Metaverse Deathmatch!
Phase Two

Night #6: Things Fall Apart
Part Five

From: "Jay/Puck/Team"
Date: Mar 15, 2001

{Place - Puck's Lair}
[Java is kneeling beside Puck as he awakes, sitting up. He turns to the would-be rescuers and scowls.]

Puck: [to Java] We'll talk later. Right now, we have trespassers. Lend a hand, dearie.

[Puck starts to form energy in his hands, advancing on Dirk and Jenny, but then he stops and his head rocks back, and he screams.]

Puck: NO! Not you!

[He staggers and grips his head, the energy dissipating around his hands. The drones stop and swivel their optic receptors toward him, leaving them wide open to an offense from the rescuers. Java likewise stops and watches him.]

Puck/Jay: [voice wavering between the two] Curse you no more make you pay Game Over, Puck I shall destroy you Author wins.

[There is a bright flash, and the surviving drones shudder before collapsing. Java cries out in pain briefly before fainting, and when the flash clears, the form of the Author has reverted from viral to human, and Jay groans and rubs his temples.]

Jay: Man, do I have a headache...

From: "Rescue Team"
Date: Mar 15, 2001

{Place: Pucks Lair}
[Dirk and Jenny are reluctant to lower their weapons to the new, or rather old, Jay and take a moment to think having no real threat, other then the normal crazy polymorph.]

Jenny: Well.. this is a change of plans.

Dirk: There was a plan?

[Voodoo enters the room with the rest of the team, the drones now no longer a threat he is ready to face Puck, but sees Jay and not Puck.]

Voodoo: Jay?

Jay: Er...Voodoo?

Java: Voodoo-chan? Jay-chan?

Voodoo: So much for the resuce mission.

Jenny: Wait a minute, how do we know that thing... [A pause] sorry, Jay, isn't Puck?

Voodoo: Good point. Jay, till we get thing checked out and are a go, It would be safe to detain you for the time being, Java also.

Java: Detain us!

[Jay places a hand on her shoulder and Java stops before saying more and looks at him, weaken and physicialy sore]

Jay: I...agree.

Voodoo: The team will take you to my GR and run test...i have something I have to do.

[Voodoo uses his Author Powers to vanish from the room, leaving the team to help the Authors back to the Team Voodoo GR.]

{Place: Team Voodoo Green Room. Location: Voodoo's Chambers}
[Voodoo appears within his protective walls, and see's Minke not sitting, but rahter laying on her side, moaning in her web speak. Voodoo kneels down and pulls her up into his arms, checking her pulse and making sure she is alive. he cries her name out, in her speak to the best of his mental ablilites but gets nothing back from her.]

Voodoo: Minke.... speak to me girl... Sai's gonna kill me if your not alright. Minke please....

[She remains silent, she doesn't hardly move aside from a slight side to side motion of her tail and the slow steady rythem of her breathing. Voodoo rests his head on her crown, calling her name through their link, waiting for her to talk back to him, waiting for the only person thats not his character that he.. does care for to come back to him.]

From: "Jay Winger"
Date: Mar 20, 2001

{Place - Voodoo's GreenRoom}
[Jay stands in the "containment" area that Voodoo has set up for him. He looks only slightly impatient -- understanding of the necessity, if not entirely willing to submit to it. E.V.A. and some of Voodoo's people check readouts on him.]

E.V.A.: Near as I can tell, he's clean. His Authoric code is back to normal.

Jay: Or as normal as it ever was.

Jeff: And what about Puck?

Jay: There's nothing I can do about him. He's a part of me as much as your Hybrid nature is of you.

Jeff: ...

Jay: [small sigh] Let me put it this way -- trying to remove Puck from me would be equivalent to doing a full frontal lobotomy.

Jeff: And that's bad because...?

Jay: Look, I admit it's dangerous keeping Puck around, but he's a permanent part of me. Most of the time I can keep him in check, but when I get too exhausted or otherwise let my guard drop, he makes a power play. That's what happened toNight. After my match with Voodoo last Night, I was mentally drained, because I had to let Puck out enough for the match, but not so much that he'd run rampant. So after the match was over, I collapsed, because when I tried to pull Puck back in, he fought back, so it turned into a mental battle. That's what was going on while I was 'comatose.'

Jenny: And then Puck took control.

Jay: Yes. He'd been biding his time and waiting for me to challenge him to a battle on the Mental Plane, and when I did, he made his move. He trapped me there and restrained my own powers so he could take control. And you know the rest, I suppose.

[Nods. Jay sighs.]

Jay: It's one thing to make something that will work for characters and concrete things in the Metaverse, but I can't exactly do that for an Author.

[Pause. Then E.V.A. speaks.]

E.V.A.: Are you certain of that, Mr. Winger?

Jay: Yeah, why?

E.V.A.: Didn't you do that very thing for Java?


Jay: I'm not sure that's the same thing...

E.V.A.: Well, why not? Granted, she's a sprite, and so code-fixes work in that regard, but Voodoo is not a sprite, and he's modified himself.

[Jay frowns.]

Jay: Meaning no disrespect to Voodoo or his own decisions, but I like my body the way it is.

Jeff: I don't think E.V.A. is suggesting you turn yourself into a hybrid creation like Voodoo. I think she's suggesting that some method can be created in which something is ingrained upon you that would make it much more difficult for Puck to take control.

Jay: Like some kind of mental block?

E.V.A.: Exactly.

[Jay stops to consider.]

Jay: I suppose that could work. You'd have to work out the specifics and let me see them so I can verify if they'll be enough to keep Puck in line.

[Nods. Jeff and Jenny go back to work, checking things, and then Jay speaks up.]

Jay: What about Java?

Jeff: [looks up] What about her?

Jay: Is she all right?

[Another pause]

Jenny: She's been unconscious since you forced Puck out. We've managed to determine that Puck literally altered her code, changing her from merely a 'renegade' polymorph into one that obeyed him. I think Puck's departure traumatized her.

Jay: Can't you fix her?

Jenny: It's not that simple. The alterations in her code are so fundamental that she could die if we tried to fix it.

[Jay looks down, feeling guilty.]

Jay: Damn... [blinks and looks up] Can you let me call my greenroom?

Jeff: Why?

Jay: Last Night, before Java's match against Voodoo, I had my hackers cook up a code patch that would enable her characters to survive if she were to die. I don't recall exactly, but I think that patch could help us restore her to her usual happy-go-lucky poly-self.

Jenny: How?

Jay: The principle of the idea was that if Java were to be killed during her match with Voodoo, her consciousness would be maintained in a secure dBase while my hackers set up a C-Link that would allow us to 'resurrect' her as it were. I'm sure that if you gave my hackers enough time, they could modify things somewhat so that it would merely kick Java's code back to normal.

Jenny: Or as normal as her code gets.

Jay: Well, that goes without saying.

Jeff: ... okay. Call your hackers.

Jay: Thanks.


Jay: You think, after we've sorted everything out, we could at least have one more match toNight? I guarantee it'll be easy for all concerned.

Jenny: What match is that?

Jay: Oh, nothing. Just Chaotis going up against Dax.

Jenny: What? You'd put her in the ring with that lech?

Jay: Against Dax, Mouse, and AndrAIa. [grins] 3-on-1. I think Chaotis would learn to think with his other head for a change, yeah?

From: "Java"
Date: Mar 20, 2001

{Place: Java's Mental Ether}
What's going on, I can't see, can't see....
Someone! Anyone! Listen!
My Jay-chan, Voodoo-san, Seraphie...
me'Napaan, ie'nase'liande...
ie'nasim'masnak me'Nesz anne traisen-nam -- NO!
He is not, I am Java, Chika da Chaos...
...I am but a insignificant
Oosi help me...

[She feels metal suddenly as she comes to, laying in a hard bunk. A brig cell is what swarms into her view. Very slowly, she lets herself look up and push herself too see the room.]

[All she can see is across from her, three characters, two women and one male. She ties not to notice them, and sits up and swings her legs onto the floor.]

Now what?
Now what? You find a way to get out, and find
te'Napaan, and protect him before yourself.

[She shakes her head violently, her scarf-ends swinging wildly.]

What is this? Why am I being controled by this programming?...
The unInfectable Chika has been Infected, in a way. Live with it. Now. Test the bars. Get out.

[In responce, she stands and moves close to the force field. One or two of the Trio look up at her. She jumps at it.]

[And is zapped and falls back.] Ow.

Jer'al: Bad shock. Might not want to do that again.

Java: I figured.

[She scrambles back up.]

Jer'al: Who are ya?

Java: An Authoress..[she springs once again and is hit again, a bit harder this time] Java's the name.

Casidy: Hey, you're the one Bios attacked, right?

[She nods blankly and sits back down, putting her head on her knees, trying to give off a "No talking" aura. it works.]

I can't get out...
Then wait for a chance. You should know that.

[The door opens, and someone begins walking down the corridor. From the Trio's reaction it would seem to be Dax. Java curls into a ball in the corner of her bunk.]

