s detectives. 80 percent of the time, drug lords and other criminal’s text emails, 3D holographic logs, video emails, phone call records, and files were hidden behind firewalls. As a result, it was difficult for most homicide detectives to figure out if a mining company or any kind of business was a front.

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