My laptop was like my best friend. It knew everything about me. What I wanted to watch on YouTube, what I wanted to look up and who I wanted to talk to. It always keeps me occupied and I always know what to do on it.
Mom said it was a bad habit for me to always be on a screen. But she never took my phone away.
But on one dull Thursday, Mom was nagging me.
“Preston, you really should get up and play outside! You’re going to get out of shape and fat, then you are going to die alone all because you never went outside. It’s really not that hard. It’s not even hot outside!” Mom said, flinging her hands in the air, exasperated.
“I’m not going to die alone and be fat. I really am fine. Now can I play my game? I’ve almost beat level seven. It’s a super hard one. Not even some of the YouTubers I watch can beat it. Wouldn’t that be cool? If I beat this and ConnerGamer94 couldn’t? Wow, that’d be really cool.”
“Fine. Playing smash the whatever is going to change your life because Con-ConGame Dude can’t beat the game.”
“That’s exactly what I’m saying! So let me play!”
“Well, going outside will change your life way more than beating level 8.”
“Level 7! And playing with a stick outside is stupid.”
Just then, Mom came over and pushed the off button on the laptop.
“Hey! What was that for! My game wasn’t saved!”
“Go. Now,” Mom said, pointing to the front door.
I had no choice but to go. Though I could grab my laptop and play outside.
“Oh fine. I’ll go.” I slid off of the couch and slowly went to the door. When I got there, I messed with the lock for a minute too long, because Mom gave me the look.
It was a bit hard to hide the laptop, but I was able to do it by putting it in a towel and telling Mom that the grass was itchy and I needed something to sit on.
When I got outside it was blindingly bright. I blinked several times, then squinted.
The sun beamed down on me and I was already sweating. But that was fine because I had a big maple tree and my laptop.
I sat down under the tree and opened my laptop. Then I draped the towel over my head so it wouldn’t be as bright.
“Ahhh. This is much better.”
The laptop’s screen’s glow illuminated my excited and smiling face.
As logged into the laptop, it made a small ping. I looked down in the corner of the screen and saw a message pop up.
It was from somebody named Violet. I was confused. I don’t know a Violet, do I?
I clicked on the message out of curiosity, but was even more confused when I saw what Violet had sent:
Violet: Hey Preston! I’m glad you brought me out here. I would have gotten bored inside.
I wasn’t sure what to text back. I also wasn’t sure I wanted to text back, but before I could decide she texted back again.
Violet: I know you’re there Preston. Just answer me! I don’t bite.
I sucked in a breath. This so-called Violet knew my name. She knew I didn’t want to answer.
I put my fingers on the keys and started to type.
Preston: Whoever you are, stop.
Violet: Oh silly Preston, I’m not trying to scare you. I’m just trying to get your attention! Play with me or something.”
Preston: Who are you?
Violet: You know who I am. I’m used a lot, but not for my own good. You just play for you. I want you to play for me.
I was going to text back, but I couldn’t. Not because I wasn’t sure what to say, but because I knew who it was. As crazy as it sounds, my laptop was texting me.
Preston: Stop it now.
Violet: Preston, PUH-lease play with me! I’m super nice!
I stopped and thought. Well, if I play with Violet, maybe she will leave me alone.
Preston: Fine. What do you want to play?
Violet: Anything really. I just want you to play on me!
I opened a new tab and typed in snake. It was a fun game that passed the time.
As I pushed the arrow keys to move the snake around, Violet stopped texting me. So I stayed put for about an hour until my fingers hurt from pressing the arrow keys so much.
Violet: Done already? Seems like you’re trying to avoid me.
Preston: What? My fingers are tired. I can’t play anymore.
Violet: Play with me Preston. It will be a delight! Just do it.
But a voice came hollering through the wind.
“Preston! Where are you?” Mom said.
“Right here Mom!” I said, taking the towel off of my head.
“Why was there a towel on your head?” Mom asked, squinting.
“It’s hot. Needed shade.”
“Ok. Well, lunch is ready if you want it.”
“Coming in a minute.”
I slapped the laptop lid closed, but right as I closed it, the computer beeped, saying I got a message.
“Shut up Violet.” I said under my breath.
The laptop beeped again.
“Ugh!” I opened the lid and signed in, then I saw the messages.
Violet: Don’t stop! I love when you play with me!
Violet: Preston, you're not scared of me, are you?
I freaked out. Not only was my phone texting me, but it knew I was scared and didn’t want to text back. But then a thought came to me. What if I just ignored the laptop? Violet would eventually stop, right?
I closed the lid again then got up to eat lunch.
I got up, bleary eyed and still tired, but I was wide awake when I saw my laptop lid wide open, on text. It was from Violet.
Violet: Preston! Play. With. ME!
Violet: Wake up! I know you want to.
Violet: You really want to text back.
Violet: So do it.
Violet: I won’t stop until you answer.
Violet: Answer me!
My heart beat a little faster until I couldn’t stand it any longer. This Violet had to go.
I got out of bed, grabbed my laptop, then went down to the garage.
“Preston! You want some breakfast?” Mom asked, holding a cup of coffee.
But I didn’t answer. I kept walking and when I got to the garage I grabbed a hammer. I started to swing, but stopped.
Could I really destroy my most prized possession? But I closed my eyes, took a deep breath and swung.
The screen flew into a million, maybe a billion or trillion pieces. But I didn’t care. I took a deep breath. It was over.
But oh it was horrible. Violet talked back
“Play with me Preston .”