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An HBO Halloween
Posted By: Jillybean<jbean_gotmuse@yahoo.co.uk>
Date: 31 October 2003, 12:01 AM

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Author: Jillybean
AN: Thanks to everyone for agreeing to be my minions - er - characters for this. Without your agreement I would never own your souls forever.

Disclaimer: Everything within is entirely the fault of the author. Any gender mix up, etc. may be attributed to my stupidity. Heartfelt apologies to my three noobs - I am aware of your true personalities. Oh yes mwahahaha

       ~ All Hallows Eve at HBO ~

Warbow took one look at the HBO forum and burst out laughing. He was doubled up, trying not to break a rib when Dizzy threw him a disgusted look.

"What? I kinda like it." Dizzy turned back to the giddy oranges and midnight blacks that swathed the forum. He didn't mention that he'd tripped over a pumpkin only a few seconds beforehand.
"You don't think it's a little . . ." Warbow tried to think of the word.
"Radical." Grimmoreeper supplied with a wave of one dark hand. Even the enthusiasm of Dizzy had a little trouble coming to terms with the pillar of evil that stood before them.
"Dude - were you always that tall?"
"Stilts." Grimmoreeper answered happily. "They are the coolest thing. Look." He commanded, lifting his long black skirt [he liked to call it a robe]. The others peered at the wooden stilts affixed to his bony ankles.
"Yup. They're stilts all right." It was really the only thing to say - so Eridanus said it.

Before the conversation became completely off-topic Warbow brought them back to the forums new look. Folding his arms he glared at them all.
"So. Who did this?"
"Oh - I think I know!" Eridanus said before looking completely horrified at the thought of speaking up. The others glanced at him.

"Maybe it was the yellow Banshee." Blown-Up interrupted. He gave them all a wry look and headed for the bar. "Please tell me we have something other than Pumpkin Punch Cocktails?"
"Yeah - Louis went a little crazy." Socrates popped up from behind the counter to say. He suddenly looked concerned. "I think he's still a little - you know."
"From the pink tutu incident?" Goatrope asked knowingly. Socrates sage nod was answer enough.
"I think it was the fact we found the tie-dye one afterwards." Marine12 shook his head pityingly. "Poor guy. He's still reeling."

"Heeloooooooo?" Army Fork and Boris tiptoed in. "We bring monkey nuts!"
"And Mars Bars from the guys at Seventh Column." Boris added, he up-ended the plastic bag and snack sized bars rained down on the floor. He sat and seized upon the nearest, cramming it into his mouth - removing the wrapper a second later.
"Humbug." Warbow muttered as the others joined in.
"No - that's in Michael M's fic." Pico corrected.

"You know what would really get us in the Halloween spirit?" Controlled Chaos said a few Mars bars later. The others looked at him, or grunted through mouthfuls of chocolate. "Scary stories. Anyone know any?"
"Stories are for little kids." Ross Mills pointed out.
"I could be a kid." Controlled Chaos sulked. "Since none of you can actually see me right now . . ."
"Dude - you're sitting right there." Pico said. Controlled Chaos glared at him.
"Don't help me."
"Anyone got a story?" Jillybean asked. After a great deal of muttered Sep7imus stood and clapped his hands together. He sat on the biggest log next to the fire and smiled.
"Gather round my children - till I regale ye with a tale - a tale of Shishka and the Three Noobs. . . .


       HBO Tales - Shishka and the Three Noobs

"Once upon a time, in a forum far away, there lurked three noobs. P_4OE, Phantom_208 and Konrad9. These three noobs really enjoyed playing Halo and they'd get together with all their friends every day to play a game of three-player Halo.
Well when they found this forum they were overjoyed! Here they could ask all the questions they had been dying know the answers to!

