LNH: 58.5 #4
lalo.martins at gmail.com
Wed Jun 20 22:16:18 PDT 2007
"Hello", said the girl in white hair. "My name is Tamela, and
I'm a time-traveler."
"Hello, Tamela", said the rest of the people in the room,
"Well", she continued, "to be honest, I have only traveled a
little bit through time. But I have these devices that can stop
or speed time... and I'm in love with an actual traveler. So I
guess I qualify."
"Of course you qualify", said the coordinator. Then, turning to
the new guys: "Tamela has been coming to the meetings for three
months now. Even though she spent most of April in an LNH
holding cell, as soon as she got free, she started coming
again. Every Sunday evening, without failure. That's
dedication, folks! Let's hear a round of applause!"
"It's nothing", she said, a little embarrassed. "I actually
come whenever I feel the need for your support... it's easy to
be here every week at the same time, when your boyfriend can
drop you off then from any point of the week."
Most of the attendance laughed in understanding, while she got
back to her seat. The coordinator gestured to the boy to her
right, a thin, tall young man of about 19, in jeans, heavy metal
band t-shirt, and a vest full of pockets; both the vest and his
belt were crammed with gadgets. His dark-blue eyes always moved
around, shining with keen intelligence.
"Howdy. My name is Daniel Hunt, and I'm a time-traveler. I was
born in the 22nd century, where, when I was six years younger, I
became the sidekick of Contraption Man. Er, a Contraption Man a
few years in the future of the version who is now with the LNH.
So when I started getting too old, we parted ways. One day I
decided to come see what he was like when he was younger. So I
borrowed... ok, ok, I stole the time machine... and came to the
early 21st. Of course, the damn thing got broken by a villain
the next day, and so I'm stranded here."
"Why don't you ask for help from today's Contraption Man?",
asked one of the new members.
"I don't want to cause some time paradox."
"Bullgrife", said the girl to his right, a short, slightly plump
teen, with very small ears, shiny pink eyes, and olive hair,
wearing a mini-skirt, stockings, high boots, and a baby-look
t-shirt, all in brightly clashing colors. "Why don't you just
admit it? You spring it here. The weather is entirely
five-twenty-three, the girls are strawing, and things really
happen. I mean, this is the silver age of the grifing LNH!"
[You may want to check the bonus feature now -- Footnote cybergirl]
"Ok, maybe I enjoy it a little", he said, with a crooked smile.
"Why don't you introduce yourself, now that you already stole
the spotlight?", asked the coordinator.
"Da, da. Hi and frames you all. My name is Locked Room. I
picked it for myself because the one my grifing parents gave me
is too stupid and hard for you neanderthals to pronounce. By
your calendar, I was born in 6,345,789, although we call it
1989... don't even ask me what we count our years from, it's too
complicated to explain. And it's a load of bullgrife too.
Anyway. My mom did a great service to humanity, so we got one
of the five-twenty-threeest rewards they give, a vacation in
pre-history. Dad picked 2006CE, sprok knows why. We came.
They died in a gang war two days later. And nobody from
civilization ever grifing inquanted to pick me up. That's the
story. Oh yeah, sorry. So. My name is Locked Room and I'm a
"Nice, nice. Now, let's hear it from our new members."
"Hi", said the little girl, nervously, holding her brown-haired
older friend's hands for support. He looked a lot more
relaxed. "My name is Mary Smith, and I'm a time-traveler."
Who Cares Studios futuristically presents...
/ ____( __ ) / ____/
/___ \/ __ | /___ \
____/ / /_/ / ____/ /
You've got to cheat a little,
Steal a little...
Lalo Martins -- writer
May Fonseca -- editor
with thanks to the Legion of Net.Authors
"I don't $%@#$(*@#&% believe it", said... well, you guess who.
"What is it?", asked Bandwagon Chick.
"What the &^%@(@*% does Firefox need one *(&(*@%&*@% gigabyte of
*&%(*#@& RAM for? Now my station is (*&%(#*%& slow again."
"Er. Maybe you got a virus?"
