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Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

Discussion in 'Fan Fiction' started by Flux, Dec 23, 2009.

  1. Flux

    Flux Administrator

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    Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

    A repost of a story originally presented on Xmas, 2002.

    Here's the full run of this comedy series.
    1. Thanksgiving in Sanctuary-- Originally posted Nov 2002. Repost: Nov 2009.
    2. Christmas in Sanctuary -- Originally posted Dec 2002. Repost: Dec 2009.
    3. Valentine's Day in Sanctuary -- Originally posted Feb 2003. Repost: Feb 2010.
    4. Easter in Sanctuary -- Originally posted April 2003. Repost: April 2010.
    5. Halloween in Sanctuary -- Originally posted Oct 2003. Repost: Oct 2010.
    6. Epilogue: A Thanksgiving "Feast" -- Originally posted Nov 2003. Repost: Nov 2010.
    These stories feature the game characters interacting with the monsters on a social level and in a somewhat contemporary setting, exchanging gifts, arguing, flirting, etc. These tales break the fourth wall, and enjoying the humor requires the reader to step outside the game's typical framework and view it as an ongoing fiction, rather than a matter of life and death.

    Original reader are comments attached after the story.


    _________________________________________________________________




    Christmas in Sanctuary

    The seven bored characters lounged around the large cave, sighing and yawning and stretching. It was the afternoon of the 26th, and still the huge Christmas tree stood surrounded by a wall of brightly-wrapped presents. They had all been waiting for hours, wanting to go ahead and open the gifts, but trying to put it off until their counterparts arrived from the stinking pits of hell.

    The Barbarian was clearly the most anxious, and he paced nervously, his eyes wide with excitement. The Paladin and Druid kept a close eye on him; they'd had to tackle him earlier to keep him from ripping open every present in a frenzy of excitement.

    The Sorceress was seated on the edge of the couch, her legs curled under her as she juggled three small balls of flame, ice, and lightning. Every now and then she would throw one errantly, and if any two balls collided they would vanish, the ice ball sending down a small spray of water drops when it collided with the fire.

    The Druid lounged on the floor, two of his Dire Wolves resting beside him. The third was banished to the corner of the cave as punishment for a little "accident" involving the tree. The Assassin sat near the exiled wolf, wanting to pet the doggy but worried by the low growls that came from its throat every time she got near enough to try.

    "Why the hell aren't they here yet?" muttered the Necromancer. He was bitter because the Amazon had forbade him to come within ten feet of her, after his behavior at the Thanksgiving dinner. The fact that she was wearing a thick, figure-hiding cable-knit sweater over her heaviest armor was doing nothing to improve his mood either. Lost in their own thoughts, no one answered his rhetorical question.

    Another hour crawled past, before a loud crashing noise from near the cave entrance drew everyone's attention. All of the characters sat up and listened, and after another moment loud footsteps could be heard echoing up the tunnel.

    "At last!" said the Druid, getting to his feet and stretching.

    "Ugg prezzie!" said the Barbarian, as he lunged towards the tree. Caught by surprise, the Paladin was a step slow and the Barbarian knocked over a pile of wrapped boxes before the Paladin could take hold of him. The Druid grabbed the Barbarian's other arm, and together they were just barely able to pull back the straining muscleman. All of the presents there were for the Secret Santa, and none had the Barbarian's name on the tag. Not that he could read anyway. The Amazon joined in, taking hold of the Barbarian's belt and helping the other two haul him back across the room.

    As they finally got him to sit down on an overstuffed easy chair, the Necromancer's Weaken curse helping to control him, a chorus of demonic voices drew their attention to the cave entrance. All seven characters turned to look at the assembled demons as they broke into a ragged chorus of Deck the Halls. Diablo's singing voice resembled a sack of cats falling down a flight of stairs, and Andariel's threatened to shatter the glass tree ornaments. With those two joining in, the efforts of Duriel, Pindleskin, Baal, Mephisto, and Rakanishu could hardly be heard.