It was P_4OE who found the forum first, so it was agreed he should have first go. He took a quick look around then decided to jump in. He wasn't stupid, he knew how to type.

       hi u guys r lk so k3wl - cn i ask u lk how do u get 2 the grrlfriend eg? ive heard ppl speek bout it. thnx neway

Some people may say that P_4OE was lucky the forum was pretty quiet at that point. Some people obviously haven't heard all of this story . . .
Anyway, as I was saying, after the noob made his post a forum regular came along. Shishka was a nice guy - normally - but newbies really, really annoyed him. Especially when they didn't read any of his nice little notices about 'How Not To Piss People Off'.
But Shishka, being the nice guy he was, decided to treat the noob gently.

       Hi, you've obviously not been here very long. We like to use 'search functions' and normal words - call us strange. Anyway, please check out our guides for noobs and then maybe you won't annoy people.
P.S. You're looking for the Megg

So Shishka went to make himself a coffee, while he was in the kitchen he found a secret stash of cookies he'd forgotten about and now fully armed he returned to the forum. He was shocked to find a second message that read like this:

       megg yeah dats wot i said u r so dumbboy do u even play halo - b3t u dont 3v3n no da flugg.

Now you or I my friends, we would have been completely stumped by this message. But not Shishka. It took time but clever Shishka finally deciphered the message. He composed himself to reply:

       Perhaps you meant the Flood? Yes I do play Halo and I think you are out of line. Last warning buddy. Read the notices.

P_4OE was not pleased by this response at all. Being a moronic noob he wasted no time in actually reading the public notices and leapt right back into the fray.

       no da flugg dumbass - have played th3 game u no!!!11!!11!1

He got no further before Shishka lunged forward, snatching P_4OE by the scruff of the unfortunate newbies neck and dragging him down into a dark pit.

It was a few days later that Phantom 208 came by looking for his friend. There was simply no trace of him, what he did find though, was a very strongly worded request that noobs did not speak in 1337 sp33k.
Phantom 208 was not an ornery person so he decided to speak properly, though it did take him some effort. And for a while all was good in the forums, he asked a few questions that were already extensively covered elsewhere - but no one could really blame him for that.
Could they?

       Hey guys - I don't know if anyone has done this but I found a really cool thing out today - you can see the medals on Keyes chest with a sniper rifle on 10x magnification!!!

Phantom 208 was so pleased with his find he sat and hit reload over and over and over again - waiting for someone to reply. It was lucky for him that kind and benevolent Shishka came along.

       Thank you but this has already been found. You should have tried searching - it saves forum space.

Phantom 208 wasn't put off, he quickly typed back:

       Ah but did you know there's this really cool glitch on aotcr where you get unlimited ammo!!! (btw, nice jacket, what is that - leather?)

Shishka could feel the rage bubbling down inside of him - but no matter . . . he had learned from before. He wasn't going to wait around for Phantom 208 to make his third mistake, oh no . . .

       Could you just come with me into this dark pit of despair? (Thanks, the jacket's noob - err . . . . calf skin.)

And Phantom 208 was never seen again.

Many hours later the last noob, Konrad9 wandered in. He found our Shishka sitting down knawing on what looked like a chicken drumstick.
       Man - Kondrad9 said - I am so hungry.
       You wouldn't like it.
Shishka assured him. Konrad9 took the hint and looked around for something to do - there was very little and he ended up whistling away. It was getting on Shishka's nerves so finally Shishka set his drumstick down.
       Want to play a game of Halo?
Konrad9 said happily - he had such a good trick to play . . .

Shishka was so close to the flag when a sniper rifle got him in the head. The bottom of the screen said; You Have Been Betrayed . . .

       Heh - Konrad9 said - Least now I won't lose.

Shishka's vision filled with red and he spun around, snatching Konrad9 by the hair . . .

They say that if you play in Sidewinder, the place of Shishka's betrayal, you can still hear the wind howl - Konrad9, Konrad9, Konrad9"


"Man. Sep7imus. You put a lot of thought into that one." KP said. "Not sure it paid off, but there was a lot of thought in it."
"Yeah. That was so not a scary story." Devin Olsen said. "I've seen grannys scarier than that."
"Well have you seen Konrad9 around recently?" Sep7imus challenged. Devin thought about it then subsided.
"Oh you guys suck." Ross Mills stood up and pushed Sep7imus off the story tellers log.

