Eden's Decay

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So Daedalus used his skills to build wings for himself and Icarus. He used wax and string to fasten feathers to reeds of varying lengths to imitate the curves of birds' wings.
When their wings were ready, Daedalus warned Icarus to fly at medium altitude. If he flew too high, the sun could melt the wax of his wings, and the sea could dampen the feathers if he flew too low.
Once they had escaped Crete, Icarus became exhilarated by flight. Ignoring his father's warning, he flew higher and higher. The sun melted the wax holding his wings together, and the boy fell into the water and drowned.

“This is Ilisa Trevors with Nexus News. Reports are coming in from New York City police of an apparent attack on Eden Dynamics last night. At approximately 1 AM, the facility was infiltrated by a group known as The Order. There are three severely wounded and five dead. When contacted, Eden Dynamics had no comment on the situation except to say that its private security would handle the situation. Robert Daniels is a pioneer in human augmentation, weaponry, and is CEO of Eden Dynamics”
The building was monstrous among the low lying skyline surrounding it, rising 150 stories tall. Twisted metal and glass imposed greatness and dominance. Just as I approached the building, the Eden Dynamics logo was splayed on my eye screen along with the company motto. Melding technology with the human body to perfect and strengthen.
Sara, the central computer at Eden, connected to my internal network. “Welcome to Eden Dynamics. Authorization required to continue.” Her synthesized voice filled my mind.
“Logan Beckett, Head of Security. I’m requesting all data on the New York City attack from last night.”
A flood of information scattered across my eye screen. I watched the video feed of the scientists being killed. After five minutes the bodies were lying on the floor. Ping. Robert Daniels popped up.
“Logan, I need you to meet me in the briefing room. The board wants to know what we can do to protect our other locations and assets.”
“I’ll be there immediately, Sir; I just need to stop by my office first.” With that the video feed terminated. I made my way through the lobby, security drones and cameras biometrically scanning me thousands of time per second. As I walked into the security wing the division was busy assessing potential threats. Sara’s holographic representation appeared in my office
“Sir, I’ve been scanning the city for any possible threats. None have been detected, but I deployed extra security drones to patrol. The op-team who infiltrated Eden did more than just kill and injure some workers. I’ve noted that our network was hacked into, and a large amount of data was copied.”
“I need to go upstairs in five minutes and report to Daniels and the board about the situation. The security drones should be scanning for any Class 5 weaponized technology while I’m with them.” I made my way to the debriefing room; as I entered all eyes were on me. Daniels sat at the head of the room; he motioned for me to start.
“What do you have for us?”
“Last night at 1:13 AM, a highly trained op-team infiltrated our New York facility. That team was tracked back to a group called The Order. We’ve dealt with them before, but up until now they’ve only gone so far as to try and stop workers from entering factories. They had a purpose last night; the central network was hacked into.”
One of the board members looked up at me, “What about the current situation? What are you doing about that?”
“I have the central computer and security drones scanning the city for any possible threats. So far we’ve come up empty.” Before I could even stop to take a breath, one of my security officers burst into the room. Sweat was pouring down his face and panic filled his eyes.
“Logan, we’ve got an issue. Scans have detected an anti-matter bomb within the city. We’re trying to pinpoint its location, but something is blocking it. We need to evacu-“
The building shook, glass exploded from every direction. The blast threw me up against the wall.
Blackness overcame me.

The high pitched whine of alarms going off hit me first. I opened my eyes and attempted to stand up. The power was out, and yellow security lights filled the room. I pulled up my eye screen and tried to see what was going on. All I got was an error message. I made my way through the debris. Cries and screams could be heard throughout the building. Using the stairs I made my way down to the ground floor.
The air was filled with a haze of dirt. People picked themselves up off the floor, and others were helped. I pushed my way outside and saw the destruction. Cars flipped, buildings on fire; wrenching screams filled the streets. A city wide alarm went off; security drones filled the air.
Another blast.
Darkness.
Police cars surrounded the front lawn. I rushed inside just as a body bag was on its way out. “It’s your wife,” They told me.

As I regained consciousness memories from the past flooded my mind. I shot up from the bed. Something was different. My arms felt odd, my eyesight excellent. A doctor rushed into the room. “He’s up!” she shouted into the hallway.
Robert Daniels walked into the room leaning on a cane. His right arm was gone, and in its place was an augmented limb. He looked me over and came up to the bed. “Logan, you’re okay. You’re in one of our hospitals. Your arms were too badly damaged for the doctors to save, and part of your face was damaged. They had to replace your arms with our artificial limb, your eyes too. I’m so sorry.” With that he walked out, nurses came in and flanked me.
I spent the next three months training to use the new augmentations. My strength was unreal, and a security overlay covered my field of vision. Daniels came to me during my training. He assigned me to recover the stolen information from The Order and kill their High Priestess in Chicago. It had to be done quietly. After the New York attack, the government closed down all air traffic, so getting there would be tricky. I’d do what I had to.






….
A week later, perched on a roof looking through a skylight at the High Priestess, the wind blowing through my hair, I constructed my plan. Flaws in their security had gotten me past their cameras and guards. The High Priestess was in her office; I set a mini-explosive charge on the skylight and prepared my descent. In a flash I was in her office standing in front of her, gun pointed at her face. But she wasn’t startled, her face devoid of shock. It was a hologram.
“Hello,. Logan. I’ve been meaning to talk to you.” The voice came from behind me, I whipped around. What I saw was impossible. “Leah?”
Guards burst through. The last thing I saw was the butt of a gun coming straight for my head, then nothing.



