| PROLOGUE narrated by Emi's creator
Crow: I take no responsibility to any feelings of revulsion or lameness that result from viewing this material.
Before reading my story (since I skipped straight to my 11th), you should watch "Identity Crisis" or at least know what happened in my other stories.
Tom: Or we could just *guess* what it's all about now couldn't we?
In my first one, Alias Hexadecimal, Emi got knocked out during a game of laser tag and woke up in Lost Angles.
Mike: I guess they lied about taking out the UV rays from the guns.
She instantly became Hex's best friend
(All sputter with laughter)
and, since 1-15 were written pre-Web World War, Megabyte's worst enemy.
Bob: Hey! That's supposed to be ME!
In my second story, she got Blip, her renegade Guardian Key Tool.
Bob: Or WOULD have if there were such things as renegade guardian key tools...
In my third story, she gets a portal to Mainframe that looks like and is on the other side of Hex's looking glass and saves Hex's life
Mike: How? Tells her that nulls are bad? Superglues her mask on? Chases away Web-creatures with a stick?
(this was based on "Nullzilla"). The story opens in the middle of a conversation Emi is having with her brother, Guardian Bryant....
Bob: Oh yeah. I went to school with him. He flunked tear-stabilizing 101.
MISS DECIMAL part one "I have yet to find your Enzo figure, Mr. Matrix."
Tom: Check in the vacuum cleaner. Everything ends up in there.
"Oh, no you won't, Miss Decimal." "Wanna bet?" GB changed the subject. "Let's go downstairs and play Realmz."
Crow: Not yet five sentences yet into this
and I'm ALREADY lost.
Mike: I'm telling Mom! Wah!
I ran into my room, shut the door, and escaped into Mainframe before GB could say anything.
Mike: Such as: Why are you trying to stick
your head into a monitor?
I landed in Baudway. There was something screwy here.
Tom: You mean oh, say, like a person jumping into a computer?
I could tell. The sky was black, making quiet, peaceful, blue-skied Mainframe look dark and forbidding.
Bob: But how can it be blue and black at
Green light shone from inside-Nibbles' Diner?
Crow: Well WE sure don't know.
This wasn't Mainframe. This was bad.
Bob: It's going to be VERY bad if you steal my line.
It was Megaframe! Oh, no! Now what?
Tom: Try to adapt to it and become a prosperous citizen.
A crowd of binomes poured out of the Diner. They looked dirty and tired.
Crow: Need we add any MORE innuendo?
"Hey!" said one. "Look! She doesn't have the mark!" "I thought this was a secured sector," added another.
Tom: THIS sounds familiar...
"Where's your bar code?" asked one of the girls. Bar code, shmar code. I wasn't about to get my head shaved.
Mike: And why not?
I'd seen what happened to Dot. Suddenly, three tones sounded, like a giant clock.
Bob: (binome) Oh great, the clock's off again.
A big VidWindow of Megabyte sprung up in the sky. "Greetings, people of the first quantum," he said.
Mike: (Megabyte) I've decided to start practicing sprite sacrifice...let's see my first victim is...you. The one that just arrived here and still has hair.
"My power be upon you." "Hail to the Prince of Power!" chorused the binomes.
Bob: (binome) Well, he should get tired of making us do this SOMETIME this century.
"Oh, yeah?" I challenged. "Your power be upon them, but most certainly not upon me!"
Mike: My body rejected it. I take "O" power types and you're an "A negative".
That out of my system,
Crow: I realized I just mouthed off the virus that controlled the city and decided to beg for mercy.
I stood there with a confident smirk on my face, waiting to see what ol' Megabasic would do next.
Mike: Sneer something sarcastically condensing at her. Order her deleted. The usual.
"WHAT?!?!?" thundered Megabyte. "You dare to disturb my city's order and calm?" "Yes, I do," I said. "Gee, you're stuck up.
Crow: Although compared to that person he's positively modest.
I suppose you're going to say you're king next, and that I am disturbing your realm."
Bob: (Megabyte) Yes I am. Guards-off with her head!
"Well, you are," said Megabyte, "but now that you mention it, King Megabyte has a nice ring to it..."
Mike: Personally I think Lord or Prince
He sounded extremely conceited. I couldn't stand it any longer.
Crow: So I shot myself.
