All the Way Here - References
by MRS Jeevas

'Declare the things that are going to come afterward, that we may know that you are gods; indeed, do good or evil, that we may anxiously look about us and fear together.'
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 2: Shopping

This is Isaiah 41:23. At the time of writing the story, because it was random, I simply opened a Bible, stuck my finger in and the above was actually the line it landed on.

Writing this now, this is the first time that I have read the context. It's a challenge from the God of Israel to the other gods to prove their divine authenticity.

In all the hacking, Matt hadn't even seen a ping that mentioned the Big Apple.
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 2: Shopping

Each server and website has a unique identity, which can be traced. In order to find these, a signal is sent out. It 'pings' against anything it finds (a little like a radar signal does) and can send information back about this unique identity. When Matt hacked Near's website, no information returning to him mentioned 'the Big Apple'.

The 'Big Apple' is a nickname for New York City, Manhattan, USA. It was first used by the journalist, John J. Fitz Gerald, in 1920, to refer to Los Angeles. The same writer used it in 1921 to describe New York racing horse-racing. By the late 1920s, 'Big Apple' was used outside racing circles to describe New York City as a whole.

The use of it in the context of Death Note renders a rather more sinister feeling. Death Gods eat apples.

People ignored megalomaniac wannabe world leaders and genocide every day of their lives. It was someone else's problem, happening in far-away countries of which they knew little. A tribe got slaughtered in Dafur; a group of people got killed on the Israel/Palestine border; a few hundred criminals had a heart attack in prison. Same shit, different place, all very bad. But Mello and Near singled out the one that had killed L and used the hunt as round three billion and ninety-four thousand in their sparring for supremacy over each other.
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 2: Shopping

In 1939, Germany invaded Czechoslovakia. Instead of declaring war, Neville Chamberlain, the prime minister of Great Britain, embarked on a policy of 'appeasement'. This was to negotiate with the German chancellor, Adolf Hitler, in a bid to avoid war, though that obviously left the Czechoslovakians at the mercy of the Third Reich. It also signalled to the Germans that their expansionist policies would be unopposed, thus leading to the subsequent invasion of Poland and World War Two.

After returning from his audience with Hitler, Chamberlain explained himself in the House of Commons. His speech included the words, 'How horrible, fantastic, incredible it is that we should be digging trenches and trying on gas masks here because of a quarrel in a far-away country between people of whom we know nothing.' It is this which Matt is referring to.

At the time of writing, both the story in 2008 and this web content in 2009, there is a genocide taking place in Darfur, Western Sudan. It began in February 2003 and is ongoing. In 2006, there were an estimated 400,000 dead and 2 million displaced refugees. In April 2008, the United Nations stated that they believed the true figure killed to be more like 800,000. The website has more information.

The conflict between Israel and Palestine, over the borders between their countries, has been ongoing since 1948. Its roots are actually in the 19th century, when the Zionist Movement identified modern day Palestine as the Eretz Yisrael (Promised Land). This was the Jewish homeland promised to Isaac by God. The Movement encouraged Jews to emigrate to Palestine and also funded them to purchase land. This policy was successful enough to create a sizeable Jewish community in the country during the early 20th century.

Following World War One, Palestine came under the control of the British. Violence erupted there frequently between the Jews and the Palestinians. After World War Two, the British handed over control of Palestine to the United Nations, with the recommendation (and a white paper already written detailing the plan) that the country be split in two. This was duly approved and the state of Israel was created, out of part of Palestine, in May 1948. Between 700,000 and 750,000 Palestinians were removed from Israel during this period, whilst the Jewish population swelled with refugees from the death and concentration camps of Europe. Though the Jews accepted the partition, the Palestinians have never recognised it. Most Arab nations also refuse to recognise Israel.

In the series of wars between the states, since 1948, Israel has invaded many areas originally given to the Palestinians, including East Jerusalem. It has also taken land from Egypt and Jordan. Several foreign governments and coalitions of states have tried to intervene with solutions, but none have been acceptable to both sides. Since 1987, 6035 Palestinians and 1453 Israelis have been killed in the conflict, though humanitarian sources believe that the actual figure is much higher amongst the Palestinians.

The 'few hundred criminals' referenced in the quotation are the victims of Kira. Matt is saying that, if people are generally apathetic about such things as the events in Darfur and Israel/Palestine, then it is reasonable to deduce that they could also be so over Kira.

He would be like Hamlet's Claudius, crying out, 'my words fly up, my thoughts remain below, words without thought never to Heaven go.'
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 4: An Exchange

King Claudius, in Shakespeare's 'Hamlet', has murdered his brother, stolen his crown and married his sister-in-law. Claudius then attempts to pray, in order to save himself from Hell, but he doesn't regret anything that he's done. He realises, therefore, that his prayers have no power, thus he is doomed.

