The sky is burned to orange and society has fragmented. Anyone that is not fully human is ostracized or worse. Aria Brayton, age twenty-three, is an Opus, a high skilled and genetically enhanced assassin with an AI. She has been on the run from the government and Project Maestro, the place that made her what she is, for the past three years. A wanted poster for her arrest and a group of people with AIs chasing after her spark her journey back to Project Maestro. She must put aside her past in order to help out the man in charge of the program, Major John Stratton. Tragedy, a desire to protect her sister, and an escalating issue with the group called Fugue cause Aria to face them alone, at great cost to her and her AI Piano.
Aria Brayton stared at the holoboard in front of her with fear. There was a picture of her and her brightly dyed pink hair staring back at her blankly. The bold font spelled out ‘wanted for the murder of several international emissaries’. It showed exactly what she was – an enhanced human, a person with an artificial intelligence unit. Dangerous and different. This had Project Maestro written all over it and the mere thought of them getting their hands on her and her AI, Piano, made her skin crawl. She toyed with removing her ‘wanted poster’ from the rotation of images, but she knew it would be traced and they would know where she and Piano were. She couldn’t risk that.
“Piano, please scan for AIs. Now,” Aria whispered into her mind.
“Right away, Aria.”
She stared at the image for a few more moments, it was an older picture; she was fourteen or fifteen. While she was currently twenty-three, her face wasn’t too different than the picture. She sighed in frustration; her hair was currently the same vibrant pink that the image displayed. While she changed her appearance every few weeks, Aria had a tendency to dye her hair back to pink. It felt more normal than her natural dirty blonde hair. She ran her fingers through the hologram, making it disappear for a second, her blank blue-green eyes splitting into five and then reuniting. Horror broke through her mind and sat, heavy, in the pit of her stomach and tightened the muscles in the back of her neck. Project Maestro was after them again.