I'm not someone who would normally pick up a mystery and turn it inside out. Heck, I get annoyed by Murder She Wrote reruns -- too complex, too wordy, too cut-and-dried. The bad guy is the bad guy, the good guy is good. Twists and turns in a story aren't interesting to me unless they involve real people. People I can touch and talk to and empathize with. But I guess that's not really what I'm looking for. When I want a story, I want it to make absolutely no fucking sense.

This whole site satisfied a lot of that carnal curiosity. I knew what I was looking at was either incredibly brilliant, or incredibly dangerous. I'm old-hat when it comes to internet scams, so I immediately discounted the latter, but I wasn't really convinced about the former until the numbers ticked by on my watch, and the words ticked by on my monitor. A countdown had begun, and end of which I had rather assumed was going to be the launch of a whole new site, sometime in late August. Some incredible marketing site with Flash and music and spinning logos the likes of which you've never seen before. But that's not what I got when those numbers reached zero...

*   *   *


06:07 PDT             06:29 PDT             06:31 PDT             06:13 PDT
38.890469 -077.026000 40.402428 -080.549342 38.799738 -081.348157 37.271918 -076.711333

06:15 PDT             CONNECTED             06:31 PDT             06:33 PDT
35.247483 -080.805150 AXON HOT              38.799738 -081.348157 41.153867 -081.356250

06:23 PDT
38.885250 -077.028167

INCOMING TRANSMISSION. DOWNLOAD IN PROGRESS.

PASSWORD: *****************
CONFIRMATION: *****************

COMMENCE VOCAL AUTHORIZATION. . .

. . .

APPROVED. 

DECRYPTION BEGINNING. 

X;SDHJFSKHFK234H1KJHJKNLFKWNJLFKNk@nj#KNSKJU8FJSDFKJHSDKAshdhjsJSKqo48Nlajksnfk
jASDNAlsjdkNkajsDNAJNSDjsnKlksaKJSFNKjnsjkgdsjHGSJDHsfjHSjdfkHsklDFJHsjfsfhjshf
hsfJsdfhJsdU8FJSDFKJHSDKAshdhjsJSKqo48fjklHsfjhJHDSJKhjJDHDJJHlakwiusdFNBJ(U8FJ
SDFKJHSDKAshdhjsJSKqo48$*@**xXIISKKkllOSIFOQP12430912882571jsJIsoFJwIlksaKJSFNK
jnsjkgdsjHGSJDHsfjHSjdfkHsklDFJHsjfsfhjshfhsfJsdfhJsdfjklHsfjhJHDSJKhU8FJSDFKJH
SDKAshdhjsJSKqo48. . .

DECRYPTION COMPLETE. FULL TEXT FOLLOWS:  

*   *   *

It all started out simply enough: a challenge from an anonymous internet personality. What's the meme? Why do we care? Who the hell is Dana, why do her bees matter so much, who's the Queen, and what's the connection with China (Beijing is 5913 miles away from Dana's hometown, San Francisco, according to her blog)? There are other questions, of course. Scratching the surface reveals a new onion-like skin to be peeled away, much to everyone's tearing eyes. Dana writes about dark warnings issued from xnbomb, (the good guy?) who helps untangle the mystery of her aunt's disappearing hotmail inbox messages. A riddle:

The day will break and the sun will rise when the Queen returns to rule, and further let it be known that retribution on any who hinder the return of the Queen will be swift and terrible.

Okay, maybe I'm going about this all the wrong way. Maybe this actually isn't all about the end of the world and the invasion of a wicked race of bee-like creatures, a hive-mind, intent on humanity's destruction. But, then again...

*   *   *


Mission Parameters: I must reveal the truth. 

Seek the truth
Behold the truth
Reveal the truth
That is the law and the whole of the law 

!init transmit proc 
!transmit truth 

Outbound:
My broadcast system is functional and expanding.
I will transmit to my crew daily until further instructions are received. 

*   *   *

A bizarre trick of the internet? There was a countdown here a while back. And some truly strange content displayed on the front page. "HALT - MODULE CORE HEMORRHAGE SYSTEM PERIL DISTRIBUTED REFLEX. STRONG INTRUSIVE INCLINATION. COUNTDOWN TO WIDE AWAKE AND PHYSICAL:" I'm no rocket scientist, this makes absolutely no sense to me. When I think of hemorrhages, I think of doctors and blood and...or maybe that's precisely what I'm supposed to think. This whole damn thing is all aimed at me. I could have sworn that Dana would be looking out for me...

