Disclaimer: My story, don't think anyone would want it. Sprung from a joke by my friend Lady Setsuna, and written with my beloved in mind. And yes, I am rather insane. :P

Feel like telling me that I'm nuts? Ok. rosmari.karlssonfaltin@telia.com

A TALE OF WOE

-------------------------------------

by Carola "Ryűchan" Eriksson

As my time is running out, I want to tell you of my fate. It is a strange and horrible tale, and I implore you to listen to it.

You see, I was a woman like any other of my generation. The times may have pushed me towards the computerized world in the beginning, but I became entranced with all the myriad kinds of computerized bliss.

My computer became more than a favourite tool - it was my sanctuary.

Through it I preformed my art of choice, found kindred spirits, made friends in places I would never visit myself.

It was also there that I found love.

Yes indeed, I met her there, she who would be the love of my life. Like mine was for me, her computer was to her the gate to her own personal world, and she carried a great deal of affection for her favoured tool. We thought nothing of it.

In the very beginning, while we were still friends and I naively did not see just how important this woman would be, how irreplaceably dear to me, she would laugh and profess her computer to be her only love.

We thought nothing of that, either.

The usual thing happened, or at least that's what I assume - girl met girl, got charmed out of her wits by the loveliest pair of eyes anywhere and a smile that could stop a heart from beating. Girl made an absolute fool out of herself before coming clean about how she felt, and was shocked nearly into a catatonic state when it turned out those feelings were reciprocated.

You know, the usual stuff.

My beloved's laptop started malfunctioning slightly, but as we spent more time together without the use of computers, we didn't think much about it. In fact I for one thought of very little in general, except for her.

Time passed, and we made a joke out of the fact that her laptop always malfunctioned when I was around.

But it wasn't a joke when she mused out loud about sending her laptop away for repairs or even buying a new one, when we were sitting in the couch together and I felt the cold blast of electrified air gust out from the drumming machine in my direction.

I rationalized it away, just as I then did with the numerous little electric zaps that I received during the next couple of days, until my love brought up the subject again.

The voltage that came arching out of that small machine was enough to knock me into the wall, and ended me up in hospital. There was no permanent damage so I was cleared to go home after a while, and the dreaded machine was unplugged and put away in a corner, repairs temporarily forgotten as my love doted on me.

That night as I turned in bed, moving to pull my arms tighter around her sleeping form, something called me to wake. There was a chilling sense of absolute terror prickling at the back of my neck and turning my stomach to ice... suddenly I was wide awake, but oh so afraid to turn around.

The gentle movement of her breathing galvanized me to turn and face the unknown horror behind us, and what met my eyes was a sight that is now imprinted on these eyelids and return to me every time I close my eyes.

The laptop was sitting there on the floor next to the bed, open and on. As I watched it, the horrible droning hum from it's slightly malfunctioning fan started up, and images sprung to life on the flat screen.

'MINE' it said, in large green letters... and a part of my mind could only say font Times New Roman, bold, size 72.

An image of my love appeared, then vanished.

'MINE'

Images of horrors started rolling across the small screen... of shark jaws and raging, frothing beasts. Of thunderbolts and instruments of torture. Of blood and screaming people.

'MINE' the screen said. And with the image of a charging lion on the screen, the laptop jumped towards me.

Make no mistake, laptops are small and mobile, with speed and agility in abundance for a form so rigid.

I closed my eyes and screamed in mindless terror, and consequently woke her up. Before I knew it, she had turned on the light and sat there holding me as I struggled to tell her of the horror next to our bed.

She looked, of course, but there was nothing there. The laptop was still in it's dark corner, and she smiled as she tried to gently tell me that it had just been a nightmare, a figment of my imagination spurred by the accident. Eventually I nodded my head, but in my heart I knew the truth.

I knew that thing was out to get me.

The following days all things electric in the apartment seemed determined to make me lose if not a limb, then at least a digit. The toaster tried to poke out my eye with a burning piece of toast, leaving me sans one eyebrow. The dishwasher threw knives at me, slicing into my shoulder and ruining my shirt. My shower scalded me in boiling water and my toothbrush tried to choke me.

Worst of all, whenever she wasn't in immediate sight, the laptop was there... snapping it's lid at me with a promise of menace, little blue arches trailing along it's sleek form. My love did not believe me when I told her what was happening, instead she worriedly drove me to the hospital again to check me for head injuries.

When we came home again, she solemnly carried the laptop down into our storage room in the basement in an attempt to soothe my fears.

Then it got worse.

The thing hunts me everywhere, even at work. It has the power to manipulate many other mechanical things, such as traffic lights - which I discovered as I very nearly got run over as all the lights turned from red to green with me in the middle of the road. Cars got smashed up, but I made it through in once piece somehow... and I saw the dark grey form slide into the shadows of an alley, another attempt foiled by a fool's luck.

When I am alone though, the thing doesn't bother to hide, but comes after me itself. Snapping it's lid with enough force to shatter bones and with the arches of electricity growing larger and longer all the time.

It has me cornered now, in this janitor's closet. The door is creaking already, and soon it will come in here and I have nowhere to run. I can hear it's humming and the snap of it's lid as it works angrily on the door to get to me. This is it.

I am going to be deleted without a backup copy.

Scrapped without being recycled.

My HD cleared out then thrown in the dumpster.

I struggle to jot down this horrible tale on the one machine that so far hasn't turned on me - my cell phone. If anyone receives this email, then please be warned by my gruesome fate...

Never come between a girl and her computer.

Return to the Academy