Dax is too powerful I can't beat her.
I don't have my Icon...they took it. I can't shift without it.
You have your dagger. Look - the scabbard is invisible, they mised it.
I can't stil beat her. She's a hybrid!

[Java takes the blade out and hides it behing her forearm as she crosses her arms. Her visitor arrives.]

...if you can't use it on her...use it on yourself.

From: "Team Voodoo"
Date: Mar 20, 2001

{Location: The Brig}
[Dax steps infront of the Trios cell, and grins before tapping the control panel]

Dax: Fields down, hope you will behave...

[Jer'al jumps forward at her and smacks hard into the feild and flys back onto Lomax, Casity shakes her head and moans]

Casity: Jer'al, thats the forth time she has reconfigured the feild, and the forth time you have her joke. One would learn by now.

Lomax: Most would, now get off me!

[Dax shakes her head and looks to Java, who has finally awoken. Java doesn't seem right, her eyes aren't the same.Dax know this is the look of one that is planning something, like the cagged animal who is planning an escape, Dax decides to learn more. She takes a few steps away and taps on a panel on the wall.]

Dax: Dax Lockheart, Gamma-Beta-Charlie 11301 Omega.

E.V.A.: Voice code... accepted.

[A small opening appears in the wall and Dax removes the icon and walks back to Java]

Dax: This what you want?

[Java remains silent, still thinking.]

Dax: We know what it does, what it can do. [she flips it in the air like a coin] But the coding..very well re-coded since our last scans on it. Puck did a job on you didn't he?

[Java is visably angerd at Dax treating her life as a toy.]

Dax: But you know somewhere that we are doing this for your own good, so untill we get things worked out... [stops flipping the icon and takes a step back] get use to the walls.

[Java slams her hands into the field and it shocks her back and she falls onto the floor, Dax replaced the icon and leaves.]

Dax: E.V.A. keep a sharp eye on her, she is planning something.

E.V.A.: Yes Dax.

{Location: Team Voodoo Main Room}
[Jay stands on the holo-platform, behind the well thought out containment feild, he tests it from time to time, trying to figure out just how Voodoo did this. But Jay's time hasn't been wasted, he has seen alot in his time in the Green Room. And while he waits for communications to be established with his team, he talks outloud.]

Jay: I never knew that it was this big inside.

Jenny: DaVinci never talked about it?

Jay: He said and I quote "Big and messy"

Jenny: He did come while the cleaner was away.

E.V.A.: Thanks for the high title... And Jay would you please stop pacing, I can feel that you know.

Jay: That is what scares me, or rather interest me a great deal. A computer that feels me move.

E.V.A.: I have a name thank you and while you are getting to know me better would you please be so kind as to take care were you step.

Jay: Can't really do much on a three foot by three foot platform.

[The large screen changes to show DaVinci face on it, and he looks up from his work.]

Jenny: This is Team Voodoo, you have one Jay Winger calling will you accept the charges?

DaVinci: Jay?

Jay: Hello again D..

{Location: Voodoo's Chambers}
[Voodoo does not know what to do. Minke has remained out of his link since his return. Her body is working, she is breathing and her tail and wings flutter and sway. But he has no power here, he has no ability to go into her mind, now without her opening a pathway. He has moved her off the floor, this time with more then the last time thanks to his new form, and has set her on his abandon bed. He sits on the side with his eyes closed deep in though. Does he go in? To break aside her walls of defence and help her the way she did to him? Does he wait for her to heal herself?]

[He shakes his head, he has to help her since it would only be far. He opens the link and as he reaches the wall, he stops and closes the link. He can't do this, not without permission. He opens another link, one he know she will hear.]

Voodoo: *Sai. Sai if you can hear me please reply back. This is of great importance. Minke..I don't know what she is but I can't go in and help unless I have your permission. Talk to me Sai..please.*

From: "Java"
Date: Mar 22, 2001

{Place: The Brig}
[Java growls at Dax as she leaves and scrambles up from the floor, sheathing the dagger again, letting the scabbard fade into nonexistance. She paces.]

So, any bright ideas now, Infection?
Hey, I'm just you obeying
Well, I'm liable to just give up now for a while and rest. Any objections to that?

[The viral code is silent. She sighs and shivers, then sits down on the bunk. Her blue scarf waves into her vision, and she bats the ends away. Finally she reaches into her pocket, withdraws her Interdimensional Pocket and pulls out a random book to read.]

Any portal commands in there?
Nope. And a Mallet isn't gonna help any.
So you'e just going to give up?
For now, yah.

[She opens the book and tries to bury herself in it.]

Shut up, okay? There is nothing to do and I dinna have my icon.
What about it? I'm trying to read so stop bugging me!

[She stares at what she was reading, now noticing it's in D'ni script.]

There's your way out, sweetheart.

[She looks about quickly, grins, and flips the book to the front page and presses her hand to the linking picture.]

{Place: Vault}
Uhm....I didn't exactly expect this...
You realize very soon tha-



[Java swears, looks around for some kind of projectile weapon, and finding none, runs as far away from the door and hides behind a locker. She pulls her dagger out and flattens herself into the locker, waiting.]

Now I know why infected sprites act so dumb.
Don't look at me.

From: "Team Voodoo"
Date: Mar 25, 2001

{Place: Voodoo's Chambers}
[Voodoo has still not be able to get in contact with Sai, but he knows she can hear her and waits for her to reply back.]

E.V.A: Voodoo. I am detecting movement in the weapons vault. It's Java.

Voodoo: How did she get out of the cell?

E.V.A.: Not sure, she has just seemingly appeared in the vault.

Voodoo: I'll take care of it. Keep a eye on Minke.. let me know if anything changes.

E.V.A.: Yes Voodoo.

[Voodoo stands and leaves his chambers and head for the vault.]

{Place: Weapons Vault}
[Java leans on the locker, taking in what she can from the dim lighted surroundings. Everything is locked up tight, she looks closer at the pad next to her and runs her thumb over it. It blinks and beeps.]

Lock: Invalid.DNA.Coding.

[Java sighs and rests her head on the locker, when she sees a small blinking red light on the work station. She stands and walks slowly towards it, knowing that it could very well be a fragmintation mine she looks closely at it from her place near the bench and makes it out in the light.]

Java: Well well..

[She picks it up gently and runs her fingers over the slick metal. Grinning she places the guantlet on her right arm, it beeps and squeezes on her arm for a snug fit. She is happy is hasn't blown her apart, but the loud door hissing open and the lights flicking on scare her and devert her attention from the weapons message as she turns to see Voodoo enter the chamber.]

Voodoo: I don't know how you got out, but this isn't the place for you to be.

[The door hisses shut and Voodoo slowly walks towards her.]

Voodoo: Think your pretty brave pointing that weapon at me? Go ahead Java. Fire it. Go ahead, it taps the nerves in you arm to give a link to your brain. [snaps his fingers] instant responce time. Think it Java.. fire.

[Her viral coding allows her to do so, but the weapon doesn't.]

Guantlet: Invalid DNA Coding.

[The weapon sends a shock through her system and falls off her arm. Java screams from both pain and anger. She runs at him with full force, pulling her dagger from her side she strikes and rolls on the ground, sheathing her weapon. Voodoo turns around and Java looks over her shoulder, seeing the slice mark in his leg that she caused. The blood slit seals itself over and fades from sight.]

Java: No fair..

[She is flipped up and into a locker. She falls to the ground. Pushing herself up she slams to the ground again, with no contact from Voodoo, only his angerd mind.]

Voodoo: I have a friend dying Java.. 'Cuz of you and Puck.

[She is lifted and dropped again]

Voodoo: And you aren't helping by breaking out of your cell. All I want it things back to normal.. so-- [slam] --start-- [drop] --playing-- [slide] --by the-- [crash into a wall] rules.

[The door hisses open and the angerd Voodoo walks past her and into the Green Room. Java cries a little, not just from pain but from the fact that yet again she has failed. The medics of the team rush in and pick Java up, taking her to the Medical bay. Leaving the dagger behind.]

{Place: Main Green Room}
Jay: What the hell happen to her!

[Jay has put D on hold for a moment as he sees Java.]

Ki'ace: She got out of her cell. Voodoo did this to her.

Jay: Why?!

Ki'ace: Without Minke to keep his powers in check, they run rampid without his logical mind to hold them back. Voodoo has expended a lot of engery fighting Puck and crossing powerful boundres. He is lossing to himself.

Jay: So put him to sleep or something. Java doesn't deserve this!

E.V.A.: Voodoo isn't meaning to do this, and he can't sleep. Not without someone to block his powers. Minke and other very powerful psyonic beings can do this. Till she is better, Voodoo is best left to himself. From my scans, Java is ok, just a little batterd.

Jay: That doesn't make me feel better.

E.V.A: Nor I Mr. Winger.