    Fortunately they wrapped the song up after one chorus, and advanced into the room, each demon holding a wrapped box before them. Everyone began to speak at once, a babble of greetings and apologies for being late and Merry Christmas wishes overlapping until no one could understand a word. The demons quickly deposited their presents beneath the tree, then everyone found a place to sit down.

    "I'm sorry we're a day late," Diablo began. "All the damn hell gates were closed on Christmas. And then this morning the lines were terrible, what with every rotting corpse in the dimension heading off to the sales."

    "Oh that's alright," said the Necromancer. "I poked plenty of air holes in my present."

    "You mean the box for your present." the Sorceress corrected him.

    "No, I mean in the present." the Necromancer repeated with a grin, earning loud laughter from all of the demons.

    "Rakanishu!" said Rakanishu, sounding quite pleased with himself.

    "Uh huh." the Amazon said blankly.

    "Rrrrrrrakanishu!" he said again, rolling the "R" and leaping up to wave his scimitar overhead. "Rrrrr..." he began again, before Diablo clapped one massive clawed hand over the excited Fallen's mouth. A few small Charged Bolts snaked away from him and across the room at this, but everyone just stepped over them without any worry.

    Just as the Paladin opened his mouth, a high-pitched yelp came from across the room and the demons burst out laughing at the sight of the Druid's wolf standing up, back arched as he looked around in surprise, the Bolt having just shocked him awake. "Rakanishu!" Rakanishu began again. "Grr rimm burr ladoo." he added, trying to wrestle free of Diablo's grip to wave his sword again.

    "You must excuse him," growled Diablo, "He's never been to a Christmas party before."

    "That's alright, he always acts this way when I see him out in the wilds." laughed the Amazon, fingering her bow string. Rakanishu gave a little growl at this, and muttered to himself, quietly. "Rrrrr alom bah too."

    "Shall we eat first?" asked the Paladin. "Or would you rather get into the gift exchange now?"

    "Ugg prezzie!" yelled the Barbarian, leaping from the chair and diving for the now even larger pile of presents. The Necromancer cast a Bone Wall in a blink, and everyone in the room winced as the Barbarian crashed into it full speed, breaking two of the wall segments and setting the rest trembling.

    "I think presents first, before Ugg blows a gasket." were the Assassin's words, and there were murmurs of agreement at her words.

    "Okay, so who drew who?" asked the Paladin. "Did everyone put tags on their presents?"

    Baal stepped forward, picking up a large box wrapped in yellow paper with silver bells and red ribbons on it. "This is from me. I drew the Assassin." He handed the package to her and the Assassin grinned as she took the large package into her arms.

    "This is giant, Baal! Did you stay under the 25 gold limit we agreed upon?"

    Baal just smiled and nodded, his antler-horn things jingling with dozens of small silver bells.

    "Oh those are lovely!" gasped the Sorceress. An enchanted gleam in her eye, she cast Telekinesis several times, setting the bells to swinging. Baal looked a bit uneasy at the spell being cast at him, but forced a smile and shook his shoulders, keeping the chiming going.

    Eying the massive Duriel, the Necromancer spoke up, "Glad you could join us for Christmas Duriel. We heard you couldn't fit the Thanksgiving dinner into your schedule. Or was it that you couldn't fit into anything?"

    Duriel snarled, his massive foreclaws cracking into the stone cave floor. "Is that a fat joke? I'll have you know I'm not fat, I'm big-boned!"

    "Trust me," replied the Necromancer, "I know about bones, and that's not your problem. Tubby."

    Duriel growled, and would have stepped towards the Necromancer if not for Diablo putting one arm around his massive, humped shoulders. "Now now Duriel, he's just having some fun with you. Don't let him upset you. It's Christmas."

    The Druid was whispering into the Necromancer's ear as he pulled him back, and the Amazon looked over to see the Necromancer winking at her. "Oh god," she thought. "He's trying to be a tough guy to impress me."

    "Let's just exchange gifts now, shall we?" asked the Paladin. He picked up a small purple package and handed it to Rakanishu. "For you, little guy."

