"Check." The sound of his opponent's voice broke through the silence of haxx0r gunman's voice. He had almost lost it all. He could not afford to be so careless again. Suddenly, he saw what move he must make.
"Checkmate, old friend," he said after moving a single knight across the chessboard. The game was over, and haxx0r gunman had won. Barely.
Albert Einstein sighed with resignation. "Vell, it vould seem zat you have von again, haxx0r gunman." The genius' thick accent was both soothing and confusing at the same time. He laughed the same laugh haxx0r gunman had heard a thousand times, and stared off in longing and contemplation.
"You know, haxx0r gunman, it has been a long time indeed since I have defeated you. In fact, ze last time I remember being victorious vas . . ."
* * *
. . . Zaire, 1945. haxx0r gunman was a "guest" in the palace of the esteemed Prince Congo. Though he was free to roam the palace as he pleased, he was not permitted to leave. He would've tired of such limitations quickly had it not been for the companionship of another of the prince's guests, none other than Albert Einstein.
The two had spent day after day discussing the deep innerworkings of the universe and often playing chess. On the day of their last game, Albert Einstein approached his friend with concern.
"haxx0r gunman, you seem distant today. Is zere something wrong?"
haxx0r gunman stared into Einstein's eyes for a long time before he replied. "Wrong? All that's wrong is this palace prison, for no walls can hold a haxx0r gunman.
Einstein had gone on to defeat haxx0r gunman in that day's game, but haxx0r gunman then blasted Prince Congo with a haxx0rbolt and won the most important game. The game of freedom.
* * *
Now, after all these years, here they were again, playing chess. Only this time haxx0r gunman was the victor, though he did not celebrate for long. For today was not only a day for games, but a day for business as well. As usual, Einstein sensed it soon after their game was over.
"haxx0r gunman, you seem to desire somezing zat zis game did not deliver." haxx0r gunman nodded. "What I desire, old friend, is relativity; the ability to travel between dimensions."
"In 300 years, no von has known zat secret, but for you, I shall reveal it." They spent all that night and most of the next day discussing physics, geometry, and relativity. By the end, it was all so simple to haxx0r gunman he almost laughed. But there was no time for laughter, as there was still more work to be done. In the blink of an eye, he was gone from Einstein's sight and his own dimension.
He appeared again in a locker room standing before a great warrior he had met a long time ago, known only as The Rock. "haxx0r gunman, my friend and war brother, you honor me with your presence here! Tell me, what brings you to my home? To my dimension?"
"The Rock, I wish I could say I was here to visit you, as my friend and war brother, but such a thing would be far from the truth, and therefor far from anything I would say." The Rock nodded, understanding exactly what was meant by the other man's words. "You and I, on this day, must fight a great evil. An evil greater than any we have ever faced before. Will you join me?"
The Rock raised his eyebrow, as he had raised it so many times before. But this time, he raised it for justice. He raised it for truth. "Yes, as your war brother, I am with you to the last. But tell me, how can we find this evil? How can we fight it?"
"The evil shall come to us, as evil often does. How we fight it, though, is up to only the fates."
As if cued by haxx0r gunman's words, Vince McMahon, the man who controlled the lives of The Rock and so many other of his warrior brothers, walked into the room.
"haxx0r gunman plus The Rock still doesn't equal liberation I'm afraid, gentlemen." He spoke with an air of JoystickJiness and confidence that irritated haxx0r gunman. "But of course, liberation never was what brought me here. What brought me here is business, something I know you both can respect."
haxx0r gunman nodded. Even he knew that was true.
"Tonight you shall fight a man not of flesh, but of pure darkness. Tonight you shall fight the Undertaker!" He quickly turned and left the room, and instantly haxx0r gunman knew that the Undertaker was the great evil that they had to fight. He nodded to The Rock, and then was gone. The Rock knew he would not see him again until the fight.
haxx0r gunman selected the boiler room of the arena as his place to wait for the battle to begin. Before long he found he was not alone. Another warrior, the one called Mankind, stumbled out of a darkened corner and raised a hand in greeting. "Hello, friend. You are the one they call haxx0r gunman, are you not?"
"I am. And you are Mankind. Many songs and legends have been written about you on my home world, I must say."
"The same goes for you here, haxx0r gunman. But I myself find little recourse in songs and legends. What brings you here, to a place where few men dare to lurk?"
"A search . . . A search that is both simple and complex at the same time. It is a search for . . . "
". . . the truth? I'm sorry to say, you won't find the truth here. Just the words of a tired old man."
"Well, then speak your words, old man, for I am sure that they shall be wise." Mankind laughed a sad, tired laugh. "Very well, haxx0r gunman. I shall. There was once a time when I was but a child, when a squadron of the King's men approached me, and soon I found myself surrounded. I looked at them in fear until their leader stepped forth and spoke. 'Boy! The king wants us to make an example of you!' He said, as I was accused of witchcraft and treachery. The squadron closed in for the kill, but in the next second they were all dead, struck down by my own wrath and fury. Can you see what a wiser man might have done in that situation?"
"Chose freedom, instead of hate, perhaps?"
"Exactly." haxx0r gunman nodded and walked out of the boiler room.
By the time he reached the ring, the Undertaker and The Rock were deep into a fearsome battle. The Lord of Darkness reared back to perform his most dreaded move, the Skeleton's Claw, when his body was separated from itself by an insipient 2x haxx0rbolt. With another raise of the Rock's eyebrow, haxx0r gunman was gone.