"Bonnie. These &*(&&(*@# LNHQ computers are a custom hardware
architecture &*(%&$#*( that nobody else has, (&%*(&$**$&
designed by Doc Stomper and Contraption Man, based on
*&#@(%&*@#%&*% Kirbytech. They all run *%&#(*&%* Loonix,
heavily modified by wReamHack, every single &*(%&*(#% piece of
software compiled from *&#(*%&#%(*& source, and *(&%*(@%&*$
checked line by (*&%*$*(&$ line by Multi-Tasking-Man[*]. Any
virus would have to be &*(%&$*( custom-designed..."
[* while he records his latest album having shower on an
exercise bicycle -- Footnote cybergirl]
"All right, all right, I get the picture... but didn't the
Melissa Virus escape recently?"
"There's no *(&%#*($#% mystery to solve, lady. This
(*&(*%&$#(*& has always been a *&%*(%#$(*&% memory hog. I guess
it's one of those (*$%&$#(*$ of life. Offline, you &#*(&% about
bugs and bees; online, it's &#@(*&% bugs and leaks."
Cannon Fodder walked in, seeming distracted, and started typing
furiously at another terminal.
"Hey CF. What's *(%&(#*%&ing?"
"Oh. Didn't notice you there."
"We figured", said Bonnie.
"Well... I'm reading the files on Beige Noon. There's this
something I'm investigating" -- he gave Innovative-Offense Boy a
meaningful glance -- "that I thought could be related."
"Nah", he made, in frustration. "The way that thing ended, I
figure it would be impossible for anything to come out of it. I
guess what is actually meant there is, 'as bad as Beige Noon',
"You %*(&%**$# sure, man? Could be some %#(*%%$#--"
"Nah. I'm sure. Not worth pursuing any further."
"Well", said Bonnie tentatively, trying hard to pretend she had
any kind of trust in Cannon Fodder's investigative skills, "I'm
sure you'll figure it out eventually."
He just crossed his arms over the desk, and let his head
collapse on them. Maybe he was going to say something, but his
terminal decided to spontaneously combust that very moment[*],
reducing him to ashes.
"Eep", made Bandwagon Chick. "Poor guy, I hate when that
happens. Guess we see him tomorrow then..."
[* This one is for the readers wondering how he could be
surviving this series so far -- Footnote cybergirl]
"All right", finally said Dramatic Pause Lass. "So, Whatever
and Analytic, your idea of going to the time-traveler support
group actually worked out. Anything useful yet?"
It was Thursday. They had gathered together in a roadside
restaurant to coordinate.
"Not much", said Sammy. "She didn't say anything we didn't know
already. We wanted to follow her, but the Crapper picked her
up, and they disappeared, probably to a different day."
"Great", said Blackbird. "Well. Fran, Blur and I have been
hitting all the hideouts the LNH had on file for both of
them... and a few more, thanks to Hyperbolic Boy stealing some
government files for us."
"Oh, it was easier than clapping my hands", said Roger.
"But none of those places had any traces of recent use", Blur
contributed, in a tired voice.
Mary was barely paying attention. Her mind was on Dramatic
Pause Lass. .o(Dramatic Pause indeed. Am I going crazy, or
you're hitting on my cousin? And more important, why do I get
the feeling you're only doing it so he doesn't notice you
stepping all over his leadership?)
Fran was looking straight at her. Mary twitched her hands
"Are you two planning to go back to the support group this week?
Are you sure nobody suspects you?"
"We made up a preposterous story about how we were sent from the
year 2015 by the future version of Weirdness Magnet to prevent
the LNH from being bought by AOL[*]. It's not any weirder than
the average story there, so they accepted us."
[*Which is entirely true -- Footnote cybergirl]
"So you're not really from the future", said a voice from the
next table. Mary leaned over.
"Da. I've been following you." She got up from her table,
picked up her pineapple and avocado milk-shake, and moved to
theirs. "You said you came to the present with friends, I
thought I'd spring meeting them."
"Er", said Analytic. "You could have asked."
"Kloorve me. I was going to, but Old Ugly didn't like you, so I
thought I'd see what's up and frames." A clicking noise comes
from under her table. "Da da, not that she didn't like you, she
just felt there was something wrong."