    Rakanishu threw down his curved sword and clutched the present to his skinny chest, grinning and gurgling with joy. "Grrr Rakanishu kerr lung bah!"

    "Uh huh..." said the Paladin. He turned from Rakanishu towards Diablo, and accepted a small box with a red ribbon tied around it. "Thanks, Terror!" he said, as he sat down with his present.

    Everyone then began exchanging presents at once, passing gifts to whoever they'd drawn in the Secret Santa gift exchange. Andariel handed the Druid a small box in pink paper, and the Druid passed Pindleskin a large box with a green bow on top. Duriel picked up what looked like a long jewelry case, and handed it to the Sorceress just as she finished handing a medium-sized box with red and green ribbons on it over to Baal. Mephisto tossed the Necromancer a light, shoebox-sized package, and the Necromancer slipped Duriel a large, gilt-decorated envelope. The Amazon picked up a box with silver wrapping paper and handed it to a delighted Mephisto, then with a look at the snoring, still-unconscious Barbarian, passed an unwrapped and partially squashed box to Andariel.

    Rakanishu was last, finally remembering to grab a small box and place it beside the motionless Barbarian. "Rrrrraaaaaakanishu!" he added for good measure.

    "Okay, everyone ready?" asked the Paladin. There were murmurs of assent from everyone who was conscious, and at that they all tore into their presents at once. Several of the humans drew knives or swords to slit open the tape and string, while the demons just used their claws.

    After a minute of ripping paper, the six characters and seven monsters sat back, examining their gifts.

    The Amazon held up a green breastplate and frowned. "As if I didn't have enough of these already." she muttered to the Assassin beside her. The Assassin didn't reply, busy as she was looking horrified at the fuzzy pink sweater Baal had given her.

    Next to her the Necromancer was trembling with fury, a black Diablo II t-shirt in his hands, the words "Curse B!tch" spelled across the chest in red iron-on letters. Across the room Mephisto gave him a big smile that turned to a frown as he opened his own package and pulled out the pair of black leather pants the Amazon had given him.

    Rakanishu sat on the floor, savaging his box with his bare hands until he finally managed to open the lid. He yanked the fabric out, and stared in confusion at the white and red polka dot tie. "Rakanishu?" he said softly.

    Duriel laughed as he fumbled at the envelope the Necromancer had given him. Giving up on opening it, he threw it to the floor and stabbed at it with his claws, ripping open the paper and managing to spear the card inside. Lifting it up the demon read it, and howled in anger. "A Weight Watchers membership?! I am not fat, maggot!"

    The Necromancer nodded, seeming to not even hear Duriel as he continued to stare at his new t-shirt, horror etched upon his face.

    The Druid was the only one who looked happy as he admired his new flea collar, smiling at Andariel for her thoughtful gift. Breaking the mood, his head snapped up and he gave a shout. "Fang! No! Bad dog!" His wolf gave one last sniff and then backed away from the tree reluctantly, whining.

    Andariel laughed, then sighed as she looked at the heavy slab of fruit cake the Barbarian had given her. The Barbarian was still unconscious, though his snores had grown softer.

    Pindleskin was slow to open his present due to his weak, skeletal arms. Finally he picked up his sword and charged across the room at the box the Druid had presented him with, delivering a vicious two-handed slash to the package. In typical Pindleskin style, the impact slightly dented, but did not break the wrapping paper.

    "Let me help." Diablo said, as he easily slit open the paper and box with one claw. Pindleskin screeched in frustration, then dropped his sword as he yanked out the present. It was a heavy parka, and he held it up in confusion, looking down at his rotting, skeletal body that could no more feel cold than the Barbarian could spell his own name if you spotted him the "Ug".

    Laughing at the sight, the Sorceress opened up the beautiful wood and brass case that Baal had given her. Inside was a long-bladed dagger, the hilt encrusted with rubies, the blade acid-etched with a dragon design.

    "Pick it up!" Baal urged.

    The Sorceress tried, taking the amazing weapon in hand, but she dropped it at once, grunting with surprise. She tried again, and again it fell from her grip, this time clanging to the floor.