"Jamirus99, Brandon - get me some more logs for that fire." Ross Mills commanded. "Spenser, kill the lights - oddworld18 get me a Mars Bar. Gather round the rest of you: This is the story of BOLL and the Hacked X-Box."


       HBO Tales - BOLL and the Hacked X-Box

In the wee hours of Friday a game was played
And Simpsons Rule - alas - alack! He was slayed.
But no ordinary Needler did make him fall
For one that shot rockets and made by Boll

Boll sat in his room and cackled away
Pleased for his newfound explosive array.
But oh Boll was tired and wanted to sleep
Master Chief's makeover would just have to keep.

With a huff and a puff and a cup of hot cocoa
[Such fuss, for he would have much preferred a mocha]
To bed Boll did climb
And was under the covers. All in good time

He curled in his knees and sucked on his thumb
And pulled up the duvet to stay nice and warm.
He expected to sleep and shut off the light
But Fate t'was to play a cruel trick that night

For as Boll lay, all toasty and cosy
Did the devil decide to be nosy
And with a gleam of green
And an inhuman scream

Boll's X-Box did come back to life.

Boll did not sleep, instead was convinced
That inside his house, some evil did mince.
He heard just then upon the stair!
Did sound like a tank, an AI with flair.

Boll yelped and sat straight up
Did try not to whimper like some young pup
Instead he peeked 'round the door
But no tank rested on the floor.

With some tremor and trepidation
Boll did take this into consideration
"It is but the cars starting outside
And safe in my bed here shall I bide."

Head on the pillow, determined to sleep
So fast was his heart he had to count sheep.
Yet he heard on the landing
Fire Team Charlie were standing.

To Boll's credit he did not faint
But the model of strength he ain't.
To frighten them off he thought of audacity
So he shouted and screamed an atrocity!

To look upon the carpeted stretch
No marines stood there, not one wretch.
Now truly scared Boll hid his head
"You can't find me here." He tried to play dead

The night drew dark and all around
Boll listened but heard not a sound.
He breathed in relief "At last!"
And thought the ordeal was past

Yet under the duvet a hand did linger
And wrapped round his ankle, finger by finger.
Not to escape, it was not his fate.
And retribution would come, some say t'was late.

From his bed Boll was dragged
By Cortana (some say 'a shag')
She grimaced down and he cowered
And with her wrath he was showered.

Her words came with unbearable heat
She called him a filthy, lying, CHEAT!
"But wait! I beg for a chance!" Boll did cry
"All right." Cortana rolled her eyes to the sky

"Name me one thing I have done wrong.
I know you've all laughed o'er long
At my tricks, why they are a game to you!
It could be worse, like a tie-dye tutu.

It's all about friendship is that game
If it tears you apart you ought to feel shame
Point the finger at me, try and we'll see
Without automatic rockets, where would we be?"

With fervour and spirit Boll argued his plight
Indeed it lasted all through the night.
Cortana was sleeping when he was finally done
For sake of a nights sleep she let him go on.

It was a mistake, she understood
Next time just avenge herself she would
So this is the tale I have come to tell
'Bout Boll and the X-Box from Hell."


"Did I ever tell you Ross, you have too much time on your hands?" Sarah asked sweetly.
"Your rhymes suck." Gre'Thor117 managed to say it plainly. Ross glared at him with his hands on his hips.
"When you can do better then you may criticize."
"Is my X-Box going to hunt me down?" Wraith asked doubtfully. "Because I once TK'd." He said the last very quietly, lest Daniel Dao beside him turned around and took him out.

Kyreck rolled his eyes and fished into the bowl of monkey nuts.
"Surely there's gotta be a really scary story around here somewhere."
"Be careful what you wish for." Meleeman warned.

At this the door burst inwards and the candles flickered out. An accompanying breeze brought the scent of wet leaves wisping around the forum and a cloaked figure stood in the doorway, framed by moonlight. He entered, cloak billowing.
"Who's that guy?" Echelon whispered.
"Wado." Invictus replied in awe. "The Master Storyteller." As he passed the hooded Wado's gaze found Invictus.

