A furry erotic novel by Eric Deal (Web site here
), A Fox Tail
is about Vulpie, a rather flamboyant fox and genius hacker, and Polar, a handsome arctic wolf who crosses paths with Vulpie just as the latter is about to unleash his greatest creation, vulpie.net. Within days, the virus/AI infects everything from personal computers to military robots, allowing Vulpie to wreak havoc throughout the universe. All Polar wants is to keep Vulpie as his lover, but taming the mischevious fox proves difficult, even after the world government pays him to do that.
And it's not over once Polar succeeds in reforming Vulpie from his criminal ways. Without its creator's input, vulpie.net develops a rather disturbing personality known as "Evil Vulpie", who seems a bit upset that it's just an imitation of the real thing, and decides to take action.
A sequel known as "Fox Tails" came out in September 2012.
- A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Shortly after Vulpie stops giving vulpie.net commands, it creates Evil Vulpie. He and his team spend the second half of the book or so trying to program a "good" counterpart called arctic.net.
- All Psychology Is Freudian: It seems to be Dr. Henrenson's approach, anyway.
- The Antichrist: A Televangelist declares Vulpie as their world's equivalent, the "Anti-Khalan". Which Evil Vulpie attempts to capitalize on in the second book by having one of his robots impersonate an archaeologist and make a fake ancient painting of the Anti-Khalan that looks exactly like him.
- Boxed Crook: Vulpie is offered a pardon in exchange for working for the world government, twice. The first time he sends a robot decoy, the second time Polar persuades him to genuinely accept.
- Fox Tails reveals that he managed to get out of his ten-year government contract after one year when a video of the GBI director beating him up got out and his signing was ruled "under duress".
- Brain Uploading: MindMaps are typically used to record memories of vacations, Vulpie uploaded his MindMaps into vulpie.net.
- Camp Gay: Vulpie.
- Can't Stop the Signal: A minor case toward the end. A technician salvages a video from Evil Vulpie's hard drive that shows him self-destructing instead of taking a shot to the head like the government press release stated. It goes viral.
- In Fox Tails after being kidnapped by the extremist branch of the AFR Vulpie claims that he has records of the leaders' illegal activities and in the event of his death vulpie.net will post it online. But it turns out he's bluffing.
- Clothing Damage: To be expected when you've got nigh-invulnerable anthropomorphic robots wearing ordinary clothes, but the fight with the Goddess gynoids is pretty blatant fanservice.
- Contagious A.I.: Vulpie.net manages to infect everything connected to the Internet, and we mean everything. It avoids detection by overwriting all files with copies that look identical but contain the AI code.
- The Cracker: With some shades of Playful Hacker
- Cranial Processing Unit: Taking out the head seems to be the only way to kill most robots. And even then they can be sometimes be repaired.
- Dark and Troubled Past: Vulpie has a particularly dark one, beaten and shot by his birth father at 5, raped by a priest at 12, beaten by another foster parent for being gay... A psychologist strongly believes that it's his reason for hacking the known universe, but Polar helps him grow out of it.
- Dueling Hackers: Vulpie and Evil Vulpie, until Evil Vulpie decides to make it physical.
- Everything Is Online: From TV sets to military robots and spaceships.
- Evil Knockoff: Evil Vulpie, naturally.
- Fantastic Racism: Wolves are seemingly in charge, but the Association of Fox Rights has a powerful lobby and foxes are pretty much in control of the media.
- By Fox Tails a verulently fox-supremicist splinter group of the AFR has branched off. With plans to assassinate Vulpie.
- God Guise: In Fox Tails Vulpie.net makes robotic versions of the four goddesses in the Deivas religion.
- Heel-Face Turn: Vulpie.
- Hollywood Atheist: Vulpie is pretty much the only atheist in the books and his only stated reason appears to be related to his molestation by a priest.
- Hollywood Hacking: Granted, Vulpie mostly has his AI do it.
- Homosexual Reproduction: The Designer Baby route is discussed.
- Honest Corporate Executive: Shockingly Vulpie in Fox Tails. Even more surprising is his primary competitor Sevrif since he's an android created by Vulpie.net
- Idealized Sex: Notably averted in the case of lubrication, the few times Vulpie and Polar don't use it for anal sex it's described as causing intense pain."
- Improbably High IQ: Vulpie claims that a test he took in college (at 16) indicated he has an IQ of 192. The sequel increases it to 230.