Everyone in the New Misfits was a little shocked, so they didn't
have much to say. Well, except for the PANIC agents; they were
on guard instead, in case the new arrival turned out to be an
enemy. Which caused the exact same apparent effect.
"So, you guys are really after someone in the group? Who?"
"Tamela", said Mary, "and her boyfriend the Time Crapper."
"Mary!", censored Fran, forgetting to make a pause.
"What? What harm could that do? If she goes and tell Mother
Time, she'll probably be devolved into... well, one of us
neanderthals, or something. Those two are not known for being
grateful or anything."
Locked Room laughed. "Da, little girl! No, no fear, I wouldn't
do that anyway. The Crapper is one of the few things from this
time we still know when I come from, and there's a whole
department of the time police dedicated to keeping him... and
his kind... out of our time range."
"But you'll help us, won't you?"
"Grife, why not? I'm bored." She took a long sip of her
"Mary...", Fran tried again, more gently.
"Kloorve you", Mary answered. "It's my call this time. I like
her, and I'm accepting her help, unless our leader says no.
You're not even a member of the group!"
"Girls, girls, you'll destroy the solar system with this rage",
said Roger. "In fact, that's an outstandingly good point. You
guys have been missing something for millennia; what say you
have a vote now, to formally accept new members?"
"That's actually a decent idea", said Green. "We could use more
hands and heads in a more permanent basis. I vote them in."
"Maybe", said Blur.
"Yes", said Analytic.
"I'll vote yes", Mary said, "if Locked Room and her pet join in
"We know less than nothing about her! She could be an alien
doppleganger vampire demon net.villain lawyer working for an
enemy government!", said Hyperbolic Boy.
"So could you", said Mary. "But I have a feeling, and my
feelings tend to be good. And Analytic can take a look at her.
A good look."
"I vote with Mary", said Blur.
Locked Room seemed uneasy. "What do you mean by a good look?"
"Sammy is our super-detective", said Green. "He can see clues
most people can't, and make connections and deductions."
"Oh. I'm fine with that. Five-twenty-three. Nothing to hide."
Analytic was already looking, however.
"Not quite", he said. "Just a little thing. Yes, she's all she
said, and she's a little more evolved than we are genetically.
She's also a rather angry girl. But she's lying on a minor
thing, I can see now."
"What?", she asked, nervously.
"You know why nobody came for you. You're a rebel, maybe we
could even say a vandal. And you've stolen something, didn't
you? The government, or the future equivalent, was opposed to
your mother bringing you along. But she did. So when she died,
the people from your time thought, good riddance to you."
"Grife. Da, that's my theory. So kloorve me, does that
"On the contrary", said Blackbird. "It gets you my vote."
Everybody looked nervously to the Analytic, waiting for his
"What about this pet?", Dramatic Pause Lass asked.
"She mentioned 'Old Ugly', and there was a noise from under the
table", Mary answered.
"Old Ugly", said the girl in olive hair. "Come say hi."
A thing from a nightmare crawled from under the table, wiggling
two long antennas. Everybody crawled on their seats, and away
from it; except for Mary.
"Cool!", she exclaimed. "You have a giant trilobite!"
"I based her on horned trilobite DNA, yes. She's obviously
larger, though, terrestrial, and a lot smarter. And slightly
telepathic. I stole the grifing equipment to make her, and
smuggled her here. That's, by the way, the reason I think the
grifers from my time don't want me back."
"Awesome! Five-twenty-four!", said Mary.
"Three", the other girl corrected with a smile.
Blur moved on and around the creature. "Hmm. Yeah, that could
be very useful. I vote her in too."
"Are you serious?", asked Fran, her hand on a concealed weapon.
Green touched the creature too. "She's smart, and loyal. Fine
by me. Strange, she doesn't feel artificial."
"Of course", said Locked Room, sounding annoyed. "Our
technology is far beyond the primitive artificial life you have
now. She's a real living being in all aspects. And I'm good!"
"I vote yes for all four", said Analytic. "Can we move on now?