From: "Jay"
Date: Mar 27, 2001

{Place - Voodoo's Greenroom - Medical Bay}
[Jay paces in frustration in his quarantine, much to E.V.A.'s annoyance, and finally he turns back to DaVinci on the vidwindow.]

Jay: Look, just get it done. Find a way to modify that code patch we gave Java so we can de-Infect her.

DaVinci: It's not going to be that simple, Jay. Infection is one thing. But Java's a polymorph, and her kind were meant to be subservient to viruses. It's going to be hard fixing this, but I've already got the others working on it.

Jay: Just get it done! Keep Chaotis out of it, though. I don't trust him completely, and besides, I still plan to have him in his match tonight.

DaVinci: Whatever. You just keep yourself sane, you hear?

Jay: Yeah. [closes vid] Now if only Minke would wake up, we can keep Voods sane too.

Ki'ace: Any theories on why she hasn't woken up?

Jay: Hey, don't look at me. Last thing I remember from the Mental Plane was me jumping after Puck as he tried to take control of the body again. I took his ass out and seized control, and as far as I know, Minke was still on the Mental Plane.

Ki'ace: Could she still be there?

[Jay closes his eyes for a moment. After a few minutes, he opens them again.]

Jay: Nope. Puck's there, but I chained him up and restricted his powers. No sense in him getting all worked up. Minke's gone.


Jay: It is possible that she got lost on her way back to her body. Psionic translation like what she was doing is a tricky thing. It's like astral projection. If the person's concentration is disrupted, it can be disasterous.

Ki'ace: Well, can you fix it?

Jay: Me? I'm not a telepath. My psionic talents are an extension of my Authoric abilities. I can only read the minds of my characters, and even then, I'm not that practiced. Characters are people, and I don't go reading people's minds without permission.

[Jay paces a bit, then sits down with a sigh.]

Jay: My suggestion is you get another strong psionic talent -- someone like Aarys or a powerful Zed -- and have them do a psi-search for Minke's mind. She's probably detached from her body and free-floating. Once you find her, then it should be easier to get her back.

[He looks at Ki'ace]

Jay: In the meantime, I suggest you restrain Voodoo. If he's not acting rationally, that makes him potentially as big a threat as Puck.

From: "Sai's People"
Date: Mar 27, 2001

[She continues to hear Voodoo's calls, sometimes a desperate whisper, other times a painful roaring demand, but she's unsure of how to respond. For the past hour this Night, she has been staring curiously in a mirror at her physical image, watching how her ears twitch as the computers to her right in this section of the green room beep and flash. She blinks her eyes, wiggles her eyebrows, wrinkles her nose and puckers her lips a few times, fascinated with the facial expressions now available to her. Taking a few steps back, she stands up tall to get a better view of her entire body, swaying her striped tail and wiggling her pawish bony fingers. Finally, her vocal chords are tested, and a word comes out in shaky Common.] W...wwwooo-OOOw.

[An amazed laugh comes out of her mouth, and at the same time she's fascinated by the fangs appearing within that cute smile.]

[Staring from around an organic, viney corner, Zaria and Ibi watch with worry more than curiosity. Ibi begins coming forward along with Zaria, but Zaria puts up a hand signal, and Ibi stays behind the plant's cover.]

Zaria: Sai?

[She turns around to stare at her friend. Zaria is a few feet away on the other side of the greenroom section's protective barrier from the forest's humidity. Crossing the barrier, she gives Zaria a quizzical expression.] W..what?

Zaria: You've been acting strange for the past hour or so. What's going on with you? Did you hear from Minke yet?

Sai: Mah...Minke...

[She blinks confusedly, and Zaria grows more frustrated with her clueless attitude.]

Zaria: You know, CReaTuRe, your baby, your precious favorite character?? What's going on in that nutty lemur's head of yours??

[Looking back into the mirror one final time before turning to Zaria with an extremely confused look on her face, her shock lifts and the realization comes to her.]

Sai:'s me.

Zaria [squints]: *What's* you?

[Sai's hands come up and grip Zaria by the shoulders. Her mouth opens to speak, but when she does, her words are not her own.]

Sai: I s-survived, Zaria! I-i-it's me, M-Minke!

From: "Java"
Date: Mar 29, 2001

{Place: Java's Mental Ether}
I didn't mean to lose! What was I to do?
You've left yourself completely defenseless, captured, unable to obey your master! Idiot!
It's not my fault!

[A grey mist surrounds this place currently, hiding any landmarks once visible. Java herself stands in the middle of what is visible, unchanged except for her scarf. The other person is but a shadow, with a blue scarf, infected icon, and wearing a uniform in Puck's colors - her Infection.]

You fool! You're going to destroy yourself and me with you!
It's not MY fault! I don't have my icon, I can't shift to any form that could cause any severe damage-
You still could have tried harder! Shouldn't have just charged blindly, he made you into a little rag doll when you did that. You should have forseen that.
I can't forsee Voodoo! Am I supposed to predict the future now?!
Doesn't change the fact you're trapped.
[The Infection sneers, shaking it's head.]
You aren't even supposed to exist! Polih are not Infected, the code is just a formality, damnit!
te'Napaan saw fit, and so it is.
Aarys is the Priestess, she can release me from my vow-
She isn't here and I will keep you from calling to her!
Puck betrayed me.
You betrayed te'Napaan.
Go away! I-

[Java falls out of her trance-like state when Ki'eva accidentally bumps her into the bed as she places her down. Her eyes flash open suddenly, and she jumps up into a crouch on the bed. Ki'eva slowly backs away a few feet.]

Ki'eva: E.V.A, a level-one force field around bed three.

[Java jumps away, hits the forcefield and rebounds back onto the medical bed. She looks like a caghed beast as she jumps again, then once more. Then drops to the side of the bed and curls up suddenly, wrapping her arms around her knees.]

Damn you Infection! Answer me!

[No answer.]

All lies, all false, no one loves me do they, do they? Damn Voodoo for interfering, for living, Jay's characters, everyone. Me'Napaan! Please hear me, I can't free myself, I'm trapped, have mercy something have mercy no no mercy why is this happening only my Master helps me, someone let me out...

[Physically, leaning her bruised self on the back of the bed, she is crying, violently, the sobs racking her body, but utterly silent.]

From: "Jay/Hyena/D"
Date: Mar 30, 2001

{Place - Voodoo's Greenroom}
[Jay can see Java from his vantage point in his own containment area, and he checks his watch.]

Jay: Dammit, what's taking them so long?

Ki'ace: Worried about Java?

Jay: YES! I feel responsible for what's happened. Shouldn't have let Puck bait me -- and now he's Infected Java.

Ki'ace: You sure your hackers can handle this?

Jay: My hackers are among the best in the Metaverse. If anyone can do this, they can.

[About a minute later, there's a knock-knock at the door to Voodoo's Greenroom. Crix answers it and blinks as he finds himself looking at Hyena and none other than the "hacker god" himself, DaVinci.]

DaVinci: Hi, Crix. [sees Jay] Jay! We just finished the modifications to the code patch.

Hyena: Yeah, with any luck, it'll reverse the alterations in Java's code and put her back to her usual happy-go-luck polymorph self.

Jay: Good! Now we just have to calm her down enough to give it to her.

Hyena: What's wrong with her?

Jay: Well, she's been behaving rather erratically. She escaped from her cell somehow, she appears almost suicidal, and very off-kilter... even for Java.

DaVinci: I think it must be her Infection making her behave this way. She thinks she's failed her Master -- that is, Puck -- and seeks to punish herself for it.

Jay: Well, we can't let her do that.

Ki'ace: Follow me, I'll take you to her.

[She leads DaVinci and Hyena toward Java. Jay moves to follow, but bumps into the containment field.]

Damn you! You're taking what I rightfully claimed!
She's a person, Puck, and an Authoress, besides! She's not yours to claim.
The Web she isn't! She is a
polih and she was without a Napaan! I had every right to lay claim to her!
No, you didn't, Puck, because I claim her. She's my friend, and not available for you to order around! Release your hold on her!
Over my derezzed code.
...I'm going to hold you to that.

[Elsewhere, Java, still hugging her knees and looking like a trapped animal, looks up sharply as Ki'ace, DaVinci, and Hyena enter. DaVinci is stunned by her appearance and behavior.]

DaVinci: It's okay, Java, we're here to help...

Hyena: We have something for you.

[She takes out her laptop and taps a button, then cups her hand in the air as what looks like a glowing marble -- a swirled blue and magenta coloring. She holds it out.]

Hyena: You want it?

From: "Java"
Date: Mar 30, 2001

{Place: Voodoo's Greenroom, Medical Bay}
[Very, very slowly, Java looks up and stares at the marble, then at Hyena, then at DaVinci, then back to the marble. From crying her eyes are red, but uncomfortably blank, like she isn't really there.]

[She moves her balance slightly, then lashes out a foot at Hyena's wrist. It hits the forcefield and shocks her back again. Whimpering, Java cradles her foot, then looks up nastily.]

