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9/5/2012 8:44:40 PM

The History of the Mancannon

Al the Forerunner sighed with satisfaction. He had finally finished his greatest invention, and it was working to perfection. Stepping back to wipe a thin sheen of sweat from his brow with a well-used shop towel, Al admired the sleek purple curves and electric blue wind that unnecessarily blew out at a 45-degree angle. "This," Al said to himself, "will change our Forerunner civilization forever." Nodding sagely to himself, Al could already imagine the statues honoring him and the Forerunner streets and schools that would be named "Al" in his memory. Lugging his new invention outside in a small rickety red wagon, Al shouted to the townsfolk to come gather 'round. Curious at the whooshing contraption, several Forerunners gathered at the town's central plaza to find out what exactly was going on. Most, however, rolled their eyes and kept on about their business. "WITNESS, brethren, the future of the Forerunner!" Al grandly proclaimed. "What does it do?" a bystander shouted. "It shoots people, objects, and plasma grenades several hundred yards in the blink of an eye!" replied Al, glowing with excitement. There was a long, silent pause in the crowd. Finally, someone spoke up. "Why?" Although several bystanders nodded their agreement with this question, Al ignored it, knowing that his demonstration would answer all questions and likely make him the most famous Forerunner in history. Al was, of course, wearing his most regal-looking robe. Sweeping his arms wide with kingly benevolence, he proclaimed, "Watch as I step from the lowly ground upon which you walk into the realm of the gods!! Behold, the MAN CANNON!!" Al gingerly placed a foot into the man cannon and immediately shot several hundred feet into the air, moving forwards at an incredible speed. For a moment, the crowd "ooh'd" and "ahh'd" as it seemed that Al's ascent to the heavens would never end and, as he predicted, he would soon be a god amongst men. Just at that moment, however, the "oohs" and "ahhs" died out as gravity began to pull Al back to the ground. Al, plummeting confusedly, began flailing his arms wildly, trying to flap his way back into the sky. Seconds later, he crashed face first into the ground several hundred yards away. Sliding a hundred feet in the dirt, Al's body created a deep trough as small animals and bugs scattered out of the way. It would have been quite humorous, except that Al was clearly dead on impact. The crowd, stunned, stared for a moment. Then, looking at each other, began asking, "So.... it looks like he made thousands of these 'mancannon' things. What do we do with them?" "Stick 'em in the Forge warehouse," they all agreed. "Maybe somebody can make some use of them in a few thousand years." [Edited on 09.05.2012 12:47 PM PDT]
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