The handy part of physically leaving the house was that it gave you an opportunity to meet new people. Physical people. Not their avatars or Avatars or Avatar: The Game avatars. Physical people, the ones who walked in the sunlight and talked incessantly about meaningless things and generally were less intelligent and interesting than a handful of pixels, were frustrating for Nicolas on a variety of levels - not the least of which was that for creatures so simplistic, they were mightily difficult so much of the time. But they had their benefits.
One of the greatest aspects of humanity as a species was its ability to generate non-linear actions and progressions; in other words, they were surprising. They didn't always do exactly what you expected them to do. Take that oddly resonant chatterbox fitted into such an appealing outer layer that he'd stumbled upon only a short time ago on the beach.
Nicolas emitted a low buzzing sound between his lips as he followed the GPS map his trace had left behind. Every morning like clock work, talkative Ty and his telephone went for a run in Los Angeles park. Habits were an interesting tell-tale of personality. Then he went home and lingered there not very long before going off again. Whatever he did during the days, there wasn't a real regular pattern to it for the first few days. Then he started showing up at the same place in Beverly Hills. Upscale, Nicolas thought, curious. Interesting. The guy had talked such a big game about not wanting to make money. Nic rolled his eyes.
But more interesting were the other places. The weekly, sometimes more than once a week, visits to two places. One, sainted Google maps had informed him, was a shooting range. Not terribly surprising, considering the danger-zone vibe the guy had released like steam from a kitchen vent. But the other… that was curious. The place only a few blocks away from the shooting range had once been a comedy club, but according to searches, the place had been closed for some time. According to Google Streetview, the building was nothing special. A big, sturdy place, surrounded by a heavy iron fence. And that was it.
A sweep of the area showed no security cameras on the outside or inside of the building. The cameras on the nearby stoplight had even been disassembled. Whatever was happening in that place, someone didn't want anyone getting a good look at it.
Unfortunately for whoever that was, Nicolas Dahlen did not get dissuaded by things like that. They, in fact, made him even more curious. Very, very, very curious. So curious, he felt like taking a walk. A little jaunt through South Central sounded like just the thing to satisfy his curiosity and give him something to do while his computers chewed up the data on prime usage throughout the city and spat out the information in a comprehensible fashion.
He drove his pleasant little Honda down the 110 South and parked in a lot closest to the only streaming security camera in a three block radius from the place. All in all, he looked as innocent as was possible: a pathetically pale and rather skinny man of average height, wearing square-rimmed sunglasses, a pair of worn jeans, a dark blue t-shirt, and a pair of Converses, with recently cropped white-blond hair sticking out in uneven, bedhead tufts.
He tugged out his phone and followed the map from where he stood, linking into the camera at his car and watching on the phone screen until he passed out of its sight two blocks down. He peered down the last block, towards the iron gates, and cocked one white blond brow up above the rim of his glasses. Reaching in the side pocket of his backpack, he pulled out a glasses case and pulled out a pair of green lenses, cleaning them with a microfiber cloth and peering out through them.
Well, there wasn't a jamming signal coming out of the place. So whatever was responsible for there not being cameras here where they were almost every where else somewhere wasn't a signal issue. Someone had either taken down the cameras or convinced the locals that they didn't need them here. It wasn't the worst part of South Central. But still. South Central, he thought, peering at the graffiti on the walls around him. Maybe Ty was in the mafia. Wouldn't that be interesting?
He tucked the green lenses back into the case and tugged out the yellow, just for the sake of covering his bases. He scrubbed the lenses again with the cloth and lifted them, peering through...