    "Oops, I guess you'd need some dexterity to equip that one." said Baal with a laugh. He was joined by the other monsters as they watched the Sorceress again fail to pick up the blade.

    The Paladin was oblivious to the whole exchange as he spread the silver polish Diablo had given him all over his helmet. His leg armor already bore signs of shining, and his gloves were gleaming like never before.

    At the third clatter of a dropped dagger, the Barbarian suddenly sat up with a grunt. "Ugg prezzie?" he mumbled in confusion, as he shook his head. The small box next to him caught his eye an instant later, and he grabbed it with both hands, falling back to his side as he ripped at the paper, a guilty expression on his face.

    The Amazon reassured him, "Yes, that's yours Ugg. Open it up!"

    The Barbarian needed no further urging, and tore open the box with his bare hands. From it he pulled forth a fist-sized silver ball with a long cord dangling behind it. Holding it up for a moment, the Barbarian brought it down to his mouth and tried to take a bite, as if it were some sort of metallic silver apple.

    "What the hell is that?" the Assassin asked.

    "Plug it in." replied Andariel. "It will provide hours of fun." The other demons joined her in a laugh as the Barbarian leaped over to the wall and jammed the plug into the end of the extension cord that was already overburdened with the tree lights. There was silence for a moment, before a shrill bird whistle burst forth from the silver orb. After a second the whistle broke into a "cluck cluck cluck" sound, before falling silent. But not for long, and just a few seconds later it began again.

    "It's a Christmas ornament that sounds like a bird." Andariel said, laughing. "It will keep on making that same sound forever, as long as you keep it plugged in."

    Everyone remained silent for a moment, the six characters wincing at the high-pitched chirping while the monsters chuckled under the breath. The Barbarian just sat holding the ball, staring at it intently, clearly amazed at the sounds coming forth.

    "Oh god, he'll never stop listening to that." moaned the Amazon.

    Baal nodded and smiled evilly, then turned back to his new galoshes with a confused look. He wondered if he could trade them with Rakanishu; that tie was pretty sharp. Next to him Diablo had pulled on his new knit cap and looked ridiculous, with his horns poking through it in every direction.

    With everyone having opened and gifts, half-hearted "Thank you's" floated around the cozy cave. The smells of dinner were becoming hard to ignore, and bringing their presents with them, everyone started to walk towards the heaping table.

    "I hope there's enough pie, eh Duriel?" said the Necromancer.

    "Okay, that's the last fat joke you get, Cursy." the demon replied in a hard voice.

    "Fat joke? Oh no, that wasn't a fat joke. I was just hoping that there'd be enough pie for you. Tubby." The Amazon groaned at the Necromancer's words, wondering if she should take off her sweater and shake her chest a bit to shut him up.

    Duriel turned and stared down at the Necromancer. "Are you calling me fat, you grave robbing son of a B!tch?"

    The Necromancer's grin died on his face. "Do not call me a 'B!tch!' You fat bastard!"

    "Oh, I'm sorry." said Duriel. "It's just that your 'Curse B!tch' t-shirt had me confused. I do hope it fits." The sneer in his voice was dripping with sarcasm.

    The Necromancer sputtered with fury, his fists clenching.

    "What are you going to do, Bone Boy? Cast a Curse on me?" Duriel laughed as he spoke.

    The Amazon quickly stripped off her sweater and dropped her heavy chain mail top on the couch next to it, revealing a gleaming golden bra that certainly got the attention of the Paladin and Druid. The Assassin threw a few sideways glances as well.

    Unfortunately the Necromancer was oblivious, his whole attention caught by the fury with which he regarded Duriel.

    "And what are you going to do, Porky?" He spit out. "Sit on me? That's all a fat sack of worms like you is good for anyway."

    It was Duriel's turn to snarl in anger, and the Necromancer turned to see if the Amazon had noticed his clever comeback. As his eyes reached her his jaw dropped, and he stood as if frozen, eyes wide as dinner plates at the sight of her naked from the waist up, save for a gleaming golden bra.

