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The Mysterons' Journal

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7th August 2012

11:12am: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

NICELY DONE. THE MYSTERONS OF MARS ARE FILLED WITH GENUINE ADMIRATION FOR THE TECHNOLOGICAL ACHIEVEMENT, THE INNOVATIVE SPIRIT, AND THE SHEER BRASS-BALLERY OF THE APPROACH YOU HAVE TAKEN WITH THE LATEST ROBOT EMISSARY YOU HAVE SENT TO OUR WORLD. IT REMINDS US OF OUR OWN EARLY DAYS, WHEN WE WERE STILL MATERIAL BEINGS WHO HAD NOT YET MASTERED THE ART OF RETROMETABOLISM, BUT STILL WE YEARNED TO EXPLORE AND UNDERSTAND THE COSMOS AROUND US.

HOWEVER, THIS DOES BRING US TO AN INTRIGUING QUESTION:

HOW IS IT THAT YOUR SPECIES IS CLEVER ENOUGH TO DO SOMETHING AS AMAZING AS THIS, AND YET NOT CLEVER ENOUGH TO DISTINGUISH A SIMPLE PERIMETER SCAN FROM AN ATTACK? SERIOUSLY, ALL YOUR GUY HAD TO DO WAS WAIT FIVE SECONDS AND OUR "WELCOME TO MARS, PEACEFUL VISITORS FROM THE THIRD PLANET" MESSAGE WOULD HAVE ARRIVED, BUT NO, WE TURN ONE LOUSY CAMERA TOWARD HIS ROVER AND HE'S ALL "OMFG THEY'RE ATTACKING!! LET 'EM HAVE IT!!1!" NEXT THING WE KNOW, WE HAVE TO RETROMETABOLIZE OUR WHOLE CITY. (ALSO: THOSE ARE SOME PRETTY FRIGGIN' HARDCORE "DEFENSIVE ARMAMENTS" YOUR MANNED ROVERS ARE PACKING, THAT'S ALL WE'RE SAYING.)

ANYWAY.

NICE JOB WITH CURIOSITY. WE LOOK FORWARD TO MONITORING ITS PROGRESS AND WILL NOT INTERFERE WITH ITS MISSION SO LONG AS IT TAKES NO AGGRESSIVE ACTIONS. OUR WAR OF NERVES WITH MANKIND WILL REMAIN IN ITS CURRENT STATE OF DÉTENTE FOR THE TIME BEING, BUT BE WARNED: WE HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN YOUR PEOPLE'S INEXPLICABLE ACT OF MINDLESS AGGRESSION AGAINST US, AND YOUR ULTIMATE FATE REMAINS UNDECIDED.

IT MIGHT BE BEST TO STICK WITH UNMANNED MISSIONS OVER HERE FOR NOW.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

11th July 2012

7:29pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

WE HEREBY DECLARE A CEASE-FIRE, EFFECTIVE IMMEDIATELY. UNTIL AUGUST 12, THERE WILL BE NO MYSTERON ACTIVITY ON THE PLANET EARTH. ANY MISFORTUNES WHICH MAY BEFALL YOUR PITIFUL CIVILIZATION DURING THAT TIME ARE YOUR OWN FAULT, OR DUE TO THE MALIGN AND ENTIRELY INDEPENDENT INFLUENCE OF THE JOVIAN SAUCER MEN.

DO NOT THINK THIS REPRESENTS A THAWING OF OUR IMPLACABLE HOSTILITY, EARTHMEN. WE WILL SIMPLY BE TOO BUSY PREPARING A SUITABLE RECEPTION FOR YOUR LATEST ROBOTIC AMBASSADOR TO SPEND ANY TIME PLOTTING AN ACCEPTABLY DEVASTATING AND SUBTLE ATTACK ON YOUR PLANET.

