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Here are the entries, enjoy.

As usual, authors names will be added at end of contest. Authors may PM me with any edits. Thank you for the submissions.

Dumpshock populace, this is your chance to influence the judge.

Fiction Contest link
Dungeons and Dragons
by Wounded Ronin

Have you ever seen someone on fire? I mean, not someone as cool as a Buddhist monk who can be on fire and not even care. I'm talking about a normal person who dosen't actually want to be on fire. See, the fire blinds them and totally disorientates them. They don't necessarily sprint around like you might expect. Sometimes you actually see a slow, zombie-like walk with exaggerated big steps. I guess that when you can't tell what's around you at all it makes you want to take big steps. So they take these big steps and their arms also rotate in big circles. The ones who have less fire on them actually run faster. But the ones who are like bonfires? They take some giant bronze golem steps, they move their arms like a creative modern dancer, and they eventually fall.

I'm kind of disappointed that my video games got it wrong. I'm really into combat realism in my video games; I'm a real first person shooter fanatic. In the games, when you set someone on fire with willie pete or something, they always flail their arms fast and sprint around but they don't trip over anything or slam into walls and fall down. I guess the game designers didn't spend enough time looking at footage of people on fire.

Then again, to be fair, there wasn't very much footage of people on fire available to the public until today. Until right now, really. The bar around me is an overpriced urban one and usually there are wealthy yuppies with money to burn. They're still young so they drink and talk loudly with their friends and there's scarcely room to sit down. I can hardly blame the bar for being expensive; everyone knows how enraging urban rents are.

But they're not making any noise now. They've stopped, holding cups and glasses and pool cues. They are still but scattered about the space in a disorganized way, like an unprofessional militia trying to stand at attention while their colonel inspects them. And they're all looking at the trideo. The trideo that is showing the burning people, I mean.

The burning people are actually on the docks. The docks have a lot of wood. I wonder if the docks themselves will catch on fire, if everyone will fall in the ocean, and then we'll be getting all of these charred bodies washing up for months. I can't help but imagine how satisfying it would be since it would really stick it to rich people who own yachts. It'd be like, "Never mind the bodies, tut tut, cheerio, made a killing in the stock market today, don't look at the water, don't look at the water." Hee, as they say.

I wonder how many of those people actually made their saving throw versus dragon breath? How do you make a saving throw versus dragon breath, I wonder. I mean, if you don't have platemail and a shield, what do you do? Just cover your face? Shoulder roll out of the way? Why is there a seperate saving throw for dragon breath and death ray, then? Thing is, all those people probably had an average of, like, 2 hit points or something, so actually their saving throws would be totally immaterial. Whatever. The concept is stupid anyway. Even if I did have platemail and a sheild and I covered my face, that armor would get really frigging hot. I'd just cook indirectly, bake, and be a healthier carcinogen-free meal for the dragon.

The bar is still silent. Yes, yuppies, feel the shock. Feel the burn. Stare at the realities of urban violence! I predict that for the next month or two everyone is really traumatized. They say all kinds of glib things about the horror of burning to death. But, it's all crap because it's mass emotion. Mass emotion dosen't count. I deride mass emotion, I reject it. Every time someone tells me how burning to death is bad I'll tell them that they're not qualified to make that assertion since they're not on fire. Stupid yuppies. I should set them all on fire.

Group identities just annoy me. They really do. People refuse to stand out as individuals and would rather form collective committies of setting people on fire or committies of being afraid of people who are on fire.

But I'm feeling really relaxed now so I'm just going to sit here and drink my Guiness. Did you know that Guiness is a meal? You only need to drink 38 Guinesses to get all the vitamins that you need in one day. Like a Roman emperor of yore I can sit here, cool and refreshed, as the bitter yet life-giving brew makes its way down my throat as a languid river, even as I watch a city on fire and flame golems take snow bank steps before collapsing. You know, if I were on fire, I'd really want a Guiness. Someone could pour it over my head and put the fire out. Then I'd need to drink a lot of Guiness to minimize the pain from my burns.

Have you ever played Dungeons and Dragons with fantasy-themed metal music playing in the background? It's a lot of fun. There's some guy screaming in a hoarse voice about the "dark crystal of power" and at the same time you're using the Oriental Adventures rules to stab a kobold in the eye with a pair of chopsticks. That even sounds like a cool thing to do when you're getting drunk but maybe you'd have to use warm sake instead of Guiness. You could use it to improve your role playing if you wanted to be one of those samurai who always carries around a sake gourd. It's pretty badass to constantly be drunk and foolhardy but still pwn everyone because it's D&D. While, like, you've got the fantasy-themed metal in the background.

