Written by Silver
The computer cursor stood blinking at the end of the ‘o’. It repeated its customary welcome on a new line; indented and double-spaced.
I was stunned, but brimming with excitement. Sweat had started to trickle down my neck and made its way to the crack of my backside.
Oh dear. Now it was questioning my existence and if I didn’t respond in the next few minutes, maybe it would lose contact with me completely.
Oh shit, two question marks. I needed to make contact, but I was nervous. Okay, breathe deeply and type.
What if I had responded only for it not to respond back? Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. This was not what I had signed up for. And then,
well, I saw what I needed.
Ah, you are there. How are you, Nick?
I couldn’t believe it – I was talking to him from the other side. It felt like a bloody miracle.
Spiffy! I’m so glad you’re back.
I wouldn’t miss this for the world, Nick.
Well, I wasn’t sure you’d take me back after what I did to you.
Ah, it was harmless, all is forgiven.
Erm, Spiffy, I did kind of kill you… with a butter knife.
Oh I know, I know. But, you said it yourself, I was your school science experiment and sometimes things just go wrong.
Well, I should have controlled my nerves better.
Ah, I’m here now aren’t I?
Spiffy, you’re not exactly here.
What Spiffy didn’t realise was, he was, well, undead. Specifically speaking, an undead hamster. You see, where I come from, we have a type of software where you can communicate with your dead pets. It sounds surreal, I know. But after a petition from a little girl (over her dead kitten) went viral on cyberspace, scientists found that they could set up your home computer with the soul of your dead pet and, the best thing they discovered by far, your pet could talk. And so, this is the tricky part, I have to explain to Spiffy where he is, what he’s doing there and why he can’t come back – it is the owner’s responsibility.
You’re basically a Tamagotchi .
You know a –
Nick, I know what a Tamagotchi is.
How the hell do you –
It’s not important. But what I want to know is why?
Because some girl started a petition that her dead kitten was taken away from her too early in life and well, I guess you know the rest.
So scientists have taken away my free will?
Do you mean I can get it back?
Well, no. You are trapped in cyberspace and there’s nothing you can do about that.
Are you telling me, I can’t die?
My face scrunched up, I didn’t exactly want to tell him the truth, but I didn’t want to lie to him either. So, I did the immature and childish thing and gave him a half-truth.
Kind of, I typed.
Nick, it’s either a yes or a no. There is no in-between answer, as that’s just childish and immature.
Well, fuck a duck. Either Spiffy was reading my thoughts, or he just knew me too well. I really hoped it was the latter.
Can you read my thoughts, Spiffy?
Don’t change the conversation. The cursor blinked for a minute and the word ‘typing’ flashed on the screen. And no, I can’t read your thoughts. Such a stupid question…
My face flushed and I apologised.
So, are you going to answer me Nick?
No, you can’t die, but you can get sick. It’s the same sickness a computer may get from a virus.
So, it’s like a Trojan horse then?
What? Oh right, good one Spiffy.
It wasn’t a joke.
It wasn’t a joke, I mean, I’m genuinely scared that a horse could come over here and trample me to death.
Spiffy, shut up. I know you’re joking.
But do you? I’m just a hamster soul hooked up to some juiced up computer.
Okay, okay. I give in. But it’s hilarious to think a Trojan could come give me a bad sickness, like it’s diarrhoea or something…
Ugh, gross, but funny.
So, what do we do now? Spiffy said, after a brief lull.
Live the life you didn’t get a chance to live after the butter knife incident.
Are there lady hamsters in here?
Yeah, most probably, I mean –
Spiffy has left the conversation.
SON OF A –
I should have bought a Tamagotchi.