"This young one knows of me." He said in a deep, booming voice. "I am indeed: Wado."
"The Master Storyteller?" Echelon asked.
"The one and only." Wado turned to the storytellers log and glanced meaningfully at Ross. After a little shove from Socrates, Ross vacated the log and sat, grumpily, with the rest.
"I will tell you a tale." Wado announced, flourishing his cloak as he sat. "A tale of such horror - it may be your undoing. This is the tale of Little Louis Wu."


       HBO Tales - Little Louis Wu and the Devil

This was the eve of the 31st and auld Nick was warming his toes by his fires. Now Nick had many names, Gil-Martin, the De'il, Damien, Lucifer, Him-Down-There, Twinkletoes-Himself, the Devil, Bill Gates . . . but he preferred Auld Nick. It reminded him of the other big red guy - the one who was partial to little children.
Gold and brown leaves would be coating the ground tonight and those same little children pretending to be nice would be prowling the streets in Nick's name. Ah - what a delicious slice of irony pie.
Feeling quite tickled light red, Nick stood and crossed to his neat little leather bound book. This book held a note of all his bargains, all his deals and all his purchases. It also kept a note of those who owed him. He ran a long black fingernail down the orderly margin and found a name that made him smile.
Louis Wu had made a bargain with him some time ago. An unfortunate tutu incident had prompted the poor soul to promise anything - absolutely anything - to Nick in order to have the tutu incident reasonably sorted. Nick chortled to himself and rubbed his bony fingers together.

At this very moment in time little Louis Wu was sitting on the internet, skimming the posts on the HBO forum for anything that looked interesting. One particular member caught his eye, a newcomer named Brimstone.
Brimstone was alerting everyone to the possibility of Halo 2 being released early - much earlier than anyone had planned. Louis Wu was doubtful at first but after following the links he learned this was true. Halo 2 was on the release cycle and Louis Wu could not wait!

On the day that Halo 2 arrived, little Louis Wu was so excited he could not stay still! He bounced on the sofa as he watched the start-up screen and dived straight into the game. He started in Mombassa and worked his way through destructible environments, enhanced AI, superb graphics and smooth gameplay. It was only as he came to the end of the level that he hit a terrible, terrible snag.
A genetically engineered Elite who came from improbable circumstances barred his way to the next cutscene. This elite had recharging health and three plasma swords. This elite also was allowed to move before the Master Chief was. In short - Louis Wu had hit Halo 2's first Boss.

Throughout the world fans of Halo 2 were screaming in terror and Nick sat in his lair, laughing wildly. Now Louis Wu had repaid his debt and Nick used a fine gold pen to draw a black line through his name in the leather bound book. Nick snapped the book closed and it vanished in a puff of smoke.

Little Louis joined his fellows in mourning. It became clear among their kind that some levels of Halo 2 even had sub-bosses. How hideous. It was with a heavy heart indeed that Louis trudged to his kitchen to make another cup of Irish Coffee.
He flicked the light switch on and gasped in surprise to see a squat little man sitting on the counter. His red skin glowed in the evening night and his lips parted in a toothy and untrustworthy grin.
But little Louis had met auld Nick before. The black haired man had barely to draw breath before little Louis understood.

"It was you!" He cried. "You put the Bosses in Halo 2!"
"Indeed I did." Nick replied smoothly. "You did promise me _anything_." His amber eyes glinted. "And I chose the game as my price."
"You've had your fun." Little Louis tried to be assertive, his tear stained face rather took away from the effect however. "Now give us back our game."
"Ahh." Nick puffed out his breath thoughtfully. "Now that would be difficult. After all - it's done now. And it takes a lot of effort to change the cosmos. A mere mortal cannot expect to understand." He dismissed the idea with a wave of his hand.
"Wait - what can I do?" Little Louis wailed. Nick smiled.
"Well I don't know little Louis. What could you do?"
"I would do anything." Louis assured him.
"The magic words." Nick assured him.

