April 9, 2000
Cutting the connection, he turned towards the window, observing a small Blackbird in her nest and rubbing his hands together with glee.
The reporter from The Sun got the best seat, and it was his eyewitness report that was used by papers all over the world.
"At the press of a key, the stasis bubble began to expand until it filled the chamber with a blue mist. With a nod from Yeh, the switch was flicked, and a resounding crack of noise caused all to throw their hands to their ears. The level of power being consumed rose to match the maximum output of Stasis Inc.'s generators at this point, and remained so for 5 seconds. After this, an inhuman sigh was emitted from the stasis bubble, after which, a human figure became clearly visible through the mist."
The man was wearing typical Medieval clothes, and spoke a kind of broken English. "say wtf?" were reportedly the first words heard from the stasis bubble. They were quickly followed by, "say oops I mean wth, dont wanna curse do I?" A sigh rose from the crowd, soon broken by a cheer and raucous applause as the man walked to the front of the stasis chamber, placing his hands on the glass.
"clan omg wth has happened?"
It was Yeh that was first to converse with the newcomer.
"My name is Harry Yeh, and I welcome you to our century! I'm sorry if we've severely shocked you, but I feel you'll be quite pleased with how things have progressed in the 700 years since your time. May I have the pleasure of your name?"
"say uh, my name's Ralu. say but how the hell did this happen?"
A beaming smile forced its way onto Yeh's face. "I'm amazed! We speak almost the same language! I can understand you!"
"say um yeah, guy, but I was just gettin some mad xpz at hornegs! You shouldn't summon without permission!" Ralu was then seen to mutter something to himself, which one journalist in a position close to the front noted down as "say why didn't I setsummon c after that Verigaard form? Gah."
Yeh smiled. "We had no way of asking your permission. We had no way of communicating with you whatsoever!"
Ralu stared at him, with a look of incredulity crossing his face. "snicker. say come on, haven't you heard of a little channel called shout? Say geez you could have even messaged me if you wanted me so bad."
Yeh shook his head and, to the amusement of the mass of journalists behind him, walked right up to the glass and tapped it opposite Ralu's bloodstained right hand. "You've been a naughty boy haven't you! You realise we've progressed past wars and violent killings in our society." He sniffed in disdain at the dagger at Ralu's side.
Ralu was having none of this. "say you still haven't apol for summoning me without permission. say I could get you frozen!"
Yeh giggled to himself, obviously spurred on by the noise of the journalists behind him. "You realise that this machine is probably the greatest advance in science since the computer? It can "summon", as you put it, anything or anyone from any period in history, up until about one hundred years ago."
"eyebrow. say You can summon any THING?. Peer man."
"say Summon me a 60/60 bloodstone, right now!"
Yeh was taken aback. "'Summon' you a what?"
"say you haven't heard of a bloodstone? Rofl. Say newbie! Say Okay, no bloodstone - summon me a HP tally or I pray that you summed me without my permission."
Yeh turned his back on Ralu, and addressed the journalists. "As you can see, we've successfully brought back a 14th century man! All our medical tests run during the proceedings since he was retrieved indicate he is of full health, and with luck we should be able to keep him here for study for at least 40 years!"
"say forty years!? Slap man. Mutter"
Ralu was looking about his small quarters - the entirety of the five metres square stasis chamber. Sparsely furnished with a wooden chair and a mattress, the quarters were nevertheless luxurious to he who had only ever camped in his life.
"say man this is weird. Clan guys you aren't going to believe where I am."
A technician had been charged with keeping an eye on Ralu at the ungodly time of 3am, and sleepy as he was, his ears pricked up at this.
"clan no mala, not the trellor brothel colon p"
"clan I dont know either. Some weird man's been prodding me verbally. summoned me without my permission."
"clan yeah I cant get outta here. Well."
"c w semicolon c t"
"s semicolon w semicolon u semicolon d semicolon n semicolon e"
"clan nope not a bean on exit or when I try to exit. doh!"
