So…yeah. I started this article thinking “You know, TML’s probably going to delete my account if I don’t write some random crap in the next few weeks, so I might as well write a funny little short commentary on the reaction to the timeline announcement. Well, I started this thinking it was going to be extremely short and more of an “article”, then I guess I just got carried away. Anyway, back to the reason for this intro. This is satire, it’s an over dramatization, and it isn’t meant to offend either side of the debate. It’s meant to offend all the sides. So don’t turn the comment section of the post into a debate forum, this article is a joke with a little moral, please treat it like one and take your rants to your respective forums. If you wish to disagree with the moral of the story, that’s fine, I just don’t want this to turn into a timeline flame war.
It’s been a month or two, I’ve lost a sense of time really, since that monumental tragedy. It’s hard to piece together what really happened, and when I do, everything just falls apart again. I really don’t know when, if ever, I’ll get over it. People around me tell me to just forget, telling me that it doesn’t really matter. I know it does, and I will never forget. People say that you are defined by the moments of highest tension and chaos in your life, that we base what we are on our most monumental moments of tragedy. If this is true, than my life will always be based on that fateful day, that terrible day, the day that forever shattered my paradigm into millions of pieces that will never be recovered. The sixth day, in the month of march, the year 2007 Anno Domini. The day Aonuma confirmed a split timeline.
I stand here, eyes glazed, staring at the burnt heap that was the website of a good friend of mine, LastSingletheoryDan. The poor guy, he was one of the first lost, one of those “single timeline” theorists. Minutes after the announcement, he slipped into a sort of berserking rage, throwing out blog posts and spamming up forums like a drunken catholic in the middle of a gay rights message board. The poor guy didn’t have any control over himself. I vaguely remember myself screaming “Dammit man, get a hold of yourself!,” or some other futile little command, I hardly remember myself. Only later did I realize it was too late for poor LSD, his entire life was based around that last little truth he had to hold onto. He hasn’t been seen in the community since.
I vaguely hear my MSN communicator beep and I snap out of my reflective trance. Pulling it off my belt, A message urgently typed in all caps is blaring in my screen, in full size font.
WE’VE GOT A CODE RED SITUATION AT THE MAIN SQUARE AT ZU. ALL UNITS, CONVERGE ON MY SIGNAL.
I dash over to my browser and quickly start it up. It would take a while to get to ZU, so much DDOS traffic was clogging up the community bandwidth lanes. As I sat there, I quickly established the chat network to be filled in on the situation. The nearest squad car was MeganoftheNight, one of the few surviving webmasters from one of the suburban communities, zeldaluverz.net. Her site was hit by the spam cloud and she lost a few good men, but at least it wasn’t the pure inhumane obliteration of the major sites.
“So, what’s the situation,” I asked her hurriedly.
“I haven’t even been been filled in myself, I gathered from the radio chatter that some Timeline Split Denier member is in the Zelda Universe timeline section threatening to deface everything there. From what I gather, he lost his online girlfriend in the blast. She apparently did some light denying, and they took her out just like that. I can understand a little paranoia in a situation of this magnitude, but they took her out for having an opinion. Whatever happened to freedom of speech.”
“Poor guy. I can’t condone what he’s doing, but….the pain he must feel for his loss.”
“I know, every time I have to ban one of these guys I feel that tinge of guilt, that maybe, even though they’re wrong, that maybe what they’re fighting for is right.”
“I know the feeling. I have a hard time banning any human, it just feels so wrong. But, ya gotta do what you gotta do, ya know?”
“Yeah….,” Her tone wasn’t so sure, “I know.”
I really wasn’t so sure either. I guess in the end, though, It was my choice to side with one group over the other. Whichever side was “right” now really didn’t matter. What mattered is that a lot of innocent people’s accounts were at stake here, and it was time to stop and do what was morally right.
We finally both loaded up to the entrance of ZU. It’s foreboding extra security measures as of late reminded us of the dire situation the community was in. We entered our pass codes and user names as the gigantic doors creaked open and we were redirected to the timeline section with one of the link terminals near the entrance. Let me tell you, you haven’t seen human depravity until you’ve seen the timeline section of Zelda Universe. Thousands of members lie banned on the ground, their picket thread-name signs a testimony to their last words. “Nintendo isn’t the final authority on the series” one said, the body nearby had a signature/tattoo that read “‘Parallel’ doesn’t mean split! Aonouma meant WW’s story was similar to Oot’s!”
In the distance we saw a crowd of people gathering, the murmur of their voices was already loud enough to carry all the way towards us. As we got closer we pulled out our TE badges and asked everyone to step aside.
“Stuff like that is what’s going to set him off,” she noted, “we need this crowd to clear.”
“Sickeningly enough, humanity loves to stare upon the grotesque, I doubt there’s anything we can do. We can send a dispatch to one of the mods, but they’re all focusing on trying to find a pattern in this guy’s IP changer.”
We neared the clearing in the center of the group, and a man sat crouched in the middle, murmuring something about “split timelines being too sci-fi-ish” for zelda or something. He was obviously stressed, he was refreshing heavily, desperately trying to convince others of his view post by post.
