Lev.DN.....Index.....Identity Crisis, page 12 (c)1996 Lee Skidmore.....Lev.UP

The slick set of super-lux suspended wheels twisted with a ghostlike effortlessness through the thick mix of vehicles on the parkway. The Scintilla auto-locked onto the 'follow me' signal. For a moment, he dreamed about a different life. He gave his head a shake. The worm started the blob wiggling again.

Johnny outlined what he wanted to do, then opened the blob's V-mail. "Shary, Honey, I'm sorry about this. You know I wouldn't have wished this on you for the world. At least I can square it with your boss when I get this mess cleared up." Wish I could help with school. Johnny sighed, saddened at being a dangerous burden to her. "I didn't have anything to do with this guy's death. I'm going to find out who does. This will all be over before you know it." He paused, with a deep sigh, he said, "I love you." A finger twitch entered 'endfile'. And, the worm turned loose a small army of tiny two-bit agents on the mednet.

Now that he wasn't a good-guy anymore, Johnny could began to appreciate the venomous programs that were all over the city's net. It would be impossible to live without them in his present position.

Sun bleached wind-blown sand painted the swank, no-cars, residences parking lot's asphalt with nova bright white and deep-space dark waves that the Scintilla surfed. He stopped at the far edge of the lot in the lee of a dune. The door wheezed open. The empty white noise of chilled ocean wave were ominously eerie to Johnny's city ears. Wide-sky over the gray-green expanse of open-ocean left the big cop feeling small. He was deeply conditioned to a security fence of towering multi-colored, concrete and steel giants cloistered protectively around a kaleidoscope of a thousand different, but well known sounds.

With teeth chattered against the sticky wet chill of the salty early-spring-wind he sloughed his way up the dune. At the top, his eyes fell on a valley of green perfection that surrounded a white-washed mansion. Warmed by the sight, he rode an avalanche of sand down the dune. At the bottom, Johnny walked out onto a carpet of thick deep-green grass. Du Quesne's was the third one down the road. The next mansion was walled in,

Lev.DN.....Index.....Identity Crisis, page 12 (c)1996 Lee Skidmore.....Lev.UP