"Yes, you are," I said. "King of the dipswitches!" All the binomes laughed.
Mike: (Binomes) Tee hee! Let's get ourselves killed by laughing at the dictator with an army!
He'd walked right into that one.
Bob: It was really lame but he walked into it.
"Be quiet, or I'll have this sector deleted!" roared Megabyte.
Crow: Touchy today, hmm?
I was prepared for that one. "Aw, shut up!" I shot back.
Mike: Ooh and they come back with a SCATHING retort there.
"You have as much chance of deleting this sector as I have
Tom: Of shutting up.
of obeying you. Prince of Power. Pa-hooey!"
Mike: I've never actually HEARD anyone say "Pa-hooey" out loud before.
"Who are you, anyway?" bellowed Megabyte. Apparently, he didn't recognize me.
Mike: And you in all your *descriptive* glory too.
Either that or I'd never told him my name.
Crow: Which is the easier explanation to believe.
"Miss Decimal," I responded calmly without a moment's hesitation. "Emidecimal, really, but please, call me Miss Decimal."
Mike: Oh NO, we've got self-insertion sign!
Emidecimal. Crude, but simple.
Crow: VERY simple.
And, hopefully, effective.
Bob: And even MORE hopefully a sign of
"Lieutenant Cyrus," barked Megabyte. "I want three leagues to the first quantum at once. Follow the one with no bar code."
Mike: The whiny one.
He then turned to me. "You remind me of someone," he said.
Bob: Hmm...could it be your SISTER maybe? You know...EMIdecimal...HEXAdecimal...hint hint...
Then the VidWindow disappeared. I jumped over a pile of hexagonal boxes and ran away. Now they'd never find me.
Mike: (Emi) They'll never catch me after I've cunningly ran two blocks!
I hopped on my zipboard, flew over the Gilded Gate Bridge, and landed in Lost Angles.
Crow: Her remains were found the next day, scoured clean by nulls.
I gasped in horror at the sight I saw.
Bob: (Emi) Hex went with PLAID! No!
A gigantic hole had been busted in Hex's lair. Inside, it looked like a terrible struggle had taken place. Hex's looking glass had shattered, her chair had lost a leg, and even the chandelier was broken.
Mike: Yes, Sprint Salespeople plague even powerful energy-throwing viruses. This could happen to YOUR home.
On top of that, Hex (or Skuzzy, for that matter) was nowhere in sight. Only a few Nulls slithered around the place.
Crow: (null) Woo hoo, she's gone! Let's spit on her throne.
Hex would have a cow if she saw this. "There she is!" someone yelled just then. I whirled around and saw some ABCs heading for me. I was absitively, posolutely doomed.
Or was I?
All: Yes! Please!
Somehow I managed to escape.
Mike: Without adding any pesky action or explanations.
I lost the ABCs on Level 31 and hurriedly zipped back to L.A. I saw a note on the floor inside Hex's lair.
Bob: (Emi) There's ten million units hidden underneath the...d'oh! The rest is blotchy!
It said: "Megabyte:
Crow: Visited you at the Tor to horribly torture you, you weren't there. Please leave a message. Hex.
We have her at last! She is locked up in a storage room waiting to be erased.
Mike: Not only is she annoying, she's suicidal.
-Cyrus" That was all I needed.
Tom: A fake message and a manipulatable almost non-existent plot.
I summoned a Double-Sided VidWindow and called the Tor. "Attention, inhabitants of Silicon Tor.
Mike: I'm selling girl-scout cookies. It's one box for four dollars and three boxes for two. Want any?
Your struggle for Hex's erasure is now over.
Bob: Until she comes back and finds you there pretending she's dead.
I would like to take this opportunity to personally thank my dear friend Cyrus,
Crow: Who I don't really know.
for helping me free Hex with such a cunning and inciteful plan.
Bob: With this clever fake note on the floor.
As for the rest of you, Hex and I will deal with you later.
Crow: We're playing N'Sync at all of you till you scream!
And after that, who cares?" I finished
Tom: Ripping off even more of ReBoot.
my speech, closed the VidWindow, and zipped to the Tor.
Mike: Yes! That's it! Insult the person ruling the system then go over to their home so they can track you down more easily! Brilliant idea!
The message on the VidWindow should keep them busy for a while.