“Nintendo has no freakin right to mess with our community!” He shouted violently, “We were founded on debates like the timeline, we work through disagreeables, once you take away controversy and tell a side it’s wrong, you’re letting thousands of fans down! I’m not standing for it anymore, Nintendo and freakin Aonouma no longer have authority, they abused the responsibility, they are WRONG!”
His voice cracked at this point, the mods were doing their best to control his posts but to no avail. He had worked though the post time limit with a script operated megaphone, no number of mods was going to stop him.
“Ok man, calm down, let’s think about this” I said cautiously, “We splitists have good arguments even without the confirmation, it just…confirmed it. Is it really so bad to have to agree with our point of view?”
“THAT’S JUST THE POINT!” At this point he was raving mad, caps lock key down and all, “NINTENDO SHOULDN’T HAVE THE RIGHT TO TELL PEOPLE THEY “HAVE” TO AGREE WITH ANY POINT OF VIEW.”
“Well they obviously chose the better one, we had better arguments. People who followed yours were simpletons who couldn’t grasp the concept of split timelines, you just need to accept we were the right ones.”
“WHY YOU DIRTY LITTLE SPLITTY,” He shouted as a nearby mother covered the ears of her child to keep him from hearing the racist term, “I’LL DELETE YOU.”
He lunged at me, MySQL injection script in had, rolled up into a sort of stick. He swung it at me as I pulled out my vulnerability patcher, just barely blocking his would-be fatal blow. We stood there for a moment, his face inches from mine, and I could see the pain in his eyes beneath the anger. He pushed back, spun around, and lunged again with a stabbing blow. I barely dodged to the side as his attack cut across my shoulder, the cut leaking vital account information. I patched it up quickly and repaired the memory leak just before he lunged again, attempting to strike low. I jumped back and held my patcher in front of me, determined to fight with my last breath until the mods could figure out a way to ban him for good. He froze for a moment, a look of indecisiveness in his face, as if this was his last chance to turn back. That look turned into snarl, and in a flash he dove towards me and slid feet first into my shin, knocking me down. Jumping up and standing over me, he plunged down with his include script. My life flashed before my eyes as I saw that glowing roll of code nearing my vital organs, and I knew this was the end. I mentally prepared myself for the worst, and….
A post rang out from an unknown observer, the voice so commanding, so sure of itself. The terrorist above me faltered, not sure what to do really. He simply paused and waited for this new face to show itself. The crowd parted as a glowing face entered the thread, the cryptic text “anonymous guest” floating above his avatar. I knew by the uncertainty in the Split Deniers face that this man would get a chance to speak, if only for his almost angelic appearance. His embossed avatar a sign of a dignified graphic designer, his body tattooed from head to toe with signature quotes from great men in the history of the internet. He didn’t have the look of one of those pansy peacemakers or diplomats, he just looked determined, as if I had a job to do and was intent upon doing it.
Considering the fact that the Split Denier was still on top of me with a deadly script in his hand, I didn’t dare say anything out loud, but inwardly I knew he was cornered with that one, there was no way he’d be able to argue back.
“And you “Split timeline theorists,” The man continued “You’re almost worse than they are. You’re all gloating over a completely meaningless victory in a completely meaningless debate, while shooting down any opposing argument as being “idiotic,” or “ignorant of the facts.” Yes, you all won, no you don’t have to be asses about it.”
At this I was caught off-guard. My feelings were a mix of agreement and anger. I agreed with him, and yet he was insulting my people, my core beliefs. I truly was speechless, not knowing whether to mouth off at him or become some sort of disciple of his “ways.” By this time the terrorist had simply backed off, he knew that even if he attacked me, this man obviously had some sort of power, and he wasn’t about to piss him off.
“Whether or not you’re right or wrong, the important thing to remember is that timeline theory is completely pointless. Posting a bunch of 1000 word essays on the importance of link’s hat throughout the series and how it proves that the minigame in Four Swords Adventures was actually the first event in hyrule’s history doesn’t make you intelligent or above any other fan, it just means that you have a small enough social life to give time to your gigantic theories. In the end, it’s just a game, and in the end, the timeline doesn’t make a dang bit of difference. If you’d just stop treating it so seriously, perhaps this pointless melodrama about “Nintendo’s Rights” and flame wars wouldn’t happen in the first place. Yeah, it’s fun to debate about it, but when you take it so seriously that you convince yourself it’s actually important, at that point you’re just asking for problems.”
We all stood there, the crowd, my partner and I, the Split Denier. The day the community stood still. At that the man just sort of glared at all of us, not an angry glare really, but one of conviction. With a flash he simply disappeared. No one said anything, there really wasn’t much to say. We all just walked back to our various sites and threads, thinking about what “anonymous user” had said.
It was sometime later when we realized that anonymous posting was actually not enabled at ZU, the trace on his IP turned up nothing, it was listed as a series of blank underscores. I guess we were expecting to discover it was one of the community demagogues, like TSA, TML, or Jack from TDC. But no, we really don’t know who or what it was, and I guess we never will. All we can do is finish the road to recovery after that fateful day. A lot has happened since then, and the words of the mysterious Anonyangel, as some were calling him, were still ringing in our ears. Perhaps this all was a game, perhaps what we did didn’t really matter, and maybe if we could just take things a little less seriously and enjoy what we’ve got in the community, we’d all be a little better off.Follow This Entry | Read Other Posts by leinator