In the morning, with Fredrich now awake, they start to make some decisions about what their next steps are. Fredrich chimes in with what he knows:
- He saw a rift to the city that the group has seen through magic (?) in one of the VR games he played regularly. Ever since he saw it, he’s been looking for it because it was the greatest piece of VR coding he had ever seen. And he wants in.
- He found other people had seen it in different games and VR spaces. Although oddly, even within the same VR space, one person might see it while 10 others would not.
- Fredrich had just started following the money trail when he was kidnapped. He had found massive data centers being built across the world. The city locations in the U.S. matched the locations that Kristin’s crystal scrying had revealed.
The group agrees to drive to Chicago in the self driving van, which should get them there with 3/4 of a day to spare before their meeting with Dylan in the downtown club known as The Crossover. But Olivia refuses to leave without getting her stuff from her apartment, despite Leo’s insistence that it was a bad idea. Harley says she’ll take Olivia and everyone else can stay with the car, despite Leo’s insistence that was also a bad idea.
When they get to the apartment, the door is ajar. Olivia sneaks around the back to look through the bay window, but Harley just walks right in, allowing a man in a black suit armed with a pistol to get the drop on her. He orders her to the ground, but seeing his gun has no silencer and expecting him not to want to make noise, Harley attacks him and takes him out, allowing Olivia to collect her stuff.
They then return back to the car, where Leo, upon seeing the gun that Harley grabbed, comments “that’s the reason I should go with you.” Harley shrugs, and the trip to Chicago begins.
It goes smoothly and they arrive a little before noon on Saturday. Dylan wants them, if they have time, to check out Chicago’s instance of the Through the Looking Glass Emporium, an adult play center themed around the Seven Deadly Sins. Dylan suspects that since all TLG emporiums keep their VR local, rather than in the cloud, that there may be some information there that they can use to verify Zack Jennings is directly involved, find out if anyone else is involved, and how/why they are putting the kids through it. They are going to need some help and Kristin thinks she knows someone – she knows some people in a neo-hippie traveling caravan who occasionally stop by her place when in San Francisco. They mentioned a member of their family living in Chicago that might be able to hack them in…