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When Falcon began typing, his hands moved so rapidly they seemed to blur.

‘I’m not sure where to begin or how to explain it, really. It all started when I got away from some people who wanted to kill me.’

Angelina’s eyes grew wide.

‘Dominic, Jessica, and Melanie helped me when I needed it most and everything was perfect for a while.’

Well, almost perfect. I’d had to leave my brothers behind when I ran away and I missed them badly.’

‘Someone saw me, one of the bad people who wanted me dead. He followed me for a few weeks but never tried anything. Finally Dominic approached him and we didn’t see him again for a while.’

‘After that, I got scared. I told my friends what was going on and Dominic decided we would go help my brothers. I was worried about the timing, about going so soon after they’d sent someone to follow me but I was more worried someone would hurt my brothers as a way of getting information and tracking me down.’

‘Everything went wrong. They discovered us before we could even get to my brothers and we ran. We decided it would be better if I went somewhere far away, where it would be harder to track me down. Dominic said this would be the best place for me.’

Naomi held up a hand, and Falcon stopped typing. She typed ‘My apartment?’

Falcon shook his head no, and then continued typing.

‘Your city. I told Dominic I wasn’t used to being alone and he wanted me to have someone. He remembered meeting you and he remembered you said you went to university in Charlotte.

He said someone else from the Fishbowl forums was nearby too. A girl who’s here for an internship. He thought the two of you could help me the way Dominic, Melanie, and Jessica did.’

The computer dinged with a message from Angelina. ‘so u want people to help u by being ur friends! awwwww! i’ll be your friend falcon!!’

Naomi began to wish Dominic had sent Falcon to Angelina instead of her. Angelina probably would have welcomed a total stranger into her house without a second thought and would have even been excited to have him there. Naomi, on the other hand, had about a hundred questions and concerns.

She decided to put one of these concerns into words and typed ‘You said people were trying to kill you. Are we in any danger by helping you?’

No,’ he signed.

‘Sorry, but just ‘no’ isn’t good enough for me. Can you elaborate?’ she typed.

‘No,’ he typed, ‘but I promise you it’s only me they’re after. Me and my brothers. I can guarantee they won’t hurt any of you and Dominic will tell you the same.’

‘All you did was restate ‘no’ and use more words. You say these people are willing to kill you. What’s to stop them from killing me or anyone else?’ Naomi typed.

‘They won’t. That’s all I can say.’ he typed.

Angelina smiled as she sent another message. ‘this is confirming my werewolf theory. they r werewolf hunters and they won’t hurt us bc we r human!’

Naomi directed a stern look into the webcam as she typed her reply. ‘Angelina, please be serious. If what he’s saying is true, it’s nothing to joke about.’

Angelina furrowed her brow and cast her large brown eyes downward. ‘im so sorry falcon. i know u r scared and i will try to be more serious.’

Falcon smiled. ‘It’s alright. I like your werewolf theory.’

‘so r u confirming then?’

‘No, not confirming anything.’ he typed.

The mischievous smile returned to Angelina’s face. ‘but not denying either’

‘I wish I was a werewolf,he typed. ‘It’s far better than what I actually am.’

‘And what is that, exactly?’ Naomi typed.

Angelina held her arm in front of her, mimicking a vampire wrapping a cloak around its body. ‘so what r u? r u VAMPIRE??’

Falcon laughed and shook his head. Then he glanced from Naomi to Angelina’s image in the video chat and his face fell serious. He paused for several seconds with his hands resting on the keyboard, then he begin typing.

‘I’m not a werewolf, a vampire, or a mysterious spy. I’m just a scared, confused guy who misses his friends and doesn’t know where to turn.’



Chelsea shifted in her uncomfortable chair, trying her best to look interested as Mr. Clyde droned on about something pointless.

An overly eager marketing intern beside Chelsea raised her hand and Mr. Clyde pointed at her and said, “Yes, dear?”

The girl glanced at the notepad in her lap, then read off a question she’d written. “Where do you see the future of the packaging industry headed?”

“The future of the packaging industry?” Mr. Clyde frowned and the girl’s face fell. “No, no, no, no, dear. It might be called ‘Clyde Packaging Solutions’, but don’t be fooled. This isn’t a packaging company. We may sell packaging solutions but first and foremost this is a company about people…”

Chelsea let herself gaze out the window as Mr. Clyde continued his meaningless patter. He spoke painfully slowly, often pausing at random in the middle of sentences, and his Southern drawl made his speech feel even slower.

Chelsea shifted her wrist, trying to subtly catch a glimpse of her watch. 4:04 PM. She and the other interns had been listening to this guy prattle on for just over two hours, and her chair was starting to hurt her lower back and thighs every time she changed position.

‘I guess the more rich and powerful you are, the longer you can get people to sit still and listen to complete nonsense,’ she thought.

She felt her phone buzz in her pocket, but she left it alone. As boring as this guy was she didn’t want to be rude, and she certainly didn’t want to get in trouble after she’d traveled over 700 miles for this internship. Instead, she gazed past Mr. Clyde out the floor-to-ceiling window at the pond and fountain outside.

She’d applied for the Clyde Packaging Solutions internship in the Brampton office, much closer to her home in Toronto, but they’d told her there was no IT presence there and she’d be much happier in their Charlotte office. They’d offered decent pay and a living stipend, along with promises of ‘valuable experience’ and ‘state-of-the-art training’, so she’d packed up for the summer and moved to a whole different country. Well, it was only the States, but still.

So far, the ‘state-of-the-art training’ had consisted of dull speeches like the one she was enduring now, and the most IT-related work she’d done was editing a slideshow presentation for her boss about “the three building blocks of technology”, whatever those were. She and the other out-of-state interns had yet to receive their promised living stipends, and while the city itself was nice, North Carolina in June was unbearably hot. The only good thing about coming here was that she was able to hang out with Naomi.

Mr. Clyde clapped his hands, interrupting Chelsea from her thoughts. He sat down in a chair that looked much cushier than the ones the interns were sitting in, and a woman wearing a pencil skirt and heels that looked too high for the office took his place at the podium.

“Thank you, Mr. Clyde, for coming all the way from Georgia to speak with us today,” she said, sounding as bored as Chelsea felt. “Everyone, please give a round of applause to our president and CEO, William J. Clyde.”

“Thank you kindly,” he said as the interns applauded politely.

Chelsea waited a moment after the woman dismissed the interns, then stood up. Once she was out of the training room, she ducked into an empty hallway, pulled her phone out of her pocket, and flipped it open. She had two new instant messages from Naomi.

“Hey, C. Can you come over as soon as you can?”

“No rush, I know you’re at work but something kind of weird is going on and I don’t know what to do.”

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One thought on “1.3

  1. Mysterious story why would ‘they’ want to kill him hmmm

    And Chelsea is having the time of her life obviously you can tell by the bordom

    I’ve been to Charlotte beautiful city and University lovely place 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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