    Unfortunately for him, Duriel was less enraptured, and with a snarl he charged, moving surprisingly fast for a ten-legged land whale. The Druid and Sorceress shouted warnings, but the Necromancer wouldn't have heard a volcano erupt, once he had his eyes locked on the Amazon's chest. Duriel hit him at full speed, hurling the Necromancer across the room, towards the tree. The Necromancer flew like a crippled duck, crashing into the Christmas tree at about head height and taking the entire thing over with him in a broken pile of tree, ornaments, and Necromancer. The plugs were yanked from the wall as the tree fell, mercifully cutting off the Barbarian's bird-chirping ornament in mid squawk.

    "Duriel!" shouted Diablo and Baal together, and the demon turned, a guilty look on his monstrous face. "Sorry." he muttered as he scuttled over to the table. Across the room the Necromancer was struggling to his feet, the Barbarian helping him out of the wreckage of the tree and empty present boxes.

    "What happened?" the Necromancer asked, sounding dazed.

    "Necro trip!" Ugg said, as he helped the Necromancer towards the table.

    "I tripped? Oh." the reeling Necromancer mumbled.

    "No worry, new shirt not ripped!" Ugg added, sounding very pleased with himself for managing such a long sentence.

    "Sh... shirt?" said the Necromancer, a hint of anger coming into his dazed voice.

    "Oh no." said the Paladin, Diablo, and Druid at the same time.

    "Rakanishu!" said Rakanishu, a salad fork clenched in each fist.

    Thinking fast, Andariel stood up and pointed to the ceiling. "Look Necromancer! Mistletoe, and it's above the Amazon!" As the Necromancer's beady eyes fixed on the dangling plant, Andariel began to say something else, but broke off with a startled shout, dancing to the side and yelling in disgust. One of the Druid's wolves was furiously humping her leg, open mouth drooling on her thigh. It clung like a barnacle as she danced away, kicking her leg frantically.

    Half of the table was laughing at that while the other half howled at the sight of the Amazon screwing up her face in disgust. Undeterred, the Necromancer walked quickly towards the table, only wobbling a little. He stopped next to the Amazon and leaned over, lips pursed, one hand resting gently on her bare hip as he took his kiss. She stood still for it, being caught under the mistletoe fair and square, but her eyes rolled back in her head and she kept her lips pressed together tightly enough to turn her entire lower face white. The instant the Necromancer pulled back, she broke away and dashed over to grab her sweater, pulling it on while snarling and wiping her lips.

    Taking advantage of the distraction, the Barbarian grabbed a double fistful of yams and stuffed them into his face, getting at least half of them actually inside his mouth. He swallowed furiously, trading guilty looks with Rakanishu. The little demon had speared a burning candle on one fork and a decorative gourd on the other and was chewing industriously, alternating bites between the two forked goodies and emitting low "Rrrrrr" mutterings.

    "I suppose it's time we ate." announced Baal. The Necromancer sat down, the Paladin placing himself between the Necromancer and the Amazon, who returned and sat down with her eyes straight ahead, trying to ignore the wide grin and furious winks the Necromancer was throwing at her past the stone-faced Paladin. Andariel sat down on the other side of the table looking no less disgusted as she wiped the dog slobber from her leg. The wolf was unconcerned, sitting sprawled against the far wall of the cave, bent double and licking himself with great gusto.

    Seizing the moment, Diablo stood, and raised his wine glass. "All hail our dark lords of destruction, blessed be their names, unto the slavery and damnation of all humanity, for ages without end."

    "Amen!" answered the demons, and with that they all reached for food.

    "Next year, I'm saying Grace." the Paladin muttered.

    And they all lived happily ever after. (Or at least until dessert.)
     
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2010
  2. Flux

    Flux Administrator

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    Re: Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

    Original story notes and feedback, from 2002:

    Secret Santa

    If you're not familiar with the custom, "Secret Santa" is a common workplace gift exchange, where everyone draws someone else's name and gets that one person a small gift, usually with a hard cap of $10 or $20 or something like that. In this case, it was arranged so that the humans only gave to the demons, and vice versa.

