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446 Terms of Agreemen

 Having fully confirmed that the state prosecutor was going to be in charge of the case, the Silvanas and Dave left the police station and were currently on their way home in the limo Dante and Zoe had arrived in.

Josh had admitted to all the charges which should lead to at least a reduced sentence. Fortunately for Dave, with Samuel Silvana assisting the state prosecutor, he would at most have to make an appearance in a hearing later down the line. Nevertheless, it was not acceptable for players to turn their in-game frustration into real-life threats and the media was going wild about this high profile offence. Even Conquest had come up with a small update to the user agreement that every player had to read and agree to if they wanted to continue playing.

Dave was surprised at how fast Conquest was able to act. It has only been a couple of hours since the assault on Dave's home and a bit less than that before it became public, nevertheless, they had moved to contain the situation as much as possible.


Conquest Game Announcement.

First of all, we are very sorry to hear that one of our players was attacked in the sanctity of their home by another player due to differences in-game.

Thankfully, player Death Stroke has managed to get through the ordeal unharmed and the assaulting party was caught. The offending party's account is irrevocably deleted and he is banned for life from playing. Yet this doesn't mean that we are contend stopping there, since another similar act of evil might not end the same way for the victim.

Due to the real-life threat the player Death Stroke, otherwise known as Undead Kis'Shtiengbrah or Mr. Skeletal, was subjected to, the company of Conquest is hereby adding amendments to our Terms and Conditions.

Any player that wishes to exact vengeance, retaliation or any other harmful actions toward another player outside the game will similarly have their account permanently banned, with no hope of ever recovering it. To make sure this is respected, The AI Albert will be scanning the brainwaves of all players before entry and exit of the game. This will allow Albert to have access to the player's memories. As we have disclosed in the past, only the AI Albert will be privy to the personal information of the players and is code-bound to not reveal them. He will be inspecting the players for any vile attempts on another's well being and punish them instantly by banning them from the game.

Best Regards.

Emile Kada


"Isn't this too much?" Dave scratched his head unsure whether to be happy or not about being used as a reason for stricter controls in what should have just been a videogame.

"What do you mean?" Samuel asked after having received the same announcement, just like any player did.

"I mean, it should be a clear breach of freedom, for anyone to have their memories scanned! I mean things like personal privacy could be available to Albert and perhaps the staff supervising him. People are bound to get angry," Dave argued, surprisingly the lawyer took it in so casually.

"Not really. Think about it, Albert is an AI, so he doesn't care about what we deem private. The company of Conquest has openly disclosed the matter to the public thereby lessening any protests about them secretly spying on us. Not to mention the fact that all of this is meant for our own protection and the protection of the other players. The people behind the game do not wish for an accident to happen, or to be responsible for someone dying over it. Your case gave them the perfect excuse to implement this system. Judging by how fast their response was, it must have already been prepared to be used in the not so distant future, anyway." Samuel explained.

"I still think it's too much," Dave defended his point meekly.

"Yes, but this is how the world works. The company would rather ban players than have people coming after them with claims such as 'Your game killed my son', or 'sent my son to prison'. As I see it, they do technically give you an option. You will either have to accept the terms of the new agreement or you could just easily not log in anymore. Admittedly, it is forcing their hand, but this will still give the company all the legal weight they need against anyone who wants to go against them in a court of law."

"What if someone doesn't want to play with Albert brain scanning us every time we log in or out? I mean, how would they get their items back?" Zoe asked.

"Whatever is in the player's account is theirs as long as the player is logged into their account. That is one of the primary terms of agreement of the game. But as long as the people are not logged in, nothing belongs to them. Yet to log in, they have to agree to the terms. No matter what they do Conquest wins anyway." Samuel shrugged while replying.

"That's pure evil!"

"Nothing of the sort, sweety, this is basic company laws. They were written in there to protect a company's interest in the first place, even though they are rarely actually used. Sure, some players will complain, but most will not care about an AI checking up their brain waves. Others will argue that as long as you don't have anything to hide, you shouldn't care either way and I would bet that the vast majority won't be bothered as they are more interested in the game. And once that majority goes back like nothing is wrong, those who complained first can either continue to abstain from the game or resume playing it. The company always wins as long as they have a product everyone wants."

"Thanks for the marketing and law lesson, brother, but I'm really more interested in unveiling the biggest mystery of the night," Dante looked straight at Dave's face.

Dave tilted his head, "Which would be?"

"How did you pull it off? Thanks to the meeting with Tivo and Vlad, I didn't get to hear the police statement. So how did you do it? I mean I've watched your adventures, but this isn't a video game. The man had a gun, yet you came out unscathed."

"Do you really wanna know?" Dave asked with a grin on his face. He looked like a storyteller who was about to get to the juiciest part of their story and Dante just nodded.

"Well, let's just say a certain lighter came in handy. I should really send some gifts to whoever designed that thing."

Dante burst out into laughter, recalling their first meeting with Dave, when the young fellow his daughter had brought home had been on the receiving end of one of them, "I knew it was a great gift isn't it! HA!"

Dave shook his head, "Yeah, but it only served to calm him down, after I managed to incapacitate him with what was lying around the house. That thing wouldn't have done anything on its own even if it was the real deal when he first got into the house. Man, thinking back about it today was really hectic."

"Dad, no need to remind Dave, he should be tired by now. It's nearly midnight. Josei, how much longer till we get home?" Zoe asked the limo driver.

"Fifteen minutes, give or take, young lady," answered the driver.

"Ugh, you drive slower than an old lady, you should give me the wheel," she demanded.

"No, young lady, I swore to myself never to repeat that mistake ever again," Josei replied as calmly as possible.

"I guess you showed him your driving skills, huh," Dave teased.

"Well, it was my first time driving a limo, the size of the car can throw you off, you know" Zoe fiddled with her hair as she defended herself.

"You tried to drift with a limo, young lady... Trying to drift with a limo..." Josei mumbled from upfront. Dave could have sworn that the limo's speed decreased even further. Apparently, Josei had not recovered from Zoe's driving style.

Dante kept laughing and said, "You'll be spending the night at our home, Dave. I already sent Nicolai and James to your place. They'll look after it and repair the door. You'll have dinner with us. Looking at the time it's more of a midnight snack."

"You really don't have to, I mean I can go to a hotel..."