As she sat there, trying to figure all of this out, Jayce studied Zarah's expression. He knew what worry looked like; he'd just never seen it on her face before. This was big. He had already been thinking about what was coming, as well as what he'd just gotten away from. Internally, something clicked. He slotted his credchip and returned the remainder of Zarah's advances.
"Sorry, Zarah," he mumbled. "I can't be here for this. I know you don't care much about people's pasts, but mine is going to catch up with me if I don't move again. Truth is, I got lazy. It's a miracle they didn't find me. With all this coming to a head, they definitely will."
She just stared at the computer. They'd had some fun times, though Zarah never allowed herself to get close to any of her professional contacts. Losing one of her best runners was not going to help her in the coming days.
"I understand," she said weakly, still skimming the data. Her worry was replaced with determination. "Just do me one favor?"
"Stay in contact. If you have to grow a new face, I understand, but I'll know it's you. You don't have to be here to be of help to me."
Jayce chewed on that for a moment. Connecting himself to any one person from a past he was trying to wipe could be dangerous, but a Johnson lived in that danger daily. She wouldn't burn him intentionally. Besides, keeping a contact like her might help him disappear. His mind was made up before he had time to clear his throat.
"All right. But I don't exist. Period. I was never here."
He slid out of the booth and stopped by Zarah's bodyguard. He furrowed his brow and looked up at the scowling face one last time. Although he didn't say it, there was a moment in which the thug almost seemed to understand.
"Don't worry," the giant man growled.
Within twenty-four hours, Jayce was nothing but a memory for the citizens of Detroit. His site went offline, expertly wiped and replaced with just a white page. Any trace of his credchip transactions were erased or rerouted to an alternate number. As far as history or the citizens of Detroit were concerned, he was unmade.