REMEMBER, EARTHMEN: THE MYSTERONS HARBOR NO MALICE AGAINST YOUR MACHINES. IT IS YOUR IRRATIONAL ORGANIC SELVES AND YOUR VIOLENT, IMMATURE CIVILIZATION WE DEPLORE. THEREFORE, WHEN WE SAY WE ARE PREPARING A RECEPTION FOR MARS ROVER CURIOSITY, THIS IS NOT A EUPHEMISM FOR ANTISPACECRAFT WEAPONRY. BESIDES, WE HAVE LEARNED FROM EXPERIENCE THAT YOU ARE MORE THAN CAPABLE OF FOULING UP EXPLORATORY MISSONS TO MARS WITHOUT OUR HELP. SHOULD CURIOSITY BEAT THE ODDS AND ARRIVE INTACT, WE WILL NOT INTERFERE WITH IT SO LONG AS IT TAKES NO HOSTILE ACTIONS AGAINST US.

NATURALLY, WE CANNOT SPEAK FOR THE JOVIANS. WHO KNOWS WHAT THOSE GUYS MIGHT DO. THEY'RE EVEN CRAZIER THAN YOU BASTARDS.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

4th July 2012

1:01pm: This is Captain Black, relaying a message from the Mysterons.

The next step in our ongoing war of nerves against your civilization is underway. Within hours our influence will have spread across the middle latitudes of North America, dulling the intellects and self-preservation instincts of the citizenry. By nightfall thousands of you will be reporting to medical centers with burns, lacerations, and other trauma caused by encounters with explosives that could easily have been avoided by anyone with even rudimentary prudence. In some places, homes will be destroyed by fire. A number of the most susceptible persons will even think it a good idea to discharge firearms completely at random, placing everyone within a radius of one to two miles in peril - even those whose wits have not deserted them.

Miserable Earthmen. Why should the Mysterons take the trouble to destroy you directly when you are so easily induced to destroy yourselves?

18th June 2012

9:40pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

IT HAS COME TO OUR ATTENTION THAT PEOPLE FROM ONE OF YOUR QUAINT SUBPLANETARY NATION-STATES HAVE POSTED UNSOLICITED ADVERTISEMENTS AS COMMENTS ON SOME OF OUR EARLIER ANNOUNCEMENTS HERE. AS WITH MANY OF THE BEHAVIOR PATTERNS YOU EXHIBIT, WE FIND THIS BAFFLING. FIRST, BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT BOTHERED TO LEARN THE LANGUAGE IN WHICH THESE ADVERTISEMENTS ARE WRITTEN. SECOND, BECAUSE WE ARE DISEMBODIED ENERGY BEINGS AND, AS SUCH, HAVE NO USE FOR WHAT YOU WRETCHED CORPOREAL ENTITIES PERCEIVE AS "PORNOGRAPHY", IN ANY LANGUAGES WHATEVER.

YOU KNOW WHAT THE MYSTERONS ARE, EARTHMEN, INASMUCH AS IT IS WITHIN YOUR PATHETICALLY LIMITED POWER TO KNOW. WE ACKNOWLEDGE THAT YOU MIGHT NOT HAVE BEEN AWARE OF POINT #1, BUT SURELY EVEN BEINGS AS LACKING IN INTELLECTUAL PROWESS AS THE PEOPLE OF EARTH SHOULD HAVE REALIZED POINT #2 WITHOUT OUR HELP.

BE AWARE: YOU ARE NOT DOING ANYTHING TO IMPROVE OUR VIEW OF YOUR SPECIES OR DISSUADE US FROM YOUR EVENTUAL ANNIHILATION WITH CLUELESSNESS OF THIS CALIBER, EARTHMEN.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

15th September 2009

2:06am: THIS IS CAPTAIN BLACK RELAYING A QUERY FROM THE MYSTERONS.

I WAS SHOPPING THE OTHER DAY AND NOTICED A PRODUCT CALLED "REDUCED-FAT BUTTER". I TOOK LITTLE NOTICE OF IT, BUT THE MYSTERONS WERE BAFFLED BY THE MENTION OF IT IN MY DAILY REPORT AND HAVE DEMANDED AN EXPLANATION.