(Matt) made himself a noob, so he could go in-game and on Vent without any of his on-line friends disturbing him. The making of a legend occurred in such subtle ways. "Yeh hes teh pwnage!!11! Jsut like Kir4 ftw!" was the comment announced, in a crowded area, which finally sickened Matt enough to log out and check his programmes instead.
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 6: Dissolution

A 'noob' is a 'newcomer' or 'newbie'. It is generally applied to someone inexperienced at playing a game, recognisable as such by their low levels. Matt has made himself a brand new character in an interactive game, so that none of his friends will identify and distract him.

'Vent' is an abbreviation of 'Ventrilo', a piece of software often used, via a headset, for gamers to communicate verbally with each other.

The Leet may be translated into English as, 'Yeah, he is great. He is just like Kira - a winner.' (FTW = For the Win.)

The Mario Clause lay coiled and waiting for him in the depths of the system, like some Leviathan rising with the end of days.
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 6: Dissolution

In Jewish and Christian mythology, God created the Leviathan on the fifth day. It is the Jewish source that is referenced here. The Leviathan is a monstrous sea-creature, lying in the depths of the ocean. It is so big that it eats a whole whale every day. In Judaism, it will rise at the end of the world and will be slaughtered by God. Its skin will be used to make shelters for the righteous, while its flesh will feed them.

Just as the rising of the Leviathan means that it's the end of the world, the discovery of the Mario Clause will be the end of Matt's world.

Matt led whole clans in expeditions into the Wilderness of MMORPGs, strategically planning so that no-one got killed and everyone returned with loot.
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 6: Dissolution

Yet another Runescape reference. Before Jagex changed it, the Wilderness was the area in Runescape where player versus player combat was permitted. MMORPG = Massively Multi-player On-line Role Playing Games.

"One of those with big droopy bits, like Deputy Dawg ears?"
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 8: Nick Street

Deputy Dawg is an American cartoon character, created by Terrytoons. He has long, drooping ears.

"Occam's Razor, innit?"
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 9: Genius

The name is actually Ockham, though it's been altered somewhat in the intevening seven centuries. William Ockham didn't invent the principle. He just used it so often that it's been attached to his name. The principle is 'numquam ponenda est pluralitas sine necessitate', translated as 'plurality ought never be posited without necessity.' In other words, look at the evidence and the theory that involves the least amount of assumptions is probably the correct one.

"He was scared of losing his Godsword, see?"
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 10: Scared

Yet another Runescape reference. The Godswords are the most expensive weapons in the game, due to the danger and levels required to assemble the parts of one. Jobe was stupid. Even if he had died, he would have kept the Godsword. Players keep their three most expensive items, unless they are skulled. He would have been highly unlikely to have anything else on him which was more expensive than a Godsword.

Poor Liberty. She couldn't have known that she tricked them, because, for all she offered, the poor, huddled masses turned out to be human after all; and of the same blood and sentiment that had caused the storied pomp in their ancient lands.
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 13: Aftermaths

Mello is referencing the poem, 'The New Colossus' by Emma Lazarus, which is embossed on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty.

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
"Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!" cries she
With silent lips. "Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!"

As a Christian, Mello is also misrepresenting the Goddess Liberty by viewing her as an extension of Mother Mary. In reality, Liberty is a blood-thirsty goddess, who demands human sacrifice and would have quite enjoyed people being trampled to death outside Near's headquarters.

"'The Ballad of Reading Goal'?"
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 14: Knowledge

Oscar Wilde was imprisoned, in Reading Goal, for 'gross indecency', after having been in a romantic relationship with Lord Alfred Douglas (Bosie). He was moved there from another prison in November 1895. He wrote 'The Ballad of Reading Goal' upon his release in 1897. It was inspired by the execution of Trooper Charles Thomas Wooldridge, who had murdered his wife. Wilde meditated upon the death penalty and concluded that everyone is in need of forgiveness. He stated that this was especially true for those who knew that they had been the cause of their loved one's death.

It's referenced here for two reasons. The first is its theme of incarceration, as Matt and Mello are stir-crazy in their apartment. The second is a foreshadowing, as Mello is later the cause of Matt's death.

"God, I know why the caged bird sings."
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 14: Knowledge

'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings' is a poem by Maya Angelou. It's a poem about longing to be free, wherein the caged bird is compared to the free bird. The caged bird lives in a nightmare, with its wings clipped and its feet tied. It sings because it's the only thing left for it to do; and also because it hopes that its song will be heard 'on the distant hill', so that the free bird can rescue it.

Matt's stir-crazy.

