Another Name That Story challenge for our readers: Do any of you out there know the title to this story?

I have been searching for a science fiction story that I read in the 1980’s or early 1990’s. I posted the search on the UK Science Fiction & Fantasy chronicles network quite a while ago, but no one has identified it. So if you happen to recognize this story, I would be quite happy:

A detective pursues a Moriarty-like kidnapper (except that later you find out that the woman who was kidnapped was cooperating with the evil criminal). The “proper” detective is confronted with loosened morals and groundlessness. The abyss in space that he is eventually marooned in becomes a metaphor for the contemporary postmodern world in which there is nothing certain. Computer-generated 3D simulacra on the ship start to fade at the end of the story. They are without substance, presumably a representation of the protagonist’s loss of any sense of substance.

Cheers — David

Can you name this story?

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