Prologue : The Eulogy
I have no idea how long I have been asleep, or how I end up sleeping here in the first place. The scorching sun above my head slowly roasts me alive. My head hurts terribly. I'm either suffering from heatstroke or hangover. Maybe both. Unconsciously, I bite my lips.
The weather is probably too hot and I'm badly dehydrated, I can taste the metallic iron in my blood as I lick my chapped, dry lips. My whole body ache, it feels like that one time where I stupidly join a long-distance marathon without undergoing training just because I lost a bet.
I support myself with my arm as I adjust my position to sit down instead. I look around me, half asleep and half confused. This is not my bedroom. Am I inside a dream?
Once in a while, I have the tendencies of experiencing vivid dreams, and my dreams always take me to different places and different adventures each night. Sure, it almost feels like a vivid dream, but this time its too realistic. My instinct tells me that its different this time.
I look on the ground where I was sitting. A field of flowers surrounds me as butterflies fly around gathering nectars from one bud to another. The warm wind caresses my cheeks, blowing gently and sweep my long silver-white hair.
'Oh, wait! Why do I have a silver-white hair?? I remember its still dark brown last night. Did I dye my hair last night when I was drunk? Did I stupidly get a tattoo too?'
I check my arms, my chest, my legs – Wherever my eyes can see. Thankfully, I didn't make any poor choices last night. I hope so… I can't see my back. I'm still in my pink, polka dot pajamas and bunny slippers that I wear to sleep last night. What happened last night? Out of habit, I start scratching my head.
'Oh shit! What is this fluffy thing on my head??'
A headband? I try to pull it off.
'Ouch! It hurts!'
I touch my head a few times more.
'Why does it feels like ears? I have soft, fluffy ears on my head?" Hmmm.. Why does it feel so comfortable when I rub it? Oh shit! Lumi, stop rubbing the fluffy thing on your head!'
I turn around and touch my bottom. Thank god, at least no goddamn tail.
'What happened? Where am I? How did I grow fluffy ears overnight?'
Let's recount back what happened last night.
It was Friday night and I was out drinking with my friends. I drink too much liquor and barely make it home. I greet the rubbish bin near the elevator and cry when I can't find my apartment's key, only to realize later that my apartment uses a digital iris recognition system to unlock. I take a hot shower and was about to go to sleep when my colleague, Ted, called and urged me to check the server for our online gaming portal. He sounds a bit panic and keeps on saying that we have been hacked and millions of players are getting pissed off and start calling the support team. Half annoyed and half-drunk, I turn on my computer and check the database that I have been working on since last year. Irritated by the constant message notifications on my phone, I bang my head hard on the keyboard. That's it. When I wake up, I was sleeping in the middle of nowhere.
This is why you don't make people work overtime on Friday's night.
There are two probabilities that lead me here in the middle of nowhere.
One, I bang my head too hard and end up in a coma state, thus my soul is now traveling in the astral plane.
Second, the angry players break into my apartment last night and throw me far, far away.
Both reasons seem highly plausible.
My head hurts. My whole body hurts. I look around and saw a peach tree not far from me. I decided to walk over and sit down, my body leaning against the tree. It's a perfect place to laze around. A ripen peach fruit fall on my head, I pick it up and start munching. It tastes exceptionally good. Blue sky, colorful flowers, green trees – it's just a perfect day for a picnic.
'Oh well, I guess I should just spend my Saturday lazing around in the middle of nowhere. I will just wait until someone passed by… Or until my colleague noticed me missing and filed a missing person file. It should be soon enough. They won't be able to find someone to fix the program immediately. Then they will surely notice that I'm gone.'
The wind blows softly onto my face, and soon I fall into a deep slumber.
When I wake up again, it was already night time. The blue sky turns dark, millions of stars shining above my head. This place is for sure far away from civilization and far from light pollutions. Fireflies dancing around me – This is no doubt an extremely romantic night for lovers, and I will be smiling from ear to ear if it's not for the fact that I'm alone in the middle of nowhere, in the cold, dark night!
The sound of wolfs howling sends chills down to my spine. Is this it? Will my dull existence end in this pitiful way? Will I end up being eaten by the wild beast? I know that I have been complaining a lot that my life is too meaningless and plain, and I have been threatening my manager that I will resign my job and live a nomad life backpacking around the world.
And yet, I haven't even successfully accomplish my plan, and my poor existence has come to its end? What will happen to my lifetime saving that I have been working so hard to keep?
A sense of regret filled my chest. I shouldn't live a frugal life, nor should I laze around this afternoon.
Goodbye Teddy, take good care of the system.
Goodbye pork chop, thank you for always being with me when I needed you most.
Thank you instant noodle, for accompanying me almost every night.