Deidre Hall at the moment is unmarried. She got married four times though. She married William Hudson who is also an actor in 1966 and they separated in 1970. She then married to Keith Barbour in 1972. Keith is an American singer and songwriter. The couple separated in 1977. Then she married to Michael Dubelko in 1987. Michael Dubelko is a film producer. The marriage lasted for two years and ... Deidre Hall has had an encounter with Quinn K. Redeker (1979).. About. Deidre Hall is a 72 year old American Actress. Born Deidre Ann Hall on 31st October, 1947 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, she is famous for Days of Our Lives. Her zodiac sign is Scorpio. Deidre’s Kitchen Closeup and How Does She Do It? are available for purchase! In the hour or less it might take you to pour yourself a cup of coffee, sit down and read each book, you will have had more than a few laughs and will also pick up a few health and beauty secrets that may change how you do it. Deidre Hall Plastic Surgery Before and After Photos. Deidre Hall has undergone Plastic Sugery and this photo was published here on 30 July 2014 in the category Plastic Surgery. See yourself how Plastic Surgery did miracly by taking a closer look on Deidre Hall’s Plastic Surgery before and after Pictures here on Surgery Miracles.See yourself, Deidre Hall body transformation has taken place ... See all Deidre Hall's marriages, divorces, hookups, break ups, affairs, and dating relationships plus celebrity photos, latest Deidre Hall news, gossip, and biography. Deidre Hall is currently single. She has been in seven celebrity relationships averaging approximately 3.4 years each. Her four marriages have averaged 5.9 years each. Explore Deidre Hall's Bio-Wiki, net worth & salary in 2020. Learn about Deidre Hall's age, height, weight, dating, husband, boyfriend & kids. Is she dead or alive? In between her multiple marriages, Hall also had an active dating life. She dated Ned Randolph in 1980s. She also dated Drake Hogestyn, a co-worker in the Days of our Lives show. There was a rumor that Hall is a bisexual and had affairs with Mary Frann and Jane Elliot. It was speculated that one of her husbands was also gay and the wedding was ... More about the Deidre Hall and William Hudson dating / relationship. More about the Deidre Hall and Keith Barbour dating / relationship. More about the Deidre Hall and Quinn K. Redeker dating / relationship. More about the Deidre Hall and Michael Dubelko dating / relationship. More about the Deidre Hall and Steve Sohmer dating / relationship. Deidre Hall filed for di-vorce from her third husband after a friend showed her his profile on Match.com an online dating service, The ENQUIRER has learned exclusively. Even worse, when the 'Days of Our Lives' star confronted her husband Steve Sohmer about the dating ad, he told her she should-n't be upset. 'Steve and Deidre's relation- Deidre Hall is straight. She is a sexy and fabulous woman. Men love her. She has dyed blonde hair. Scroll down and check out her voluptuous body, short and/or medium dyed blonde hairstyles & haircuts. 2 Ways to Vote her Up! 1. Hit the 'Tweet' button at the top ↑ 2. Tell us 'why you have a crush on her'
Welcome! For those who are new (or just want a refresher):
_ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ Chapter 6 High and Low
Sleep didn’t come easily. Deidre tossed and turned in bed as she tried to configure her MindCom to help her archive telepathic readings. She gave up eventually, assuming that whatever enhancements Valerie had made, they somehow got around the problem of having to use a computer program that didn’t understand how to activate mental abilities.
The MindCom was an emerald-generation thought colony; a linked network of microscopic robotic processors laced throughout the human brain. Nearly every member of the Colonial Armed Forces had one installed (citizens had similar, consumer-oriented versions). They could provide a variety of services, from simple messaging and data storage to more involved functions like tactical analysis, body regulation, and social matchmaking. The system could locate and eradicate harmful diseases and poisons, calculate the likely outcomes of given scenarios, and save a running backup of the user’s mental state and memories.
That last benefit would create a thought profile that could technically be used to ‘resurrect’ a dead user, though the true result would actually be a clone with implanted memories. It was what the Colonial Empire planned on doing to Deidre: Use her genetic profile to reproduce all her mental gifts, implant her fully-trained, stable mind into the resulting copy, and presto, one new Deidre.
Repeat as needed.