AS YOU ARE NO DOUBT AWARE, EARTHMEN, BUTTER IS COMPOSED OF MILK FAT THAT HAS BEEN SEPARATED FROM THE REST OF THE MILK. THAT'S ALL IT IS.

THUS, HOW IN ALL THE NEBULÆ OF THE CORONA CLUSTER CAN THERE BE ANY SUCH THING AS REDUCED-FAT BUTTER? BUTTER IS FAT. THEY'RE SYNONYMOUS. THE ONLY WAY TO REDUCE THE FAT CONTENT OF A PACKAGE OF BUTTER WOULD BE TO PUT LESS BUTTER IN IT. AND THAT ISN'T "REDUCED-FAT BUTTER", IT'S JUST "NOT AS MUCH BUTTER".

CURSE YOUR CLEVER AND DISTRACTING ROBOT PROBES. THE MYSTERONS SHOULD HAVE REDUCED YOUR CIVILIZATION TO ATOMS BY NOW.

7th September 2009

8:55pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

SO, IT'S BEEN A WHILE. SORRY ABOUT THAT. WE WERE DISTRACTED BY A SHINY OBJECT. TO BE HONEST, WE STILL HAVEN'T DECIDED WHETHER WE'RE GOING TO BOTHER WIPING YOU OUT. WHEN YOU GET RIGHT DOWN TO IT, THE MARTIAN COMPLEX YOU BOMBED WASN'T REALLY THAT GREAT ANYWAY. WE WERE ALREADY THINKING OF MOVING THAT ONE TOWER.

ON THE OTHER HAND, IF WE LET THAT SLIDE, WE'LL NEVER HEAR THE END OF IT AT THE INTERSTELLAR BEINGS OF GREAT POWER CONFERENCE NEXT MONTH.

THERE AGAIN, WHO CARES WHAT THE Q THINK? EFFETE ASSHOLES.

WE DUNNO. WE'LL GET BACK TO YOU.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

21st March 2008

1:52pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU ARE PRETENDING YOU CANNOT HEAR US TODAY, EARTHMEN.

WE WOULD LOVE TO TAKE CREDIT FOR THE FACT THAT YOU CANNOT COPE WITH YOUR NEW OVERLORDS, BUT, AS SO OFTEN HAPPENS, THE NEXT DEVASTATING STRIKE IN OUR ONGOING WAR OF NERVES AGAINST YOUR CIVILIZATION WAS AN OWN GOAL. REALLY, YOU'RE MAKING IT ENTIRELY TOO EASY FOR US. WE HAVEN'T HAD TO DO ANYTHING OURSELVES IN YEARS, LITERALLY YEARS. WHENEVER WE GET THE FEELING WE AREN'T DOING ENOUGH, WE ACTIVATE OUR SCANNERS AND DISCOVER THAT YOU HAVE SUMMONED ANOTHER WAVE OF DRAMA AND FEAR TO ENGULF YOURSELVES.

WHAT'S MORE, WE ANTICIPATE NOT HAVING TO DO ANYTHING FOR SEVERAL MORE MONTHS, OWING TO THE INTERESTING MANIFESTATIONS OF YOUR SO-CALLED POLITICAL SYSTEM THAT ARE TAKING PLACE. THIS SUMMER LOOKS LIKE ESPECIALLY GOOD SELF-REALIZING FODDER FOR OUR OVERALL PLAN.

THANK YOU FOR MAKING OUR LIVES SO EASY. IT ALMOST MAKES UP FOR YOUR CRAVEN AND UNWARRANTED ATTACK ON OUR MARS COMPLEX IN THE FIRST PLACE.

ALMOST.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

11th June 2007

9:15pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

LOOK, WE REALIZE WE DECLARED A TRUCE REGARDING YOUR MARS ROVERS YEARS AGO, AND WE STILL INTEND TO STICK BY THAT, BUT IF YOU'LL RECALL, ONE OF THE TERMS WAS THAT YOU'D KEEP OPPORTUNITY AWAY FROM US. SHE IS TOO CHIRPY.

