The Mechanical Ogre
In Bologna, the future heart of railway communications on the Eurasian continent, a city continually changing, submerged in toxic fumes and light pollution, Amanda becomes involved in a series of brutal murders. Thanks to her gift for navigating the net, she is called upon by iRobots to solve the case. But why would the largest robot company in the world be interested in catching a murderer?
Amanda raised her head from the sticky counter of the Japanese bar, her eyes blurry with drunken stupor, and vaguely remembered having beans for breakfast. She could not recall anything else that had happened that day except for the beans and an orange juice laced with vodka she had washed them down with. She sat up attempting to stretch her aching muscles.
The Japanese bar had filled up while she was asleep. Hazy blue light shone down through the smoky air, drunken voices drowned out the music. In a pulsating knob she caught sight of the silhouette of a man with six arms. The hologram of a model wearing a dinner jacket approached, looking like a blue shell filled with vapour, and his invitation to smoke heaven-knows-what-make of cigarettes was lost in all the racket. Amanda waved him away, and the electronic salesman disappeared.
Although she did not know what had woken her up, she would have bet on the baritone laugh of the man sitting next to her – a German with skin-grafts on his face, still wearing the orange overalls of workers at the station.
As if Bologna needed more drunken workers, or new trains, coming here, she thought.