The only limitation of the MindCom system was that, while it could activate various bodily systems, it couldn’t quite grasp mentalics. That meant no automated shielding in the event of an ambush, no preset offensive attacks, nothing. The MindCom could warn of an oncoming assault, but it couldn’t actually activate the user’s abilities to help deal with it.
Deidre wasn’t about to complain, of course. All its benefits certainly overshadowed such minor shortcomings. Still, she would have liked to do more with Valerie’s assignment. She wasn’t sure why, but she had a desire to impress the android woman. Perhaps it was the fact that she was neither unapproachable like Valkentoff nor instantly accepting like Karen. She was simply difficult to reach. A challenge.
“Then again, I might just like showing off,” she murmured, rubbing her eyes. “Egotist.”
Sighing, she decided natural rest wasn’t going to happen any time soon, queued up a standard sleep cycle, and let her dreams take her.
_ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _
An obnoxious buzzing woke Deidre nearly an hour before her alarm. A half-second later, the door monitor chimed, lighting up the room with a sharp, fluorescent white glow.
Deidre grunted, briefly entertained the thought of setting whomever was responsible on fire, and rolled out of bed.
Sleepily, she padded to the door in her official CEF pajamas and triggered the callbox. The screen flashed, displaying a video feed from just outside the apartment. In the hallway, six imposing men – mostly human, but some alien – in dark suits stood waiting. Every last one had the sort of towering builds and flawless physiques that screamed genetic modification. Strips of metal traced the edges of their temples and necks, likely for feeding data to cybernetic combat suites, and their suits bulged with hidden ordnance. Their cookie-cutter appearances extended to their faces, all of which seemed locked in the required mien for unfriendly enforcers everywhere: grim, flat, and overly-serious.
“Sorry, guys. I didn’t order a pizza,” Deidre said, rubbing the sleep out of one eye.
“Your presence is requested by Crown Prince Verasicht,” Interchangeable Goon #1 said, his voice a rolling baritone. “You will accompany us to his offices at Eidolon Tower.”
“Is this a date?” she asked, disliking nearly everything about the situation and resolving to spread that emotion around. “Does he know I’m underage?”
“You have ten minutes to prepare yourself,” Goon #1 said, annoyingly unphased. “Your companions will attend you.” On the monitor, Deidre noticed a few of his friends having similar conversations with two of the doors down the hall.
“And if I decide I want to sleep in and maybe melt your carbon copy asses instead?”
He didn’t even hesitate. “We have been instructed to inform you that noncompliance will result in travel restrictions and an embargo on all CAF transits to, from, and within this port. Hostilities will be considered a declaration of war by the Colonial Empire and-”
“Fine, I get it. Hang on,” Deidre said, disgusted.
She took her sweet time getting ready, emerging a half hour later in her official CEF uniform. The goons seemed unamused, which, while not exactly surprising, still felt like a minor victory. Valerie, immaculate as ever, nodded to her from two doors down the hall. If the simulacker had rushed her usual routine, there was no sign of it. Even her clothes seemed unnaturally pristine.
“Where’s Karen?” Deidre asked, noting the empath’s absence.
“Apparently more dedicated than you at making her displeasure known,” the Lieutenant responded, her eyes snapping to the woman’s door.
Deidre smirked at that, and was more than happy to wait the extra ten minutes her friend ended up taking. When she did make an appearance, Karen ignored the waiting creeps and pushed through them to Deidre. “Morning!” she said, bright and unconcerned. “Wanna nab some breakfast? I hear the pancakes at Eidolon Tower aren’t bad.”
“Sounds great!” Deidre said, feeling a genuine smile appear.
Karen nodded to one of the men. “All right. Get us there. And hurry it up – I’m tired of waiting.”
It was hard to spot, but the little flicker of loathing on the man’s impassive face nearly made their unwanted wakeup call worth it.
_ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _
The room was, just barely, more extravagant and pompous than its owner.
They were in a cathedral-like vault, a soaring atrium of carefully-tended utopia trees, stained glass, and marble columns. A path wound through the garden temple, the trail marked with strips of gems and precious metals, terminating at the steps of an enormous onyx platform.
Upon it, a desk larger than a grav skimmer sprawled before an ornate office chair that was clearly intended to seem more like a throne. Behind the galaxy’s most ostentatious workspace, vast windows looked out on the clear skies above Port Moratlis. A doorway in one corner of the façade led to a private shuttle platform; a single, breathtakingly sleek craft was moored at its end.