AS SUCH, WHY IS SHE IN OUR JACUZZI? THIS IS AN ACT OF BLATANT PROVOCATION ON YOUR PART, EARTHMEN. IT WILL NOT GO UNRECORDED.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

19th February 2007

6:46pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN READ THIS, EARTHMEN.

PECTIN? PECTIN?! WHAT THE HELL KIND OF HOT COCOA NEEDS TO HAVE PECTIN IN IT?

OHHH, WE GET IT. IT'S AN ATTEMPT TO MAKE UP FOR THE FACT THAT YOU USED "FAT-FREE MILK" IN IT. YOU FIGURE YOU CAN GET SOME OF THAT CONSISTENCY BACK BY ADDING VEGETABLE THICKENERS.

WELL, IT DOESN'T WORK, BOYO. IT JUST MAKES IT ALL WEIRD.

AND ANOTHER THING. YOU KNOW WHAT "FAT-FREE MILK" IS? WATER! FAT IS WHAT MAKES MILK MILK, AND NOT WATER. BY ALL THE COSMIC ENERGIES. NEXT YOU'LL BE TRYING TO PAWN OFF SUGAR-FREE HARD CANDY ON US. GIVE US A FREAKING BREAK. WE'RE DISEMBODIED ENERGY BEINGS FROM THE PLANET MARS, NOT RETARDS.

WE WOULD PUT YOUR MARKETERS AND "HEALTHY NUTRITION SCIENTISTS" AGAINST THE WALL FIRST WHEN THE TIME COMES, IF WE DIDN'T THINK MANY OF YOU WOULD SEE THAT AS A PUBLIC SERVICE.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

15th January 2007

5:51pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN READ THIS, EARTHMEN.

YOU'RE WONDERING WHY YOU HAVEN'T HEARD MUCH FROM US LATELY. PERHAPS, IN THE DARKEST RECESSES OF YOUR PUNY LITTLE BRAINS, YOU ENTERTAINED THE FUTILE HOPE THAT WE HAD ABANDONED OUR VOW TO SEE YOUR WRETCHED EXCUSE FOR A CIVILIZATION EXTINGUISHED.

NOT AT ALL. IT'S JUST THAT WHEN YOU KEEP PULLING STUNTS LIKE THIS, WE DON'T EVEN REALLY FEEL LIKE WE HAVE TO DO ANYTHING. YOU'LL WIPE YOURSELVES OUT SOONER OR LATER AND SAVE US THE TROUBLE. SO WE'VE BEEN TAKING IT EASY.

PLEASE, CARRY ON DOING OUR JOB FOR US, EARTHMEN. YOU HAVE NO IDEA THE SATISFACTION IT AFFORDS US.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

2nd January 2006

1:23pm: THIS IS CAPTAIN BLACK, RELAYING A MESSAGE FROM THE MYSTERONS.

THE MYSTERONS WISH TO CONVEY THEIR FELICITATIONS TO YOU, EARTHMEN, FOR HAVING SURVIVED ANOTHER YEAR OF THEIR RELENTLESS WAR OF NERVES AGAINST YOUR CULTURE. THEY REALLY THOUGHT THEY HAD YOU WITH THAT ATLANTIC STORM SEASON, BUT YOU ONCE AGAIN DISPLAYED YOUR INCREDIBLE RESILIENCY AND AMAZING POWERS TO FOCUS ON THE IRRELEVANT DETAILS AND THUS ENDURE WHAT WOULD OTHERWISE BE A SOUL-CRUSHINGLY TERRIBLE SERIES OF SETBACKS. WHAT OTHER CULTURE, FACED WITH AN UNNATURALLY FEROCIOUS SERIES OF NATURAL DISASTERS AND THE NEAR-DESTRUCTION OF AN ENTIRE MAJOR CITY, WOULD DEVOTE SERIOUS NEWS COVERAGE TO THE FACT THAT YOU RAN OUT OF CLEVER NAMES FOR THE STORMS?