Java: Traitors. Cailleah! You're tricking me again, trying to make me disavow him - You're not going to make it work!

[She throws herself at the forcefield, is zapped back, and scrambles up onto the bed. Her scarf is slighlty askew, but she tugs it back on before it falls off.]

DaVinci: Java, stop. We don't want you to hurt yourself. We only want to help you, understand?

Java: Your help means turning me into a ta'shav! I won't let you.

[She perches on the head of the bed, the field a foot away from her, back turned.]

DaVinci: When have we ever hurt you Java? We just want to help. Jay's worried about you.

Java: Jay?

[She softens a moment.]

Java: D, I can't take it. I can't control an Infection, I just...I follow my Master.

[Again, she turns her back on him. Hyena looks at D, then Java, and puts the marble out of sight for a moment. DaVinci walks around the bed and forcefield, where Java is curled up again, scarf hiding her face.]

DaVinci: If I told you it wouldn't change that part of your code, would you take it?

Java: You already did, didn't you?

[She changes again, the Infection flaring up.]

Java: I want my icon. Now, fictive! And my dagger, maybe then we can play bargain. Hear??

From: "Jay/Hy/D"
Date: Apr 3, 2001

{Place - Voodoo's Greenroom - Medical Bay}
[DaVinci's eyes narrow and glint subtly with a hint of that residual viralness from his merging with Lean. He doesn't like being called fictive. Something within him tells him to hit her for that -- but he doesn't. That would most certainly get Jay mad at him -- no matter what Java had said. Instead, DaVinci tries a different tack to get her to take it back.]

DaVinci: You know, "fictive" is a racist term.

Java: So?

DaVinci: So, the last people who used that term were the Owners.

[Beat. Java doesn't get it.]

DaVinci: Puck killed the Owners.

[That gets through. Java blinks in fear as she realizes what fe'Napaan (her Master) could do to her for letting a racist remark like that slip out.]

DaVinci: Please, Java, just take the patch.

Java: [after a pause] No, no. I can't, D, you know that.

[DaVinci sighs and goes back over to Hyena.]

DaVinci: This isn't working.

Hyena: I noticed. Puck really sunk his hooks in deep, didn't he?

DaVinci: Tell me about it. As long as she's got that Infection in her, she won't listen to reason.

Hyena: Yeah, and the only thing she will listen to is her Master's voice.

[Suddenly, a voice speaks from the other Medical Bay where Jay is being held.]

Puck: me'Polih!

[DaVinci and Hyena jump in surprise at hearing Puck's voice, and Java meeps and sits up straight, listening.]

Puck: Take the code patch! I order you!

[Java stares for a moment. DaVinci looks at Hyena, who rushes to the other Medical Bay and finds Jay leaning against the containment field, looking pained.]

Hyena: [whispering] Jay, what are you doing?

Jay: [whispering, Puck's voice] I'm-- [coughs, normal] I managed to take control of part of Puck's code to use his voice. Now I just need to get that code back under control.

Hyena: [whispering] Is that smart?

Jay: [whispering] Maybe not, but I don't want Java in any more trouble.

[Back in the other Medical Bay, DaVinci is still unaware of Jay's little ploy, but Java is looking at him. DaVinci hesitates, then offers the code patch again.]

DaVinci: You want it?

From: "Java"
Date: Apr 3, 2001

{Place: Voodoo's Greenroom, Med Bay}
[Java ignores DaVinci for a moment, instead leaning over and trying to see where 'Puck' is. Right when she would see Jay instead of Puck, she hits the forcefield and bounces back, rubbing her head.]

Java: Well...If me'Napaan wishes it, so be it...

[She scampers over to face DaVinci, who motions to Ki'ace and lifts the field. He holds it out to her. She is about to pick it up, but stops a moment and looks at him seriously.]

Java: If this is a trick, D...I'll play Salome for Puck and have your head on a platter.

[DaVini seems slightly disturbed at this open threat, but swallows it. Java picks up the marble carefully from him and holds it in her palm. Unlike the first, it slowly dissipates into a mist of magenta-blue energies and clouds arounds her. She watches it, confused.]

[Then the energies swarm into her body and she gasps, then blinks, then keels forward unconsious into space, and DaVinci barely manages to catch her. She lies inert as he puts her back onto the bed.]

[A wave of golden energy flashes over her body, foot to head. After it passes and dissipates, her scarf is again, thankfully, magenta.]

[Her eyelashes flutter, and she gets up slowly.]

Java: Uhm...David?

DaVinci: Yeah, Java?

Java: ...Sorry for the ...

DaVinci: It's all right. It wasn't you.

Java: Kee. [She pauses and tugs her scarf. Start.] Hey! Wheresa' Jay-chan? Is he okee?

From: "Jay -- finally"
Date: Apr 9, 2001

{Place - Voodoo's GR - Medical Bay}
[Hyena watches Jay as he stands back up in his containment field, groaning a bit. He opens his eyes, and after glowing white for a moment, he looks normal.]

Jay: [sighs with relief] Got Puck back under wraps. Close there for a moment.

Hyena: That's good, `cuz I think there's someone who wants to talk to you.

[And at that moment, DaVinci opens Java's containment field and she all but breaks the sound barrier rushing over toward Jay. He looks up and jumps back a bit in shock as she POUNCES at him.

[Wham. Java collides with the containment field a bit painfully. She meeps and holds her face where she hit the field. Hyena starts giggling, then grins as Java shoots her a mean look.]

Hyena: Sorry. I just find that incredibly funny.

Java: Maybe yousa do it yourself? See you laugh then!

Hyena: [after a moment's thought] Nah. [walks off giggling]

Jay: [hiding a smile at Java's pratfall] Hi, JavJav.

Java: Jay-chan! [pokes at the field] Yousa gonna let me in?

Jay: Well, that's up to the doctor.

[DaVinci walks up and taps the button to turn off the field -- Java instantly POUNCES again and tackles Jay.]

Jay: Ack!

[Java grins and giggles, wrapping her arms around him. Jay smiles and hugs her back, leaning down to kiss the top of her scarf.]

Java: You canna do that to me again, Jay-chan. Was worried about you!

Jay: So was I, Java. So was I.

{Place - Jay's Greenroom}
[There's a knock at the door. Chaotis, Justice, and Lean look up from the card table. They each draw a card, then show them. Cha draws the four of spades, Justice the ten of diamonds, and Lean the ace of clubs. Lean shrugs, gets up and goes over to the door. He opens it.

[He immediately shoots out his arms to catch none other than Tri as she collapses through the door, exhausted.]

Tri: Made it back... finally...

[Lean helps her into the room and sets her down on the couch, then sits beside her to check on her.]

From: "Garg-Voodoo"
Date: Apr 10, 2001

{Location: Team Voodoo Medical Bay}
[As the two Authors reunite, it's really only Dax who notices the large doors open and slide closed. But Jay feels it before he sees it and quickly checks to make sure that Puck is contained. He looks up, and up and up to see the large, and very changed Voodoo.]

Jay: What happen to you?

Voodoo: I'm surpsied, I thought you might have known.

Jay: Pucks version of you in our mind is somewhat worse.

Voodoo: That a insult or something I should think highly of.

Jay: Take it how you see fit.

Voodoo: I think a thank you should be the first thing out out of your mouth Jay. Even more to Minke.

Java: she?

[Voodoo's eyes close, and he takes a moment to himself.]

Voodoo: Alive. Her mind is strong, but her body isn't as powerful. I know she is alive, I can feel her. I just can't place her. She will return, when she is ready.

Jay: You seem torn.

Voodoo: This wasn't a battle between good and evil. There is no good and evil here Jay. Each person Metaverse or Reboot. Every Author, and every peice of tech in the entire MDM has a set intention. Everything is good, till it does something that breaks a person thought on good. I may be good Jay, but what I did to my body is some ways is evil. The Hybrids are evil, till one sees that they are only doing what they know. If that is evil to one, then it must be good to someone else. Puck was evil to us, but to some members of your team, he was a messiah.

Jay: I think that Puck hardly measures up to a god Voodoo.

Voodoo: We do. Look out there Jay. Thousands of people, all here to see not only the characters fight, but their creators as well. By all means I'm sure we aren't the true deal, there has to be something controling our actions for everything happens here for a reason. But to call ourselves gods is not something we do because we know the truth. We all are someone elses pawn, some of us are pulled by more strings the one.

[There is a few moments of silence, things tonight haven't been anything like they were before. And right now, three Authors are in the same room, and not killing one another. Perhaps, it's only in times of tragedy, that one finds out who his allies are.]

Voodoo: Puck is still a tacticle threat, and in such a case you will be watched very close at all times Jay. If I so much as sense him get a firm hold. I will act.

Jay: Understandable. If not somewhat unsettling to know that you will be watching my mind.

Voodoo: I'm just watching Pucks power level, If I sense it, I will act. As for you Jay. I have no problems with you anymore.

Jay: That's big of you.

Voodoo: More then you know...more then you know.