    The full gift list was as follows:

    Demons to humans:
    * Baal to Assassin: Fuzzy pink sweater
    * Diablo to Paladin: Silver polish
    * Pindleskin to Amazon: Unidentified set breastplate
    * Rakanishu to Barbarian: Plug-in bird sound-effect ornament
    * Andariel to Druid: Decorative flea collar
    * Duriel to Sorceress: Ceremonial dagger (with dex req)
    * Mephisto to Necromancer: Personalized D2 T-shirt

    Humans to demons:
    * Assassin to Diablo: Ski cap
    * Amazon to Mephisto: Leather pants
    * Barbarian to Andariel: Fruit cake
    * Druid to Pindleskin: Parka
    * Paladin to Rakanishu: Polka dot tie
    * Sorceress to Baal: Galoshes
    * Necromancer to Duriel: Weight Watchers membership


    Feedback

    There's not a whole lot to say in the feedback to this story. Lots of mails about it, almost all of them positive. I'll paste in a few with specific comments on things, and I do appreciate everyone who takes the time to mail me some comment, and I replied to most of them personally. Most writers do enjoy feedback, and I'll suggest that you keep that in mind whenever you read any story online. The author will probably be delighted to hear what you think, praise or constructive criticism or whatever.

    As is often the case with my writing, I have a lot more critical thoughts about it than any of the readers do. (At least any of the readers who I've heard from about it.)

    As I said in a couple of forum posts, I hadn't planned on doing a sequel/continuation of the Thanksgiving Story, but there were so many mails from people who said they'd like to see more of it, and since I'd ended the T-day one with a tease/plug for the Xmas story, I kept it in mind. I wasn't sure what this one would be about; I didn't want to just reprise the food jokes of the T-day story, since what was novel and cute the firs time would be boring the second time around. It wasn't until the evening of the 25th that I got the idea for the Secret Santa thing, partially prompted by this column on The Onion. Once I had that idea, I could immediately see humorous extensions for it. The characters would give the monsters things that were totally useless/insulting, and vice versa. Who would give what to whom didn't seem to matter; only the present itself.

    I suppose if I'd had more time to think about it, I could have tried to create some deeper meaning to who was giving each present. As it is it's mostly the present itself that's relevant, with just a couple of them reflecting upon the gift giver as well. The Barbarian's isn't wrapped, the box is sort of squashed, and he gives the lamest and least thoughtful of all Xmas prezzies: fruitcake. The rest are just things that any of the monsters or chars could have given, and in fact the two factions are sort of banded into opposing sides, all laughing together at a cleverly-nasty present.

    I'm also not especially happy with the dramatic sweep of the tale. Primarily since it doesn't have one. There's no plot, so to speak. It's just waiting, then presents, then they go to eat and it ends. It had a clear beginning, but no clear ending, or at least no real reason for it to end there, other than me not wanting to reprise the T-day story with their dinner misadventures.

    I had planned on a full out battle, like the T-day one, but somehow the Necro and Duriel got into it with everyone else trying to make peace, and that seemed better than a huge battle, especially since that would have made things a lot longer, and I was running late and was up to the desired length already.



    Most people said in email that this one was better than the T-day one. It's probably true that the events and happenings were funnier in this one, but the T-day one is probably a better story, in terms of proper story structure. It's got a beginning, events, rising tension, climax, and resolution. Whether any of those things are really necessary in a short, humorous holiday story is open to debate.

    One surprise for me in the email was a total lack of angry necromancer mails. I didn't write the story to be offensive or insulting, but given the reaction to my third column, I anticipated that I'd get some anyway. If not for the "Curse *****" jokes in this story, then for the Necromancer getting the worst of the fight. Though he did shake it off like a man, and got to kiss the (disgusted) girl in the end, so it wasn't all bad. But the point I'm making is that not a single person mailed to say how it wasn't funny or was cruel or to explain how their Necromancer was so much more than a mere curse *****. So let's give the sometimes easily-offended Necromancer crowd some credit for not being overly touchy.

