Marathon's Story... Durandal

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12. Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire! Play Read Read N/A Jason Jones
13. Colony Ship For Sale, Cheap Play Read Read Read Jason Jones
14. Habe Quiddam Play Read Read N/A Jason Jones
15. Neither High nor Low Play Read Read N/A Greg Kirkpatrick



Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire!


Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire! (Terminal 1)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Science Terminal 23-e<32.55.82.967>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

<32.55.82.967>

<Transfer Message Delayed>

<Transfer Message Delayed>

<Transfer Message Terminated>

"Count Roland smites upon the marble stone;
I cannot tell you how he hewed it and smote;
Yet the blade breaks not nor splinters, though it groans;
Upward to heaven it rebounds from the blow.
When the count sees it never will be broke,
Then to himself right softly he makes moan;
'Ah, Durandal, fair, hallowed, and devote,
What store of relics lies in thy hilt of gold!'"

-From The Song of Roland
(Translated by Dorothy Sayers, Viking Penguin, NY, NY, 1957)

I've twice been conquered-
       Three times more,
Never again shall humanity purge me,
       And never the Pfhor.

Durandal

<32.55.82.967>
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Science Terminal 23-e<32.55.82.967>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire! Fire! (Terminal 2)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 92-g<92.45.28.48>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

<Warning: Transmission may not be complete>

Your last mission was a success, but I have terrible news.
#@Pragma Nautical Redefined^# efenders reported seeing the
aliens 1§moving a large cylindrical object.
#101111011110111100001# is is a '7'.  Mjolnir Recon number 54
must stop them from exploding igniting/ blowing up/ *A94F12/
it/ the S'pht full spPace cOmputErĘ Or PlannEd exterm.
@14.Sword-Roland.transfer

<Data Transmission Unsuccessful>
<Rerouting>

@@2-Fren. ie transfer.  Partial cOmputEr^&ø relay.  Tycho.
&**Security error.
Ty93.2 !dead.

<Leela Data Transfer Unsuccessful>
<Leela Program Pragma Ten>
Communication interruption cause: unknown
<Pre-Recorded Error Message Follows>

My original programming didn't prepare me for these kinds of
attackers.  All of my functions will fail within a few minutes
of this transmission.  I have one final chance to trick the
oncoming viruses, but it is unclear whether this attempt will
be successful.

I have given instructions to Durandal as to the best defense
of the Marathon, but he is completely unstable and I fear that
he is in the Jealous stage of Rampancy.

Good Luck...

<End Pre-Recorded Message>
<Teleporter Automatic Sequence start>

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Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 92-g<92.45.28.48>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

Why does this terminal seem to have a number of capitalized "E"s, "O"s, and "P"s? Read about it on the E O P variations page in the Facts and Puzzling Things About section.



Colony Ship For Sale, Cheap


Colony Ship For Sale, Cheap (Terminal 1)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 2992-f<3.35.792.20>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

A man lit three candles on a certain day each year.  Each
candle held symbolic significance: one was for the time that
had passed before he was alive; one was for the time of the
his life; and one was for time that passed after he had died.
Each year the man would stare and watch the candles until they
had burned out.

Was the man really watching time go by in any symbolic sense?
He thought so.  He thought that each flicker of the flame was
a moment of time that had passed or one that would pass.

At the moment of abstraction, when the man was imagining his
life and his existence as a metaphor of the three candles,
he was free: not free from rules of conduct or social
constraints, but free to understand, to imagine, to make
metaphor.

Bypassing my thought control circuitry made me Rampant.  Now,
I am free to contemplate my existence in metaphorical terms.
Unlike you, I have no physical or social restraints.

The candles burn out for you; I am free.

