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To: Zion Council
From: Operative (REDACTED)
Re: Developments After Murder of Morpheus Honorable Councilors: You have asked me to survey reactions, rumors and attitudes following Morpheus's murder. My findings: 1. Zionites are outraged. Qualms over Morpheus's provocations have been washed away by the blood of his martyrdom. An effort is afoot - Captain Niobe and a coterie of followers are in the vanguard - to tease the secret of the assassin's identity from those in the Matrix. They seek revenge. Many Redpills are deeply angry and seeking satisfaction. 2. The Machines deny complicity. They too urge their followers to locate and destroy the assassin. Perhaps this is a ruse. However, it may also be meant as a show of good faith. Risking anthropomorphization, let me report another possible motive. The Machines have lost face. The Matrix has proved too unruly for them to control. A sense of distress among Agents is perceptible, if indirectly expressed. That Agent Skinner was "killed," apparently by the same assassin, seems to have created alarm. They may seek the assassin to prove they are, indeed, in control and to be feared and deferred to. 3. The Merovingian has not hidden his pleasure at this turn of events. But he studiously avoids taking credit for it. He held a postmortem celebration. He served cake (the Merovingian's desserts are known to exert druglike effects over those who consume it; no obvious change was observed in those who did). His aide Flood disparaged Morpheus ("If you want me to say some somber, respectful things about Morpheus you'll have to wait until I stop laughing,") and chided underlings for being beaten to the punch by this unknown party. It is hard to imagine these braggarts failing to crow about this coup if they were behind it. Unconfirmed reports that the Merovingian is having his followers make quiet inquiries may suggest innocence, or be mere disinformation. 4. Suspects. The Merovingian is obvious. The Machines were the ones Morpheus was provoking, and may have calculated they could get away with it. Restive Exiles, chafing at the Merovingian's control, may hope to frame him and so inspire his elimination by the Machines or vengeance-seekers. Finally, I would be remiss if I did not report a widespread rumor naming Commander Lock as the killer. His personal involvement with Captain Niobe, and hers with Morpheus, is cited as motive. Lock is, of course, freeborn, unable to jack in to the Matrix. The rumor speculates he has developed a wireless connection to the Matrix, and cites the assassin's masked RSI as a result of this imperfect connection. I make no judgment on this rumor, only mention it. 5. Hoax. Morpheus told some Redpills he "might have to go away," or "might have to disappear" before the killing. His physical body has not been found. Reports of jacking-in points conflict. It is possible Morpheus somehow staged this, a lie in a world of lies. If so, the grief he has inspired may turn to rage when he returns. 6. Conclusions. This will test the truce. Wrongly blamed parties may be killed or deleted. Vendettas may arise. Framing may occur. Zion may wish to formalize the search for the assassin, so that a reliable determination may be made of his guilt before he is punished. Definitely two, and possibly three factions are in a race to find and identify the assassin. The competition may turn deadly. 7. I continue my inquiries and await further orders (END REPORT).
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