The Game

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Chapter 5: Text Messages

We all sat in the living room waiting for How. He called us all in here, you’d think he’d be here first. I sat on the floor leaning my back against the couch where Alice laid. She still seemed steam. If anyone should be mad it should be me. She electrocuted me! I think I should be mad at that. Or is that culture here? No, it’s just crazy, that’s it.

Eve sat with her legs crossed in the center of the opposite couch playing on her phone with a serious appearance.

We all sat in silence with nothing really to say. I don’t know anything to say and Eve’s having some break down on her phone and well, Alice, I don’t really want to hear what she has to say right now.

How entered the room carrying a white board and a red marker. The white board was large and awkward in his hands. He seemed to be having trouble holding on to the thing. How dragged the board over to his white chair setting it on his lap as he too sat in a crossed leg position. He still wasn’t wearing a shirt.

“Evette what does the message say?” How asked.

“Umm, congratulation Blank and Hacker for discovering the first step in uncovering my set clues. What you do next is up to you. I will leave you with this small hint- You guys are going to have to read this.”

Eve handed us the phone with the message in full screen.

Lif3 (n’t (ontinu3 with0u+ 3ch o+h3r

“Life can’t continue without each other?” I questioned, “What kind of hint is that?”

“Maybe he means we have to stick together,” Eve suggested.

“Or it’s being sarcastic, maybe, this Blank here is the cause. I bet he’s just been sent to kill us,” Alice growled kicking the back of my head.

“What’s that supposed to mean?” I snapped rubbing the back of my skull.

“How else do you explain not having a phone?”

“That doesn’t mean anything,” I barked. Our faces were locked in an unsettling glare. Her eyes stared me down but, I will not back off.

“How are we supposed to know? Maybe you’re a glitch in the programming.”

“Maybe you are and you’re just putting blame on me,” I suggested smugly. I am not a glitch. I am a person not a program.

“Maybe you’re the killer himself. I mean it makes sense, you’ve been here a few hours and already you’re discovering clues? Seems suspicious,” Alice smirked.

“It was an accident and I used your weapon to do it anyway,” I yelled.

“Hmm,” How groaned breaking our argument. “Notice how all the e’s are threes and the symbols take the place of c’s, o’s and t’s? Doesn’t that strike you as odd?”

He moved the pen across the white board writing down the misplaced letters and symbols down as they appear.

3(a(0+3a)+3

Math? Really?

“If we simplify the equation, we get,” How began as he wrote.

(9a^2)+3

“That doesn’t really give us anything,” Eve pointed out.

“We need to find the missing variable or just keep guessing until something happens but, that’s really annoying,” Alice huffed.

Did everyone just forget that happened?

“Agreed,” How added. “We can’t just go around looking though. With a new message there’s a high chance of becoming targets. Running around crazy would only increase our chances of being killed.”

Apparently so.

“I’ll have a plan come breakfast until then, Alice we may need new equipment. Last time I found a clue we lost the Tracker. Eve use the information from the last power box we found to see if you can get a visual of where you got the message. John is it? Help Alice if she needs anything and try to remember everything about what you saw,” How ordered standing from the chair pulling the white board with him.

Eve was the first to leave leaving Alice and me alone. Alice smirked with a slight laugh that sent a chill up my spine.

Great I get the insane fixer upper.

“So partner or should I say, conejillo de indias,” she laughed.

“What?” I questioned a little bit afraid of her voice.

“How about you just go to sleep for a little bit, I’ll call you when I’m ready,” Alice smiled ending her creepy giggle.

“Should I be afraid?”

“I don’t know? Should you?”

I’m pretty sure I should be. But, I’ll just be quiet instead. God, she’s nuts.

I walked silently away without a single word against the Hispanic, who was already thinking of ideas to hurt me with. Why did How put me with her? Actually, why are we even listening to How? I mean he is the first rank player, then again, he’s been here the longest. He still hasn’t found anything. How wants us to wait and wait and wait. I don’t want to wait. I want to know who I am and who the Game Maker is. Is it so wrong to want to live? He has four months left, why doesn’t he hurry? Does he just plan to die letting his plans go with him? Damn it! I’ve only been here a few hours and already I’m trying to break the system.

I just need sleep, I need to see nothing but, black and just stay silent. That’s right just keep your mouth shut.

I walked into the house and up the stairs into the junk room for sleep. Maybe, they won’t keep me up now. My eyes closed as I nestled into the rubble. I feel like a rat, I’ll have to clean this won’t I?

My body relaxed to the best of my abilities before falling into a nothingness that was close to sleep but, not quite. Just enough to be considered sleep but, not enough to fully knock out my senses. I could hear the unfamiliar sounds of the home echoing through the day. I do not know these creeks or this bumps and slams. The sounds of madness rambled in my head as I listened to the noises unknown to me.

What should I do? I want to survive this game, I really do, but, I’m not useful like them. I’m not smart like How, I’m not an inventor like crazy, I mean Alice, and I don’t know technology like Eve. I’m just blank. Why do I feel so sorry for myself? It’s just like I said before, I can be anything I just have to choose. I decide who I am and The Cellphone Killer can’t take that from me. I’m not a program you can’t just rewrite me no matter how hard you try. Got that Alice?

Why am I thinking like this? Do I honestly know how to think? Are these dangerous thoughts? Maybe, but, maybe not. I don’t know.

I need to stop thinking so much. I just need to go to sleep. Sleep, yeah, I’m going to need that if I’m going to be working with Alice today. I wonder what she said. I’m sure it’s not good for me.

My body finally began to slip into unconsciousness. The distraction of thought left me as I fell into the abyss the darkness.

My first night here and already my life is being turned upside down, I think, to be fair my life could have been a lot more insane than this. As far as I know…


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