The Graphene Prairie – Lawrence, Kansas – 2082. The North American Union comprises all of Mexico, Canada and the antique United States. Alcohol is banned, marijuana is mainstream. Holograms fill our eyes, drones float above the city hovstreets and the Office of the Architect watches everything and everyone. Everyone, that is, except for a particular group of shiners, hand-picked outlaws protected by canine war cyborgs and a charismatic and mysterious telepath named Daxane Julius Abner. Mr. Abner has a purpose. That purpose is freedom. He and his shiners make America’s black market vodka. And they are the only heroes left.
Tara Dean had a gift. She used it to escape. The vile memory of the behavioral modification hospital was only fifteen kilometers behind in the cold January wind as her stolen 2079 Mustang flipped off the hovroad floating 199 kph. Halfway through the first mid-air rotation, charges exploded along crumple junctions in the silver hovcar’s roof and the polyaluminum cabin blew free. Ejected into the sky, away from the disintegrating Ford, Tara Dean’s unconscious body was enveloped in an emergency collision sphere. Clear of the wreckage, her shrouded form bounced into a ditch and was immediately surrounded by the pack of waiting Coyotes. The animals began to savage the sphere’s elastiframe fabric with their dulled teeth. They had come for a reason. These were the Coyotes of cyborg legend, the vanished products of Darkpool Laboratories, drawn at long last from the darkness by the unique scent of her blood. Welcome to the Dawn of the Courtezan.