Accessing augmented eye recording...
Done.
Recording...
“Ma’am, do you plan on telling him?”
“Yes. He needs to know what they did.” It was my wife. “They’ve lied to him for years. It’s time Eden Dynamics is exposed for what they really are.”
Saving video...

I started to rouse; a deep fog covered my mind. No one was in the room. I flicked on my eye screen, but there was no outside connection. “Da**it,” I muttered under my breath. Ping. Up in the corner a video file flashed. It was a recording from when I was unconscious. Just then the door to the room slid open and in walked Leah.
“I’m sorry about the injury, Logan. I tried to tell my security team they wouldn’t have to, but they didn’t want to take chances. My sincerest apologies. I’d like to talk to you about some things.”
“You mean like how you’re alive?”
Her face faltered for a second but was quickly composed. “I’ll explain everything, I promise. Years ago, I faked my death. The police said it was a robbery gone wrong, but what they didn’t know, and neither did you, was I had stumbled upon something at work. Something I wasn’t supposed to see.”
“What are you saying?!”
“Daniels tried to have me killed. I found out that he had been selling modifications and weapons to other countries and factions under the table. He was single-handedly furnishing the conflicts of the world causing stock prices to rise in his favor. He got greedy. When I found out I went to Nexus News about it.”
I was hurt, furious, and confused. “You left me all alone Eva. Do you know how long it took me to get over it?”
Pain filled her eyes, “I know.” A single tear fell down her face.
Rage devoured me and I yelled, “YOU COULD HAVE KILLED ME IN THE EXPLOSION!”
“That wasn’t us, Logan. Eden Dynamics orchestrated all of that. After my team stole all of Eden Dynamics financials, Daniels didn’t want the information getting out about his black-market selling, so he created a disaster to discredit us and force us into hiding. I have everything in a video file, please watch it.”
I saw everything, right from when she uncovered the information, to how she faked her death. I saw her pain when she had to leave me behind. I saw her as she created The Order and used her knowledge to try and take down Eden.
I saw.
All of these years I thought my wife was dead. One man had gained too much power and in doing so took everything away from me that mattered.
I looked up at my wife, “What now?”
“We take him down Logan. Robert Daniels is no god, and it’s time we exposed who he really is. Go back to New York and confront him. See what he says, or does. Threaten to expose him, and if he refuses to stop what he’s doing… kill him.”
……
The night sky view of New York filled his office windows. I sat waiting for him in front of his desk. The doors slid open as Robert walked in.
“Ah, Logan, how did everything go in Chicago?”
I remained calm, keeping my heart rate down. “It went well, Sir. I learned some interesting information while I was there. You could have told me what was going on behind closed doors at Eden.”

Robert stumbled for a moment. “How did you find out?”

“My wife told me. She’s one of your ex-employees. You tried to have her killed twelve years ago I believe.”

His eyes widened at my revelation, and he tried to contact security but couldn’t. “You’re going to have a problem with that Daniels. Sara is currently using all of her computing power to try and destroy a virus in her main network. It’s just me and you.”

Robert jumped up from his desk and started to walk away. I pulled my gun out and cocked it. He stopped dead in his tracks and turned around.
“What do you want me to say Logan? I’m sorry? I’m not! I am the most powerful man in the world, the government can’t control Eden. My technology has brought mankind into a new era! You think you can stop me?” He looked crazed; his eyes bulged out of his head, his face bloodshot, his veins popped out down his neck. His prosthetic right arm started to shift, plates of metal transformed. “Do you like it? It turns into a sub machine gun.” An evil grin crossed his face as he opened fire on me.
I ducked and caught my breath behind a wall. Robert screamed at me, “You’re not going to leave here alive, Logan! Eden Dynamics will continue to shape the world as I see fit!”
I ran out and rained fire on him as my augmented eyes locked in on him. The glass windows shattered as bullets hit them. The cool night air rushed into the top floor office. Papers scattered as I made my next move. A blaze of bullets came at me. My security overlay proposed action for me, none with a high enough probability for killing Robert.
I ran straight towards him and punched the butt of my rifle into his abdomen. He flew backwards as his breath was knocked out of him. He struggled to his feet and tried to aim at me. I ran forwards and punched him in the face. Blood ran down his cheek as he wiped it off. Robert hurled himself at me pushing us closer to the broken windows. We struggled; I lost my balance and fell to the floor. As I did, I flipped Robert into the air.
He clung to the ledge of the window as I brought myself up from the floor. Glass crunched beneath my feet as I approached Robert. He looked at me with mercy, “Please, Logan, don’t do this. Think about what you’re doing, the consequences the world will face.”
“I already have, I’m saving the world from your destruction.”


......
“Ilisa Trevors here from Nexus News with an exclusive story about Robert Daniels, CEO of the largest US company, Eden Dynamics. Stocks this morning plummeted at the report of Daniels apparent suicide after top secret records from the company were published on the internet. Daniels and his company purportedly sold their technology to terrorist factions and mercenaries all over the world. His technology and aid helped kill more than a million people over the course of ten years. Once seen as one of the greatest men alive, Robert Daniels and his company are no more.”





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