The morning sun, cutting through the industrial haze in the upper atmosphere, cast the whole affair in vibrant shades of gold.
They were above even the executive floors of House Verasicht’s control tower. With the edifice’s monumental underbelly hidden by the clouds and the airy, ecclesiastic design of their surroundings, one could almost forget they stood atop a sea of human misery and enterprise.
Their host, the Crown Prince himself, spread his arms and grinned as they approached his desk, his almost-throne chair rolling back with the movement. “My friends! Welcome! Always a pleasure to treat with representatives of the illustrious Colonial Elite Forces,” he said, his voice crisp and high, yet just a touch too snide.
He was a simsahr; one of humanity’s trading partners in the galaxy. Tall with pebbly, reptilian flesh, all simsahr had been forcibly evolved and molded into their current bipedal form by an unknown race thousands of years ago. Originally an odd combination of insect and lizard, the event had shaped the simsahr into an anthropomorphic species with a reverence for technology. Since that time, their development had followed a very similar arc to mankind’s.
At first glance, they seemed surprisingly close to humans - eyes, nose, mouth, hands with five fingers, and so on - but the differences quickly became apparent. They were hairless, their mouths were filled with serrated teeth, and their skin changed colors depending on their environment and mood. Their eyes were compound (a remnant of their insectile heritage) and all of their joints were hypermobile, letting them bend in often-disconcerting ways.
Crown Prince Verasicht’s skin was currently a smug shade of rusty amber. He wore a tightly-tailored business suit with an actual stars-be-damned cape
, the whole affair threaded with platinum and accented by a fist-sized gem pinned to his left breast and carved into his house’s symbol. It caught the light whenever he moved, throwing a riot of colors across his absurd desk.
Deidre had the suspicion that, were it not for modern medical technology and nanite maintenance, this was the sort of creature who would be very, very fat.
“I am Dahltak Verasicht, Crown Prince of the Verasicht Trade Union and Controllers Guild and head of all our spaceflight operations in Port Moratlis,” he said in a gleeful, self-important tone.
“May I inquire as to the nature of your summons?” Valerie said the instant he stopped speaking. Deidre suspected she’d hurried to prevent Karen from saying anything… accurate.
“Of course, Lieutenant Sona,” he replied, radiating arrogance. “You are here because you are going to forge a partnership between the Colonial Empire and House Verasicht.”
“Correct. You will provide military information, escorts, convoys, and ground-level support for all House Verasicht operations. You will assign operatives to guard high-level members of our house” – he quirked his compound eyes at that, clearly indicating he would be one of the protected elites – “and inform our house economists of any potential profits or shortfalls that may result from your military operations.”
Valerie blinked, utter shock registering even through her android features. Karen seemed similarly flabbergasted for a moment, then broke into gales of laughter.
“Ahaha! Sure! How about we just start shooting your competition out of the skies, too?” she cackled, holding a hand to her face. “That’s rich. That’s too good. Thanks.”
“I do not jest,” Dahltak said, leaning over his desk. A touch of crimson accented his skin. “You will provide these services to House Verasicht, or your Empire will fall.”
Karen’s mirth vanished. “Excuse me?” she said in a very different tone.
Dahltak kicked back, smile returning. “You have a secret,” he said, steepling his fingers. “A particularly unique one, at that.”
For the first time since she’d entered Eidolon Tower, a stirring of fear began to brew in Deidre’s gut.
“Your race is unique. This, some of us had already suspected; how else could you have come so far so fast? Many believed you had friends – perhaps the Ourians had chosen to experiment again, perhaps a great power was playing a very long game – but no, that seems not to be the case. Your uniqueness… is innate.
To punctuate that, he raised a pebbled finger of swirling saffron and tapped it to the side of his head. Oh no.
Grin a mile wide, he rose and began to pace behind his desk. “You did a fine job of hiding it, make no mistake, but there are certain conditions
in our good port of which you were sadly unaware.”
“We will confirm nothing,” Valerie snapped.
“Your confirmation is unnecessary,” he replied, turning to stare out the vast window. “Your race has access to all known mentalic fields. The data we have collected is proof enough, but the youngling with you, ahh
He turned to stare at Deidre, every facet of his geometric eyes seeming to shine with greed. “…she is my final request. Enter her in my employ.”
