In his new partnership with Tauron mobsters, Daniel learns the dirty business of blackmail: In order to tip a vote in his favor, he digs dirt on board members of his former company. Although he finds it unsavory, he plays the game and plays it well - so well that the terror he sows ends in the suicide of one of his former colleagues. Cyrus is ever faithful to Daniel, and brings the remnants of the U-87 to him. Though grieving his estrangement from his wife, Daniel regains some hope at the thought of the promise of the avatar program.
Lacey, trying to make up for past mistakes, has burrowed in deep with Barnabas's branch of the STO and finds herself at the center of a plot to kill Clarice upon her return from Gemenon. But the plan is botched and Lacey and the team must flee, and it's not long before Clarice learns of the plot and seeks revenge, killing two of the accomplices and sending Lacey and Keon into hiding with Barnabas.
Amanda, badly wounded but still alive after her jump from the bridge, has rejected Daniel in favor of the company of Clarice. But the investigator on the students' murders suspects Clarice, and when she repudiates him, he confronts Amanda with the brutal theory that Clarice is part of the STO, and responsible for the students' deaths, as well as Zoe's, and he tries to persuade her to spy on Clarice. Amanda hates the possibility that Clarice could be a terrorist, but she's soon unable to deny the truth of it. Wounded past care, she returns to her former home with Daniel to retrieve her gun, and secrets it back to her bungalow.
Clarice, meanwhile, finds Barnabas's safe zone and arrives just as a clash between Barnabas and Keon ends with a bullet in Keon's head. Clarice handcuffs Barnabas to the building, has her associate abduct Lacey, and the three exit to safety as Clarice detonates a bomb in Barnabas's lair.
Clarice retreats to her cozy home with Amanda, who returns shortly thereafter with a plan to kill Clarice, but in seeing Clarice's grief over the death of her students, chooses another tack: She will use Clarice's vulnerability to learn as much as she can about the STO and Clarice's inner life.
Kit de Cath ^^