I was brought before the devil.. He peered at me with his glowing yellow eyes, echoing greed across the craven cavern. Or rather, I was cravenly, for I had been presented to Satan himself. But I held fast, knowing these might be my last words I may ever speak again.
"Let's make a deal, you son of a ♥♥♥♥♥."
The devil smirked, for he had made a million handshakes over a million deals, and this one would be no different. Men had cowardly traded their souls for greed, power, women. What would be the predictable request of this one?
I gulped, for gulping was quite the only appropriate response. Hesitantly, I returned fire.
"Half Life 3. You give me Half Life 3, and I give you my soul."
The lord of hellfire stroked his mangled beard. A proposition so ridiculous, there was certainly a string attached loosely, but a string Satan himself wanted to attach.
"Too easy. Your soul? Please. I have billions upon billions."
I recoiled, then fired back.
"Then what do you have in mind?
Satan once again gave his beard a tug, deep in thought. He carefully perused his mind for ideas, then rested upon one only he could conjure up. A nightmare so nightmarish that a nightmare would never hold a candle.
"You will get your Half Life. I will promise that. But you will do something for me."
"... Yes. Yes, what do you want?"
"You will play a game that few play, a jewel lost in the desert of Steam. You will make a pilgrimage. You will play Pajama Sam. You will be afraid of the dark that shrouds the outside, you will quiver and hide in terror."
I stumbled backwards, jumbling and fumbling, I could not comprehend his request. It was that of a villain, a villain who could be none other than the demon who guards the gates of Hell.
"Very well, and if I don't?"
"I will take your soul at this very moment, and that will be the end of it. You will never see Gordon Freeman wield a crowbar ever again."
"So what, I just play this stupid game and get Half Life 3?"
The devil smirked, for tricks and turns were his finely tuned speciality.
"No, it is not the mere act of playing, but the act of dedication, of concentration, of disassociated delusion."
I put my foot forward, taking part no more in his babbling.
"Enough riddles, demon. Explain what I must do."
A long pause seperated the two for what could have been an entire eternity.
"One thousand hours. You will play Pajama Sam for a thousand hours."
I think he wanted to break me. I knew he wanted to break me. But I had come this far, and I would not be beat.
"It's a deal,"
The fallen angel adopted an expression of absolute shock.
I firmly restated my position.
"It's a deal, you son of a ♥♥♥♥♥. I will put in my time. I will conquer this game again, and again, and again, a thousand agains until the time count brings you to your knees."
"You're a fool."
"No. You see, I'm not afraid. I won't hide."
"You won't hide?"
"Not when it's dark outside."