This post features a short story that I wrote way back in year 11, I am quite fond of it despite it’s odd concept. I am posting it today as I undertaking a creative writing class as an elective this semester and was seeking inspiration. Hope you enjoy!!!
CYBER GRAVE YARD
Ever sent a text message or an email to someone and then later when you ask if they got it been told “no…”? Ever wondered where all the sent-but-not-received-messages go? Well that is why I write this story, to tell you just that.
Here’s some background info for you’s so you can piece this thing together.
My name is Sebastian Hawkens, I am 11 years old and the youngest of four, only all my other siblings are girls so I kinda feel like I fade away a bit, because everything in my house is well, …pink. But that’s not really important, now where was I? Oh yeah. When I grow up I’m gonna be a kick ass reporter, I’ve wanted to be since forever only mum says I’ll have to improve my English but who listens to mums?
So, anyway, my story; this morning I was sitting on my bed looking out my window just thinking about stuff. My two best friends; Tom and Tia, twins from next door were playing scrabble on the floor. Tia was winning as always, so Tom decided he was bored which he always does when he’s losing a game.
“This is boring” Tom declared, “Seb, let’s do something” he continued to whine.
I suggested we go on an adventure, the others agreed but none of us had any exciting ideas. It was at that precise moment that my older sister Angela started muttering incoherently as she walked passed my door out in the hallway.
“What’s wrong with her?” Tia asked.
“How would Seb know” Tom said as though Tia were stupid.
That was when my idea struck me, maybe whatever Angela was muttering about could become our adventure. Turned out I was right!
“Hey Ang” I called to her retreating back as I ducked my head out my door.
“Oh hey Seb” she said yanking her ipod head phones from her ears “what’s up?” she asked.
“Well that’s what I was wondering” I said with what I hoped was an intelligent smile, but I think may have come off a bit sheepish.
“Nothing really” Ang mumbled “just Jason isn’t getting my texts or emails or anything” she continued sadly. Jason was Ang’s boyfriend, they’d been together for almost three years and he was currently studying in America. I knew that Ang missed him a lot.
“Awww, nah, I’m sure he’s just really busy” I, tried to sound sympathetic even though I knew that Jason would never ever be too busy to reply to Ang. But I couldn’t focus, so many thoughts were catapulting around the inside of my brain, so many ideas and un answered questions! I tried to console Ang by saying I’m sure it would all work out, but I don’t think she really believed me. Anyhow she went into her room to dwell on the situation while I practically burst with what I had just learned.
“So, we’re going on a missing message hunt?” Tom questioned looking somewhat confused.
“kinda” I replied trying to be patient “well, come on think about it, all these texts and emails and stuff that are sent but no one ever gets, they must go somewhere, we just have to work out where!”
“And how are meant to do that?” Tom muttered sarcastically.
“The tip, we need to go to the tip” Tia piped up in her sing song voice.
A few hours later we found ourselves scrabbling through the towns old junk, there was everything from rusty cars to teddy bears. Tia had brought a big garbage bag, she kept throwing things in it like old mobiles and computer parts.
A short hike from the tip was our cubby; it’s like our hideout when we don’t want our parents to find out about our adventures. It’s a pretty cool little hut, halfway up a tree. The twin’s dad made it, the outside is painted greens and browns to blend in with the environment. Inside is awesome, we have a mini-fridge and a bookshelf, we even have a phone for emergencies.
Once we’d clambered up the tree dragging all the old crap Tia had collected from the tip with us we started on our mission. Tia is really smart and she hooked up the old machine bits into each other, the last thing she connected to her old computer-and-phone-part circuit was an incredibly ancient mobile phone which more resembled a brick. She turned it on, and we watched in astonishment as the little screen flashed with brilliant colour, much to new for the age of the phone.
“Come here” she said gesturing for Tom and I to stand on either side of her. Out of her pocket Tia pulled a slip of scrunched paper, on it scribbled in a child’s writing was a mobile number.
0417 2559 84
“What’s that?” Tom wondered aloud.
“It’s daddy’s old number” Tia said.
“but that one doesn’t work anymore” Tom said knowingly.
“I know” Tia replied absent mindedly “Just watch” she added as an afterthought.
As she spoke Tia had been typing a text to the number of her dad’s old phone. It said “take us with you, won’t you please, whether it be out of this world, over the trees or under the seas”
“Why does it rhyme?” Tom murmured “sounds stupid”.
“No… look” I said in awe. In the middle of the circuit of wires and things there was like a hole, a great big tear in… in nothing at all, as though the air itself had ripped open.
“Follow me” Tia sang excitedly as she jumped into the hole before we could stop her.
“Like we have a choice” Tom grumbled.
Inside the portal (I spose that’s what you’d call it) the air rushed passed our faces, we seemed to be falling without actually moving. It was taking forever yet no time at all. After only a second the weird sensation subsided and we found that we were standing in front of a tall wrought iron gate.
“WHO GOES THERE?” a booming voice called from all around us.