“Fat chance,” Karen spat.
He shrugged. “Agree to my terms and your secret remains with House Verasicht. Deny me and it will find its way to the stars... as well as the true nature of this ‘Candidate Veronice.’ I assure you, between the two, you will never
know safety. Your race is a fine curiosity, but the girl? She is pure, macro-scale potential
. Do you even realize what she could do, properly shepherded? Do your middling intellects even grasp-”
“You get nothing,” Deidre said, hot rage crushing the fear, blasting up from somewhere dark and daunting. “Not our help and never me
. You forget all of this, destroy the data and tell us how you got it, or your entire house dies
Valerie turned to stare at her, dead face unreadable, but the telepath said nothing. A moment later, a whisper of pride and caution from Karen provided the empath’s opinion.
Dahltak scoffed. “A threat? How new.”
He inclined his head, and a moment later, dozens of his black-suited, cyber-enhanced, gene-amped minions emerged from the woodwork. Hidden panels slid open, foliage rustled to the side, and the room seemed to come alive with movement before settling into a very tense silence. Fifty-six threats identified
, text chattered across her peripheral vision as her MindCom analyzed the room. Primary armaments: Gauss lancer variants, incendiary and concussive triggers, neural destabilizers, memory whips-
“Toothless,” Dahltak said, heaving a dramatic sigh. “You, like your race, are undeniably brash, yet ultimately feeble.”
“You think these men make you safe?” Karen said, arcing an eyebrow. “You haven’t a clue what we’re capable of, you hollow sack of-”
“Empath,” Dahltak said, pointing at her. His finger shifted to Valerie. “Bimental. Telepathy and premonition.” He leered as he looked to Deidre. “And, of course, the grab-bag.”
Karen’s jaw dropped. Then she composed herself. “It doesn’t matter what you know. We can still-”
“Oh, spare me,” he said, pulling a small remote from one pocket on his regal suit. It seemed out of place with the rest of his possessions, clearly sturdy and well-made, but far more industrial and workmanlike than his other trappings of wealth.
He tapped it idly, then gave Karen a pointed stare.
The Major frowned, opened her mouth to speak. “Wh- agh!
” she began, unable to make it through the first syllable before she bit it off in a strangled, keening wail. Clutching the sides of her head, she collapsed to the floor, thrashing.
Valerie stared at her peer in shock, then turned toward the Prince, her posture predatory, violent.
Dahltak pointedly looked away and flicked a piece of lint off of one of his cuffs, ignoring the woman completely. A heartbeat later, the simulacker’s frame seized in place and she toppled backward, onto the tiled path. She didn’t make a sound, but Deidre vaguely sensed the same paralyzing agony from her mind as Karen’s.
“Didn’t even have to touch it that time, did I?” the Crown Prince said, shooting a sly glance at Deidre. “Care to draw a conclusion regarding your chances?”
“You’re dead,” she spat, turning to the simsahr.
“Slow learner, I see,” he said, shrugging as he gave his remote a tap. “Ah, well. Humans.”
Something ghosted through Deidre’s brain in that moment, an odd, out-of-body shiver that felt vaguely like déjà vu. It wasn’t exactly fun, but it was mercifully brief. A moment later, the sensation faded. She blinked, looking around, and realized that other than that mildly uncomfortable mental chill, she seemed no worse for wear.
Dahltak frowned, tapped his device again. And again.
“This stupid-” he began.
Before he could finish the sentence, Deidre slammed into his mind, wriggling past its few barriers to dive into the dynamic, bewildering complexity of his conscious thoughts. A riot of noise and color blew past, and then the gorgeous latticework of his personality stretched before her, a curved infinity of the self. Surrounded by the humming machinery of his psyche, she paused to admire its brilliant, analytical nature. Here was the seat of his being, the iridescent hive of light and life that made Dahltak... Dahltak.
Deidre smiled and took a moment to flip through those memories, to dig her psychic fingers in and get a solid grasp of everything he knew. Then she pulled back, fracked and compressed the entirety of his history and intelligence into a glowing pearl of enlightenment, a personalized facsimile of the man, and pocketed it.
