My cochlea struck twelve noon and a HUD appeared with my weekly backup reminder. Lil was maneuvering Ben Franklin II out of his niche. I waved good-bye at her back and walked away, to an uplink terminal. Once I was close enough for secure broadband communications, I got ready to back up. My cochlea chimed again and I answered it.
"Yes," I subvocalized, impatiently. I hated getting distracted from a backup — one of my enduring fears was that I'd forget the backup altogether and leave myself vulnerable for an entire week until the next reminder. I'd lost the knack of getting into habits in my adolescence, giving in completely to machine-generated reminders over conscious choice.
It's Dan." I heard the sound of the Park in full swing behind him — children's laughter; bright, recorded animatronic spiels; the tromp of thousands of feet. "Can you meet me at the Tiki Room? It's pretty important."
"Can it wait for fifteen?" I asked.
"Sure — see you in fifteen."
I rung off and initiated the backup. A status-bar zipped across a HUD, dumping the parts of my memory that were purely digital; then it finished and started in on organic memory. My eyes rolled back in my head and my life flashed before my eyes.
After I was shot dead at the Tiki Room, I had the opportunity to appreciate the great leaps that restores had made in the intervening ten years since my last death. I woke in my own bed, instantly aware of the events that led up to my death as seen from various third-party POVs: security footage from the Adventureland cameras, synthesized memories extracted from Dan's own backup, and a computer-generated fly-through of the scene. I woke feeling preternaturally calm and cheerful, and knowing that I felt that way because of certain temporary neurotransmitter presets that had been put in place when I was restored.
Dan and Lil sat at my bedside. Lil's tired, smiling face was limned with hairs that had snuck loose of her pony-tail. She took my hand and kissed the smooth knuckles. I dug for words appropriate to the scene, decided to wing it, opened my mouth and said, to my surprise, "I have to pee."