Frozen in Line 1: New Message

Anthony set his mug of coffee next to his computer. The shield on the left side of the cup holder would save from any accidental spills. The wheels of his chair shook when he plopped into his seat. Coffee steam rose like smoke from a chimney against the snowy sky. Anthony cracked his fingers and logged into his computer. A new message appeared on the startup screen.

            You have received new messages (25). 

            Anthony groaned.

            “And how much of you will be trash?”

            You know what, ignore it. Work on something else first. Anthony opened his most recent document and read over the blog entry for the day. The list of unknown Pokémon Yellow Version hacks was both fun and nostalgic. It even made him itch to go buy the game. But he would have to wait until the weekend, which by then Anthony would forget the nostalgic craving. Another new message notification appeared. Who would send me a message at two in the morning? But Anthony had subscribers across the world. Another notification appeared.

            “Okay, fine!”

            Anthony yelled at his computer. A thud came from upstairs followed by three solid pounds and a courteous shut up. No expletive this time, interesting. Anthony opened his email box and saw that all twenty-seven messages came from the same sender. 

            Unknown Sender                                                           Subject: Incomplete Mt. Everest List

            Another message appeared. Anthony swore and clicked on the most recent email. The second he clicked the message, he worried he’d just fallen for a phishing scam. The anti-viral software ran its scan before the email opened and gave the green check mark. 

            Dear Anthony,

            I am a long-time enjoyer of your writing. I find this list and it seems incomplete. Would you see into it for me? 

            “If that isn’t a virus link…”

            Anthony saw the end tags on the link and it would send him to an online page for Mt. Everest. Instead of clicking the link, Anthony searched it for himself and found the website. On it, a list of everyone who’d died climbing Mt. Everest and, at the bottom, a hyperlinked text.

This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.

            Then Anthony noticed the attachment, and against his better judgement, he opened the file. It revealed a flier with a missing person on the front. A black-haired, white male, who the flier claimed as being 21, in a Donavon’s University Hoodie. Anthony dug further into the social media profile and searched through others and confirmed Donnie’s disappearance. Did he want to go to Donavon’s University because his name was Donnie? Though the research proved that Donnie’s legal name was Donald. Donnie was a childhood nickname.             

The messages stopped coming through the minute he opened the email. The twenty-five messages started at 1:35 AM and sent every minute. Three already? Anthony took a sip of cold coffee and fought the urge to spit it out. A ticking sound appeared, but Anthony didn’t have any analogue clocks in his room. Must be time for my before school nap. Anthony tried to respond to the email, but without the sender, he couldn’t confirm his interest in the matter. With weary annoyance, Anthony went to bed with the ticking pacing his dreams.

Next Episode

2 thoughts on “Frozen in Line 1: New Message

  1. Pingback: Frozen in Line 2: Family Matters – Myers Fiction

  2. Pingback: Myers Fiction July Newsletter – Myers Fiction

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