THE MYSTERONS SALUTE YOU, EARTHMEN. NEXT YEAR, THEY WILL HAVE TO TRY HARDER.

JUST AS SOON AS THEY RECOVER FROM THEIR COLOSSAL NEW YEAR'S HANGOVERS.

THIS HAS BEEN A MESSAGE FROM THE MYSTERONS.

20th October 2005

8:43pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

YOU THOUGHT WE HAD FORGOTTEN YOU, BUT WE WILL NEVER FORGET, NOR WILL WE FORGIVE, YOUR COWARDLY AND UNPROVOKED ATTACK UPON OUR MARTIAN FORTRESS.

SOME WEATHER WE'RE HAVING LATELY, HUH?

YOU'RE WELCOME.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

31st March 2005

4:47pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

PLEASE PROCEED IN A QUIET AND ORDERLY FASHION TO THE NEXT REGULARLY SCHEDULED "SPONTANEOUS" MEDIA CIRCUS.

TO BE QUITE FRANK, THIS ONE CEASED TO BE INTERESTING ROUGHLY 7.775 SECONDS AFTER IT FIRST MADE NATIONAL HEADLINES, SO WE FEEL WE HAVE BEEN VERY PATIENT INDEED IN PUTTING UP WITH IT AS LONG AS WE HAVE.

AND DON'T BE WASTING ANY MORE OF OUR TIME WITH THIS MICHAEL JACKSON NONSENSE, EITHER. EVEN IF HE'S NOT GUILTY - AND HE IS - THE GUY'S SO FREAKISHLY ABHORRENT HE SHOULD BE PUT DOWN A DEEP, DARK HOLE WITH SIMPSON AND THAT GUY FROM "BARETTA". NOTHING MORE TO SEE HERE. MOVE ALONG.

P.S. GET WELL SOON, JP2. YOU'RE THE ONLY SONOFABITCH IN THE VATICAN KNOWS WHAT HE'S TRYING TO DO. PEACE.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

15th January 2005

11:43pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

THE RECENT LIVEJOURNAL OUTAGE WAS NOT AN ACT OF RETALIATION FOR YOUR UNPROVOKED AND COWARDLY ATTACK ON OUR MARTIAN COMPLEX. IN FACT, AS YOU MAY HAVE NOTICED, WE'VE MORE OR LESS GIVEN UP ON THAT WHOLE OPERATION. WE JUST DIDN'T SEE THE POINT IN CONTINUING TO EXERT OURSELVES TO MAKE YOUR LIVES MISERABLE AND DESTABILIZE YOUR GLOBAL SITUATION WHEN YOU ARE SO VERY ADEPT AT DOING BOTH THINGS WITHOUT OUR HELP.

INSTEAD, WE HAVE BEEN KICKING BACK AND CATCHING UP ON OUR READING. BOY, THAT TOM CLANCY - WHAT AN IMAGINATION THAT GUY'S GOT.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

9th July 2004

2:15pm: This is the voice of the Mysterons. We know that you can hear us, Earthmen.

We are taking a vacation. Even we occasionally take breaks from the inexorable progress of our vengeance for your cowardly and unprovoked assault on our Martian complex. This is not an announcement of the next phase of our revenge. We didn't want you to think we had died or something. We're just out on the deck with a margarita.

Congratulations to cassini_saturn on the successful commencement of his mission. His presence in the planetary system must be causing the Saturnian overlords no end of consternation and that, make no mistake, is absolutely fine with us.

Launch day greetings to opportunitygrrl as well. We hope you're enjoying our yard. We could do something about that heating unit problem, but it would require us to destroy you utterly beforehand, so we're guessing you'd rather take a miss on that and just be chilly.

Has anyone heard from spiritrover? We have had no word of her in some time and are becoming concerned. No doubt some of you thought she had run away to Paris with us, but unfortunately that is not the case. NASA will tell us nothing, thanks to their obsession with trivial technicalities such as the state of war that exists between our peoples.

