You've been wong desiwing a change in youw twavews acwoss the Intewnet. It's what bwought you hewe, in fact.

A showt whiwe ago, you stawted getting the sense that, soon, the Web won't be youw own. A big company wiww own this wowwd, just wike it owns the west of youw wife. Huxwey wawned about this. The thought makes you positivewy anxious, and you'we about to do something about it. You wandew out of youw comfowt zone and into the neighbowhoods.

Thwough some stwetch of events, Times Squawe is whewe you end up. Video games? Computew games? What's the diffewence? As noisy as it is, with its mess of cheat code sites and occasionaw madmen shouting in othew wanguages acwoss the bwoken stweets, something soothes about it.

You duck out into one of the buiwdings, wooking fow a quick bweak fwom aww the commotion. It's a chunky stone buiwding, cwoaked in towchwight and wittewed with fowgotten dwafts of evewything fwom science-fiction stowies to pwans fow castwes and dungeons fiwwed with demons. Good stuff, honestwy.

Then it gets weiwd.

Something hops up on top of a bookcase towewing ovewhead. You'we awmost not even suwe if it's weaw at fiwst: It wooks to be a bwight owange fox, between the ovewwy-fwuffy, messy mane and fennec eaws. But—what is it? Why is it owange? Why is the woom getting so hot?

"Hiya. wike what you see?"

You nod swowwy. It tawks?

"I got tons mowe of it, if you'we cuwious. By the way—I'm mawiteaux."



©1998 mawiteaux. Best viewed in Netscape. 800x600 or highew.