The Story of Syndie-rella
Once upon a time… there lived an unhappy young webcomic. It was unhappy, because its webhost mommy was dead, and its daddy domain had decided to marry a giant stepPanda in her stead. When she moved in, the widower Panda brought along stepchildish ambitions, and neither liked the webcomic one bit.
All the nice links, kind emails, and loving support were given to the Panda’s ambitions. But for the poor unhappy webcomic, there was nothing at all. No support, only scraps. No decent hosting, but only hardship and discomfort. For the webcomic had to work hard all day just to be seen, and only when the update came was it allowed to sit by the index hearth, near the other hosted webcomics, and dream of better times where everyone played together. That is how it got its nickname, for everyone called it Syndie-rella.
Now, there was a Webcomics Ball to be held in the popular sections of the kingdom, and all the important people were to be there. Syndie-rella wanted to go, too, but the stepPanda firmly said, “No.” In fact, when Syndie-rella asked the stepPanda to be more supportive, and to allow Syndie-rella to go out and meet other people, the stepPanda grew angry, and told Syndie-rella that instead it would be locked up in the non-hosted closet, never to be seen again. Syndie-rella was about to be cut off from the world, and it cried and cried. On that afternoon, the wicked stepPanda left the poor webcomic locked up alone in the hut, and took her ambitions with her to the Ball.
“Oh, whatever will I do?” Syndie-rella cried through its tears.
Just then, in a flash of code, a blue-faired hairy appeared. “Don’t be frightened, Syndie-rella!” he said; “I am your hairy Gavfather, and I am here to make sure that you attend the Webcomic Ball!”
Syndie-rella answered, still sniffling, “But how could I attend? My wicked stepPanda is planning to lock me in the non-hosted closet, and I shall never see anyone again!”
The hairy Gavfather smiled his blue-goateed smile, waved his magic compiler, and suddenly Syndie-rella found itself garbed in a wondrous, sparkly new address, adorned with silken autoupdating and laced with frilly rotating newsboxes. “There,” said the blue-faired hairy, “Now you’ll be the belle and whistle of the Ball.”
Sydie-rella looked at itself in its IP mirror, and saw that it looked even lovelier than it did before the wicked stepPanda had tried to cut off its lovely braided connections. “But how will I get there?” she asked. The Gavfather looked around, and saw that there were a few tiny webco-mice skittering about in a corner of the stepPanda’s hut. Once again, he waved his magic compiler, and in a great big POOF, there were handsome crosslinked steeds standing where the confused webco-mice had been, all bridled up to pull a blindingly neon, spotted green carriage. “They will take you to the Ball,” said the hairy, grinning through his blue whiskers.
The wicked stepPanda paraded around the Webcomic Ball with her childish ambitions, trying hard to hook them up with one of the grander nobles, or perhaps even the dashing Prince himself! It was a grand affair, and everyone who was everyone had shown up, even the handsome Baron Peter, who had briefly dated one of the stepPanda’s ambitions last summer before realizing he was much better off living the nifty bachelor life.
Then a great hush fell on the crowd, for a neon carriage had just pulled up by the entrance gateway, and out stepped a beautiful webcomic dream. Syndie-rella was so alluring that the Prince, overcome by the wondrous sight, slicked across the Ballroom floor, and asked Syndie-rella to dance with him. This seemed a great Sin to the stepPanda, who steamed and grumbled angrily in the crowd. She knew that her ambitions were being cheated of a great catch yet again. The Prince ignored all other webcomics, and fested all evening with Syndie-rella â€“ truly, Syndie-rella’s dream had captured his heart.
When midnight came, and the Y2Klock began to gong, Syndie-rella totally expected the steeds to become mice, the carriage to become a rutabaga, the IP mirror to crack, its glass slipperosities to shatter, and the dream to end. But, as it turns out, the blue-faired hairy was more competent than most run-of-the-mill fairy godmothers, because everything stayed as it was.
And besides, the Gavfather had recruited other helpers to make sure that the webcomic’s dream didn’t tank, including another (very) hairy named Nate, and Syndie-rella’s real mom, who hadn’t died after all, but was just doing legal work until she could afford to support Syndie-rella’s dream full time.
So Syndie-rella and the Prince got married and had lots of webcomic children â€“ all mostly adopted, of course, not that that made them love the children any less.
And they all lived happily ever after.
Damonk is the Editor-in-Chief and the Executive Editor for Reviews and Columns.