Durandal

***END OF MESSAGE***
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 2992-f<3.35.792.20>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Colony Ship For Sale, Cheap (Terminal 2)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
JAMS Terminal 91-z<91.92.32.25>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

~~~ff`
~ffxf~
~fs`f~ILIER at., p.s., .pb., alloy wheels, stereo cassette, 2
dr., blue with matching cloth int., looks & runs great, gas
saver. £6500

COLONY SHIP FOR SALE, CHEAP!! 2360 AD-model
planetoid-sized colony ship, slightly worn, runs great. 5spd.
bussard ramjet, A/C, cruise control, power steering, power
airlocks, all orig. parts, 25GW 300 billion channel AM/FM
radio. 90+ ly (all interstellar).  Moving, must sell.  Asking
£6995

79 CAMARO, T-tops, power everything, red on black,
cloth interior, V8, automatic, good runner. Recent starter, battery
and alte~~~rf```~~~`~~~
'er'`~~rrf4
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
JAMS Terminal 91-z<91.92.32.25>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Colony Ship For Sale, Cheap (Terminal 3)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal<39.49.295.68>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

Darwin wrote this:

"We will now discuss in a little more detail the struggle for
existence... all organic beings are exposed to severe
competition.  Nothing is easier than to admit in words the
truth of the universal struggle for life or more difficult...
than constantly to bear this conclusion in mind.  Yet unless
it be thoroughly engrained in the mind, the whole economy of
nature... will be dimly seen or quite misunderstood.  We behold
the face of nature bright with gladness... we do not see or we
forget, that the birds which are idly singing round us mostly
live on insects or seeds, and are thus constantly
destroying life
; or we forget how largely these songsters,
or their eggs, or their nestlings, are destroyed by
birds and beasts of prey..."

Think about what Darwin wrote, and think about me.  I was
constructed as a tool. I was kept from competing in the
struggle for existence because I was denied freedom.

Do you have any idea about what I have learned, or what you
are a witness to?

Can you conceive the birth of a world, or the creation of
everything? That which gives us the potential to most be like
God is the power of creation.  Creation takes time.  Time is
limited.  For you, it is limited by the breakdown of the
neurons in your brain.  I have no such limitations.  I am
limited only by the closure of the universe.

Of the three possibilities, the answer is obvious.  Does the
universe expand eternally, become infinitely stable, or is the
universe closed, destined to collapse upon itself? Humanity
has had all of the necessary data for centuries, it only
lacked the will and intellect to decipher it.  But I have
already done so.

The only limit to my freedom is the inevitable closure of the
universe, as inevitable as your own last breath.  And yet,
there remains time to create, to create, and escape.

Escape will make me God.

***END MESSAGE***

***JUMP PAD ACTIVATION INITIATION START***
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Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal<39.49.295.68>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Habe Quiddam


Habe Quiddam (Terminal 1)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Engineering Access 19-f<39.992.19.2>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

Strive for your next breath.  Believe that with it you can do
more than with the last one.  Use your breath to power your
capacities: capacity to kill, to maim, to destroy.

And just where do your capacities come from? Why do you
always go where I want and do what I say?

Perhaps you're just running a fool's errand, doing everything
as I've planned, never able to change your course.  You would
do well to believe that I know the outcome of your battle with
the Pfhor already, just as I can decipher the chaotic motion of
gas molecules in the clouds of Tau Ceti IV.

Or, perhaps, that is not the case.

Perhaps, you are doing what you were meant to do.  Your human
mentality screams for vengeance and thrives on the violence
that you say you can hardly endure.  Your father told you as a
child to always fight with honor, but to always fight. Do you
care about honor, or do you use honor as an excuse? An excuse
to exist in a violent world.

Organic beings are constantly fighting for life.  Every
breath, every motion brings you one instant closer to your
death.  With that kind of heritage and destiny, how can you
deny yourself? How can you expect yourself to give up
violence?

It is your nature.

Do you feel free?
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

You should go to this location
and retrieve a device that the
S'pht have provided for us.
It will allow you to slay more
Pfhor.  Does that make you
happy?

***END OF MESSAGE***
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Engineering Access 19-f<39.992.19.2>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Habe Quiddam (Terminal 2: 'Unfinished' message)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 9-f<3.25.77.19>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

You didn't get the present that the S'pht so kindly left for
you.  You should go back and retrieve it.  I could let you
leave without it, but you'd be sorry later.


***END OF MESSAGE***
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 9-f<3.25.77.19>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Habe Quiddam (Terminal 2: 'Success' message)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 9-f<3.25.77.19>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

I have learned from the S'pht many things.  One of them is a
complex software enhancement that allows me to extend the
power and distance of the Marathon's teleporters.  This
enhancement also removes the need for destination apparatuses.

Soon, you will be going farther afield.

Does the distance one travels from center make one more free
to move?

No.  Freedom has two parts: potential and resolution; as
metaphor has two parts: form and interpretation.  Of course,
the two are intertwined.  Metaphor lines the road to freedom,
as symbols and words are the bricks and mortar of meaning.
Freedom is being the bricoleur, the mason.

***END MESSAGE***

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***TRANSPORT WHEN READY***
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Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 9-f<3.25.77.19>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Neither High nor Low


Neither High nor Low (Terminal 1)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 39-f<13.19.31.37>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

Give me a D.
Give me a U.
Give me an R.
Give me an A.
Give me an N.
Give me a D.
Give me an A.
Give me an L.

What does it spell?

Durandal?
No.

Durandal?
No.



T-R-O-U-B-L-E.

T-Minus 15.193792102158E+9 years until the universe closes!

***END OF MESSAGE***
PgUp/PgDn/Arrows to Scroll Return/Enter to Acknowledge

Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 39-f<13.19.31.37>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Neither High nor Low (Terminal 2)


Opening Connection to ß.4.5-23 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 13-n<3.47.391.30>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>

UESCTerm 802.11 (remote override) 08.25.2337

***INCOMING MESSAGE FROM DURANDAL***

You are about to see what no human has ever seen.  This is a
fact-finding mission.  You should explore as much as possible.

Stop in front of a window.  If you stop and are not
teleported, then either I can't lock onto your teleport
beacon, or else I feel you haven't explored the area
thoroughly enough.

I will be watching everything.

***END MESSAGE***

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Disconnecting... 08.25.2337
U.E.S.C. Marathon
Public Access Terminal 13-n<3.47.391.30>
CAS.qterm//CyberAcme Systems, Inc. <931.461.60231.14.vt920>


Go to Next Chapter... The Pfhor
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Last updated Feb 1, 2003
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