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[url=http://www.bungie.net/Forums/posts.aspx?postID=10520525]Chapter 1[/url] Halifax woke up in the morning to the sound of his PM box beeping. He sighed, rubbed his eyes, and then walked over to the box. He flicked it open and pressed his hand against the screen. A message appeared, sent from Douglas Brown. Halifax's eyebrows rose when he saw the name. He hadn't spoken to Douglas in a long time. He quickly opened the message and scanned its contents. He jerked his head up when he finished and rushed out the door. Halifax caught a taxi and headed for the Flood Library. Everyone was usually sleeping this early in the morning, but when Halifax looked out the window, he saw that the streets and sidewalks were filled with people, all going to the same place he was going. The taxi was hardly moving in the heavy traffic and Halifax groaned when he saw that there was a wreck further up. He quickly opened the door, left some money, and then rushed down the street, pushing people out of the way as he went. It wasn't long before he finally made it to the Library. And there he saw several people standing at the door in front of several construction workers. Douglas Brown was standing at the head of the group. "You can't tear this building down!" He shouted. "If you do that, you will take away the last source of knowledge the Flood has." "That's what they want." One of the people standing next to him shouted, glaring at the construction workers. "Because you can't fight if you can't think." Halifax walked slowly up the steps. Douglas, when he saw him, pointed and shouted, "There! That is a prime example of what intelligence really is. He has contributed so much to this library and he has made these Forums better because of it!" Halifax looked at the construction workers warily. He noticed that several had guns hidden under their vests. "What's going on Douglas?" Douglas glanced at the construction workers and then back at Halifax, "They're tearing this place down." Halifax nodded, "And what do you think you can do about it?" Douglas looked at him in confusion, "Halifax, I thought you would support me." "I support peace, Douglas. What you're trying to do is start a riot which will get a lot of people killed." "Halifax!" Came a shout from behind. Halifax turned to see Yoozel approaching with Pezza and Anton following close behind. "Step down." Halifax looked at him in confusion, "Why are you telling me to step down?" Yoozel looked at him grimly, "I know how you feel about this place, but there's nothing you can do." Halifax knew Yoozel wouldn't believe Douglas was responsible, so he figured he'd play the part as the leader. "I've seen you here often. Reading the stories that are stored and protected in that thread. In fact, I think it was you that made this thread a sticky! You can't possibly support this action." Yoozel shook his head, "I support the Overlord. He's doing what's best for these Forums." Halifax peered closely at him, "Do you really think this is what's best for the Forums?" "Don't you?" Anton asked over Yoozel's shoulder. "People are wasting their time reading, when they should be working hard to root out Spammers or help Achronos find ways to make these Forums even better. It's only a matter of time before this Forum loses it's name, just as the Septa--the Bungie Community did. Names aren't important and neither are books. The only things that matter are the members and what they do for the Forums." "Halifax," Douglas said quietly, "You can't let them do this." Halifax shook his head, "There's nothing I can do to stop them." "Yes you can. You have power here." "But they have more." Halifax interjected. He looked at Yoozel and said loudly, "I know you don't believe this is right. But I will step down. And so will these people behind me." He shot a glance at Douglas and then looked back at Yoozel, "After all, it doesn't matter what we think. All we have to do is listen in order to create a perfect Forum." ---------------- Halifax spent the rest of the day cruising the Forum. He thought about what Anton had said. Ever since the Septagon had lost it's name, he hadn't felt any desire to go there. He wondered if the same thing would happen to the Flood. Would Achronos actually take away the name that so many members wore proudly over their heads? He certainly could. The people would grumble and complain, but in the end, they would obey. Halifax thought he should write something down about today's events, but he figured no one would read it now that the Library was gone and quickly brushed the thought away. Suddenly he paused. "That's it?" He wondered aloud. "The Library's gone so I'm just going to stop writing?" He shook his head, "I can't do that." Suddenly an idea came to him, "I can keep writing. I'll write it by hand and pass it around to my trusted friends. They can't stop me from doing that." He walked back to his home with a newfound resolve. --------------------- "He won't keep quiet will he?" Yoozel asked when Anton reported back to him. Anton nodded with a smile, "It was silly of him to voice his thoughts aloud...but at least we know that he's dangerous." Yoozel breathed in heavily, "There's nothing else we can do?" Anton shook his head, "No." He peered at Yoozel closely, "He got to you didn't he?" When Yoozel didn't answer he pressed him, "You may have been friends with him once, but you have to put that aside so you can do your job. He's trying to stir up contention and we have to stop him. You know he won't be quiet just because we told him to. He's like Douglas, only smarter." Yoozel glared at him, "I know my duties and you don't need to worry about where my loyalties lie. Just do what needs to be done and report back to me." he glanced at Pezza, "You understand what you have to do?" Pezza nodded grimly. "Good, now go." --------------------- Halifax sat quietly in his room that night, flicking his pencil between his fingers. "What do I say?" Suddenly he felt what he could only call inspiration come and his hand started moving: [i]Today I have seen the only thing holding this Forum together fall. It is only a matter of time before the rest of the Forum falls with it. Does Achronos know what he is doing? Can he possibly think that destroying the one place that housed all the intelligence of the Forums is a good idea? I believe that Achronos is trying to do what is best...but this seems completely illogical. Why did he take away the groups? Why did he take away the Septagon? And now, why has he taken away the Library? I wonder to myself if I should leave. Perhaps I should flee this place and find a new place to live. A new Forum.[/i] He paused when heard something creak downstairs. Halifax shrugged and kept writing: [i]But where would I go? It doesn't matter. Even if I had a place to go, I know I wouldn't leave. I can't abandon these people to tyrann--[/i] Tyranny? It certainly hadn't gone that far. But what Banshee Barron had said to Halifax the other day stuck in his mind. Could he be right? [i]I can't abandon these people. My friends. If it comes to tyranny, I will not leave...I will fight.[/i] At that moment, Halifax saw a slight flicker in the mirror above him and he quickly rolled away from his chair just as a knife whizzed past to thud into the wall. A dark figure slowly entered the room and leveled a silenced pistol at Halifax. Halifax quickly threw his pencil at the attacker's face and the man brushed the would-be weapon away, giving Halifax time to yank the knife from the wall and whip it back at the man. Again the man raised his arm to knock it aside, but instead, the knife struck his arm and stuck, hitting bone. The man screamed and tried to pull it out and Halifax quickly rushed forward and shoved the man backwards into the railing. Halifax bent down and picked up the gun but the man had already recovered and was charging Halifax. The man grabbed Halifax with his good arm and stuck his leg out, tripping Halifax and bringing them both to the floor. Halifax gasped as the man's fingers closed around his neck, cutting off his air. He looked around desperately for a weapon as the gun was knocked away. His fingers clasped around the pencil he had thrown and he quickly jabbed it into the man's hand. The man jerked back and Halifax pulled the pencil free and jammed it in the man's throat. The man gasped and clutched at the pencil as Halifax rolled away and grabbed the pistol. He quickly leveled it and shot the man in the back of the head. Halifax sighed as the man lay on the floor, a pool of blood forming around his head. He rolled the man over and jerked back in shock to see Anton's blank face staring up at him. ------------------------ Halifax spent the night cleaning up the mess. He couldn't call the Mods because he figured they were all in on this. His suspicions were confirmed when he received a call from Pistolsnipe telling him that Douglas Brown was dead. His throat had been cut. Halifax quickly picked up his phone and dialed. "Yes?" Came a voice at the other end. "Is this Banshee?" "Of course." Halifax paused and then said, "I'm in." [Edited on 04.20.2007 10:16 PM PDT]