17. Moving Waves

Nick, Yano and Haruma are still on the run from the rogue boomers in the lower levels of the ADP Totem Pole. As the relentless army of boomers marches on, the three men gain the temporary safety of an elevator. Still in the information centre, Nene monitors the situation and tries to guide them away from the boomers- only to find that the situation is growing worse with every passing minute as the boomers start taking control of the underground power system.

Elsewhere, Leon and Daley discuss the future over a bowl of ramen. Thanks to Genom’s machinations, the ADP is all but finished. And even though it isn’t clear to them just what Genom’s endgame is, with matters coming to a head it’s for sure that they won’t have to wait long to find out.

Their musings are interrupted by a call from Nick’s daughter Maria. She hasn’t been able to get into contact with her father for the last few hours. Although she shrugs it off as no big deal, it is strange for him to be out of contact…and it’s also the first indication to the outside world that something might be horribly wrong…

Indeed, Nick and the others aren’t doing so well. Despite Nene’s attempts to create a safe route for them, the boomers keep on coming through the elevator shaft and the floor- even the fire doors cannot stop them for long. Even reaching a higher level does no good when the boomers burst through the floor, leaving Nick, Yano and Haruma surrounded.

Using the last of their ammo, the three men manage to escape the boomers and attain new weapons when Nene brings down another set of fire doors. But the situation looks hopeless- as long as the boomers remain in the building, the security system will remain on lockdown, with a communications firewall preventing them from broadcasting any emergency messages. Fortunately, Nene is a more skilled hacker than the system designers allowed for- to Haruma’s surprise, she manages to bring down the entire sensor network. With the sensors no longer detecting “unauthorised personnel” in the building, the communications firewall can be lifted, allowing Nene to send an emergency broadcast.

The plan is successful, and the emergency broadcast goes online- at least, until the boomers intervene. Taking over the information centre, they shut down the broadcast and cut Nene off from all support. And with Nene stranded, the others can no longer count on her support. Their only hope is an emergency stash of weapons located on the ninth floor- but will it be enough?

At Genom Tower, one of Mason’s secretary boomers is gathering data on Galatea. Walking in on her, Mason realises that the boomer is not the “clean unit” he had hoped for, but is instead working for Quincy. Angered, he destroys the boomer, but it is too late- Quincy now knows that Mason has brought Galatea to the tower. Still, Mason is certain that it makes no difference at this stage; although Quincy may think otherwise, it is too late to stop him.

Meanwhile, Galatea continues to grow stronger and more powerful- now she has learned how to read and already tires of the book Mason has brought her. Mason is amazed at how quickly she learns, and is more than a little puzzled by her reply that her friend Macky is helping her.

Having finally got a message from Linna after spending all day in rehearsals, Priss heads down to the Silky Doll where the others update her on the situation at the Totem Pole. But with Nigel needing at least four days to build even one new hardsuit, it looks as if there is no way for the Knight Sabers to help their friend- or is there? There is still one piece of technology they can use- the Moto Slave. Nigel designed it so that Priss could use it without her hardsuit, and despite Macky’s fears that is too dangerous, Priss is determined to go anyway. It seems she really does care about the other Knight Sabers after all.

Meanwhile, things have gotten worse for Nene. Her attempt to hide in a storeroom fails miserably when she knocks over a container and attracts the attention of the boomers. Forced to run, Nene chances across a gun and immediately turns from hunted to hunter, shooting down the oncoming boomers. But even as she runs to catch up with the others, Nene’s luck changes once again as another set of fire doors comes down, trapping her in a short section of corridor.

But outside help is on its way; having detected the aborted emergency broadcast, Leon, Daley and some other ADP officers have arrived at the Totem Pole to find out what’s going on- and soon after they are joined by Priss and the Moto-Slave. But even with the Knight Sabers and the ADP now co-operating with each other, will they be in time to save Nene and the others?

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