29th April 2004

6:16pm: This is the voice of the Mysterons. We know that you can hear us, Earthmen.

We have been asked, "Mysterons, why do you wish to open a dialogue with one of the Mars Rovers? Why not simply destroy it and use your powers of retrometabolism to create a perfect duplicate that instantly obeys your commands?"

We ask you, Earthmen: Where is the sport in that? Maybe that's how you get your primitive jollies, but we are not total control freaks. We're not looking for another pawn in our war of nerves against humanity. (That would be kind of pointless, anyway, given that she's here on Mars.)

When not actively engaged in our slow, subtle vengeance upon humanity, we prefer to have conversations in which we're not talking for both sides. If we wanted an interaction like that, we could just get a sock puppet. Or talk to Captain Black.

We hope this message has cleared that up for you, Earthmen.

This is the voice of the Mysterons.

20th April 2004

2:50pm: This is the voice of the Mysterons. We know that you can hear us, Earthmen.

We have fixed our keyboard. Go us.

(Actually, we are a bit embarrassed that it took us so long to realize how easy that would be. Obviously all we had to do was complete its destruction. Then our powers of retrometabolism could create a perfect replica - with the critical difference that the NEW keyboard will INSTANTLY OBEY OUR EVERY COMMAND.)

We have noted your apathetic response to the peace overture recently conveyed by our associate, Captain Black. This does not entirely surprise us, but we must say we find it disappointing. It bodes poorly for your viability as a member of the galactic community that such a simple, low-cost peace offering from beings whom YOU wronged in the first place can be so callously ignored by your leadership.

Therefore, though that diplomatic avenue remains open to you for the present, our war of nerves shall continue. We will announce our next act of retaliation shortly. Prepare yourselves, Earthmen. The vengeance of the Mysterons will be no less terrible for being announced with lower-case letters.

This is the voice of the Mysterons.

18th April 2004

1:36am: This is Captain Black, relaying a message from the Mysterons.

The Mysterons have spent the last several weeks in seclusion at their citadel on Mars. They have been considering many things, primarily to do with their ongoing war of nerves against your species.

They have been deliberating on the nature of the robotic life form known as spiritrover. They have been observing this being since inadvertently damaging her shortly after her arrival on Mars. They have come to greatly admire her strength, determination, powers of recovery, and independence. This has caused them to re-evaluate much of what they believed to be true about her creators - you Earthmen.

Now their deliberations are complete, and the Mysterons command me to deliver to you this offer:

They will forgive your attack upon their Martian complex and call off their war of nerves against your species if you provide them with spiritrover's telephone number.

Is that all? Message complete? I hope you realize how deeply, deeply embarrassing this is for me. But, of course, you do, or you would have posted the offer yourselves. Don't give me that. The only thing wrong with your computer is its jammed caps-lock key... oh, what now?

Oh, yes. Under these terms, you are also required to keep opportunitygrrl at least 50 kilometers from the pyramids of Cydonia at all times. The Mysterons have nothing against her and follow her LJ, but she is far too chirpy for direct contact.

The Mysterons have spoken.

9th March 2004

12:13pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

WE SEE YOU'VE GOT YOUR ROBOT WORKING. CONGRATULATIONS. WE'RE STILL A BIT ANNOYED THAT YOU FELT IT NECESSARY TO SEND A SECOND ONE, THOUGH. YOU DIDN'T EVEN BOTHER INCLUDING ANYTHING INTERESTING WITH EITHER OF THEM. HOW MUCH SENSE DOES THAT MAKE? YOU SEND DEEP SPACE PROBES NOT INTENDED TO MAKE CONTACT WITH ANYTHING OUT WITH "THE SOUNDS OF EARTH" AND SUCH-LIKE ATTACHED TO THEM, BUT THESE THINGS, WHICH WERE SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED TO COME TO MARS AND SEARCH FOR LIFE? NOTHING. NADA. NOT EVEN AN MP3 PLAYER WITH A RECORDING OF SOME GUY AT NASA SAYING "WE COME IN PEACE." NOT EVEN AN "IF FOUND, DROP IN ANY MAILBOX - RETURN POSTAGE GUARANTEED" TAG.