"Don't give me that look. I know this city is dangerous. King Kong, Ghostbusters, ice ages... I've seen all of the films. We could go and see where John Lennon got shot."
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 14: Knowledge

There are many films where New York City is destroyed or endangered by wild and wondrous things. There are three namechecked here. In 'King Kong', a giant gorilla climbs the side of the Empire State Building. In 'Ghostbusters', the city is beseiged by ghosts and later trashed by a giant Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. In 'The Day After Tomorrow', the city is hidden under a mile of glacial ice.

John Lennon was a member of The Beatles. He was shot dead outside the Dakota Building, just off Central Park, on December 8th 1980.

"We could go to Christopher Street. You might even be tempted to pretend you know me in public there."
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 14: Knowledge

Christopher Street, New York City, was the scene of the Stonewall Riots, on June 28th 1969. The Stonewall Inn was a Mafia owned bar, in Christoper Street, which welcomed the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transsexual community. Despite its Mafia connections, it was frequently raided by police, as homosexuality was illegal in America. Judy Garland was a gay icon, who overdosed on June 22nd, 1969. This event and her subsequent funeral caused a morose mood in the bar. When police raided, in the early hours of June 28th, the clientele of the bar fought back for the first time.

As news got out, the event inspired sympathy actions across the world. The Stonewall Riots are popularly viewed as the start of the Gay Rights Movement, primarily in America, but globally too. They weren't the beginning, but it makes a good story to say that it was. Or, as Edmund White put it in 'The Beautiful Room is Empty', 'Lily Law should never have messed with us on the day Judy died!'

Matt is noting that Mello will not publically admit to their relationship. He is commenting wryly that Christopher Street would have no resonance for Mello. Unfortunately, Mello doesn't get the reference and therefore misses the snide comment.

Matt span ahead in circles, arms wide, then grinned as his lover caught him up. "'I wish I was a child again, wild and reckless and free, chasing after adventures, not maddening under them.'"
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 14: Knowledge

Matt is misquoting Cathy from Emily Bronte's 'Wuthering Heights'. The real quotation, from chapter 12, reads:

Oh, I'm burning! I wish I were out of doors! I wish I were a girl again, half savage and hardy, and free; and laughing at injuries, not maddening under them! Why am I so changed? why does my blood rush into a hell of tumult at a few words? I'm sure I should be myself were I once among the heather on those hills. Open the window again wide: fasten it open! Quick, why don't you move?'

'Because I won't give you your death of cold,' I answered.

'You won't give me a chance of life, you mean,' she said, sullenly. 'However, I'm not helpless yet; I'll open it myself.'

Someone had, apparently randomly, hung a rosary on a section of boarding around the construction at the centre of the site. Mello fixed his gaze on it, his tone alerting Matt to the fact that this was not open to discussion, "It's all I ever wanted."

"Fair enough." Matt grinned. "Then we'll just have to work out how to run the world when we're at Ground Zero."
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 14: Knowledge

They are standing on the site where the World Trade Centre was destroyed, on September 11th 2001. However, to those who come across it randomly, it's not immediately obvious what it is. It does look like a construction site, when approached from a certain angle. The site is also popularly known as Ground Zero.

Peering through the low windows there, he smiled. "Bingo."
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 16: Leads

In the game, Bingo, achieving a full house (or sometimes just a line) is announced by the winner calling out 'bingo'. Matt is saying that he's found the winner.

"Yama nashi, ochi nashi, imi nashi. Welcome to Japan."
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 18: Ukeru

'Yama nashi, ochi nashi, imi nashi' translates from the Japanese as "no climax, no point, no meaning". The acronym is YAOI and was devised around the dojinshi market in the 1970s by Yasuko Sakata and Akiko Hatsu. It is basically the smutty parts of shonen-ai.

Mello is demanding sex from Matt.

'It isn't like the fucking Godfather, Matt.'
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 19: The Law of This New World

'The Godfather' is a book, by Mario Puzo, about the American-Sicilian Mafia.

Mello smirked, his mouth the only part of his face immediately visible. It made him look like a Cheshire Cat.
Mello, All The Way Here, chapter 21: Coming Out

In Lewis Carroll's 'Alice's Adventures in Wonderland', the Cheshire Cat befriends Alice. The cat can appear or disappear at will, wholly or in part, and one occasion leaves only its wide grin visible in the air.

A shout out from his on-line friend, Lyma, to say that she was trapped and in immediate danger of dying at the hands of Sub.
Matt, All The Way Here, chapter 25: Echoes

Yet another Runescape reference. The Dagannoth Kings are high level monsters, usually hunted in a team. Dagannoth Supreme is level 303 and can deal 56 hitpoints damage. Sub, rather than Sup, is a typo. -.-