In junior high school, I went to the "model school for technology" for one of the largest school districts in the state of Washington, so that meant they were haphazardly throwing students into random, technology-themed classes in which we learned to use borderline-deprecated hardware and software. The one I remember best was that when I first started going to the school, I was put into a class where we used ClarisWorks, some Apple software from 1991 (this was in 1997). We were running it on computers that were even older. One of our minor projects toward the end of the class involved making a document that described what we had learned in the class and how we could apply it in the future. So I wrote an essay stating that the whole thing was a waste of time, that the computers we were using were already obsolete, and that I would never use ClarisWorks again. My teacher told me he thought that I was wrong (for some reason), but conceded that my little essay was well-written and gave me full marks for it. And then I never used ClarisWorks again. I mean, that was obvious, right? Anyway, the following year, in another one of these technology-themed classes, we used internet research for various projects. For me, this was an opportunity to mess around on the internet and look for stuff about Magic cards. I was still rather new to the game, owned few cards, and exploring showed me a lot of new things. While I was in this class, I discovered her... She was a 7/7, which seemed huge at the time. She could let me make as many creatures as I wanted. There was that gorgeous Ron Spencer art. And she was all five colors. I had to have her. Back then I didn't have much money for acquiring new cards and buying singles, while I'd seen them in the local game store and grasped the concept, was still kind of new to me. But it wasn't long before I was rocking a five-color slivers deck. I took to calling my Sliver Queen deck "SQ." At first, it was just a few slivers and all of the best cards in my collection that I could squeeze into one deck. Five-color good stuff. It seems like it is less prevalent now, or maybe it's somehow tied to youth, but back then, it was a common experience for new players to make a deck that just crammed in all the best cards, in all five colors, they happened to personally own. Somewhere, I saw the card Heartstone. I forget if I noticed the Sliver Queen + Heartstone + Ashnod's Altar interaction on my own or if I saw someone mention it on the internet. I was immediately sold on it. Infinite creatures? Such a thing was possible? I already had my precious Queens and, thanks to the glut of Chronicles cards foisted as bulk cards onto new players so they could pad out their collections, Ashnod's Altar was taken care of as well. But I didn't have a lot of Stronghold yet and owned no copies of Heartstone. Thematically, this makes sense. Finding a true heartstone is even harder than finding a true heart. So I got my mom to help me order them through eBay or somewhere. My first ever online purchase of Magic cards. And that's how I got my start as a combo player.