My Guiness is finished but I'm having trouble getting the attention of the bartender. Useless slitch is just looking at the burning people. There's clearly someone who hasn't played enough FPS games and downloaded enough snuff trid from the matrix. If only she were more jaded I would be getting served now. Now now now!

It's just my luck that all these people had to catch on fire on my birthday when my dad gave me 100 nuyen as a present. The one time I go to the upscale bar everyone's distracted by a few people on fire. Dammit, I might as well be on the matrix right now playing a RPG.
Knights of Rage
by warrior_allanon

<connecting to “Knights of Rage” Forum>
<observing 10 avatars>

Hoi chummers and welcome to the Knights of Rage matrix based support group and forum, I'm your host Knightmare and tonight we have a few new faces amongst our avatars. Since this is the case I'm going to have one of them come up to the front of the forum and tell their story. Have fun folks, and remember kiddies, those who don't learn from history are doomed to be killed whilst repeating it.

<Wolf in Human Clothing>
I'll start this Knightmare. Now many of us here tonight are old enough to remember the night of rage. Some of us were adults, others were children, some of you weren't even born yet. I myself grew up in Northwest Florida, just outside the Gulf Coast Metroplex to the north. The land had been in the family for a few generations, Some had been lost during the time my grandfather was a child but as he swore, he managed to buy both the lost land back as well as some of the surrounding land. In his youth he had been a United States Marine and when he returned to his family homestead and bought the surrounding land he prepared it for a defense that up until the night of rage was not needed. My father, followed in my grandfathers footsteps and joined the military, he died during the Euro wars. My mother died during my birth I was foisted off on my grandfather. Mother's parents didn't want anything to do with me since I had been the first elf born into the family. This however is just all background and history, the reasoning for me being in that place on the night.

I had been raised by grandpa to respect the government and authority, so when the county commissioner came on the trid and told everyone to gather their meta-human relatives for in processing to government rehab camps, I went and packed a dufflebag. When I finished, I went back into the living room to find that the tenant farmers had almost all turned up in the living room. The only ones not present being the ones that didn't have meta relations. Suddenly, my grandfather strode into the room from his bedroom. He was dressed in his old marine fatigues and was carrying a very modern assault shotgun.

"I believe this will be all that will be joining us folks," my grandfather growled to the group. I had never seen my grandfather angry before, and would never see him this angry again in his life. "Our esteemed county commissioner has decided that any relations that are not of pure human persuasion are to be rounded up and put into a camp that I honestly wouldn't house a dog in. I called you folks here to offer you assistance in protecting your families and yourselves. Now if you don't want to take the offer, no hard feelings, however, if you do take me up on it you must be prepared to fight and fight hard. The commissioner's bully boys will be around eventually and I don't intend to give them my grandson, but if you folks don't want to fight me and the boy will just go to ground and woe betide the poor drek head who finds us."

My grandfather turned to me and told me to go get my guns and meet everyone else in the bunker. As I did this I also changed my clothes, my grandfather had outfitted me with a set of clothes similar to him recently. I guess he had seen the trouble coming earlier and decided to be ready for it. After putting on my camouflage and tactical vest I grabbed my rifle and pistol and hustled down to the bunker that grandfather had built at an even older time. When my grandfather had been a child he said that the bunker had actually been a kennel for his mother's show dogs, He had retro-fitted it though in his younger days as a bomb shelter for his parents so that if anything happened they would be safe. He later enlarged the bunker to serve as a group storm shelter for the valley we lived in. Another thing he put in over the years was a slightly submerged parking area that had a reinforced cover and also provided interlocking firing positions with the original bunker. This provided the house with a good defendable position against any kind of raiding attack.

Stepping into the upper level of the bunker I found grandpa showing the dependants who didn't know how to fight into the lower areas where nothing short of a penetrator bomb would reach them. Also I could see the rest of the refugees drawing weapons from my grandfathers personal armory and loading them. Most of the weapons tended to either the Kalashnikov's standard or .308 with only a few light machine guns and rifles using the now defunct NATO standard 5.56. Once everyone had loaded up and made sure their families were secured we settled in to wait, and we didn't have to wait long. Just as dark was falling on the valley the rumble of diesel trucks could be heard coming down the hill, the air brakes screeching as they reached the bottom. I was in the observation and detonation room watching a bank of monitors where each monitor was hooked to a camera and a switch controlling a claymore land mine emplaced either above or below the camera. As I watched I saw a pair of diesel pickup trucks full of people toting hunting rifles and shotguns followed by a deuce and a half partially full of people already made the turn into the driveway. I hit the inter-room intercom and described the situation for my grandfather who grunted a reply of "Poor fools, they'll be safe soon enough." I followed the procession on the cameras until they stopped in front of the small pond my great grandfather had built in the front yard of the house. A county deputy got out of the lead pick up and proceeded across the foot bridge to the front door where he knocked and started reading a proclamation like it was mid-evil times.