That done, she gathered every drop of rage in herself, every piece of ruination she could envision, and vomited it into his brain.
Twisted memories, psychic poison buoyed on slick waves of hatred, crashed into that glorious network of thoughts, eating away at them like acid. Kernels of knowledge popped, the delicate filaments of his self-esteem blackened and curled, and his towering supports of hope and happiness toppled. Disaster and chaos spread, the terrifying experiences she’d forged taking on new lives of their own, multiplying and mutilating, until all that remained was a pitiful ruin of cognitive decay.
It was over in moments.
Deidre pulled away, out of the wasteland she’d made of his mind, and opened herself back up to the world around her. The Crown Prince was slumped over his desk, his skin gray, eyes half-lidded. A thin line of drool inched from his slack mouth.
There was nothing left inside - she’d destroyed everything he’d ever been.
Guns, grenades, batons, and worse leapt into fifty-six pairs of hands, a roomful of high-powered assassins drawing a bead on the teenage girl who’d just lobotomized their master.
Deidre caught the first wave of gauss rounds in a web of kinetic force, halting them in a deafening barrage of shockwaves that sent plants thrashing and stained glass tinkling down. She wasn’t worried about the firearms, but there were neural chaff emitters, mentalic scramblers, and psi-shields spread throughout the pack, all of which could be her death.
With twenty-three flicks of kinesis spread across four heartbeats, she deftly activated every explosive device her MindCom could find, overriding their safeties and shoving their interior primers toward ignition before wrapping herself and her friends in a hardened shell.
Bodies launched in all directions, pristinely-tended trees flew to splinters, and a monsoon of glass rained down as the room was torn apart by a chain reaction of fireballs, hammering bursts of force, and ricocheting fists of ballistic shrapnel. Thirty-four threats
, her MindCom updated, and Deidre blinked, surprised. House Verasicht clearly spared little when it came to the modification of their underlings – she’d expected far fewer to survive.
Seeming intent on reinforcing that point, six men launched themselves toward her through the haze of smoke and drifting leaves, overcharged muscles rippling with unnatural strength. Five caromed off her barrier, but the sixth was able to react with a seismic stick at full charge, sending a miniaturized earthquake reverberating through her field.
Momentarily dazed by the distortion, Deidre staggered back, unable to keep her shield from flickering. It was barely a second of inattention, but it was enough for the man to dart forward, wrap a meaty fist around her neck, and close her windpipe.
A rocket engine’s white-hot flare of pyrokinesis blew his skin to ash and threw the smoke-wreathed remnants into the far wall with a puff of greasy soot. Coughing, Deidre spun and whipped the overpowering flame through a searing arc, converting four more suited speed demons into heaps of ruptured cinders.
Then a man tackled her from behind, the high-pitched whine of something deadly thrumming to life in his hands. Out of ideas for escape and unsure if she could shield herself in time, she instead concentrated a lifetime’s worth of misfortune into that unseen device, unbalancing the scales and forcing her own miracle.
Her attacker didn’t even have a chance to scream as the weapon backfired, sending several million volts cascading through his priceless nervous system and cutting shadows through the dust-filled vastness of the room like an electric sun.
Understanding she’d bought herself a handful of seconds at most, Deidre refused to waste them. She snagged both of her friends with nets of kinesis, drew a new bubble around herself, and yanked all three of them back with all the elegance of a pint-sized planet cracker.
The sonic boom and pressure wave were enough to blow the lights out and tear the entire face off the building. Howling winds poured in as Deidre, Karen, and Valerie shot out in rigid arc. All she saw was a brief flash of tumbling bodies and twirling metal before they were darting over the polished shuttle dock outside.
Desperate to keep them from being swallowed by the open air and rain-slashed clouds, Deidre directed another pulse from above and smashed them back onto the platform.
“Oof!” she grunted, wind blasting out of her lungs. She and her torpid friends bounced once, then rolled to a stop.
Blood ran into her left eye, blurring her vision, and she groaned and held a hand to her head. “Okay, that... that one needs practice,” she gasped.
She lifted her head, squinted with her good eye. Suited shapes still moved in the crumbling chaos of the atrium they’d left behind, but none seemed to realize their foes had found an exit. Smiling weakly, Deidre staggered to her feet and swayed toward the Crown Prince’s shuttle, dragging Karen and Valerie behind her with stuttering twitches of kinesis.
