|The Eye of Minds|
|Publication date||October 8, 2013|
|Published by||Delacorte Press|
| Preceded by|
| Followed by|
The Rule of Thoughts
Michael is a gamer. And like most gamers, he almost spends more time on the VirtNet than in the actual world. The VirtNet offers total mind and body immersion, and it’s addictive. Thanks to technology, anyone with enough money can experience fantasy worlds, risk their life without the chance of death, or just hang around with Virt-friends. And the more hacking skills you have, the more fun. Why bother following the rules when most of them are dumb, anyway? But some rules were made for a reason. Some technology is too dangerous to fool with. And recent reports claim that one gamer is going beyond what any gamer has done before: he’s holding players hostage inside the VirtNet. The effects are horrific—the hostages have all been declared brain-dead,Yet the gamers motives are a mystery. The government knows that to catch a hacker, you need a hacker. And they’ve been watching Michael. They want him on their team. But the risk is enormous. If he accepts their challenge, Michael will need to go off the VirtNet grid. There are back alleys and corners in the system human eyes have never seen and predators he can’t even fathom—and there’s the possibility that the line between game and reality will be blurred forever.
After seeing Tanya kill herself on the Golden Gate Bridge after mentioning Kaine, he is distraught and returns to meet his VirtNet friends, Bryson and Sarah. After that, Agent Weber kidnaps him and tells him about Kaine's plan to terrorize the VirtNet, and tasks him, Bryson, and Sarah with stopping him by going to The Path.
They go to a barbershop run by Cutter, who tells them that they have to go to the Black and Blue Club, managed by Ronika. She tells them and they have to go to a game known as Devils of Destruction. Immediately after, they watch her being damaged and killed by KillSims, and they head to Devils of Destruction.
Upon arrival, they realize that it's just a place for old people to vent their anger over things. They manage to find the Portal to the Path. Bryson is sent back to the real world when struck by a column of creatures. Then, the rest of the party meet the former legendary gamer, Gunner Skale. He tells them that the path is very hard to beat. Sarah is returned to her mortal body when she falls into a pit of hot lava.
A silver robot removes Michael's core, leaving him no choice but to continue the Path. He enters the Hallowed Ravine, when it is revealed that he has been living in Lifeblood Deep all along, and that now he is within the body of Jackson Porter. He is now chosen to complete a task given by Kaine.