"By order of County Commissioner Thorvald, Mr. Hunt you are hereby ordered to turn over all of your meta-human kin to the personell designated by the county commissioner. They will be taken to an internment camp where he will begin receiving therapy for their condition.” When silence and inaction greeted the finishing of this proclamation, the deputy started to read it again only louder until my grandfather cut him off.

“We heard you the first time deputy Jones, and you can tell the esteemed county commissioner where he can take and shove his proclamation. Or better yet you can tell him to come on down here and I'll do it for him. This astonished the deputy for a few moments, never before had his power been challenged except amongst his fellow officers whom only did it as initiation. Here on the other hand was a civilian telling an armed group apparently from behind a standard door that they could all take a long walk down a short pier.

“Sir,” the deputy started as he un-snapped the holster of his service pistol. “We are authorized to use force if necessary and to also take you into custody if you refuse to hand over your relations.” With this statement the deputy beckoned to the people in the pickups who unloaded themselves as did the driver of the deuce and started over the wooden foot bridge. “Are you telling me sir, that we will have to do this the hard way or will you see reason and hand over your relation.” the deputy continued.

In the bunker my grandfather watched the moniters now with me as he conversed over the intercom with the poor deputy at the door to the house. “As a matter of fact sonny I am telling you that. Now I will give you one chance to get you and your idiot friends off my property while you can still breathe, otherwise it's open season on blue bloods.” This took the deputy aback for a second who then with a muttered curse of “Frag You, you old fart turned the knob on the door which came out in his hand. Watching this my grandfather shook his head and reached up and flipped a switch. This switch detonated the plastique explosive that had been planted along the bottom side of the wood on the foot bridge killing most if not all of the goons that had been in the trucks. The deputy, now alone with a doorknob in his hand and no bridge to retreat across, suddenly got a I just fragged the neighbors dog look on his face and started running. He went around the end of the pond closest to the bunker and reaching one of the pickups tore out of there spinning dirt and grass everywhere.

At this point my grandfather opened the bunker door and led a group of the tennants out to the deuce to collect the metas that had already been rounded up. The group was mostly people we knew from either school funtions or just from around the small town next to us. “I need everyone's attention if you would please,” my grandfather said speaking loudly enough for everyone to hear. “We need to get as many people who are willing to fight to get into the bunker armory and gear up. Everyone else needs to get below ground into the tunnels where they will be safe and out of the way of the fighting.” With this my grandfather swung himself into the drivers seat of the duece and moved it where it would block the driveway, making the opposition have to walk a mile through booby-trapped woods. This ladies and gentlmen, was just the beginning of what would be later known as the Battle of Bell Creek.

Once everyone had gotten settled in, it was getting close to midnight, so I got one of the other folks to spell me on watch so I could get some sleep. I had been up before the sunrise that day and as some of you know farm life ain't easy. As the night had worn on we had listened to the radio and watched what trid we could get in the bunker, but the majority of our knowledge of what was happening around the world came through the one person with a deck. Unfortunately Jonas couldn't join us tonight, he has long since gone to the great spirit he spoke of to me long ago. About the time I was coming back into the monitor room we were getting reports of what was going on in Seattle and around the world. We truly felt sorry for those folks and hoped that all the crazyness would be over soon, for us it lasted 2 more days. On the first morning the county forces tried rushing the property, they didnt know of the mine field my grandfather had put out years earlier. It wasn't very big, but when a concerted rush loses its center in one tremendous blast, well it took the heart right out of the poor suckers.

The second rush came more circumspectly around dusk that day, using the bodies of the first rush as well as the scrapes caused by the explosions, the county forces made it to the fence line. This would have done them great as most of the people were asleep at that time. It would have anyway, except for the line of claymore mines attached to the tops of the fence posts. Now these were not your typical claymore mines, these were improvised, but my grandfather once again showing all that his life had taught him had spent the morning making explosives from something he called the “Anarchist's Cookbook” and the afternoon putting cans of it filled with both roofing nails and buckshot along the fence-line. This really shredded the second advance and just put an end to the idea that they would get through this unscathed.

The last attempt they made came just before dawn on the next day. Reinforced with a company of National Guard from the State Govenor, the county bully boys and remaining deputies advanced across the remains of the fence into the front yard. This time they sent forward a “negotiator to try and talk the people into surrendering. Honestly, I wonder if the little pencil neck ever got the load of rock salt out of his crotch, but I digress. Since we refused to surrender or negotiate the troops moved forward. Oh the yard ran red that day, and even today every now and again the grass will come have a deep red tint to it. On came the troops into our field of fire and they died in large numbers, but we started losing some of our own as well. As we lost a shooter, and the fire slackened to care for them, more and more troops would manage to get closer. Finally though, the troops pulled back with too many wounded and dead to deal with. Later that day, we heard on the news that because of the worldwide controversy concerning the first night, any official who took action against metas within the CAS would have to find a new job. That the metas were CAS citizens as well and were to be afforded the same rights as anyone else. We all knew it was BS coming from the President, but since the troops were leaving we didnt much care.