From: "Java"
Date: Apr 13, 2001

{Place: Voodoo's Green Room}
[As Voodoo and Jay talk, Java becomes very quiet and depressed seeming. She clasps Jay tighter to her, trying not to lose strength and fall.]

Java: Voodoo-sama?

[She loosens and turns, stepping away only slightly.]

Java: I'm...sorry for...I wasn't trying to hurt you or Seraphie, I was...well, trying to lure Puck away from you because I didna want either of you to be hurt...or Jay-chan [turns back to him] I didna want you to be in anymore fights...[half-smile] I know firsthand what Voodoo can do when he's angry, y'know, and attacking Seraphie makes him angry certainly... Dax-sama...uhm, could I have my Icon back now, hai?

{Place: Java's Green Room}
[A chorus of voices can be heard from the main room.]

Erinys: I hate not being in the know.

Aarys: Do you think I enjoy not knowing where my daughter was? At least I found them now, Java and Tri both.

Pyra: Seems like the rescue was sucessful.

Liturgy: [peeved] I wanted to help...

See: Look, all I can say is that from all of this, I wouldn't be surprised if they cut the night off and gave everyone a day or two vacation. I mean, don't we deserve it?

Pyra: You don't, runner. But Java does, and Tri.

See: Will you-

Aarys: Stop, sprite. But I agree. We will wait for the arrival of our Authoress?

Erinys: The primary one, yes.

Pyra: Peachy keen with me...Actually, I'm gonna go up there, see if she needs an escort or whatnot to come back here.

Liturgy: I'll come too! Maybe she'll come to Inspiration tonight instead of staying in these cold stadium walls.

See: You are far too dramatic.

Liturgy: Oh, shut up.

Erinys: Ahem. [waits for quiet] As I am in command, currently...Lit and Pyra can go to Voodoo's room for Java, if she wishes. Aarys said Tri was in Jay's room...

[Pyra giggles.]

Liturgy: What?

Pyra: I'll tell you later. I'll let her stay after Pyra's suggestion. Okay?

Pyra: Peachy keen.

From: "Garg-Voodoo"
Date: Apr 15, 2001

{Place: Team Voodoo Main Room}
[Voodoo sits in his newly replaced wooden chair, having yet another thing being replaced to fit his more...evolved form. Java is sitting on the couch, close to Jay who is flanked by both Jenny and Jeff much to Java dismay.]

[Dax strides through the door that has just hissed open and into the main part of the GR. She walks to Java and hands Java her icon and turns back to Voodoo.]

Dax: She's clean, as far as I can tell. [turns back to Java] The Trio sends their cat

Java: Oh..great.

[She is ready to turn and leave when E.V.A. makes the anouncement that Lit and Pyra are at the door and Dax takes the turn towards the door, and after a nod from Voodoo taps the panel and the door locks unlock with a loud thump and the doors hiss apart and the two stand outside with arms folded.]

Dax: Sorry, we don't believe in Jahova's return.

From: "Jay"
Date: Apr 20, 2001

{Place - Voodoo's Greenroom}
[Jay smiles to himself as Java takes her icon back, glad that she's okay. Somewhere within his mind, the villainous virus-half rails at his bonds and attempts to break free, but this time Jay's too mentally prepared for another hostile takeover.

[Jay is still uneasy, but not because he's still got a highly-hostile virus-half within him. First off, he's in enemy territory here. Despite his best efforts to show his moves against Team Voodoo are merely business and not personal, he's put them through too much hell to be a friend here. Second, he's still surprised by Voodoo's new gargoylish form -- and distrustful of him because of the way he attacked Java.

[Liturgy and Pyra arrive, and Lit starts to speak, but sees Jenny and stops.]

Lit: Hi, pretty lady-- [stops and sees Jeff] Eep.

[Seeing Liturgy and Pyra just serves to galvanize Jay's thoughts onto a less distracted course.]

Jay: Okay... I can probably guess why you two are here. Java's fine now. We've fixed things... [glances at Voodoo] as much as they're likely to be fixed.

Lit: I want to know where Tri is.

[That gives Jay pause.]

Jay: To tell the truth, I don't know where she is. I can ask my Team if they have, though. And I'll do that in a minute.

[He looks to everyone assembled.]

Jay: If you ask me, we're all still a bit too wound up and stressed from what we just went through. We need some levity.

Dax: 'Levity?'
Jay: Yes. And I'm glad you spoke up, Dax, because it involves you. See, I think we need to watch a match.

[There are some initial sounds of disapproval -- especially from Dax, who participated in the raid on Puck's Lair. Jay calms them down.]

Jay: Relax! Relax! It's nothing big! In fact, Dax, you'll work with AndrAIa and Mouse - against Chaotis!

[Dax stops and glowers a bit. She evidently doesn't like the idea.]

Jay: Oh, please. You know he has no combat skills to speak of. He'll be a pushover -- especially with three females to deal with. Particularly this one. [indicates Dax]

[Dax thinks about it, still reluctant.]

Jay: I even give you free rein to break the poor guy's spirit after you three pin him.

[Now Dax starts to smile a bit.]

Jay: That's the idea!

{Place - Jay's Greenroom}
[Lean is watching over the still sleeping Tri, who is recovering from her trek back to the Stadium after portaling to who knows where. He gently brushes her hair out of her face as he looks at her, then glances up as a vid-window sproings open and Jay's icon flashes. Justice answers it.]

Justice: Jay?

Jay: [on vid] Nat, you guys seen Tri?

Justice: Yeah, she fell through the door a little while ago. Looks exhausted.

Jay: [on vid] Okay. Keep an eye on her for us till we get back. And is Chaotis still around?

[There's a scrambling in the Greenroom, and the Hacker Anarch lunges and tries to shove Justice out of the picture, but Justice just plants a hand on his masked face and shoves him back.]

Justice: Yeah.

Jay: [on vid] Good. Tell him to get to the ring. He's got his match.

[Chaotis grins and RUNS! out the door, quite eager. Justice gives Jay a long-suffering look.]

Jay: [on vid, grinning] Relax, you'll like this.

From: "Jay"
Date: Apr 20, 2001

[The Metatron begins to show Chaotis' trademark black-and-red CGI swirls. "Ya Ha Haa" plays, and then Chaotis' laugh echoes over the speakers.]

Ring Announcer: The following contest is scheduled for one fall. Introducing first, from the Chronicles of Justice, the Hacker Anarch -- CHAOTIS!

[When the Hacker Anarch appears, the audience boos him, still remembering how he betrayed Cowboy way back on Night 1. Chaotis looks around at the audience, then shrugs, and runs down and slides into the ring. He tries a few poses, but each only serves to turn more of the audience against him. Finally, he shrugs again and faces the Metatron.

[Mouse's emblem appears on the screen, and then her chime plays before "The Mouse that Roars" begins to boom on the speakers.]

Ring Announcer: And his first opponent, representing Mainframe, she is the legendary hacker -- MOUSE!

[The fiery-haired hacker appears, swords in hand. Chaotis grins. She shows off her skillz, then points her wakizashi at Chaotis before making a cutting gesture at her throat with the short sword. Chaotis gulps; whatever fantasies he'd had of her liking him are gone now.

[Mouse walks halfway down the ramp when AndrAIa's entrance music, the remix of ReBoot's theme, plays. The Game sprite appears, trident in hand. Chaotis jerks in surprise. Two at once?

Ring Announcer: And her partner, also representing Mainframe, hailing from the Games -- ANDRAIA!

[Chaotis starts to smile again, but then AndrAIa makes a slow cutting gesture at her throat with the points of her trident. Chaotis gulps again; no love there either.

[The two Mainframers start down the ramp again, but then the unmistakable music of "Metaverse Woman" plays. Backlit on the stage stands the lovely and deadly Dax Lockheart, and the fans start going crazy! Chaotis jumps again; three at once?!

Ring Announcer: And lastly, representing the Hybrid Saga, from Scifera, the second-generation Hybrid -- DAX LOCKHEART!

[Chaotis' jaw drops -- he knows he ain't gettin' ANY with her, and now he realizes that Jay has screwed him on purpose.

[Dax starts down the ramp, joins up with the other two and then they circle the ring. Chaotis, standing in the middle of the ring, turns in circles, trying to find an opening. Finally, he gives up and runs to try and escape the ring, but Dax is there to cut him off, kicking him in the face and sending him back into the middle of the ring.

[The three women enter the ring and surround Chaotis and start pounding him with kicks and knee drops and elbow drops. Finally, Mouse pulls Chaotis up and whips him into the ropes. When he springs back, Mouse ducks and grabs one of his legs and jumps in the air. AndrAIa joins her in the air, grabbing his other leg. They come down on one knee, dealing a paralyzing blow to his legs with that move as they bring his legs down on their shoulders.

[Dax turns him over and grabs his head in the Necksnapper.]

Dax: [in unison with the fans] Let's hear the snap!!

