1000 Words V: Pwn3d

by Devin Hallsworth

Story Image: See end of story


H3D0 screamed as he sent rounds down range. The dust was so thick he
couldn't be sure if he was hitting anything but he knew they were out
there, he'd gotten a glimpse of one for just the second it had taken an
arrow to fly into the bunker and nail Vegeta99 in the throat.

PKNewb killed Banana'sinPajama's.

PKNewb killed $#%^Storm.

PKNewb killed Frodo(chicken).

H3D0 felt a sweat break out, he quickly reached up and flipped down his
visor. The HUD displaying a mini map of the area surrounding the bunker,
with three skulls and crossbones behind it in the pass leading to the last

Something jumped down off the top of the bunker and landed off to the
side of his M60's protruding barrel. Before H3D0 even had a chance to
flinch the Samurai removed his head from his shoulders.

H3D0 just stood there for a few seconds as his killer moved on. He
looked at his hand and noted it was indeed semi transparent, an indicator
of someone watching the match as opposed to playing it.

"Eeee, tough luck man." He looked up and saw another ghost. BillyBob,
who'd been taken out of the match in the first minute.

H3D0 looked down and saw his head was still rolling around on the floor
of the bunker.


BB grinned and gave H3D0 a hand climbing out of the bunker. "Don't let
it get to you man, these guys are hard core professionals. They told us
that too when they invited us for a couple matches."

H3D0 shook his head. "Yeah, I know they're hardcore. I mean you HAVE to
take this stuff seriously to get into it as a professional. But .. Christ
you remember that last match?"

"The Jungle Stalkers mod?" BB asked.

"Yeah. That one, you remember how I died in that?" H3D0 asked as they
walked up the hill behind a couple other ghosts who were watching the
ProKillaz Clan's advance towards their fifth straight victory.

"Uhh, no. I was still alive at that point. You and UrM0M were going to
try and pick off a guy that was straggling weren't you?"

"Yeah, and Guess why he was straggling. So he could lure a couple dumb
suckers like me and Ur in where he could take us both out. WITH HIS BARE
FRIGGIN HANDS!!" H3D0 yelled, positively livid as he gestured at the small
group of Samurai.

BB looked somewhat confused. "We were playing as Were Jaguars in a
jungle setting, hunting down human merc's. How could he kill you with his
bare hands?" H3D0 gesticulated wildly in frustration

"I. FRAK, I don't know! I was there and even I don't know." They
watched as a single samurai threw his sword through the air, the blade
arcing impossibly high before coming down and spearing one of the last two
defenders through the ribcage. The act itself didn't bug H3D0 so much as
how casual the clan member had made it look.

PKHuffman killed Zion

"I mean.."

"I. DON'T. KNOW! I mean, I saw him do it, but my mind still doesn't
understand how my spine got destroyed in the same motion he twisted my
head a full hundred eighty degree's in."

H3D0 had been playing Second Strike for at least three years now. In
that time he had tried out almost every type of game mod made by the
community and had felt he was proficient enough to hold his own no matter
what the situation.

Whether it be commanding a small gang of Goblins or holding off a Swat
team from inside a bank he had felt like he knew the game and how to beat
the people who played it. He didn't mind being proven wrong, but there was
a difference between a defeat and complete and abject humiliation at the
hands of an elite clan. He had even been thinking about applying to join a
clan, but now he realized he was still plodding around at the skill level
of the casual players.

PKGlassNinja killed Ahnold


ALL Guest players eliminated.

The world faded out into the electric blues and shallow gray of the
server's lobby.

BB and H3D0 hung above the lobby's main area as formless digital

"This sucks." H3D0 observed privately with Bob.

"Could be worse." Billy bob said, trying to placate his friend. H3D0
would have been quivering in fury if he'd had a form to do it with. He
almost thought about floating down to the surface below to take a form and
do just that but he didn't want these people seeing that.

"How, could it possibly be worse?" H3D0 asked placidly before erupting.
"Were getting @## raped by people who are taking ridiculous handicaps in
order to make it 'fair' for us!"

"Well at least they're not mocking us about it." Bob observed.

H3D0 had to admit BB was right about that. It was bad enough not being
able to play on the same level as these guys, at least they had the grace
to not rub it in.

Sixth match starting.

Dragon Kingdom Mod selected.

Guests defending.

ProKillaz Handicap level set.

The world faded away in a wash of gray and green. From the formlessness
that was his body H3D0 felt his giant scaled wings erupt. Head, tail and
clawed limbs all seemed to burst out of a central point of self fully
formed and settling themselves into where they were meant to be.

A rush of power swept over his mind as he flexed his draconic muscles.
He teeth grinned and reared his head back on its long slender neck,
letting loose a mind splitting roar that was quickly joined up by the
other thirty some dragons in the cavern.

"H3D0, BillyBob! Quit your yammering and get going! The attackers
always arrive by boat on this map, if you hurry you might be able to catch
them on the ocean!" That got H3D0's attention. He whipped his head around
to look at the blue and gold scaled dragon that tromped over beside him.

"FINNALY! A chance to give some back!" H3D0 exclaimed, grinning
predatorily as he made his way out of the cavern and stood on the edge of
a sheer drop down the side of a cliff.

"I wonder what kind of handicap they took though. I mean this mod is
biased enough towards the dragons as it is." Billy bob asked before they
both dove off the cliff and into the air, wings snapping open and catching
the air instinctively.

A few minutes flight yielded BB his answer as they flew over the beach
where the PK's had landed.

"Okay. NOW they're mocking us." Bob begrudgingly admitted.

[Story Image: "Battle Hamster Raid"]


ALL Guest players eliminated.

The End.


Raven's Comments:

This is probably the hardest I've laughed at any contest submission in
the seven years that I've been doing these. :) Very funny indeed, and a
brilliant use of a very silly image to maximum effect.

The story is not terribly ambitious; it's essentially built around that
one joke at the end. It doesn't have highly developed characters and
motivations, and the "computer death-match" setting is a little clichéd at
this point. None of that really matters, though, because it succeeds very
well at what it sets out to do. This isn't a deep story, but it isn't
supposed to be; it's supposed to be funny, and take you by surprise with
the final image. In this it succeeds completely, so you get top marks in
the Artistry category.

The story does have some spelling and punctuation errors, besides the
intentional ones that were part of the characters' screen names. It also
suffers from some awkward phrasing in one or two places, a few formatting
errors, and various other technical glitches; nothing too egregious, but
enough to keep you from claiming the top spot. I also had to knock a point
off of the Applicability score because the story, as fun as it is, doesn't
really have much to do with the subject image; the battle hamsters are
just a punchline, not the focus of the story.

All in all, it's a thoroughly enjoyable story, in spite of its flaws. :)

Spelling/Punctuation: B-
Technique: B
Creativity: B
Artistry: A
Applicability: B

Final Score: 42.5 out of 50

Copyright 2006 by Devin Hallsworth. If you want to post this anywhere else, please ask for permission first.

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