The shimmering metal of the craft drew near, shining a cheerful gold before the dawning sun. Suddenly exhausted, Deidre leaned against it, allowed herself a few seconds of hyperventilation, and then turned her thoughts inward, diving into the pearl of knowledge that was all that remained of Dahltak Verasicht’s mind.
She fed his personal access code and passphrases into the shuttle with a burst from her MindCom, getting it right on the second try, then pulled herself and her friends inside. That done, she sealed the door and began prepping the ship for takeoff. She had no idea how to fly the damn thing, but its former owner certainly did.
With the help of his stolen memories, the engines hummed to life, the security clearance locks detached, and the four separate booby traps laced throughout the cockpit disarmed themselves with friendly beeps.
Deidre grabbed at the controls, letting Dahltak’s training take over, and used his practiced touch to spin the wasplike shuttle up and around. She took a moment to level and turn the craft, maneuvering until it faced the smoking ruin of Eidolon Tower’s upper atrium. She glared at it for a moment, then flicked on the shuttle’s extensive – and patently unnecessary – weapons systems.
She spun up the ship’s plasma array first, wary of further attacks, then took her time to lock something a little more powerful onto the comatose heat signature still slumped behind his grandiose desk. Twenty seconds and three vaporized goons later, the ACTIVE indicator on the shuttle’s HUD pinged green.
Deidre prepared to send the launch command, then hesitated.
Carefully, she rifled through a block of the simsahr’s memories, hunting until she found the extra cherry this particular bout of catharsis demanded: Its price tag.
“Wow,” she said, whistling at the number of zeroes. “That actually helps.”
Twin missiles streaked out on lines of crackling fire, cutting through the cloud of debris and devouring House Verasicht’s heir and the upper floors of his grandest creation in a sprawling torrent of flame. Deidre watched with glee as the fireball expanded, then yelped and yanked on the controls as she realized it was going to be far bigger than she’d expected.
After riding out a brief but scary shockwave, she returned the gorgeous ship to a much higher position, surveying the sputtering carnage with a grim smile.
“Told ya,” she said, watching the plume of smoke that was Dahltak’s legacy billow into the bright dawn sky.
_ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _
There was nothing left of the top thirty floors of Eidolon Tower but twisted debris and pools of hardened metal. Of the levels below, the intense heat had warped the superstructure and laid waste to the contents of the nearest rooms. Karen, covered in a blanket and shivering despite it, watched the cleanup crews through reddened eyes. She was sitting on a smooth mound of slag, arms wrapped around her knees.
“You sure you’re okay?” Deidre asked, edging closer.
Karen’s eyes darted to her. “I’m alive, and getting tired of the question.”
“Sorry, sorry,” Deidre said, holding up her hands and stepping away.
She turned to watch the medical and repair crews work. Officially, as the highest-ranking – aka: only
– CEF representatives in the area, the three of them were in charge of the relief efforts. In practice, they were there to babysit the Crimson Principle
’s tech teams as they went over the ruins with a fine-tooth comb, ensuring no trace of Crown Prince Dahltak’s discovery remained.
Deidre had been a little worried she might be in trouble for, well, murdering a high-ranking merchant and/or feeding his family’s building a few rockets, but the whole affair had disappeared thanks to two aces: the Colonial Empire’s propaganda and internal security divisions, and her faultless recall of the Crown Prince’s memories (including planets
worth of dirty secrets and leverage). Between them, they’d managed to classify the whole event as an unfortunate industrial accident and even get House Verasicht to publicly thank
the Empire on the speed of its response.
Then again, for what Dahltak had tried to do, it barely seemed acceptable.
“We have confirmation on the nature of the simsahr’s technological advantage,” Valerie said, walking up. Though her frame and voice gave no sign of it, Deidre could tell by the ragged edge to the woman’s thoughts that she was nearly as frazzled as Karen.
“What was it?” she asked.
“A very specific virus,” Valerie said, stopping beside them. “Likely created by a third party, outside the merchant House.”
Karen looked up at the woman. “A virus? Are you serious?
Do you think I’m ever
going to be able to sleep again? Did you see
Deidre shuddered and turned away. Valerie simply nodded. “Yes. Our ‘nightmares,’ while inventively horrific, were merely a visualization intended to trap our minds, forged by a programmer for maximum impact.”