[The ref cautiously enters the ring to ask Chaotis if he'll submit, but he refuses and manages to kick one of his legs up and dislodge Dax enough for him to wriggle free. Before he gets far, however, AndrAIa jabs him with her claws in the legs. Numb, Chaotis turns onto his back and shakes his head, begging Mouse & AndrAIa to leave him be. No such luck, however, as they grab his numb legs and hold them together for a moment. Then the two Mainframers yank the legs in opposite directions in the Wishbone. Chaotis screams in pain and doubles over, grabbing his prized nether region in agony.

[Dax steps in again and grabs Chaotis by the neck. Pulling him to his feet, however unsteadily since his legs are still paralyzed, Dax socks him with a haymaker, then grabs one of his legs and hoists him up and back into Mouse's grip for a modified 3D. AndrAIa slides in and twists his legs around in the Figure-Four Leglock. The ref again comes in to ask Chaotis if he'll submit, but Dax chases him away, letting Chaotis scream for a while before she tells AndrAIa to release him.

[The three women huddle together to decide what to do next, while Chaotis remains curled up in a ball on the mat, in pain. Reaching a decision, Mouse exits the ring to get a chair while Dax goes and pulls a ladder out from under the ring. AndrAIa stands Chaotis up and pulls out her collapsed trident. She flicks out the spike end and grabs the shaft. Holding Chaotis with one hand, she gestures with her shaft to the audience, indicating what she's about to do. Taking a page from Steve Blackman, she slips the shaft under Chaotis' legs and holds the spike perpendicular to his legs. Then she lifts Chaotis in the air and slams him down, the shaft colliding VERY painfully with his already abused nether region.

[As Chaotis lies in a fresh rictus of pain, Dax has set up the ladder in the ring while Mouse comes over to work him over with the steel chair. Dax shoves AndrAIa.]

Dax: 'drAIa!

AndrAIa: What?!

Dax: [points] Get the table!

[The fans, already screaming in glee, go absolutely insane as AndrAIa pulls a table out from under the ring and slides it in, where she sets it up beside the ladder. Dax ascends to the top, while AndrAIa and Mouse set Chaotis on top of the table, and then hold him in such a way that his body is curved up off the table, leaving him VERY vulnerable to whatever Dax's attack is going to be. Dax goes for the simple -- a legdrop right onto Chaotis, snapping him through the table. The three women pull him from the wreckage and lie him on the mat, and all three hold him down with their arms. The ref comes back in the ring and counts.]

Ref: 1! ... 2! ... 3!

[The fight bell rings, ending the match, and the three women raise their arms in triumph. Dax nods her thanks to the other two and shakes their hands, watching as they head back to the Mainframe Greenroom. Dax looks down at Chaotis and cracks her knuckles. She's not done with him yet!

[Dax kneels down and grabs hold the scruff of Chaotis and pulls him up. She turns him around and grabs him by the throat, pulling him closer to her face. She smiles, her warm breath falling on his mask. She runs her left index finger down his face, scraping the mask with her nail]

Dax: You know... I don't hate you.

[Dax can see his brow narrow as he listens to her words. He is confused at this remark but listens to what the brown hair bomb shell has to say.]

Chaotis: You...don't?

[Dax rest her ringer over where his lips would be.]

Dax: Nah... I hate pretty much all men equally.

[Her finger slides away and forms into a fist with it's sisters and the fist slams hard into Chaotis's gut, he coughs hard at the force of the blow and falls onto to Dax's shoulder. She stands, taking him with her, she lifts his body onto her shoulder. With unknown strength she slams him down head first into the mat. There is only a silent whiper as he trys to keep his male ego from shattering by crying out in front of Dax.]

Dax: That right there is one reason.. This male egotistical stuff... I'm really tired of it...

[Chaotis pushes himself up onto his elbows only to fly up and land back on the mat from Dax's kick to the chest.]

Dax: Did I say you could get up! For that.. punishment!

[Dax kicks him in the face, rolling the Hacker Anarch onto his back. Chaotis eyes only are open for a moment as a black boot comes crashing down onto his neck. Not hard enough to seriously hurt him, but enough to make him feel pain. She slowly and easly applies pressure to his neck]

Dax: See.. so fragile you are.. It's really sad when you think about it. I have seen kids with more strength then you. And yet yoy see fit to do as you wish. And look at my face Chaotis..

[How Dax knew what he was looking at through his mask would remain a mystery to him. But she had her foot in a very uncormtable spot, and if doing what she said would get him out of it any quicker, then he was only then happy to comply.]

Dax: Now don't get me wrong Chaotis.. I still like men in some ways... but there are few. And you my weakling.. are one of them. Think your snide comments and lewd looks go unnoticed?

[Dax removes her foot and grabs him by the neck again, lifting him up to her face.]

Dax: Nope.. we all see them.. next time..listen to your team mates.

[Dax throws him into the post, it almost rings as the Anarch hits it, he falls onto his back, and soon Dax is there, with her hand in a most uncomfortable spot, and then a scream fills the arena.]

Nick: Oh my gawd Johnny.. I didn't even know Dax would ever do such a thing!

Johnny: You might want to reconsider asking her out Nick.

[There is more then a silent sob coming from Chaotis, there is both rage, anger, and fear escaping him now. Dax picks him up yet again, but this time from the neck of his shirt. She pulls her fist back to stirke, but she stops, and places her hand on her ear. Then with a sigh grabs the Hacker Anarch and tosses him out of ring onto the ramp of the Metatron.]

Dax: Remember Chaotis, Girl kick ASCII, It says so on the t-shirt. Oh.. and be a dear and tell Winger I will be more then happy to do the same thing for him.. Hell..I wear heels for the occation.

[Dax steps back and two wingerd Dreckards decend from the hatch on the outside of Voodoo's green room. Kaka and Mistya buzz the arena before Mistya comes dives and snatches up Dax by the shoulders and glides back to the green room hatch. Kaka buzzes by the fans once more before she returns to the green room. Leaving more then one screaming fan and one battered and beaten Hacker Anarch behind.]

From: "Garg-Voodoo and others"
Date: Apr 22, 2001

[Bios's armor lay, or rather rested, on her body. Aarys had seen to it that when she had snapped of, or rather shatterd off, one of Bios's claws (although she didn't know why Bios call them 'claws' since they came from her arms and not attached to her fingers) she had stopped the match in order to have the MDM provide weapons.]

[Bios violet blade hummed lightly as she though of how to strike her viral rival. Aarys pinkish blade hummed a little louder as she spun it in her fingers. The battle had lasted forty-five minutes, the longest MDM battle in the ring to date. Although Voodoo's and Jay's re-match had lasted thirty-five.]

[There was a stop to the stand off as both struck at the same time, the two beams of light cracking as the feilds holding them collided and tried to push themselves away. The owners back off and Bios spins around her weapon coming down towards Aarys head. Aarys blocks and slides her weapon down towards Bios. Bios again spins out of the way and slahes down Aarys back. Aarys screams in pain but regains her stance. The MDM had made sure that the weapons on shocked and not killed, much to boths disapointment.]

[Both clashed again and Bios pushed up and tapped the second button on the handle and the bottom ignites and a second blade slides out and Bios spins it down causing Aarys to back off and block. The crowd cheers at Bios's attacks, the twin blade weapon striking again and again,Aarys on the defencive.]

[Aarys parrys and in her back stance ignites her own second blade and the two fight with more quick strikes rather then powerful one hits. Aarys strike misses and Bios spins her weapon twice hitting Aarys twice before Aarys slams the end of her weapon into Bios's heart, both hit the mat, the weapons blades fade back into the handles.]

{Place: Outside Java's chambers.}
[Bios waited in the shadows of the hallway, waiting for Aarys to come out, or for her to sense her powers. Although they had regained and came alive the same moment after striking one another, Aarys had run off to do something and Bios had chased her down. Aarys was quicker and go to Java's room first, now Bios waited.]

{Place: Team Voodoo's GR, Main Section.}
Voodoo: There is no reason you shouldn't trust me Jay. After all, I havn't killed you.

Jay: Yet.

Voodoo: Jay, as much as we clashed, I rather not go through all that again. It has done nothing but made us enemies and worse off, hurt many.

Jay: So buddy buddy? Not much money in that.

Voodoo: We could. The owners are dead Jay, you now run the MDM, even more then before. I say..for the fans, keep this battle between us going, for them.

Jay: But in fact not be enemies?

Voodoo: I don't know 'bout you Java. But I'm starting to get tired of 'come back for the dead' so to speak.

[E.V.A. appears on her now regained holo-platform. Which causes Jay to jump a little, have not been use to having people just appear out of no where, let alone a computer.]

E.V.A.: Thats better....

[Voodoo turns his chair to look at E.V.A. and E.V.A streches.]

E.V.A.: You don't have any idea how cramped it can be in my matrix.

Voodoo: Oh really.....

E.V.A.: Well....maybe you do.

Java: What does she mean by that?