Tia looked at me and Tom, but none of us said anything.
“WELL?…” the voice asked again.
“Um” I squeaked, “I’m Sebastian and this is Tia and Tom” I shakily indicated Tom and Tia as I introduced them.
“AND WHAT BRINGS YOU HERE TOM, TIA AND SEBASTIAN?” the voice queried.
“ah… we’re looking for something, but we’re not quite sure what..” I ushered vaguely.
“Who are you?” a softer, much higher voice peeped from behind us.
“Um…” I choked out again turning in shock to see a very old and frail looking man standing contemplating us with wise eyes.
“Oh never mind” he chuckled, “now, come on you three, follow me”
Looking at each other again we all shrugged our shoulders and followed the weird old guy. We later learned that the old man called himself Leigh. Leigh lead us to his little cottage, it looked very similar to ours except that it appeared to glitter.
After a while we started to trust little old Leigh, he was wacky and fun. Just one of those people you knew was good. He gave us tea and biscuits and introduced himself; though he spoke so much we barely got a word in. he didn’t even pause to give us time to answer his questions which he shot at us like bullets.
Though Leigh talked us half to death we discovered a great deal from him. For example we were the first to enter the portal. Where we’d ended up was a kinda parallel universe. The booming voice we’d heard outside was a means to ward off bad guys and trogen horses who carried viruses.
Finally, Leigh stopped shooting round after round of endless questions and looked up at us over his cup of tea. “So, what inspired you to make a portal in the first place?”
This time he did wait for an answer.
“Ahh…” I spoke softly unsure of what to say.
“We’re on an adventure” Tia said hurriedly not sure whether she should be so honest. Tom obviously thought not as he stepped on her foot under the table.
“No, no” Leigh chuckled to himself again seemingly entertained. “Let the girl speak”
Tia blushed slightly but refused to say any more.
“Well, we’re trying to find out where all the un received texts and that go” I said figuring there was no point hiding anything from him, he seemed to be our only hope of getting home again.
“Is that so my boy?” he looked at me quizzically. “righteo, I had better show you all something so as I can send you safely back home again” he chortled, jumping out of his seat.
This time Leigh led us to the other side of town. Again it looked like our city from earth, well you know if we weren’t still on earth. But there were two main differences; one there appeared to be no traffic or anyone about and two, everything sparkled, the same mysterious glittering-shimmer that had surrounded Leigh’s cottage.
We arrived at our destination slightly puffed as we had to climb a small hill. Infront of us lay, what I thought at first glance was a grave yard, but looking closer I noticed the tomb stones weren’t really stones at all, but more grey cement box like contraptions. The place glowed more eerily than the rest of the city and a sign hanging from a post a few meters from where we stood read Cyber Grave Yard.
“Wow, what is this place?” Tom asked in awe, for once not complaining.
“This” Leigh said, his eyes twinkling again “Is our little cities power source and what you have come looking for”
“You mean…” I uttered, beginning to understand “that this is where all Ang’s texts to Jason would be?”
“As well as all the other messages not received” Tia added, “that’s why everything sort of glitters isn’t it?” she asked Leigh.
“That’s my girl” Leigh said. “on the ball”
“But how?” I asked.
“Why?” Tom parroted apparently in shock.
“The stones” Leigh gestured to the tombstone thingos “are actually cyber traps, they’re connected to cyber space and act as a sort of vacuum I suppose, whenever there is a delay in a message or a cue or traffic is heavy, they will suck a few out and trap them here, that is why sometimes you find you don’t receive only one message. From here they go up those wires” he was now pointing to wires not unlike power lines running back down the hill and criss-crossing all over the city “and feed into the buildings, in your world you have electricity, here we use lost words” Leigh explained making the whole thing sound rather simple.
“Is there any way to retrieve them?” inquired Tia who had nodded along to every word.
“No, once sucked from cyber space the messages become incomprehensible, there is no way to convert them back again, that’s why we say ‘Lost words’ also that is why you should never assume internet messaging has reached its target” Leigh said in his chuckle.
For a while we just stood there, all looking dumbstruck. Till at last Leigh said “well, it’s time you munchkins got home”
After that we’re not quite sure what happened, but we were back in our cubby. Tia’s old computer-and-phone-part circuit on the floor scattered around our feet.
“That’s got to be our best adventure yet” I said looking at the others with enthusiasm.
“Still don’t like them” Tom said, back to his whining self.
“It was really interesting” Tia alleged “but we should be getting back for tea”
Tia was right, outside it was almost dark. We walked back to our houses in silence, each lost in our thoughts.
“I hope Jason calls tonight, Ang looked really sad” Tia said before we parted for the night.
“Yeah, me too” I agreed.
“Will we go on another adventure tomorrow?” Tom asked skeptically.
“We’ll see” I said, hoping that my eyes twinkled the same way Leigh’s had. Tia just smiled and Tom looked glum.
So, until next time; this is reporter Sebastian. Goodnight.