October 22, 2013
Guest post | An updated urban legend from Wes, a.k.a. The Gentleman Gamer
I'd like to ask you all to welcome Wes (a.k.a TGG), gaming news extraordinaire, who brings us today's guest post. Thanks so much for doing this, Wes!
It was a calm, autumn night, and Paige was sitting alone on the couch in her living room. Her parents were gone for the evening, and with no younger siblings to babysit, Paige had the house to herself. Where most teenage girls might invite their friends over to watch movies or talk about boys or make cookies or whatever teenage girls do, Paige didn’t feel the need to do any of those things. Why go through the inconvenience of seeing people when they were already pretty much hanging out all the time through their phones anyway? Not to mention the fact that most of her best friends Paige only knew online. No, Paige would much rather sit in her comfortable house alone in the quiet and be digitally social.
She was all settled in with some snacks and her bottle of Starbucks brand Mocha Frappucino (there was a Starbucks a mile from her house, but that would require a trip out and the bottles were almost just as good) and Netflix was all queued up for a serious Supernatural marathon. Her phone was next to her on the couch for ease of access in case she needed to quickly tweet something about Dean’s adorable dimples or Sam’s flowing hair (which she undoubtedly would). In her lap was a pile of yellow and orange yarn with a half-knit Jayne hat sitting on top that she was determined to finish now that it was finally hat weather. She pressed play and picked up her needles.
Paige was already through the first episode in her personal best-of-Supernatural marathon (episode 615: “The French Mistake”) and was ready to start the second (episode 509: “The Real Ghostbusters”) when her phone lit up. It was a tweet, which wasn’t unusual—she’d sent and received about 20 over the last 45 minutes—but this one was from someone she didn’t know.
“Oh, gross,” she said and immediately blocked the account. She put the phone down and turned back to the TV, but before the episode had even finished buffering her phone lit up again.
Paige’s first instinct was to block this new account which was clearly the same person, but watching Sam and Dean take on the forces of evil always got her blood up and she was feeling a bit confrontational.
She stared at the screen for a minute or two, but when no response came, she put her phone down and turned back to the episode. The boys were just getting to the hotel—she loved the look on Dean’s face when he saw all of those Impalas—when suddenly her phone lit up again.
Paige could feel goosebumps on her arms and her blood ran cold as her heart sped up. She looked around the room and began to regret leaving it so dark even though she thought it fit the mood of the show at the time. After a minute of wondering if she should call someone, she checked her Facebook and realized she had left the Netflix sharing feature on. Those tweets were probably just one of her friends playing a joke on her after they saw what she was watching. She relaxed some, but she still couldn’t totally shake the creepy feeling so she got up to turn on a light. When she sat back down she decided to take the high road and ignore the tweets. She thought she might know who it was and not responding would probably drive them up the wall, which was revenge enough, so Paige sat back down and went back to knitting and watching the Winchesters put spirits to rest.
Paige had made it a point to avoid using her phone after the last tweet so she had almost forgotten about it by the time she started episode three of her marathon (episode 418: “The Monster at the End of This Book”), but just as she was getting into the episode her screen lit up again.
Paige read the tweet and then looked around nervously. She was still sure it was a friend playing a trick, but she couldn’t help but feel like someone was watching. Her phone buzzed in her hand and it surprised her so much she nearly dropped it.
That was too far for her. Paige’s fear had started to turn to anger and she hammered out a reply.
She waited only a few seconds for the message to go through before blocking the account and practically throwing her phone down onto the couch.
The screen lit up almost immediately.
Paige looked at it in disbelief. She was positive she had blocked that account.
Paige felt a new surge of horror at the message, but it was the thing at the bottom of the tweet that held her eyes. In the location section of the message were GPS coordinates. She quickly copied them into her Google Maps app and was frozen with fear when it showed her exactly what she had been afraid of. He was tweeting from inside the house.
She pushed her fear aside with a large helping of adrenaline and slowly stood up from the couch, ready to bolt in a second. She would have already been gone, but she wasn’t sure where he was, so she stayed where she was and began to dial the police.
"911, what’s your emergency?"
"Yes, hello," She was trembling and her voice was shaky. "My name is Paige Roberts. I live at 308 Black Creek Lane. and I think there’s someone in my house."
"OK, are you in the house now?"
"Alright, I need you to stay on the line and get out as quickly and safely—" The voice cut out and it took Paige a second to realize what had happened. She looked at her phone and her heart dropped when she saw her usually full signal had been reduced to nothing. She frantically dialed 911 again, but no matter what she did, she couldn’t get through. Something was blocking the signal. She immediately thought to send out a message over the Internet when she noticed the Wi-Fi was down as well. She was completely cut off and needed to get out now.
She reached down and grabbed the closest thing to a weapon she could find—one of the size 10.5 bamboo double pointed needles she had been working on her Jayne hat with—and gripped it tightly in her right hand. She reasoned if this person was still in the house she only had to make it to the front door and she might be OK. Paige took a deep breath counted to three and then ran. She was out of the room, past the kitchen and almost to the door when she heard a noise behind her. She turned as she hit the door just in time to see a black shape flying down at her from the top of the stairs. Something bright flashed past her head as she ducked and she heard a thunk as a knife stuck deep into the wood of her front door.
Instinct took over and all she knew was she had to make it out of the house any way that she could. Paige swung hard at the figure that was still struggling to free the knife and her knitting needle stuck deep in something before snapping off in her hand. She hardly had time to feel surprised as the figure screamed and fell backward clutching at the area she imagined to be its neck. Paige wrenched open the door and ran out into the crisp night air where she was met with police sirens screaming toward her down the street. Everything after was a blur.
Later someone told her the man who had attacked her had done this to three other girls and none of them had gotten away. They had been chasing him for almost a year with no luck and she had been very brave and also very lucky. She was just happy to be alive, but also pretty proud of herself for not buckling under the stress. They told her they would be calling on her to testify and she said that would be fine. She was ready to put him away for life.
A few weeks went by and life had finally started to settle back down when she received a package in the mail. It was a new pack of knitting needles just like the one she had used that night. The note in the package read, "To replace what you broke," with no signature at the bottom. She didn’t recognize the handwriting but she assumed it was from one of her knitting friends who understood the pain of a broken needle. She was still holding the package when her phone rang.
"Hi, Paige. This is Detective Jones."
"Oh, hi, Detective. How are you?"
"I’m fine Paige. Listen, I don’t want to alarm you, but I’m calling to let you know that the man that attacked you has gone missing." Paige felt the blood drain from her face. "Now, we have no reason to believe you’re in danger, but as a precaution …" She hardly heard anything else he said as she lowered the phone from her ear. She looked again at the knitting needles in her hand and that’s when she saw the notification flashing, "One new tweet," on her phone's screen.