Bob: Except for the guards INSIDE the Tor and patrolling the outside.
"Blip!! Mega-cutters!!" I yelled as I approached the Tor. Blip cut a gigantic hole in the wall that I zipped through easily.
Bob: Then I was instantly deleted by the binomes on the other side.
Blip blasted open all of the doors of all the storage rooms.
Mike: Ah, the pointless violence scene. Very nice.
I searched all of them and finally found the one with Hex in it. "Hi," I said.
Tom: Want to buy some cookies?
"No time to explain how I got here. What do you say we go crash Megabyte's party?"
Tom: (Hex) Oh, Megabyte's having a PARTY? Hurrah! Let's go attend! Do we have to bring any food? I hope it isn't formal...
Hex agreed. We went up to Megabyte's throne room.
Mike: Conveniently skipping any transition scenes.
"Once Hexadecimal is erased, the little brat will have no friends left," gloated Megabyte.
Bob: ONE is more than YOU have.
"She'll be gone, too, in no time." He and Cyrus started laughing. Little brat, huh? It was now or never.
Tom: (Emi) So I ran off and joined a cheerleading squad.
"Okay," I whispered.
Tom: (Emi) They're not paying attention. Let's run!
"Hex, get Hack and Slash. As much as you'd like to shred him, I need Megabyte unhurt for the rest of my plan.
Bob: After all, scrap iron is so expensive these days and when you think about it there's lots hanging around for free...
Don't worry, this will result in non-stop chaos-
Tom: Eventually leading to death and the total destruction of Mainframe's existence after which will come the endless void of oblivion for millennia.
and you'll have a front-row seat."
Tom: (Hex) Oh, do I get peanuts? I LIKE peanuts. Do we get hot dogs as well? And I'd like a flag to wave about.
When Hack and Slash were lying in heaps of assorted parts, I stood in the doorway to the throne room and yelled,
Mike: (Emi) Don't kill me! I throw myself at your mercy! Please, let me grovel...
"HONEY, I'M HOME!!"
Bob: Did I get any e-mail?
Slam-bang entrance. Everything was going according to plan so far...
Mike: I was acting like a total dork and getting away with it.
Bob: (Megabyte) Stop inviting your family over!
Bring all the armies here at once!
Bob: It's totally pointless and killing her myself would be easier but what the heck, do it anyway!
I think it's time to break Miss Decimal's spirit-once and for all."
Crow: Oh for an original line or two...
Oh, Megabyte. You never learn, do you?
Bob: Red means stop, green means go. You see?
"Miss Decimal?" asked Hex. "What?"
Tom: (Hex) I'm confused. But I'm perfectly fine with that usually so just go with the flow...
Uh-oh. "I'll explain later," I said. "Ah, Miss Decimal," Megabyte said, turning his chair around. "Megabyte," I said. "What a delightful mess you're making.
Crow: That's what someone said about this story except they left out "delightful."
Now get a life and clean it up!"
Bob: (Megabyte) Nah. I have servants to do that. What, you don't?
"WHAT are you doing here?" bellowed Megabyte, practically right in my face.
Mike: Self-insertion is on floor eight, not twelve!
"Breathmint?" I asked with a calm smile.
Crow: I GUESS you could use one.
I was almost in tears laughing, this was so much fun.
Tom: It was so much fun I didn't notice Megabyte unsheathe his claws until it was too late and he impaled them through my head. Ah the memories. Still, purgatory isn't too bad...
"GET OUT OF HERE!!" MB roared.
Bob: Oh for-just blast her! You DO have guns mounted on that chair you know...
"Hex," I said, "take care of the armies."
Mike: Make sure they're comfortable, set up a buffet, start a few social activities, maybe some bingo...
I narrowed my eyes and gave Megabyte my most viral glare.
Tom: Grr, I am a puny annoying half-virus, be frightened of me.
"This one's mine."
Mike: But still, you should've seen the one that got away!
I wished I had some water balloons.
Crow: They'd make him look funny before he killed me.
"Hey! Prince of Power!" I yelled. "Hex has more power in her little finger than you have in your entire Tor!"
Mike: Oh no wait, she must have missed the Telsa Coil's he has stuffed into the basement.
Now I'd made him mad.
Tom: As opposed to making him furious just a few paragraphs back.
