Author: William A Lasher
Book title: Unlawful Presence
Genre: Science Fiction
Publish date: Original: 10/01/2019
Revised Edition: 05/26/2020
A near future full length science fiction novel with a healthy dose of dark humor.
Meet Nancy Johnson, the futuristic federal cop who deactivates illicit androids with her high voltage Annihilator weapon. Before Nancy had her brain inter-faced with an advanced AI processor, she was Vanessa Alvarado, a beautiful Colombian college student who knew Captain Dominguez as Oscar Mendoza, an American spy on a mission to infiltrate the Inca Resurrección, a dangerous drug gang based high in the Peruvian Andes.
And who’s side is Eddie Dominguez really on anyway? And why did the same guy who gave him his undercover assignments introduce him to Winston February, the advanced Andy Smith Custom with the clinically insane creator who wants to eliminate the human race?
It’s within the realm of possibility that artificial intelligence could some day begin to think for itself. In the future, robots with cyber brains might begin making their own decisions, without the limitations of man’s organic brain, and without the foolish mistakes he makes because of his primitive instincts. Robots like Winston February, a super intelligent android who takes control of a worldwide corporation, and then tosses the owner out of a helicopter into the icy waters of the Atlantic Ocean.
February offers Eddie a new job, smuggling illicit worker androids across the border. Eddie forms an alliance with an eccentric Mexican crime boss and makes millions. Everything is going great for Eddie and Larry and their screwball gang of computer programmers and truck driving misfits, but the cops are on to them. Just about the time the heat moves in, the robots turn on the humans, and Nancy’s DTIA agents make an astounding discovery.
When Vanessa regained consciousness in the recovery room, she immediately became aware of her vastly increased mental capacity. Dr. Novachek sat close by, working on a laptop computer. “Vanessa, you’re awake. How do you feel?”
“Bright,” she said with a quick laugh, “I feel like the dark cloud I was under has lifted.”
“I’m still working on the final details of the interface – what’s going through your mind right now? Describe it to me if you can.”
“It feels like I’m hooked into a computer. There’s a stream of random information going through my mind quickly. It’s moving so fast I’m having a hard time concentrating on our conversation.”
“O.K., that’s what I’m working on – sequencing your brain with the information coming from the processor so your organic brain is in control of the stream of data.”
“And I’m so much better,” said Vanessa, “Thank you, Doctor.”
You’re very welcome,” said Novachek continuing to work on his laptop, “Your new A.I. processor auto links to available WiFi internet connections. With my computer program we can adjust and modify the interface until everything is working just fine.”
After a few more minutes, Vanessa’s mind was beginning to smooth out, and she became aware of the fact that she had gained a large number of I.Q. points. In fact, her overall intelligence had just increased geometrically. Vanessa was ecstatic…
Author bio: William A. “Bill” Lasher lives in the mountains of Western Colorado where he writes fiction and develops websites. He also owns a custom building and remodeling business, loves the outdoors, and spends at least a couple of hours every day hiking or skiing. Bill has been a prolific fiction writer all his life, and is also schooled in news and commercial copy writing.
Unlawful Presence is what Mr. Lasher calls “pre-apocalyptic” sci-fi because it examines the circumstances leading up to an AI apocalypse, and that’s what makes it different from frequently seen stories that take place in the dystopian aftermath. It’s a fast moving narrative with memorable characters, and has occasional tongue in cheek humor. There’s a sequel in the works as well, and according to the author, the follow-up will take the AI science fiction concepts to the next level.
Bill also writes in the steampunk genre, and you can find his current serial: “Diary Of An Atmospheric Sailor” on his Surreal Science Fiction website.