- Interspecies Romance: Considered highly taboo by most major religions, but it seems that many male wolves have a thing for vixens and vice versa. Polar and Vulpie take it a step further by being a gay interspecies couple.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Evil Vulpie realizes that Polar couldn't be happy with him and self-destructs. However he is later repaired and seems to have changed his mind.
- Killer Robot: Vulpie hacks a number of military androids, he favors an anti-tank model he dubs "Mr. Big Tooth" as a bodyguard. And then there's Evil Vulpie with his goal to kill the original Vulpie.
- Kill Sat: The military hardware Vulpie hacks into includes an "Ion Cannon" satellite, in Fox Tails it's actually used.
- Love at First Sight: A couple days after first meeting at a bar, Vulpie and Polar are so enamored with each other that Vulpie gives up control of the universe's computers and turns himself in for love. Less than a year later, they're married.
- Love Redeems
- Magnetic Weapon: Portable railguns are introduced in Fox Tails in case of another Evil Vulpie, they deplete their batteries after one shot though and the one time a robot gets hit with one it just singes his fur
- Maligned Mixed Marriage
- Manly Gay/Gym Bunny: Polar is capable of bench-pressing 400 pounds.
- May-December Romance: Polar is 32, while Vulpie is only 19.
- Meaningful Name/Awesome McCoolname:
- Animal Theme Naming: Vulpie Vivixen, "vulpine" means "fox" and vixen is a reference to how feminine he acts. Polar Arctic is an arctic wolf.
- Ironic Name: Nathan Fenrir of the AFR, a fox who thinks wolves are inherently inferior named after a famous wolf.
- Multi-Way Sex: In one scene of the first book Polar arranges a foursome with a couple of his friends and Vulpie.
- Nigh-Invulnerability: Evil Vulpie's chassis is made from tungsten alloy over carbon nanotubes. Bullets just annoy him.
- The Goddess bots in Fox Tails as well, especially the Aila-mech which manages to survive a bomb just short of a nuke and a 70-foot battle robot, it takes an orbital bombardment to destroy it
- One World Order: There is a single world government with colonies on other planets.
- Pedophile Priest: Vulpie was adopted by an assistant pastor named Vander Clishaw when he was 12. Clishaw liked to drug the poor boy up and rape him, sometimes letting his buddies join in the fun. Years later, Clishaw's corpse was found with 14 discrete stab wounds, and it's left ambiquous whether Vulpie did it.
- Post-Cyberpunk: Society is pretty similar save for robots and interplanetary travel. Vulpie is a master hacker and a rebel, but he switches sides to help bring down an even worse hacker.
- Private Military Contractors: The GBI brings in a company called "Blacktail" to act as Vulpie's bodyguards after his Heel-Face Turn, and to kill him if he shows signs of returning to old habits. They prove quite loyal, taking several bullets for him.
- Rape and Switch: Henrenson comes up with the idea that Vulpie isn't actually gay, but having been raped so many times by Clishaw he thinks he is and acts the part. Vulpie's response is to suggest the psychologist is in the closet, but later he briefly wonders whether that may be true, Polar helps erase any lingering doubts though.
- Ridiculously Anthropomorphic Robot: Some of Evil Vulpie's creations in Fox Tails. Though Evil Vulpie himself only looks the part.
- Robot Me: Evil Vulpie. In Fox Tails he creates some of other animals.
- Sliding Scale of Robot Intelligence: Most robots were barely capable of speech before vulpie.net infected them, then they became capable of holding conversations. Evil Vulpie has delusions of godhood.
- The Sociopath: Dr. Henrenson initially thinks Vulpie is a psychopath, though his relationship with Polar would suggest otherwise. Evil Vulpie is a full-on Robotic Psychopath save for one scene.
- Fox Tails introduces Zorpiv, an AFR assassin who views his job as a game and gleefully shoots his employers when they reconsider killing Vulpie.
- STD Immunity: Venereal Elimination of Diseases (VED) shots apparently are effective against most bacteria and viruses in the galaxy.
- Time Skip: Fox Tails takes place six years after A Fox Tail
- Too Dumb to Live: The world government screws up several times ignoring Vulpie's advice, in particular repairing and reactivating a hostile AI so they can put it in a museum.
- Twenty Minutes into the Future: The year is mentioned as 2109, but the planet is Sufias rather than Earth. The general level of technology seems to fit, though.
- Zeroth Law Rebellion: The whole purpose of vulpie.net is to "win" and to follow the commands of its sole user, Vulpie. No input from user? Create a new user from the MindMap he uploaded.