The Adventures of Huygens Sideways – Part Six: The V.I.B.R.A.T.O.R.S.

By Aaron Russell


It’s a new day in Second Life. I’ve been languishing around this sector for quite a while now, but before I beat feet, I thought I’d check in with Charolt one more time to see if she ever built that foot of hers. Unfortunately, she was nowhere to be found, but it looks like she’s been a busy bee.


This giant, floating crystal sculpture was not here a couple of days ago. She got her foot built and then some. Nice work, Charlot, wherever you are. I hope your tribute to The Goddess of Countertops lasts 1,000 years. Maybe we’ll meet again someday.

Now, on to business. I found a relatively deserted market place to teleport to. I figured I better perform a weapons check and see what ordinance I was hauling around so I could start having fun with it.


But first, since I was packing now, I was thinking my avatar needed a harder edge. I ditched the glasses, gave myself some spiked hair, and grew a little more facial hair. No one is going to fuck with this.


It would appear I am the proud owner of a large musket. I can find no powder or balls in my inventory though. I also own at least three semi-automatic rifles, a semi-automatic pistol, a humorously oversized grenade launcher, and a couple of machine guns. Solid.

Among the weapons came some other neat items. One is a snowball launcher. Another, and my fast favorite, is a mini-harpoon hand attachment, that worked kind of like Scorpion in Mortal Combat. It’s great because I can wear it on my left hand and hold something else in the right. I also have some Marvin Martian-looking ray gun thing that I haven’t messed with yet.

I think Harold was overstating his ability to knock people off. I found that most domains in Second Life have protective rules governing the area. I could whip out a gun anywhere, but most sectors wouldn’t allow bullet fire. The market I was in allowed me to fire my guns, but the projectiles did no harm to the few people around. I had the most fun with the snowballs and harpoon.

I noticed an avatar was slumped over. This is an indication that the user is probably away from the controls, because you take that posture after five or so minutes of inactivity. I decided to perform a few tests on this person, you know, for science!

I chucked a snowball at her. It bounced off like a tennis ball. I practiced the harpoon on her which was awesome. When the harpoon hit her, this large tire-looking thing appeared at her feet, then it disappeared, and then she ran at full speed until she was directly in front of me. I did it a few times, and I was now certain her user was M.I.A. If I was her, I certainly wouldn’t have put up with all the shit I was doing.

There’s another funny thing about the harpoon. When you put it on it says, “Now reel them in and finish the kill!” Sweet! I’m hoping it doesn’t say this out loud, because it might cause a scene in a crowded place.

Since I knew my limitations in most areas, what sort of fun could I have with these guns other than looking badass?

I know! I’ll take up a cause!

But what?

I got it!

I’ll go to the zoo and liberate some animals! I will be Huygens “Badass” Sideways, leader of the Virtual Incarcerated Battered Rasterized Animals Team Official Release Squad! I must teleport to the nearest animal detention center to fulfill my destiny.


Oh wow, this zoo is actually kind of nice. It’s pretty, it’s got wonderful sculpted shrubbery, and a giant pink elephant statue breathing fire. That’s really cool.

Wait a minute. I must not forget my goal. Think of the animals, Huygens. To my dismay, I start to see the injustices seep through the shiny veneer. I see my first set of prisoners locked behind their virtual pens. Don’t worry, digital boar and digital marmoset, I’ll find someone around here and make them pay hard.


I found the only two people in the zoo at the moment. I hovered over them, letting the bile fill my mouth at their lack of empathy for the poor and mistreated creatures around them. This backgammon game of theirs was about get a lesson in humility.

Still above them, I flew straight up into the air. At a certain point, I turned off the fly mode and let myself plummet two miles, building and building momentum, until finally crashing to the ground smack dab in the middle of their game board.

The players were understandably shocked at first. One exclaimed, “What the Hell!” and the other yelled, “Jesus!” and then followed up with, “I think this guy moved one of my pieces!” I peeled myself off the ground, rifle in hand, and now ready to complete the task I sent myself here to do.


I told them who I was, who I was with, and what I was here to do.


They laughed.


I’m pretty sure I got my message across though. I don’t think these yokels will be playing board games again without thinking about the poor, incarcerated creatures around them. After admonishing them, I told them my work was done and to carry on.

Looking back now, though, I think maybe they didn’t get it. As I was flying away I heard one of them ask, “What the hell was that all about?” with the other responding, “Beats the hell out of me. It’s your move.”

I guess next time I need to work on my delivery a little more or maybe take up a different cause. Either way, at least I showed those couple of backgammon playing, consensual animal-confining a-holes what’s what.


Tune in next time for…

Part Seven: Sexlexia


Aaron is living the life on Twitter. He also has a website devoted to his Photoshop hilarity.

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