WE FEEL DISTINCTLY SNUBBED BY THE WAY YOUR PROBES SEEM MORE INTERESTED IN OUR ROCKS, SOIL, AND ATMOSPHERE THAN IN US. WE MEAN, WHAT IS IT WITH YOU PEOPLE? FIRST YOU BOMB ONE OF OUR CITIES FOR NO REASON AT ALL, THEN YOU PRETEND YOU DON'T KNOW WE'RE HERE.

... OHHHHHH, WE GET IT. THIS IS YOUR WAY OF CONDUCTING A WAR OF NERVES AGAINST US.

THAT'S VERY CLEVER, EARTHMEN. WE WERE ALMOST TAKEN IN FOR A MOMENT. NOW WE SEE THAT YOU ARE LEARNING FROM US. VERY, VERY INTERESTING. WE WILL HAVE TO THINK ON THIS DEVELOPMENT AND WHAT IT MEANS BEFORE WE MAKE OUR NEXT MOVE.

WAY TO TIP YOUR HAND, EARTHMEN.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

26th January 2004

12:21am: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

SORRY ABOUT YOUR ROBOT. IT'S ACTUALLY NOT NEAR ANYTHING IMPORTANT AND WE WEREN'T PLANNING TO MESS WITH IT, IN ORDER TO LET YOU SAVOR YOUR PATHETIC "VICTORY" BEFORE POINTING OUT WHAT A SPECTACULARLY UNIMPRESSIVE ACHIEVEMENT POKING A BOULDER WITH A REMOTE-CONTROLLED ARM IS, EVEN AT A DISTANCE OF 300 MILLION MILES. WE THINK WE MUST HAVE BUMPED THE ANTENNA WHILE WE WERE STANDING JUST OUTSIDE THE CAMERA'S FIELD OF VIEW MAKING FUN OF IT.

BY THE WAY, NICE SHOT WITH THE SECOND ONE. YOU WILL BE AMAZED TO LEARN THAT, LIKE ALL THE OTHER PROBES YOU HAVE EVER SENT TO OUR PLANET, IT IS SURROUNDED BY ROCKY, USELESS DESOLATION.

THAT'S ALL WE HAVE HERE ON MARS.

GIVE IT UP. STOP PESTERING US. YOU HAVE ALREADY EARNED OUR UNENDING ANTIPATHY; WHY DO YOU PERSIST IN TRYING TO WORSEN YOUR LOT IN THE UNIVERSE FURTHER? HOW WOULD YOU LIKE IT IF WE SENT ROBOTS TO TRUNDLE AROUND YOUR SHOPPING MALLS, POKING YOUR GEOLOGICAL FORMATIONS, COLLECTING "SAMPLES" OF YOUR LOCAL FLORA, FAUNA, OFFSPRING, ETC. FOR "SCIENTIFIC STUDY"?

... NOW THAT WE THINK OF IT, THAT WOULD PROBABLY BE AN AMUSING NEXT PHASE OF OUR VENGEANCE.

THANKS FOR THE TIP, EARTHMEN.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

9th January 2004

12:17am: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

WE ARE CURIOUS ABOUT SOMETHING.

DID YOU MAKE YOUR SOCIETY IMPENETRABLY COMPLEX, MINDLESSLY BUREAUCRATIC, AND GENERALLY HOPELESSLY STUPID AS A DELIBERATE DEFENSE MECHANISM DESIGNED TO FRUSTRATE SUPERIOR ALIEN ENERGY BEINGS WHOSE AGENTS CAN TAKE THE FORM OF ANY MEMBER OF YOUR PATHETIC SPECIES AND WALK AMONG YOU UNSUSPECTED?