    There are a lot of people who have mailed to say we should sell Curse ***** T-shirts. Not just as a joke, people really want that, and say they'd be willing to pay for it, perhaps as a Cafe Press type thing. Necro fans want it as a badge of pride, others just want one to piss off their parents. I'll give the concept some thought.

    Another thing I expected some comment on was the mixing of game and reality. I thought someone would point out how some gifts were from the game, others from that era, and others from the modern world, including electric lights on the tree. No one said a word about this, which I find encouraging, that everyone was willing and able to go with the flow and the jokes and the surrealism, and not get hung up on ticky tack details.

    No one mailed to point out that my obvious inspiration in the Necro vs. Duriel confrontation was South Park. The, "I'm not fat, I'm big-boned." is one of Cartman's most famous lines, and while they were arguing, on Christmas, I was thinking of the infamous South Park Spirit of Christmas, their early short made for a FOX studio executive's Christmas card, that was widely seen and propelled them to enough fame to get their own TV series with the characters.



    The Spirit of Christmas is about five minutes long and hilarious, as well as being colossally obscene. With it in mind, I had a lot of trouble keeping profanity out of the shouting match. The Necromancer could not have wanted to call Duriel a "fat f*ck" any more than he did without bursting. But see, not using profanity forces you to be more creative and original. As well as less funny.


    Some reader mails:

    I don't have an email to quote about it, but one of the best comments was from Lanth, via ICQ. He had a bunch of suggestions, including some typo fixes, since he was reading it just after I'd posted it. One content idea he had was to make the Sorceress at the beginning juggle one ball from each tree, rather than all fire, as I had it initially. The Amazon was picking them off with cold arrows from time to time, but I liked the fire/cold/lightning idea better, plus they were supposed to be bored and lying around waiting. The Amazon firing her bow seemed too active. So I changed that shortly after I posted the story, which is why most of you probably never saw it in the initial form.

    First off, here's Noel.

    As I said above, there weren't actually any angry mails about the story. Not even about the Necromancer. Perhaps no one was angry, or perhaps they saw how much I enjoyed the flames about my third column, and didn't want to give me the satisfaction?

    Here's James.

    A lot of people said they hoped to see future stories, and I will keep it in mind, for other holidays. Some people asked for New Years, but I didn't want to do another one so soon, and anyway, what New Year's traditions are there to mock or work into the story? Watching Bowl games is about it, at least in my family, and I don't see a whole lot of D2 jokes to make about that.

    I don't have any real reason for the changes in supporting cast monsters. I had an idea of the fat jokes so needed Duriel this time, and thought of Rakanishu in his hyper Pokemon mode as coming relief. All Fang Skin jokes had been exhausted over T-day anyway.

    Some of Robert's comments.

    I like the Mardi Gras suggestion, since I can think of several things to put in a story right off the bat.

    "We need a float to ride on." Duriel said.
    "You are a float to ride on!" the Necromancer yelled.
    Robert also points out something a few other reader mentioned, with the Necromancer's present and the holes in it.

    Initially I was going to have him give a dead puppy, or something equally gruesome. However it occurred to me that would actually be a gift the demons would like, which was not supposed to happen. True, three of the characters got gifts they liked, but they were all sort of barbed; the Paladin's silver polish was meant to tweak him for being so vain and worried about his appearance, the Druid's flea collar was meant to be an insult to him for having fleas, once he's in wolf/bear form, and the Barb would like just about any gift. Neither the Pally or Druid grasped that they were the butt of a joke though, with the vain Paladin happy to show off his vanity, and the Druid unashamed of his flea problem, and glad to have something to help him with it. And yes, the flea collar was for the Druid, not for one of his wolves. Some readers asked why he wasn't given three of them, one for each Dire Wolf, so obviously my intent wasn't quite clear enough.

