16-year-old World of Warcraft youth absconds with cougar 'soulmate'

We, as members of the video game blogging community, would like to take a moment to thank Blizzard for creating World of Warcraft. Not for making the world's most popular MMO, as you may imagine; rather, for making possible bizarre stories like this one, which could only exist in a post-WoW world:

When a 16-year-old boy, of Ontario, Canada, asked his parents to drive him to a hotel to meet the 42-year-old mother of four he'd developed a relationship with inside WoW, they understandably balked. The kid nevertheless absconded in the middle of the night, prompting his parents to discover a wealth of chat logs that detailed the nature of the relationship. "He said she was his soulmate," his mother told The Globe and Mail.

Now, before you worry about the outcome of the young lad's safety, know that he was found two days later in a Future Shop with Ms. Price -- the cougar in this sordid tale -- who "will not face criminal charges," thanks to Canada's age of consent: 16. "Neither the teen or Ms. Price expressed any remorse," said a local police sergeant.

Unsurprisingly, the boy has had problems with computer addiction (specifically WoW), while Price's Facebook page "reveals a middle-aged woman with a large collection of friends -- many made online," the Globe and Mail notes. And while this situation ended safely (albeit, not happily ever after for the soulmates), we'll take this opportunity to remind everyone to be cautious when talking with strangers online. Especially if they graduated college before you were born.

Update: Well, scratch that whole "not face criminal charges" thing. The CBC reports that Price was arrested upon her return to Texas, where the age of consent is 17. She's being charged with "two counts of online solicitation of a minor and one count of child enticement." Bail is set at $310,000.

[Via WoW.com]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.