::Just offstage, 8-Bit Star and his creation Mademanna—an android in the guide of a young female human—are waiting their turn to face the cameras::


8-Bit Star: Time to go present some awards, kiddo!


::8-Bit tugs at Mademanna's arms, but the youngster is more than a bit unwilling::


Mademanna: No, I'm not going!


8-Bit: Sure ya are...


::Madamanna shakes her head furiously::


Mademanna: No! I get stage fright!


8-Bit: And you think I don't?! Now come on.


::8-Bit kneels in front of the cringing girl::


8-Bit: Ever heard this one? "I want to be the best, there ever was...to beat all the rest yea that's my cause!"


::In between scared sobs she answered::


Mademanna: Electrode, diglett, nidoran, mankey...


8-Bit: Yea, catch 'em catch 'em gotta catch 'em all..."


::In tandem they sing the final verse::


Together: PO-KE-MON!


8-Bit: Ya feel better now, kid?


::Mademanna thinks about it for a moment::


Mademanna: Well... no. But I guess I'll go anyway.


::With that, they both walk up to the podium, the youngster holding 8-Bit’s arm, still a bit shy.


8-Bit: Greetings, my fans! I am 8-Bit Star, and this is Mademanna, one of my original characters (Be gentle, she gets stage fright). And we're going to tell you the names of some winners of the Golden Acorn Competition.  Our first category is Best Short Stories. The nominees are:


“A Matter of Mice and Bats”, by Kyle "Zipper" Calderwood

“Chip & Dale vs. Donald Duck”, by Indy & Chris Silva

“Dale's Decision”, by Justin Reese

“Dance of the Dreams”, by Jeff Wikstrom

“He Who Laughs Last”, by Chris "Malachite" Sweeters

“The Day Smart Became Dale”, by Indy & Rennod

“Paris and Paradise”, by Indy & Chris Silva


::8-Bit opens the envelope and passes the note to Mademanna, but her eyes are fixed on the crowd so he reads it himself::


8-Bit: So, to protect the world from devastation, the winner is ‘The Day Smart Became Dale’!


::Indy and Rennod take the stage again, the crowd waiting with the tomatoes to see if they would dare use lyric poetry again. Fortunately, the daring duo had shot their wad in one acceptance::


Indy: We're both honored that the first collaboration between the two of us earned an award tonight. ‘The Day Smart Became Dale’ was a joy to write, but I have to give most of the credit to Rennod. He was the one who came up with the idea, and really made the plot work. I was simply along for the ride, for the most part.


Rennod: Now, now ... a close reading will show your trademark style of dialogue throughout the work. I merely built most of the plotline and provided about half the humor.


::They wind up pointing fingers at each other and exclaiming…::


BOTH: **HE** did it!


::The presenter throws the trophy at them, which bounces off Rennod's head with a reverberating hollow *tonk* and lands in Indy's hands::


Rennod: Ow. Good thing there's nothing in there to damage.


::Indy shakes his head and grins toward the audience::


Indy: Uh, once again, thanks to everyone. It's an honor... really.


::Indy and Rennod share a pleasant moment with 8-Bit and Mademanna and head back to their seats::