Afterward, my grandfather told me of another time when physical differences were a concern, and told me of a man that though he didn't come through our area, made a huge impact just the same.

<Whtpwr> I can't believe y'all are listening to this drek, you know this night of rage drek is all lies it <remaining post deleted by sysop>

<Knightmare> I got to change those blasted access protocols, every idiot with a deck seems to get in here and spout off.

<Hid in the hills> I know Knight, but why does it always seem to be the idiots with a radical agenda that bother to? You would think we would get some random Little Johny drek in here or something.

<connection lost>
Wow I'm the first vote...

I went for D&D for being "nicer" to read and wonderfully creepy. I suspect the narrator wasn't the only one thinking like that on the Night of Rage.
SL James
Nor has anyone ever thought anything like that ever in the history of the world.
D&D gets my vote as well.

SL James
I just.. Can't. He's just not callous enough.
the first one reads like it was written by a spastic 13 year old on crack. I can not in good conscience vote for it.
SL James
I'd be more amenable if he wasn't so much disinterested as he would be excited (note the emphasis).
Wow, my vote made it 50/50... talk about a split of oppinion smile.gif
QUOTE (Ophis @ Apr 2 2006, 04:43 AM )
Wow I'm the first vote...

I went for D&D for being "nicer" to read and wonderfully creepy. I suspect the narrator wasn't the only one thinking like that on the Night of Rage.

Ok, I edited some of the things like capitalizing I and adding and deleting apostrophes. Easier to read?

QUOTE (Halabis @ Apr 2 2006, 10:14 PM)

  the first one reads like it was written by a spastic 13 year old on crack. I can not in good conscience vote for it.

QUOTE (SL James @ Apr 2 2006, 10:37 PM)

  I'd be more amenable if he wasn't so much disinterested as he would be excited (note the emphasis).

These are the sort of comments that help. Telling everyone who you voted for is already taken into consideration by the poll result.
hate to do this but


sorry it needed that, people tend to ignore things on the second page
Tiz unless someone breaks the tie i think that this one can be called as officially over with
emo samurai
I DID IT!!!!!
you would nyahnyah.gif
Augh, but I re-tied it when I cast my vote! O_o
That second story really reminded me of that series by John Ringo, who knows where else it comes from too.
Wounded Ronin
So, uh, when does this part of the contest end?
It'll never end, muahahahahaha!!!
My, oh my!

I could claim I was awaiting a clear and difinite winner... But, actually, I have been busy since a few days before the deadline for this contest.

Thank you Wounded Ronin and warrior_allanon for the stories.

I am going to go against the slight poll variance and award the book to warrior_allanon. My reasons, one, I felt it was more topical in content and two, Wounded Ronin was planning on re-gifting the book (iirc.) In such a close poll, it hardly seems fair for neither actual entrant to get anything.
warrior_allanon wins!!! Fatality.
thanks everyone who voted for mine. and PBTHHHHT, though you could have said it was partially inspired by John Ringo, i was actually writing this story as if i was actually there. and i mean me the person.

the land described is actually where i grew up and plan on moving back to when i retire, and if i were to have my own children the timeline would be about right for a 10 year old grandkid on the night of rage.

Tiz, i will get with you later in the week about shipping, i have a lot on my plate at the moment
Sorry, I meant inspiration, I just couldn't think of the word at the time when I was writing that post. I just felt a lot of influence from the John Ringo book, I know that scene pretty well and I didn't mean anything was taken from there because both are very different in many ways. Apologies for any misunderstandings.

edit: Argh! I realized I used the word anything instead of any before misunderstandings. I can't believe I did that.
no problems there pbhhhht, i think i came across a little harder than i intended as well so i'm sorry to,
Wounded Ronin
Ouch, I've been pwned!

And, yeah, that's correct. Since there are no RPGs out where I am and shipping to me would be slow and unreliable if I win anything in any of these fiction contests I would like to give the prize to Hyzmarca instead.

The reason for this is because I think that Hyzmarca is the one man on these forums who understands best what makes a kickass RPG forum. If I ever meet him in the flesh or on IRC for a game of SR in the future he is the one man I trust to kill *all* my characters in the most correct and awesome possible way.

Um, anyway, I'm going to go and cry about losing now. Sniffle.
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