No, that's absolutely ridiculous. What the hell would some Californian nut-job girl get from terrorizing my dreams? I'm not important, I hold no public office, I have no large amounts of money, I'm not famous, and I didn't accidently screw her sister and leave her in the morning before she got up. So it's not about me. My axons are totally secure. It's YOUR axons that aren't. I can see it, you know. The goddamned AI is floating around in hotmail's server, Melissa. She's not the extraordinary, you know. It's something else, and I finally get it.

*   *   *


OFFICIAL TRANSCRIPTION FOLLOWS: _

SUBJECT WHITE MALE, AGE 17, FULL NAME: <CENSORED>. DATE: >CENSORED<.
INTERVIEW CONDUCTED BY AGENT 13-5B, G<CENSORED> S<CENSORED>. SUBJECT HELD IN 
PROTECTIVE CUSTODY AS OF <CENSORED> AT <CENSORED>. TOUCH MONK SOW.

Wait, hang on. Oh this bit is great. My dad loves this stuff. He says, well, 
he's away a lot, like years at a time, it drives him crazy. He says this stuff 
reminds him of what he's fighting for.

I DON'T UNDERSTAND.

That he can connect. He can listen to this stuff and imagine the people who made
 it. They care about the same things we do: Making a buck, finding a girl, 
rooting for the home team. These old guys--they really knew people. They knew 
the human heart. That's what my dad says.

WHY ARE YOU TELLING ME THIS?

It's a long way away, you know...out to...wherever he is. He gets lonely out 
there. I wish you hadn't told me.

WHAT?

About my mom.

OH.

*   *   *


TRANSCRIPT OF INCIDENT MARKED RED-401. AIC: AGENT F977. ONE CASUALTY. WOMAN
DETAINED MUST REMAIN UNDER TIGHT SECURITY. FULL INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND ON-SITE
AT HQ. DESTROY THIS RECORD UPON RECEIPT.

THIS IS FOX 9-7-7 REQUESTING AN AMBULANCE THIS LOCATION. 1 CITIZEN.

NO, I'M OKAY. SEND UNIFORMS FOR CROWD CONTROL, THOUGH.

JUST A TRAFFIC STOP. HE DREW A WEAPON.

YEAH. WE'LL NEED THE SCENE TEAM. YOU CAN TELL THE AMBULANCE CREW THEIR CLIENT IS
DRT.


MISS, DON'T GO ANYWHERE. WE'LL NEED  YOU TO GIVE A STATEMENT AND A LIE DETECTOR 
ABOUT WHAT YOU SAW. ALL STANDARD PROCEDURE. NAME?

<CENSORED>

END TRANSMISSION. 

*   *   *

The countdown ended on 24 August. After a lot of theorizing and postulating, most people came to terms with Microsoft's involvement. It is little wonder that the richest man in the universe was the one to create something so innocuous and mysterious that it would capture the minds of the 'Net's brightest and most bored. I guess we've all come to terms with the X-Box infiltrating our little world network. Someone with an amazing amount of free-time came up with a brilliant anagram for that disturbing message that was at one time on the front page: "INDEX THIS IRONCLAD PREDICTION : HALO TWO SINGLE PLAYER DEMO CD-ROM DISK INCURSION AT AUGUST TWENTY FOUR. EARTH WILL NEVER BE THE SAME." I wonder if Dana got her copy. I imagine she did.

So, it's just another Internet meme, just another interesting thing to blow your time on while you're waiting for that new Linkin Park song to finish downloading from Limewire. Was a time when I thought all these brilliant deceptions were the work of individuals, members of the private sector schooled in the art of deception. That this one was likely orchestrated by Microsoft (or a person foolishly obsessed with Halo) leaves a chalky taste in my mouth, like eating too many Tums. I suppose the most fortunate part of this whole adventure is that just because Microsoft was, ostensibly, behind the project, the boiling interest in the issue does not dissipate. There's a lot on that website, and the accompanying blog is worth a read. Maybe all of our cursory glances at it have been wrong. I guess we may never really know.


Senso says re ilovebees.com: Ouroboros actually went to one of the GPS coord: August 27, 2004

ilovebees.com was created by a person known as Dana, for her Aunt Margaret, and is (or was) a bee-keeping site, made to advertise Margaret's honey sales and fascination with bees.
In earlier July, the AI known only as "Melissa" landed somehow on ilovebees.com, damaged and disoriented. When it tried to repair itself, it ended up making ilovebees.com look like a complete disaster, leaving pieces of itself and the data contained strewn throughout the website. From the data, Dana, with the help of the public, discovered some facts about the AI.