We have a couple of villains to catch."
"Five-twenty-three", said the girl from the far future, with a
wide grin. "I'm a grifing net.hero! Hey waiter, another
milkshake, I need to celebrate!"
Between Friday and Saturday, Mary was sleeping fitfully, now
sharing her tent with Locked Room.
%I KNOW WHO YOU ARE%, said the monster in her dream. It was
large. Larger than most people's minds can fathom. Not Mary;
she could fathom pretty much anything, and in fact they have met
before. They had a... troubled history. %I KNOW WHY YOU'RE
HERE. AND IT'S NOT THE REASON YOU THINK.%
"You don't frighten me", she said, in the dream. "You didn't
frighten me when I was younger, and now I know more."
%KNOWING MORE SHOULD MAKE YOU EASIER TO FRIGHTEN, NOT HARDER.%
"Still. You don't. I know more about myself, and what I can
do. I can--"
%YES. YOU KNOW MORE. BUT NOT ENOUGH. NOT NEARLY ENOUGH.%
"Enough that you don't frighten me."
%WE'LL HAVE TO WORK ON THAT.%
She woke up with a scream.
"Mary! Mary, what the grife?"
She hugged her new friend, shivering, and cried a bit on her
"Ssh, ssh. What is it?"
"Something big. Something really huge."
"Like a monster? You were moaning something about a big
creature before you woke up."
"No. Yeah, there is one. But it's not what I meant."
"Something very big is going to happen. Oh, Locke, we're
entirely kloorved. It's too big."
Mother Time is Rob Rogers'... I think.
The original Footnote Girl is Saxon Brenton's; but she's been
taken already, and replaced with a robot.
Innovative-Offense Boy is upLink's.
Bonnie Chique (Bandwagon Chick) is Sue Clark's.
Cannon Fodder is wReam's, with special thanks to Dvandom.
The Leviathan is Paul Hardy's. I hope he's not reserved or
anything, because I'm using him :-D
Everybody else is mine. Quick recap:
Blackbird Jones -- Blackbird
Mary Smith -- Whatever
Meredith "Sammy" Samuels -- Analytic
Green Delaware -- Tree-Hugging Kid
Francesca "Fran" Blake -- Dramatic Pause Lass
Roger M. Zing -- Hyperbolic Boy
Daniel Hunt -- Contraption Boy
Locked Room and Old Ugly
Bonus feature: a small glossary of early 63458th century slang
Each one has a "formal" definition, then early 21st century
(or recent) equivalents, and an example or two.
Bullgrife: nonsense, or lies. This one is not real
63458th-century talk; Locked Room made it up, combining "Grife"
with a well-known 21st-century term. "Da, da, cut the
Da: yes; yeah, totally. "Oh da! This is what I call a gun!"
Entirely: very much, really; totally.
Five-twenty-three: good; awesome, cool. "What a
Frames: fill-in for a set of terms that either can be guessed
from context, or are formulaic; et cetera, so on, all that,
stuff. "Go inside, get your costume, gun, the frames." Used
either as "and frames", or "the frames".
Grife: the generic cursing noun; fu*, sh*. "What the grife?"
Grifing: the generic cursing adjective or adverb; f*ing. "Give
me the grifing sandwich already."
Inquant: (verb) to show up, come, arrive, appear. Compare
"outquant". "Hurry up, I don't want to inquant late!"
Kloorve: (verb) generic cursing verb; fu*, screw, or sometimes
when applied to oneself: sue, bite. "Kloorve you noofers, I'm
going home." "Da, I only have one pair of boots, kloorve me."
Noofer: person, friend; guy, dude, pal, bro. "The noofer in the
pink shorts is entirely strawing!"
Outquant: (verb) go away; beat it. Compare "inquant". "Da, you
said your piece, now outquant!"
Spring: enjoy; dig. "I think you just spring making slang up."
Sprok: fill-in cursing noun for something big or bad; hell,
heck. "This trip has entirely gone to sprok." "Sprok only
knows what's in this sandwich."
Strawing: attractive; hot. "You look entirely strawing in that
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