“How is that even possible?” Karen said softly. “The things it said… and did
. I mean, you- you felt it, right? How could that
have come out of a computer program?”
“I sent samples of the virus to the software engineers on the Crimson Principle
,” Valerie said, squatting beside Karen. “Their analysis found it to be an extremely advanced piece of evolutionary code. Probably assembled in mindspace through AI interpreters. Designed to attach to a victim’s MindCom and, among other things, use it to kill the owner.”
“At least it didn’t get that far,” Deidre said.
“Only because its wielder chose not to let it,” Valerie replied. “As it stands, the ‘distraction’ subroutine was more than enough. It is apparently intended to turn a victim’s very thoughts and memories against them, to construct a monster out of the darkest pieces of their personality, then unleash it.”
“Gee.” Karen rolled her eyes. “It’s like poetry. Glad to know that- that thing
was tailor-made for me. Flattering.”
“We were fortunate, all things considered,” Valerie said, turning to look at Deidre.
“Yeah,” Karen said, following the Lieutenants’s gaze. “Why didn’t she get taken down for a little psychic keelhauling with us?”
Valerie sighed, a precise exhalation. She looked at Karen, then up at Deidre. “As far as the Principle’s
engineers can tell… it malfunctioned.”
“Lucky break,” Karen said.
Worry creased the Lieutenant’s flawless features. “Merely a silver lining in a very dark storm.”
“I beg to differ!” Deidre snapped.
“Listen,” Valerie said, her measured voice becoming quieter. The delivery didn’t change – it was more like someone had turned down the volume on a speaker. “Unless Tech is mistaken, every single
sentient organism in Port Moratlis with a MindCom system is infected with this virus. That includes every CAF officer who has passed through here since its creation, all of our government officials, and, of course, the three of us.”
” Karen said loudly. She grimaced and her eyes flicked to the emergency crews that labored nearby. If they’d noticed her outburst, they gave no sign. Deidre squatted down to join her and Valerie. When the Major spoke again, her voice was little more than a whisper. “How is that even possible? It’s supposed to be hack-proof.”
“Someone’s found a weakness,” Valerie hissed. “A backdoor. A software patch is already nearing completion, but the fact that it happened once is cause enough for alarm.”
“I’ll say. Everyone
has the damn things,” Karen said.
“Hence the concern.”
“So someone made it to kill people?” Deidre said. “Way to supervillain, I guess.”
“No,” Valerie said. “That is only a very small part of the program – its primary goal is information-gathering, with a particular focus on, of course, mentalics.”
“Is that even possible?” Deidre asked. “I thought the system couldn’t interface with those portions of our brains.”
“Interface, no – examine, yes. Once it subverts a host’s MindCom, the virus begins extending a web of data-spiders throughout the infected network. According to the analysis, it incorporates several elements similar to a Delphic scanner to facilitate this.”
“Creepy,” Deidre murmured.
“Eventually, it understands its host enough to be able to swiftly kill or disable them, as well as make the distinction between a mentalic brain and a normal one. Enough time, and it can even determine the precise mentalic classification of an infected adept.”
“How long does that take?”
“Usually weeks. However, if the subject utilizes their powers post-infection, that can be dramatically reduced.”
She stopped and looked pointedly at Deidre.
“You were flagged almost immediately,” she said, her tone reproachful. “You used kinesis as a makeshift umbrella, empathy to redirect hostile thoughts, telepathy at my behest, and several attempts at premonition in the evening hours. Dahltak had an alert set for unusual results, and when your profile appeared with those abilities listed, he immediately
understood humanity’s secret.”
“Oh. I- I didn’t think...” Deidre trailed off, floored by her carelessness.
“And the virus?” Karen prompted after a moment. Deidre had the feeling she was trying to lighten her guilt with a subject change. “What’s the actual intent behind it? Espionage, assassination, or a really
bitchin’ dev portfolio?”
“Unclear. It requires a remote command before it will perform anything beyond analysis. The distraction and termination protocols can’t even be sent wide-band to, say, everyone who’s infected – they need targeted, manual approval on a case-by-case basis.”
“And Mr. Verasicht had his personal system set to trigger the hurty part on anyone who tried to use mentalics against him,” Deidre said, confirming with a quick glance at the dead man’s memories.
