The hotel lobby, or more correctly the bar, was where they spent their time. It was no safer than their rooms but its opulence offered some comfort. The hacks grouped on the sofas when they came back from following a story. There was always a feeling of relief when someone walked in who’d not been seen for a while. As they uploaded they talked. Sometimes dark humour. At one table Martha swore again at her keyboard as its AI detail-checked and tried to log on to encrypt the watermark. “Bloody sub chips,” she said. “Just let me tell the story”.