Watching the temperature numbers drop on the AR display while sitting in the cozy warmth of his MCT EnviroGen extreme environment tent made Grant Toshi beam with pride over the advanced temperature regulation systems he had helped to develop. It was thrilling to finally be out of the lab and in the field. Though he had some doubts in the beginning about using his precious vacation time to do some private field testing, he was past all that now. As the wind outside continued to howl and he watched the display slide past –30° Celsius, he slipped off the last of his garments to truly enjoy the cozy 24° C air inside the spacious tent. He considered the howling and pulled up another window in the AR field to jot down notes for a proposed upgrade, a model with more sound dampening. That note was quickly followed by a few more notes on how to develop that without compromising the other systems. He was in the middle of a heat absorption equation for MCT’s new Sairento™ advanced sound dampening material when Shiyonin, his agent program, informed him of a message he had just received. <Get dressed, exit the tent, and walk away.> No signature. No transmission authentication code. Toshi considered his options. Doing as the message said was not one of them. He had only reached his current location with the help of his guide, Shan-jun, who was currently assisting another climber on a distress call the pair had received about an hour earlier. He wouldn’t survive long without the guide, and he knew it. Toshi thought it best to simply negotiate. He tapped the AR reply icon and began to type on the AR keypad. <I understand the nature of your message and don’t wish to argue or insult, but I do not think I can exit…> At the sound of a pair of quick slapping pops, Toshi stopped typing. He felt a chill immediately start to fill the air and looked up to see two holes near the top of the tent, which were flapping and growing larger with the gusting wind. Toshi tapped the voice operation command for typing and began to speak the rest of the message as he grabbed the repair kit and hurried to work on the holes. “… this tent and survive, period, I would like to make an alternate arrangement, period, is your intention to get this tent for a corporate employer other than MCT, question mark, end message, send.” His voice was relatively calm and monotone while his hands frantically sprayed the InstaSeal™ repair fluid over the holes. The tent was resealed only a moment after the message was sent. The reply came quickly. Another slapping pop was followed almost instantly by something small and fast slamming into, and through, his gut before proceeding out the other side of the tent. Toshi didn’t bother to look down; he knew he’d been shot. It wasn’t as painful as he had always imagined it would be. His knees gave out quickly and he fell back onto the pile of clothes he had discarded to enjoy the warmth of the tent. He tried to sit up but found the muscles of his abdomen unresponsive. He craned his neck up and down and saw the clean hole where the bullet had come in and then the blood spattered mess around the tent’s exit wound. The cold air blowing in from the exit hole passed over his face and turned his breath to an icy mist. A freezing wind iced his shredded abdomen. He finally looked down and saw the steam rising from his warm blood. The blood was freezing fast, and instead of coagulating to seal the wound, the blood was forming an icy bandage. The calm suddenly left him, replaced by a rush of panic and fear. “Help!” Toshi screamed, again and again. A small part of his mind knew that the howling of the wind was much louder than his injury-hampered screams, and the screams grew quieter and less frequent with each breath of freezing air he drew into his lungs. It wasn’t long before the air in the tent was painful to breathe and Toshi began to waver on the edge of consciousness. He remembered seeing the tent open and Shan-jun appear. He remembered the frigid chill as he was dragged out onto the snowy mountainside. He remembered the feeling of not-feeling, the complete loss of physical sensation. He remembered the thunderous explosion and the avalanche. He remembered the light, the voices, the warmth of the nutrient tank. He remembered the face of Shan-jun and the icy death to which he was left.