"t karina yeah I suppose I'd better"
Ralu, standing still in the middle of the chamber and without raising his voice, said, "pray there's some kinda bug, I'm trapped in a room near hornegs"
The technician pressed the "Mic on" button at this. "umm, where's hornegs?"
"shout are you a god?"
The technician sniggered. "Yeah mate, sure"
"shout get me outta here pls. Shout I gotta log off"
"Umm can't be done-a-roonied I'm afraid. The resulting drain on the power from your trying to leave stasis would bring down the whole New York grid."
"shout is this a medieval game or what? I dont recall power grids being around in the 14th century"
The technician started scribbling in his pad. "You know what one is? How does a 14th century man come across such knowledge"
"shout guy I'm not from the 14th century. I'm a 20th century man playing a MUD"
The technician shook his head. "Those text based telnet games?"
"shout yeah. It's called Medievia. I dunno how THIS happened"
Yeh, called in in the middle of a non-existent sleeping break had hurried to the stasis room. He bustled straight into the room, coffee in hand, without so much as nodding at the technician.
"You expect us to believe that what we've got here is some Canadian guy, and what you say is being typed on a keyboard?"
"say yeah don't ask me how it happened."
"I can't believe this." Yeh paused for a second, brow furrowed in thought. " Okay. if you're telling the truth, pick up the phone and dial this number."
Having given Ralu the number for the phone on the technician's desk, he turned away and smirked into his coffee. Aside to the technician, he said, "We've either picked up a loony, or a Court Jester."
The technician was not as skeptical. "But... America wasn't even known of in the 14th century. let alone Canada. How could he be lying?"
"You're prepared to believe some crazy story about incarnation of computer game characters over the possibility that someone has mentioned Canada to him in passing conversat-"
He was interrupted by the phone ringing. The voice on the other end said simply, "Yeah it's me. Ralu I suppose I should say. Listen I can't afford the phone bill, guy."
Yeh was not convinced. "Okay, joker. If you're really controlling this computer game sprite, get him to raise his right hand."
Ralu said, "handraise."
Flicking off the Mic on switch, Yeh said, "Oh yeah, wonderful proof. He said it, but he could hear what I was saying. Now he can't - get him to scratch his head. Good luck."
"He said it? I can get him to say anything you want then."
Ralu was heard to say, "scratch."
The voice on the other end of the line said simply, "I gotta go. This is killing my phone bill." ***
Yeh stared at the technician. "So you've dug up the command logs from the few minutes of the experiment?"
The technician slowly nodded, engrossed in the text running down his screen.
"Umm, here it is sir. 18:48 Commence stasis inflation. 18:49 Stasis Fully inflated: Input target Parameters entered: Lock on Medievial person."
"Umm yes sir. It appears there was a typo."
This hit Yeh like a bullet to the chest. He staggered backwards and fell into a chair. "So that... that's really a character from a computer game. I... I don't know what kind of machine could do that... it's like a creation machine! All we need to do is write a computer game with any kind of character in it, and use the machine, and we can bring them to life! Just think... we could make anything! A dodo! A DRAGON!"
The technician wasn't listening. Busily typing away on his keyboard, he was organising another stasis grab. He flicked the "mic on" switch.
"Ralu, is there any way you can quit this MUD?"
"say sure, I was playing some tetris anyway. /zap"
Ralu remained perfectly still for about 3 minutes, and then was swallowed whole by a void. The technician had no eyes for what was happening in the stasis chamber, however. Typing the last of his series of commands with a flourish, he hit the Enter key and turned to face the chamber.
The same rigmarole went on inside the booth as the first time, but this time there was no adoring crowd to cheer. Simply Yeh, stunned, and facing the wall in his chair, and the technician, hunched over facing the chamber. Eventually, the inhuman sigh sounded, and a distinctly feminine figure was seen in the chamber. That of Lara Croft.