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CYBERTYDE: THERE WILL BE CAKE

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Scene: The Alabama Crimson Tide offices. Some of the coaches' names have been anonymized to protect the innocent. And yes, it's weeeeeeeeeird.

Coach1: I, just don't see how we're gonna get all of our players on scholarship, Nick.

Coach Nick Saban: I have a way of doing this. It's all part of the system.

Coach2: But, coach, I mean, we still have to get six scholarships from somewhere, I mean...

CNS: SILENCE!!!

A deathly quiet falls over the room.

Coach2: Hey, coach? Is that...an earpiece?

CNS: It's my new HEARING AID!!! OWWWWW!!!!

He writhes in pain, contorting his shoulder. The other coaches stare in horror until he regains his composure and calmly removes the wrapper from an Oatmeal Pie.

CNS: Now, first, let me remind you that that is a shoddy, libelous piece of analysis, at least as far as I'm concerned.

Second, we have a system for these situations. Now, if you'll excuse me, I have a meeting with a fifth year senior who has produced little off our bench the past few years. You are dismissed.

The coaches, baffled step out of the office. In steps [ANONYMOUS], a fifth-year senior who has seen no significant playing time, and has applied for another year of eligibility.

CNS: Sit down, son.

Anonymous: Thanks, coach.

CNS: So...you're really going to apply for another year? You're that...um...committed?

Anonymous: Yes, coach. That's me. I'm here for good.

CNS: (laughs) Yes, yes, you will be.

Anonymous: Pardon me, coach?

CNS: Oh, I mean you will be. For the rest of your life you'll be Crimson true. (He smiles in a broad, innocent way.)

Anonymous: Oh, yeah. Most definitely.

CNS: Good, good. That's just what I wanted to hear. Hey, I know the training table guys have you on a pretty strict diet, but do you like...cake?

Anonymous: Oh, yeah, coach. I love cake.

CNS: That's good news. Here, I'll show you something I've never shown to any of the other seniors. It's our special social room. There's cake in there for you. Watch!

(He presses a panel in the wall, and a dimly lit ramp in a concrete corridor appears to go down from the office.)

Anonymous: For me? Really?

CNS: Well, you and a few others. You'll see. Your buddies are all down there waiting for you. Go see!

Anonymous: Hey, what's that written on the wall...

CNS: Oh, that?

CNS: Nothing. Here, right trigger's orange, left trigger's blue. You'll be fine. And don't forget: there's cake down there!

Anonymous: Hey---SLAM!

The door shuts behind him. Nick Saban smiles, and puts his finger to his ear.

CNS: Did I please you, master?

A great mechanical disturbance comes from the floor; the boards slide back, and the full mainframe of Cybertyde, the disembodied collective unconscious of Alabama football arises atop its mammoth Cray Processor.

null

CT: YOU DONE RAIGHT SON. WINNAHS DO WHAT IT TAKES.

CNS: I know, I know. I feel a little bad for him down there, though.

CT: HE WILL HAVE CAKE.

CNS: You and I know that's a lie. He's going to throw into a furnace at level 19, Master.

CT: ARE YOU SASSIN' ME? AH AM RUNNIN' THIS PROGRAAHM THE WAY IT WAS MEANT TO BE RUN!

CNS: And I do your infinitely wise bidding. I know, I know.

CT: VERY GOOD, FLESHLING.

CNS: Just like Mike Dubose and Dennis Franchione did...

CT: WHAT? DO YOU QUESTION CYBERTYDE'S JUDGMENT? ONLY FLESH FAILS, NEVER THE MACHINE---

CNS: AAIAIIIIIIGGHGHHH!!!!

Saban wriggles in the fetal position with pain. Cybertyde's red electrodes glow with a magnificent, evil light as the pain chip implanted in Saban's skull shortly after hiring pulses with electricity.

CNS: (Breathing hard.) ...nevermind. I mean, "yes, master."

CT: WELL SAID. NOW GET MAH A BOURBON AND UH PACKA CHESTAHFIELDS!

CNS: Yes, master....