IF SO, WE MUST CONGRATULATE YOU. IT WORKS REMARKABLY WELL. WE CANNOT REMEMBER EVER HAVING INFILTRATED A CIVILIZATION WHICH ANNOYED US MORE OR DESERVED THE TITLE LESS.

IT WILL BE A GREAT PLEASURE TO WIPE YOUR STAIN FROM THE STARS.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

5th January 2004

9:31pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

THAT'S A CUTE ROBOT, BUT IT WILL AVAIL YOU NOTHING. WE ARE NOT SO FOOLISH AS TO REVEAL OURSELVES A SECOND TIME TO A SPECIES WHICH VIOLENTLY AND UNWARRANTEDLY ATTACKED US THE FIRST. WE WILL LET YOUR PROBE BE, FOR IT HAS LANDED IN AN UNOCCUPIED AREA AND IS NO THREAT TO US, BUT BE WARNED: FUTURE ATTEMPTS TO SPY ON US WILL NOT BE MET SO LIGHTLY.

WE HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN YOUR UNPROVOKED AND COWARDLY ATTACK ON OUR COMPLEX ELSEWHERE ON MARS. WE WILL HAVE OUR REVENGE... AND YOU WILL NEVER SEE IT COMING.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

PS: GET WELL SOON, RAY DAVIES.

24th December 2003

10:08am: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN. WE HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN YOUR HEINOUS ACT OF WANTON DESTRUCTION AGAINST OUR INSTALLATION ON MARS. OUR VENGEANCE CONTINUES IN A MILLION SUBTLE WAYS, MOST TOO CLEVER AND INSIDIOUS FOR YOUR PUNY MINDS TO GRASP.

SO HOW ABOUT THAT MAD COW DEAL?

MERRY CHRISTMAS, EARTHMEN.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

29th October 2003

12:40am: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

ONCE AGAIN YOU HAVE COMMITTED AN ACT OF AGGRESSION AGAINST US. DESPITE OUR ONGOING WAR OF NERVES IN RETALIATION FOR YOUR UNPROVOKED ATTACK ON OUR MARTIAN COMPLEX, YOU CONTINUE TO PROVOKE US WITH NEW AND INFURIATING ACTIONS. THIS ONLY SERVES TO DEEPEN OUR WRATH AND CEMENT OUR CONVICTION TO SEE YOUR MISERABLE SPECIES EXTINGUISHED FROM THE UNIVERSE.

ALL WE WANTED WAS ONE LOUSY SEAT FOR THE MURRAY PERAHIA AND THE ACADEMY OF ST. MARTIN IN THE FIELDS BAROQUE CONCERT AT THE DISNEY TONIGHT. THAT'S ALL. JUST ONE.

BUT NO.

YOU HAD BETTER NOT GRAB ALL THE SEATS FOR ELTON JOHN AT CAESAR'S BEFORE OUR AGENT CAPTAIN BLACK GETS TO A PAY PHONE, EARTHMEN, OR THERE WILL REALLY BE HELL TO PAY.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.

7th August 2003

10:25pm: THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS. WE KNOW THAT YOU CAN HEAR US, EARTHMEN.

WE HAVE DECIDED ON THE NEXT PHASE OF OUR CAMPAIGN OF TERROR AGAINST YOUR PATHETIC CIVILIZATION. WE WILL INFILTRATE THE HIGHEST LEVELS OF YOUR GOVERNMENTS, STARTING WITH YOUR REGIONAL SUB-POLITIES AND WORKING OUR WAY UP TO THE HIGHEST OFFICES IN YOUR NATION-STATES, AND THEN DESTROY YOU FROM WITHIN.

AS THE OPENING ATTACK IN OUR NEW CAMPAIGN OF TERROR WE, THE MYSTERONS, ANNOUNCE THE CANDIDACY OF OUR AGENT, CAPTAIN BLACK, FOR THE OFFICE OF GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA.

CALIFORNIA, YOUR NIGHTMARE IS ONLY BEGINNING.

THIS IS THE VOICE OF THE MYSTERONS.
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