The Plot

(Critical Survey of Science Fiction and Fantasy)

Trouble and Cerise are partners, both in bed and on the computer “net.” They are part of the new breed of “crackers” who have brainworms (a high-tech input system) implanted in them. The brainworms enable them to receive more information when they “walk the net.” They have been working in the “shadows,” stealing information from corporate computer systems and selling it to shady clients. The Evans-Tinsdale Act makes the misdemeanors they have been committing into felonies. Cerise wants to continue working as an outlaw, so Trouble deserts her.

Three years later, Cerise is working for Multiplane, a company that caught her trying to crack its Intrusion Countermeasures (Electronic) system, or IC(E). Rather than go to jail, Cerise became Multiplane’s syscop. She is assigned to track down Trouble, because someone using that signature has broken through her company’s IC(E).

Trouble is working legitimately as a system administrator for an artist’s cooperative. A friend from her old gang drives three hundred miles to warn her that she is wanted by the law. The cooperative gets scared and evicts her. Trouble gets back in touch with other members of her old gang of gay netwalkers, and they help her get fitted with new equipment.

Trouble and Cerise each follow the trail of the impostor to Seahaven, which is both a virtual and a real-world town. They meet there, but before they turn up anything definite, the women are...

(The entire section is 440 words.)