Valerie nodded. “I attempted to shut down his mind and was immediately rendered insensate by the reactive protocol.”
“So what happened to me?”
“As I said, it malfunctioned. The best guess from the Principle
’s tech lab is that your diverse array of mentalic profiles introduced a bug into the system. Whomever designed it clearly spent the bulk of their effort on the initial intrusion and data collection portions – the potential use case of disabling a polymental of your scope was never tested or even considered.”
“Saved by lazy code,” Karen said, snorting. “There’s an achievement.”
“As a result, the attack divided and dispersed itself to a crippling degree, registering as ambient chaff which your MindCom duly filtered.” Valerie paused, and when she spoke again, it wasn’t verbal – her cultured tones echoed in Deidre’s head like neural music. Can you confirm that it was not built by House Verasicht?
Deidre had already taken a peek at the answer earlier, but now she made sure to thoroughly ransack the Crown Prince’s memories, just in case she’d missed something. He bought it
, she cast to both Valerie and Karen. Dead drop, several layers of intermediaries. Even he didn’t know who. But the kill/disable commands were extra – he paid a fortune for them. Whomever made the virus apparently doesn’t sell those to just anyone.
Worry slithered in alongside Valerie’s reply. Then we are on borrowed time. Admiral Kreslim’s advisors believe this means our secret is in the hands of an unknown third party and disastrously close to revelation. They’ve informed me we have less than 24 hours before they step in. Fail to find the source in that time, and they’ll begin taking drastic measures.
How drastic? There’s a phased plan for this. Consult your archives for ‘Flawless Intent.’
Deidre took a moment to find the classified file and skim its contents. A blockade. Troops. A city-wide quarantine. More ships. A planetary lockdown. An armada. And then…
Deidre sighed internally. Valerie seemed to pick up on it. Yes. They’ll glass Port Moratlis to protect their secret. Of course they will.
Deidre had the unexpected need to stifle a laugh. I guess I’d be stupid to be surprised. Subtlety is not their way. We’ll find the idiot. Besides, I need to ‘thank’ them for my nightmare,
Karen thought to them with a burst of conviction. But where do we begin? We’ve got no leads and little time.
Laughter wafted through their minds from Valerie like a joyful breeze. Don’t you see, Major? Our cases are connected. I can feel them entwining even now. Either we will subvert the virus for our own ends and use it to find our serial killer, or… he has already employed its services to hunt his victims. Mentalists are not easy to recognize, after all. How else could he find such success in so short a time?
Karen’s shock and delight cascaded into Deidre’s thoughts. Indeed
, Valerie replied. Two birds, one stone. Let us be off. The teams here are more than capable of completing their task. Brilliant!
Deidre broadcast, grinning at the elegance of it. Where are we headed?
“This is a city of murder,” Valerie said, her natural voice surprising Deidre after the intense mental conversation. “Murder and commerce. Between the two lies our answer: Someone in this megapolis knows how to find mentalists, and they’re selling the technology to the highest bidders. Let us discover who.”
“Okay, but how?
She stood and beckoned. “We cheat.”
_ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _ - _
Part 7 is now available here!
Deidre Ann Hall is an American actress best known for her portrayal of Dr. Marlena Evans on NBC's daytime drama Days of Our Lives, whom she has played for over 40 years. Hall has won many awards for h Skip navigation Dating In the Middle Ages Episode 2.6 'BUZZ KILL' Samantha Collins re-enters the dating scene after her fifteen-year marriage ends and it is like landing on Mars. The entire dating scene has ... Deidre Hall discusses her books, role on Days of our Lives, receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and other topics on The Queen Latifah Show March 27, 2014 To celebrate the upcoming 50th anniversary of ‘Days of Our Lives,’ NBC’s longest running drama, Deidre Hall, Galen Gering, Kristian Alfonso, Stephen Nichols, Lauren Koslow, Thaao Penghlis ... Deidre and Drake at the 13th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards in 1986. No copyright intended, I own nothing. Dating In The Middle Ages Stars: Devin Mills, John Schneider, Deidre Hall, Matthew Ashford, Loren Lester, Kelly Lester, Joshua Finkel and Victor Fischbarg For More Fun Follow Us: https://www ...