An old man sits quietly at his desk. Notes are strewn about the work space, almost in clutter, but not quite. A half cup of tea cools near his elbow, the spoon resting on the saucer glistens slightly by the light of the nearby fireplace. Absently, the man takes a small sip while continuing his notes, glancing at the computer monitor every few minutes.
A small rap on the door, followed by a young woman clearing her throat ever so softly, almost apologetically.
"Professor?" the young woman almost whispers.
The old man continues writing for a few more moments, sets down the stylus and turns towards the young woman.
He glances briefly at the monitor before addressing her, a slight smile played on his weathered face.
The old man closes his eyes as he faces her, the slight smile still on his lips, raises his index finger, and says: "You are concerned. I see that. Do not worry though, young lady. Do not worry at all. It is for science!"
"But professor....it's been over 12 hours! The people...they're restless...angry! I just don't understa..."
"Now, now...we discussed this prior to the start of the experiment."
The professor turns back to the monitor and picks up the stylus and continues writing.
"Notice, my student....just please notice. What we have here is a community of people with a common cause. Within that community are leaders, loners, groupies (as some may say), and malcontents. I've longed to observe such a catastrophe while in progress without bloodshed. Think of it! Some threaten to quit which is akin to suicide. Others wait patiently while yet others search for answers. The crux of the matter is not even known to be sure! Yet they still LOOK! And why!"
His hand slams hard on the table.
"WHY do they look? Why do they need to feel that they can be the one to find the answer? Why do the ones that say they will quit and essentially 'die' within this imaginary realm continue to use this device?"
The intern is silenced, but knowing how her beloved professor works, she knows that she is expected to answer.
In a softer tone, the professor continues, "In all my years of research of the human mind, of social strata, human-hierarchy, I've yet to discover and completely understand how imaginary worlds created by a group can survive within and without multiple cultures, short of the one true cause....power.
"Each one, regardless, strives to become powerful within their own right. To be the best of the best, get the best of the best, and be known as the best of the best...whether or not it's completely understood. During times like this wherein the 'world' of imagination is not available, I write. I note the tension....I note the anger. You can't get this from a running war, you cannot get this from political strife. This is part of the human condition. Power."
"I have to agree with you. No one really sets out to be second best. If something doesn't work within, it's changed or deleted. The bar brawls are the most noted that I've found where people test their own physical skills against each other that would not happen within an actual quest. The actual quests lack randomness of survival unlike those of PvP which are in direct relation to man versus man."
"Then why is PvP not concentrated on more?"
"Because that would be counter-productive to revenue, and is only considered a side to relieve the tension of the human-instinct."
Nodding slowly, the old professor turns back to his notes, absently sipping at his tea.
"So..." the intern began.
"It will last as long as it takes, my dear....as long as it takes."
I got bored....sorry