Hope you all in enjoy my silly little Halloween story…
“Hello peeps! I’m logging on bright and early today!” I write- then cross out that line, because it seems far chirpier than I truly feel in my pyjamas and under-caffeinated state. I sigh. My eyes flick over the screen of my wordpress cooking blog, The Hungry Dragon. It’s all grown a bit… stale. The ideas just aren’t coming like they used to. I wanted to share a whole load of seasonal baking recipes and fun posts for this October… but it just hasn’t happened. I guess I’ve lost my touch.
Still, I’m grateful to see the orange notifications sign ping for the first time in a while. Clicking, I see an avatar I don’t recognise.
Huh. Well, that’s an odd introduction, but it’s always good to make new friends!
I buzz back a reply: thanks, how so?
My fingers hesitate on the keyboard. Before I can reply, there is another line:
Okay, that’s too far. And not particularly funny. A little part of me wants to slam down on the keys and tell whoever this dolt is to piss off… though truthfully I know there would be little point. They could just create another profile and harass me that way. Swallowing my irritation, I log off and go to work. I’ve no time to deal with stupid internet trolls.
Slouching into my chair at 17:32, I’m not exactly in the mood for… wait what is that? “Activity seems high on your blog today”. No shit sherlock- there seems to be a new comment on every post… and all from the same (clearly hyperactive) troll.
My fingers twitch; my face heats. This has gone beyond a joke now. I wish I was genuinely a fire-breathing dragon, cos I’d take some serious pleasure in barbecuing this sod. Instead, I have to resort to my least-favourite blogging tool: the block button. I hit it with a teeth-grinding thud, hoping the jerk on the other side of the screen feels the force of it.
A new notification pops up almost immediately.
The gravatar’s grin seems to grow, laughing at me.
“This isn’t funny,” I splutter to myself.
“What do you want?!” I scream at the screen- even if it is not as if it can hear me.
I slam down my laptop lid. The pings keep coming. And coming. I want to swipe the thing to the floor, yet instead I curl in a ball and wait for the darkness to take over the room. The pings keep coming. Surely it cannot go on all night? I hug my knees into my chest and wait.
Darkness creeps around the room. A sullen silence has settled around my desk. I think it’s finally stopped- though I do not have the courage to go and check.
This is ridiculous, I chide myself. How can I be scared of my own computer? There has to be an explanation- and I’m not going to find it cowering in my room, afraid of my own LED screen. I will not go quietly. I am a dragon after all… well, in a manner of speaking.
I whip open my screen and click on write post before I can chicken out.
I hit post and open a new tab to google how exactly I can get this loser taken down. A new ping chimes in, as if on cue.
I finally breathe again.
My heart stutters; the screen flickers. Shadows appear in the reflected light. Squeezing my eyes shut, I try to block out the way my blog chimes with activity. The way the computer crackles with life. I just want to log off and shut down. Because this isn’t happening. This isn’t.
All the cables in my head have been fried, hearing rustles where there shouldn’t be and a subtle scythe-like slashing coming from… behind me. Shit.
I take one last gasping breath as the screen goes black. The pings- mercifully- have stopped. But then, so does everything else.