"Now my boy, let me discuss with you the . . . uh . . . issue in hand." Nick clicked his fingers once and in a puff of sulphur they were in his office. "We had a business agreement - do you remember?"
"Vaguely." Little Louis Wu tried to be flippant, but the image of the tutu stayed in his mind.
"If you like - there are pictures which might clarify . . ."
"No!" Louis shouted. "I . . . guess I remember now." He admitted. Nick turned with a grin and opened his little leather book.
"Now you see I obviously had to charge for my services." Nick said. "Now how could you pay me for the favour you ask?"
"I don't know." Louis guessed that Nick had an idea in mind.
"If you do remember our original problem with the tutu . . ." Nick prompted. "We could have a refund."
"Never!" Little Louis exclaimed. Nick sighed.
"Well when it comes down to it Louis my boy, you have to make a choice. The tutu or the game."
"But that's not fair!" Little Louis wailed.
"Life ain't fair Cupcake." Nick drawled. "Now what's the deal Twinkle?"
"I refuse!"

Little Louis Wu returned to the forum with a heavy heart. He was met by the others there and they thought that his gloom and doom was due to the Bosses.
"Be brave." Spenser flung an arm around his shoulder. "You must . . . try . . . to struggle on." Spenser teared up as he spoke and fled the room crying.
"It's not the end of the world." Fork Me With A Spoon said, though he sounded slightly doubtful. "It's just - close to it."

And Little Louis Wu's heart filled with guilt. How could he tell them that this was his fault? Well, he couldn't. Not without risking his life at any rate.
"If I find who's responsible . . ." Nukeduke growled grinding one fist into his palm. Little Louis gulped. It really was only a matter of time before they found out. What was he going to do? Even Hokeywebb22 had taken a break from his pigeons to swear vengeance.

"Me and my pigeon army will find the guilty one." Hokeywebb swore. "And we shall peck them to pieces!"
"Louis, is something wrong?" Sep7imus asked. "You look a bit pale. Perhaps you're ill - I know this has been a terrible shock to the system. Perhaps you should lie down?"
"I think that may be an idea." Little Louis gulped.

Little Louis escaped the forum and locked the door to his room. He shut his eyes in relief, but opened them to find auld Nick standing there.
"Wow." Nick said. "They sound angry, don't they?"
"I know what you're trying to do."
"If it's any consolation - the tutu is long gone . . . the refund would be slightly different . . ." Nick trailed off temptingly. Little Louis Wu grimaced.
"What did you have in mind?"

Nick clicked his bony fingers together and a floor length tie-dye ball gown appeared in front of them.
"It's a Vera Wang." Nick said knowingly as Louis's jaw hit the floor. "Lovely - isn't it?"
"No." Little Louis said flatly. "Absolutely not." He shivered convulsively.
"Well it's this foxy little number or you hide your head in the sand for the rest of eternity." Nick smirked. "Which is it to be little Louis because time is ticking down."
"Five . . ."
"You can't do this!"
"Four . . ."
"Please don't make me do this!"
"Three . . ."
"Maybe a different dress-"
"Two . . ."
"You don't know what these people are like!"
"They'll tear me apart."
"Tick tick - time's gone and the offer is up-"
"The dress!" Louis wailed. "I'll wear the goddamned dress."


Wado the Master Storyteller folded his hands in his lap when he had finished his tale. The others drew back with one, long breath.
"Man." Goatrope a l'école said, he had one arm around a tearful Simpsons Rule. "That just wasn't funny."
"Yeah." Sarah stood up haughtily. "Why'd ya have to go scare us all like that?" She sniffed. "I'm never gonna be able to look at little Louis again. Damn it!"
"I'm scared." Wraith whimpered.

"It was only a story." Wado tried to reassure his audience.
"Yeah but have you seen Louis recently?" Elfster asked darkly. Suddenly Wado was afraid.
"No . . . but it can't be true . . ."
"Can't it? You never know."