Megabyte got out of his chair and onto his legs.
I thought of Angel and the toothpaste cap fiasco.
Mike: And I'm sure we would to if we had ANY idea of what the HELL you're talking about...
Megabyte started running towards me but tripped.
Bob: (Megabyte) I told them not to polish the floooooooooor...ow!
I heard a familiar purring and knew at once what had happened. "Now, now, now, Skuzzy," I said,
Mike: We had you in as a cheap plot device at the VERY end.
"you know Megabyte is mine."
Skuzzy zipped off to trip some viral binomes instead.
Tom: (Emi) That just magically appeared AFTER we broke in.
"Blip, BFG," I whispered.
Mike: Big Ferocious...uh...menacing yet ludicrous thing that starts with G.
"Okay, Megabyte, draw!" MB had a guitar.
Bob: We know that. What's the point? He's not about to whip it out and whack you with it.
What a dipswitch! It was too bad for Megabyte that BFG stood for "Big Fat Gun" right now.
Crow: That's not what it REALLY stands
for you know...
My BFG wouldn't fire,
Tom: Now this is getting pathetic.
so I switched to a Star Wars- type light sword and-well, you know what happens next.
Crow: Megabyte got tired of listing to you and your banal ripped off dialogue and gutted you on the spot?
I was about to slice the viral armies,
Bob: So they brought in armies from OTHER systems then?
but they saw me coming and retreated.
Tom: (armies) Oh no! An adolescent girl with a gun! She's no match for our tanks and cannons! Run!
Victory was ours! "Hexadecimal is the best, put your virus to the test!"
Crow: This is inducing my sickness, will
you just give it a rest...
I yelled. "Woohoo!"
All: (Singing) And I feel heavy metal!
Back at Lost Angles, I fixed everything that was broken and explained everything I had no time to explain before.
Tom: And then I worked out all my life's
problems and did everything I ever wanted to do.
"So you see, in a desperate attempt to save my bitmap,
Bob: I joined the circus. That's what's with the tattoo you see...
I decided to use my pieced-together name (which I guess will now stick with me forever).
Mike: Emidecimal. Remember that. Write it down. Avoid it like the plague.
In the face of danger, I improvise.
Crow: Planning makes my head ache.
Either that or I laugh."
Tom: Usually pissing off people near me and triggering a beating.
I returned home.
Crow: Much to the dismay of her parents.
I supposed I had better test the looking glass sometime soon.
Bob: (Emi) Right after fighting off the Web single-handedly and taking over most of the Net.
Something seemed to be wrong with it.
Crow: Yes that was also said about this.
Except they didn't leave anything out.
@.. 2.. 3.. 4.. 5.. 6..
Tom: Whew. Emidecimal...I think I'm going to fear that name after a while Mike...
Mike: Well at least it was...FAIRLY short.
Tom: (starting to freak) But she mentioned OTHER stories! OTHER plans! OTHER potential experiments waiting to happen!
Mike: Well uh, let's just be thankful that it ended and for each other, okay guys?
Tom: (Sniffing) Okay.
Mike: Looks like the four stooges are calling...
(pushes the button)
Megabyte: Ah hello everyone. And how are we feeling after today's little experiment?
Tom: Oh, you know, wretched, bad, horrible...but we've still faced worse.
Pearl: (narrowing his eyes) Is that so? I think it's time to pay another visit to Stephen Ratliff's fic archives again.
Mike: Oh, GOOD one Tom.
Crow: Mr. Byte? Just let me just ask you a question...if an annoying half-virus girl with apparently no powers burst in what would you do?
Megabyte: (a bit puzzled) Call the guards...possibly get rid of her myself if she proved dangerous...filelock her...
Crow: And how many legions would it take to look for someone? Say, the same girl.
Megabyte: It depends of course but no more than 15...
Crow: And you wouldn't just sit and yell at her ineffectively for a while doing nothing much except getting upset if she started mocking you?
Megabyte: Certainly not.
Crow: (nodding) I thought so. Thank you.
Megabyte: Yes well...perhaps you're all starting to crack already. Splendid! Push the button Bobo.
Observer: WHAT button?
Bob: No one said anything about any buttons.
Pearl: What are you talking about?
Megabyte: (puzzled) I don't know, it just...seemed like the right thing to say for some reason.