Brief update, as reading is tearing my life into tiny shreds right now. I died in assassins, after effecting a fifth kill in Burton. Decided the first Aikido Broomball game was worth going to, even though I knew Kevin and his partner would probably be there. I wasn’t killed at the game, but Henry Keiter waited in the trees outside the Libe for the whole game, tailed me home by running the long way around the Olin-Hulings-Mudd complex, and met up with me at the entrance to Nourse. I had time to block his 10-shot, but was exhausted from a hard game, so I was too slow. Henry went on to test his luck against Bendikson in a re-enactment of the Princess Bride iocaine powder scene, featuring two goblets of juice, one with tabasco sauce as a deadly poison. Man, those guys are winners at this game. :-D

Class has been interesting: quantum is tearing my brain to tiny little pieces, metaphysics is alternately interesting and infuriating, and psych of prejudice is absolutely fascinating. Lots of cool stuff about stereotype formation and metacontrast bias, but I won’t write much right now–maybe a paper or two to come later.

Broomball has been absolutely awesome: Reid and I are on four teams each, this year, and that means 1-3 games per night, on top of 11-14 hours a week of Aikido training. I haven’t been this sore in ages, and it feels great. The new liner gloves are holding up great and keeping my hands warm (thanks Dad!), and I even splurged and bought an Underarmour shirt as a base layer. The first game has convinced me it was worth the money: the fabric is warm (I was comfy with it and a fleece at -17 on the ice), breathable, and doesn’t get snow and ice stuck in it. On the other hand, I think the fit is designed for people with much thicker pectorals than me. Ah well, another reason to keep up on those pushups! :-)

Dear Duchess of Destruction,

The last two days have seen the death of many assassins. On Saturday, after Open Mat, I saw Mr. Daft Hands himself pass by my table in Sayles. As he climbed the stairs into the computer lab, I quickly removed my jacket and wrapped it around my head: a suitable improvised mask. Moving as quietly as possible, I snuck into the lab and dispatched halla with two shots through the cervical vertibrae.

Figures nobody was there. A kill like that is too good to be true, and when the smoke cleared, and I saw nothing but a smashed iMac smoldering on the desk, I realized my mistake. I mean, I’ve got a condition. I get confused sometimes. And seeing Hall’s ghost… just meant it was time to take my pills.

Moving in the early hours of the dawn is not unfamiliar to the contract killer, especially when innocent lives (e.g., his own) are at stake. Carls are at their most vulnerable just after waking up, before the natural process of caffeine induction can enervate the senses and bring new alacrity to fuzzy neurons. Thus I found myself walking through the corridors of 3rd Nourse at 10:15 on a lazy Saturday morning, with a pair of rubber band pistols in my bathrobe’s pockets.

I knew the girl had it out for me last night; she and her partner, Ross the Toss, had been stalking up and down my hallway all last night, weapons out. Who else on the floor could they be gunning for? Luckily, I’d had some dealings with this shady character before, and knew a few things about her.

Amy. Amy McGrew. Flinger of a Thousand Deadly Blades. Her nigh-inexhaustible supply of edged armaments made her a foe to be reckoned with. I heard she took down a man in Musser once. By the time the fight was over, Campus Security and all of NoPo’s men couldn’t put Humpty together again. She slices and dices so fast, you couldn’t find her equal if you watched late-night infomercials for a month.

O battle-scarred Guildmistress!

I engaged and killed a redheaded tall person in the CMC lab. I left two taped nerf darts, black with orange tips, and Kennedy's grenade.

I then returned to Nourse, where I came up the stairs to third only to find myself in the middle of a firefight--Kristine and Reid firing from the lounge, and Grace, Berlinm, and Brucenta on the other end of the hallway. They retreated to the south stairwell, Kristine, Reid, and I advanced. I came down to second, and moved to the bottom end of the stairwell. I killed Berlinm and Brucenta with two perfectly placed nightfire shots to their respective breast and stomach, and engaged Grace at length.

Her tactical acumen was clearly evident, as she fired off salvos of rubber bands at my feet. Swiftly dodging each volley, I returned fire, missing her narrowly several times. Finally Kristine and Reid bravely threw themselves onto the unrelenting arrows of misfortune, sacrificing their love for the good of the Nourse cause. I ran swiftly up the stairs after she had unloaded her last rubber bands, and delivered the coup de Grace to her suddenly vulnerable chest.

Her screams of abject terror still resounding in my memory, I shared tales of triumphant adventure and misfortune with my largely now-deceased floormates, and retired to bed.

Yours,

--Aphyr

P.S. I'm sorry I killed your roommate. ;-)

P.P.S. If this tale of high adventure and glory did not satisfy your tastes and therein earn my pardon for accidental death of a civilian, O Guildmistress, then I fear my cause is lost indeed.

Our esteemed and glorious Guildmistress,

It is with a sad heart that I must convey to you this most recent news: I have been fatally shot in the side by an Enforcer. At breakfast in the LDC, I noticed a very wary Nate leaving the dining hall. I sat down at a far table, planning to don a mask after eating and induce the inevitable demise of one Mr. Morrow, his eponymous occasion having finally been reached.

Before being able to put my plans into action, however, Nate returned, wearing an ominous mask and wielding a fully loaded Maverick. I leapt to my feet, ran around to the upper dining hall, and drew my concealed lightsaber. Bullets were useless against this fearless oblivion personified, and as I blew through the heavy wooden doors at the entranceway, I felt his inhuman breath chilling the very air around me. Knowing my end was near, I duck, spun quickly, and made a cut across his arm, but alas, it was too late! His pistol had already fired, dispatching shards of deadly foam and rubber into my lungs.

The medics say it is too late for me: I wish these last words to reach you, O dark princess of carnage, and evoke within your paranoid heart echoes of the deftly vengeful spirit we Assassins all strive to attain.

Yours,

--Aphyr

My introduction to Cara Chomski went something like this:

“Cara? She’s frighteningly competent.”

“At what? Classwork, sports, discussion…”

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