[E.V.A looks to Java]

E.V.A.: When Voodoo took on his new form, he spend those hours in a Hydro-Chamber. The type we use for healing heavy wounds. It's only hardly big enough to house him as a human, he broke it apart when he tried to move when he form changed.

Voodoo: Thanks E.V.A... you know just the right words.

[She grins that Voodoo type grin as the door behind her opens and in walks Dax, Mistya and Kaka.]

Jenny: Dax hun. Did you need to do that to Chaotis?

Dax: Didn't have to, but maybe he will learn some respect for women now.

Jay: Not likely. Now whats this about doing the same for me with heels on?

[Dax grins and she unzips the top of her uniform and slides it off, leaving on her slighly shoaked t-shirt on.]

Dax: Just a joke, but if ya feel like it lemme know.. I work ya in.

[She laughs a little, mostly at Java's expression and walks off to her room, the two Dreckards behind her shake their heads, trying not to laugh.]

From: "Java"
Date: Apr 23, 2001

{Place: Voodoo's Green Room, Main Area}
[Pyra giggles silently at Lit and his sudden fear at the sight of Jenny's significant other. Jeff seems fit to ignore him, but of course, this doesn't stop the virus from using Pyra as a shield, keeping her between them.]

[Jay's finding of Tri pearks the little Chaos up.]

Lit: Uhm....lovetostayPrettyLadybutmyresponsibilitiesareforemosttoTrisoI'llseeyouagainmaybe?

[Zip - he's gone. Pyra teardrops.]

Pyra: Jav', great fight, but ya wanna leave soon?

Java: Huh?

[She looks up, but it's obvious she's troubled to Pyra. She's just...too blank. Like a simmering pot.

[She gets up, bows politely to Voodoo, then steps over and stands in front of Jay. She leans slightly, and her hand reaches up slowly, almost to caress his cheek.

[Then speeds up rapidly.]


Jay: Ow! [rubs the spot] What was that for??

Java: What was that for?? Lemme tell you, you little priss! How dare you make decisions just at some snap! Let me ask you, dear ally, sweet Jay-chan: Who's the one with who could most object to such an alliance, but oh no, never ask her! What, so you lost some dumb-ass matces and got your face cut. Who gets nearly killed by the bitch-queen, not once, TWICE!? Who's the chika darling who let you beat Voodoo by geting crispy fried? Who did whatever your pretty heart desired, even cutting off a Trick because you didn't like my tye-dye job, letting order rule chaos, and why? Because I wanted your attention, wanted you to like me! And now?

[She stands up straight and laughs.]

Java: I'm "Winger's Lapdog," is what I am. Maybe I thought I loved you. Well, nice, this love thing. Go off with Dax, why don'cha. Hell, even Voodoo-sama, eh?

[She turns to him, ignoring the Hybrids or anything.]

Java: When did you say, "Thank you, Java, for trying to help Minke and me even though it sacrificed yourself"? Or even something about Jenny-san, eh? Wounds I can take fine, our wars I took, great. But I made truce with you last Night, and what do I recieve for helping? A big flat fuckin' nothing. Have fun, boys. Enjoy yourselfs. You won't tomorrow, I swear to Oosi you won't.

[She turns on her heel and walks out. Pyra stares a few moments, speechless, then follows.]

Jay: ...

{Place: Hallway Outside Jay's Room}
[Knock knock bang bang.]

"Lemme in!"

{Place: Hallway, Java's section}
Pyra: Why are you doing this?

Java: Because he doesn't care.

Pyra: Jay does!

[Java stops and turns quick on her heel. She is far too close to tears.]

Java: Then he doesn't care enough.

[She goes back to half-running back to her Green Room. Pyra shakes her head and follows, completely confused.

[When she turns the corner to her own green room, she stops in her tracks, letting Bios turn and see her. Then she goes over, opens the door, walks in, and closes it, ignoring her. Pyra looks far too confused, but steps forward more cautiously.]

Pyra: If you're waiting for Aarys, you might want to wait until tomorrow, Jav'll probably release her chars to their systems soon. Alright? [She stays a distance away from her, but keeps herself calm.]

From: "Sai 'n' Company"
Date: May 7, 2001

[Minke...or walking around the MDM's system, outside the stadium grounds. It's late at night, and the cyber-moon is full, giving off a light that sets her surroundings in a gentle blue glow.]

[Her lemur tail swings back and forth as she mindlessly walks through the grass, seemingly searching for something, though she doesn't know what.]

Sai: How did I get out here? ...not wanting to be noticed sneeking out by Z... Zar... Who? Why can I not remember? And who keeps calling to me? So familiar...

[Hearing the voice again, Sai spins around to face the large structure in the distance she knows to be a stadium of some sort.]

Voodoo: Minke, please, can you hear me!?

[Not understanding that the voice is telepathic in projection, Sai calls out into the night, towards the stadium, hands balled up into fists and eyes glowing from frustration at her own confusion.]

Sai: Where- Who are you!? Why do you keep calling for me!? [quiets down] Is he friend or foe? Barely remembering...a good friend...warmth... All I can remember is that I am no longer myself and must return to myself...whatever that means.

[Blinking once, twice, her alert, blue eyes' gaze turns upward to see the full cyber-moon. She then stares off at the stadium once more.]

Sai: I don't know who I am, what I was thinking about ten minutes ago or where I was then. Am I safe out here? Is someone after me? Does anyone here even know if my name is really Minke? Maybe he meant to call out to someone else... In that case, who am I really?

[All this was almost directed at the stadium, as if it's huge, barely-lit form in this darkness was actually alive, listening to her every word intently, willing to help.]

Sai: Maybe you have the answers I need. Friend or foe or nothing at all, the one calling out to me may just have answers...

[Letting confusion swarm around her for a moment more, she pushes it aside and begins her long walk to the stadium.]

Sai: I just hope that I still remember why I came there when I get there...

{Place: Sai's New Green Room}
[Ibi rubs the Sandman's sand from her eyes as she enters the flora section of the greenroom. She'd just barely woken up in time to see Zaria's form rush from the sleeping quarters out to the main area. Just about to turn a corner, she conects with Zaria with an "oof!" and they both fall to the dirt ground.]

Ibi: Wha's the big idea, virus gal?

Zaria: Sai's- Minke- Rrr! Our lemur Author has gone AWOL!

[Ibi shrugs.] Maybe our mixed-up lady just stepped out ta catch a breatha'.

Zaria: You haven't been paying much attention, so I'd not be surprised if your indifference wasn't helping you to understand. [ignores Ibi's growl] She's come down with a severe case of amnesia. I don't understand, she was fine at first, but her attention span and memories just started to fade. Time and time again she kept asking me where she was, how she got here and what my name was, stuff like that.

Ibi: In dat case, we'll form a search party! [pulls out a small hand gun from who-knows-where] We'll find the bastahds 'n' make 'em pay!

Zaria:... Ibi, we don't even know if anyone took her. Most likely she just woke up and wandered out.

Ibi: But-

Zaria: I think it's time I stopped trying to solve this puzzle myself and call in for some help from the other teams.

Ibi: Those gun-happys? What for??

[Zaria looks once at Ibi standing in her shorts and T-shirt holding a little firearm and squints, turns, and walks into the teched-out area. Pouty Ibi follows behind.]

Zaria: Though our Author is technically gone now, we're still here, which means she's either switched places with Minke, or her mentality's being supressed by Minke's presence.

Ibi: Yer point?

Zaria: I don't think we're limited to this greenroom. Voodoo's people weren't even when he was supposedly dead.

[Ibi gasps] I'd fa'gotten about dat! If we step beyond dat gateway door, we could just vanish. Poof! An' all because Sai's gone.

[Zaria taps out a message across her screen and sends it out to Voodoo's place.] I just hope our absence from the recent insanity hasn't dampened our ties any with Voodoo's people. Not that any of us besides Minke really had any... My recent confusion over Minke being in Sai's body and her amnesia have just been such a handful.

Ibi: Eh. Wasn't our fault. Takin' car of yer Author is Priority 1. Nobody likes 'poof'in' outa existance.

[Zaria blinks and acknowleges Ibi's talk.] Quit being so dramatic, like I said, we'll probably be fine. Sai granted us individual control a while back.

Ibi: Dat was only yous two, an' ain't includin' me. I ain't takin' my chances o' goin' 'poof'!

Zaria: You don't have to then. It's understandable. [sneers at the screen and smacks the monitor sideways] Come on, damnit! Answer!

Ibi: Wonder what's holdin' 'em...

Zaria: I hope everything's alright over there... [types out a few requests to her machines and sends a ping] *sigh* That explains it... We're lagged...

[Ibi groans.]

{Place: Outside Stadium MDM}
[Sai's head tilts back in an attempt to take in the height of this stadium, without success. From inside, cheers of "Dax! Dax! Dax!" can be heard. Flicking an ear and making a purring noise at the somehow familiar name, she walks up to the large doors of the stadium and enters.]