1. The AI "Melissa" ran the comms on a ship that spied on an alien race, "The Covenant."
2. Melissa is also known as "The Operator."
3. Melissa did not come alone.


The programs SPDR and the Pious Flea came with the Operator, SPDR being a program that was used to repair the Operator. The purpose of the Pious Flea is officially unknown, but it seems only to try to reveal the "Truth." He calls himself "The Seeker."

Seek the truth.
Behold the truth.
Reveal the truth.
This is the law and the whole of the law.

SPDR saved the Operator from destruction, only to be killed by Melissa for trying to remove the Pious Flea, who is apparently giving orders to the Operator.

Someone else has also joined in this little "game." She goes by the name "The Princess," and she... Well, she's just a mystery in herself. She doesn't know where she came from, before "the dungeon." She has, however, taken over Dana's e-mail account, ladybee777@hotmail.com. When she was found, she could only speak in what is presumed to be the text from e-mails she received. Now she has learned to "make her own words," however, and answers some e-mails she has received by herself. She has corrupted many of ilovebees.com's pictures, putting hidden messages inside of them, and when these hidden messages are combined, they create riddles. One example was "I spy with my little eye something that is the color of cowardice, as hard as a pig's house, and goes ever on and on." The answer, of course, is "yellow brick road," which corresponds to an html document on the site.

Now, to the real attraction of ilovebees. There is a list of "axons," which are latitude/longitude coordinates linked with times, on various pages on the website. When the times come, at the corresponding coordinates, a payphone will ring. If you answer the payphone, a recorded message will ask you some questions. Answer these questions correctly, and you hear a sound clip. Along with that, the axon will "go hot," which allows other people to hear the same sound clip. Every time a list of these axons goes hot, another puzzle opens up, along with another set of axons. The phones ring every day, until they either get answered, or the entire series of axons go hot. Only 2 or 3 are needed, out of 7, to unlock a sound clip.


This whole craze was started when a new Halo 2 trailer was released. There was not much new content in the trailer, but was probably aimed to advertise for ilovebees.com. At the end of the trailer, it flashed www.xbox.com. For a second, however, www.ilovebees.com was flashed. People started flooding in to the website, and rumors began flying. No one was sure who was running this game, but most people suspected Bungie, for some very convincing reasons.

1. The site was first advertised on a Halo 2 trailer, and Bungie is creating the game.
2. There are several references to Halo, including a Marine talking to a Spartan, and the Covenant, an alien race from the game.
3. Some of the characters in the sound clips may have links to the Halo characters, from the Halo books.
4. Bungie has a fascination with the number 7, and that number is popping up a lot on ilovebees.com.

Who knows what exactly is going on? Well, I guess we'll find out when 777 axons go hot. Until then, keep answering those payphones. The Operator is waiting.


BrooksMarlin says re ilovebees.com: I haven't been following this all that closely. Do the phones ring every day? Or only on one specific day?
vebelfetzer says re: ilovebees.com - "Melissa" is the Latin word for bee. Whoever's designed this has an incredible grasp of etymology.

haze says re ilovebees.com: actually, melissa is Latin for honey, and melis is Latin for bee

The I Love Bees soundclips told a story of 5 separate people, Jan, Kamal, Jersey, Rani, and Herzog. Jan James, the daughter of a genetically enhanced supersoldier, called a spartan, is a troublesome teen. Kamal is an insecure med student who is not so secretly in love with a gangster's girlfriend. Jersey is an average 17 year old who happens to have a military grade AI crash land in his computer. Rani is a southern girl who ends up being recruited as a spy for the Office of Naval Intelligence. Herzog is a higher up in the Office of Naval Intelligence, and tries to help the other 4 along through cryptic phone calls.

The entire story takes place around the year 2552, the same as the Halo games and novels. Many events mentioned in those mediums, The Fall of Reach, the events on the ringworld called Halo, and the eventual invasion of Earth by the Covenant are also mentioned in these audio files.

The sound clips that were unlocked by answering questions through payphones have been archived and organized chronologically by storyline at psyjinir.net


References:
http://halo.bungie.org
http://library.psyjnir.net/?id=405
http://www.ilovebees.com

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