    As for the Necromancer's "air holes in it" remark being left in, despite his gift changing, that was intentional. I noticed that it was sort of a red herring upon rereading the story, but it was a decent line, and in character, so I left it in even though it didn't match up with the ending. My explanation for him saying it is that he's all charged up at the party, to try and impress the Amazon. That's why he gets into the smack down with Duriel, and also why he made that air holes comment early on, trying to impress her with his clever wit and daring. Plus he's just charged up and hyper, so he's running off at the mouth without thinking much about it. For which he later pays a price.

    Lord Chimera says.

    Easter is a good holiday for this also. I can think of several funny things with egg decorating and rolling, candy, bunnies, etc. Lots to work with there. Valentine's Day would be pretty easy also, with the Necromancer loves the Amazon who loves the Paladin who loves himself sub-plot set up already. Human/Demon crushes could spice things up as well.


    From Matthew.

    Well Attract doesn't work for PVP... not that I really thought it through that far. I have no idea if anyone knew what the "tweety ball" thing was, but I had one when I was a kid and drove my parents crazy with it, so it seemed like something the Barbarian would like, but which would madden the other characters since he's never unplug it. Which was, of course, the whole point to the gift, for the Demons.


    General agreement, from Methos.
    I've always thought the Assassin looks pretty butchy, personally. Not that there's anything wrong with that.


    Again, thanks to everyone who mailed. There were a lot of other mails just saying they appreciated the story and wanted more of the same, and that is encouraging. I mostly wrote this Xmas one based on requests for it after the T-day one, so people mailing about that one were heard. And I'm definitely planning future ones now, since there is a demand.
     
  3. razen

    razen IncGamers Member

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    Re: Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

    O man, I remembered those stories! I remember I used to wait for these every holidays (and when the party ended at Easter, that was a sad day)

    Flux, start up new stories again! Or finish that super long Diablo2 novel, I am dying to know the end.:thumbup:
     
  4. GoldenBird

    GoldenBird IncGamers Member

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    Re: Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

    LOL curse-w**** I laughed so hard at that xD Great job man
     
  5. Flux

    Flux Administrator

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    Re: Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

    Good memory, but my comedy ones actually went through to the next Halloween, with a short epilogue on Thanksgiving. No, I wouldn't have remembered that either if I hadn't checked recently.

    I was going to just dump them all into this FFF after I reposted the T-day one last month, but it occurred to me that I could wait and repost them on the appropriate holidays, so I guess that's the ongoing plan. I will put the various Halloween/horror shorts I wrote in the early 00s into this forum at some point; not waiting for the next 5 halloweens to do that.


    Well I did post a new one earlier this year for the bliz FF contest, and then another novella-length one like, a month ago. ;)p

    Also, I'm amazed anyone remembers, but I did finish the novel that started with the short featuring the Necromancer and the thief in the cemetery; it was transformed greatly after chapter one, when I realized there was no point in writing a novel-length diablo fan fic, in terms of "could I get this published?" So I kept most of the character archetypes; aged necromancer/wizard, young thief, enemy holy knights, opposing forces of mage armies, but expanded everything a great deal, since I was no longer limited by the Diablo world/cosmology/magic types/society, etc.

    I hope/expect to sell that one to a publisher, as the first book in a planned trilogy; I've just got to do some heavy editing since it was overlong and unfocused during the early chapters, written before I was entirely sure where the story was going and how the storytelling would be balanced between the groups of main characters. That's a project set for 2010, after I finish up a contemporary detective novel set in the wine industry that I'm writing with my dad (the wine expert). I don't expect I'll be posting any excerpts of that one here though, since it's not fantasy or anything to do with Diablo. (Though it is overlong in the early chapters; a trait that's something of a tradition in my novel-length works.)



     
  6. Raging_Zealot

    Raging_Zealot Diablo: IncGamers Member

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    Re: Comedy Christmas in Sanctuary, 2002

    Thanks for posting this and the other stories up again, it is fun to re-read them, and nice to see the resurgence of the FFF.

    I think the Haunted Castles beat Treats and The Dark Lady stories are some of my favorites of yours, so I'm looking forward to their re-appearance as well.
     

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