[A taupe-skinned sprite sitting at a desk grinning at a small screen sees her and quickly tosses the screen into a drawer, standing to ask if she has a pass to be in here, but upon registering who she is, he sits down again.] Go right in, lemur-lady. [He smiles and winks.]

[Sai tilts her head confusedly and walks over to him.]

Sai: Do you know who I am?

Shavaunt: this a trick question, Sai?

Sai: Sa...iiii... Sai... Is that my real name?

Shavaunt: Uh, I wouldn't really know, ma'am. Do you display that name on your birth papers?

Sai: Birth papers? [pause, blink, looks around, frowns] Where am I? [She sees a hallway that seems familiar to her and begins walking down that way to look for answers of how she got in this building and where 'here' is.]

Shavaunt: Hey! Uh... Do you have an appointment with someone? I can help you out with that at least. [He watches her walk around a corner and disappear from view. Sitting back in his chair, he sighs and shrugs.] These Authors keep getting weirder 'n' weirder with every Night...

[Pulling out a mini television from a desk drawer, he turns up the volume slightly to watch the end of the match.]

From: "Garg-Voodoo"
Date: May 7, 2001

[Voodoo stands infront of his team. The Hybrids shoulder the last of their gear, the Drecks stands next to Bios who is pulling her hair back and tieing it into a ponytail. Voodoo looks around the green room as it rest in lower power mode.]

Jenny: I do think it would still be best if we stayed.

Voodoo: There is no need at the moment. The Night is just about over and there is more then enough for me to do without you guys around. Go home and rest, the next phase of the MDM will not start for a while and it would be best for you all to take some major downtime.

Jeff: What about Minke?

Voodoo: Her form is safe here, I will not be leaving. This is my home and I have to stay anyway. She shall stay here till things can be worked out.

Kaka: It would be nice to take some time off, I havn't been home in a while and things are calm enough around here.

[Voodoo nods to his characters and all of them nod back. E.V.A. flickers onto her holo-platform and looks over the people she protects. She smiles as the blue/grey energy swarms over them and they are taken to the docking section of the stadium for transport home. She looks to Voodoo who is slowly walking towards his chambers.]

E.V.A.: Why didn't you tell them everything?

[Voodoo stops and turns back to the AI.]

Voodoo: No need. Tonight has been more the just a simple battle. To many things have changed and shifted and to many lives have been changed and or damaged. Things have settled, but not return to normal. Minke is out there somewhere, Puck is contained but not destroyed and Java is torn and mad and I. Well. I am just.... in the middle. Good night E.V.A.

E.V.A: Good night Voodoo.

[She flickers away and the living area's lights fade to lower as Voodoo enters his chambers. The door closes behind him as he walks to his desk and sits. He looks over to Minke who has not moved since he has returned, and he sighs. He picks up the first of a large pile of datapads, and sets to work. Night Seven awaits.]

From: "Jay Winger"
Date: May 10, 2001

{Place - The Cliff, Jay's Private Sector}
[Jay Winger, the Author and now sole Owner of Metaverse Deathmatch, stands on the rocky cliff, staring down at the system spread out before him.

[This moderately-sized place, System Meggido, was initially his creation, but he'd released it into the Metaverse at large. People populated it -- hell, it could even be used in Writings, should other Authors be so inclined. Within the confines of the MDM, however, it became a different version of itself. In the Metaverse itself, Meggido was known as a place for its Arena, where sporting events could take place -- much like the Resonate Tracks and its various performance halls were known about the `Verse as a place for races and plays and shows.

[When the MDM came to it for its use, however, the creative energies of Jay and his fellow Authors split it off the main timestream into a system where the Arena is used for Deathmatch. When a Night ended, the characters of the Metaverse and the inhabitants of Meggido went back to their respective locales and life went on as if nothing had happened. Which, in a sense, was true.

[Jay sighed. What no one really knew was that he and his virus-half, Puck W!ld, were originally closer to one entity. Puck's influence and natural tendency toward violence influenced Jay into deciding to rebuild the Arena and most of Meggido after the WeB ViRuS/DaemoN "match" destroyed them, and the virus-half's further influence led to Jay's "bastard" persona of the early Nights.

[But then Jay -- who remained aloof from the concerns of others -- began to care. Not about power and prestige and control, but about people. Specifically about Java. He started to like the little polymorph and her hijinks, and then he began to worry about her. When Voodoo began becoming more grandiose in his own machinations, Jay began to fear for Java's own safety -- especially when she wound up in a match against the Black-clad Author.

[Jay's newfound "softness" (as Puck put it) caused the virus-half to become a bit more irritable, and the stress Jay began to undergo did not help matters. Having to protect his characters, as well as Java and hers, coupled with the sometimes unreasonable demands of the Other Owners, caused Jay -- and his tenuous merge with his virus-half -- to breakdown.

[Rather than become irrational, however, Jay and his virus-half simply became separate entities. Jay's concern led Puck to stage a mental coup, striking when Jay's mind was at its weakest. Following his match with Voodoo, Jay was worn out from keeping Puck in check while simultaneously allowing the virus-half to use their shared body to attack their rival. So Puck struck then, when Jay was passed out from exhaustion, and took steps to seize control.

[And look where that had landed him. Puck had run rampant, laying waste to large portions of Meggido (especially when he shot down the Hybrids' Raider), captured and actually Infected an Authoress (and Jay's best friend) and her Twinsie, murdered the Other Owners, and waged war with the other Authors. Thanks to Minke, Jay had managed to get Puck off-balance and put him back in his place, but he couldn't destroy Puck, because that would be like lobotomizing himself.

[And thanks to the hackers, Java was back to herself -- but because of Jay's residual aloofness, she'd left him and practically foresworn him. Voodoo seemed to have agreed to keep the open hostility to a minimum, but as a rival, the tension was still there. No one knew what was going on with Sai, and with the Other Owners dead, Jay was now the sole owner of Deathmatch -- a job which he did not want or need. Holding a controlling share while splitting financial and other responsibilities with the Others had been fine, but having to deal with all of it was too much stress.

[Jay sighed. This hiatus from MDM was fine and good. The characters would all return to their home systems or colony worlds, and their lives would continue as if nothing had happened. The Authors, however, would remember. And that meant Java would remember when the next Night began. And since she shared such an intimate connection to so many of her characters, that meant her characters would remember.

[Jay sighed again and chucked a stone down the side of the cliff. He would take as much time as he needed to figure out how to handle all this. How to spread the "wealth," as it were, of being the sole Owner, how to reconcile with Java, and how to keep things going now that his chief source of aggressive creativity was openly hostile to him.]

Jay: Everything's just gotten so damn complicated...

[He disapparated from the cliff.]

{Place - Jay's Place, Private Sector}
[Jay reapparated in his private home in the private sector, part of Meggido which reverted to blank space when the system was released from MDM. He dropped into a chair, rubbing his temples, then calling up his keyboard.]

Jay: So long, everyone. Have fun till I call you back.

[And he pressed the "end Night" button. An intangible wave spread across System Meggido. The private sector became a smaller park sector, sections of it simply appearing empty. The Arena changed more subtlely as Voodoo's Greenroom disappeared -- though the interior remained in the same basic type of pocket dimension that Jay's Private Sector existed in when Meggido was not in MDM-Mode. Same was true for Sai's own pocket-dimension-Greenroom, which was its own.

[Jay deactivated the keyboard and leaned back in his chair, sighing, while a voice in the back of his mind growled at him.]

Puck: [mentally] Vengeance will be mine. Oh, yes... it will be mine.

From: "Java"
Date: May 11, 2001

I feel so strange....
Like something's gone, but shouldn't have been there in the first place...
It did.
I wish I was a full Author....

[Java sighs and pulls her mind out of it's more abstract thinking, concentrating on the fic in front of her.]

You know, if I had that power, the full Authoric power, this would be so much easier to do. Because she wouldn't remember if I didn't want her to.
But she holds part of the power.
And she will remember.
Why do I talk to myself aloud?
Probably because it sorts your mind better than thinking.
But I chose already. I couldn't do that to her.
Maybe it's that I can't do it to Jay. But he would deserve it. But...not his character.

[She looks at the screen of the laptop, looking more like a thin ancient VAIO notebook than a hacker's vid-and-keyboard. She sits on the bed of her room, not in existance in the Metaverse proper anymore. The walls are just a bit hazy.]

She's my hope too.
Jay, you can't hear me. But I'm not erasing all this work and manipulation of you and your char, and my sweet Anya, because I care about you. I'm not doing it because I care about her.
Take your sane calcukations and shove it, man.
Last words before sleep?

[She pauses in her talking to herself.]

I overreached myself.
Voodoo...I didn't mean to yell at you. If Seraphie wakes..I said hi.
That's it, I think.
Close program. Run Sleep mode.

[Just a bit of a giggle.]

Chaos awaits ye, Authors, when ye step back in. And I'll be the sower.
I really must stop talking to myself.
Night night. Night night night night and hope for next night.

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