Sunday began with Colin trying to wipe away the crustiness of dried sleep-gunk in his eyes. Still only half-awake, he went to rub them clear and found his fingers’ way blocked by the confining rubber of the hood. For a brief moment overnight, it seemed he had been able to somehow forget that he was a prisoner in a form-fitting cell. His waking had been gentle; he rose smoothly and gradually from the depths of sleep. The lingering vestiges of a pleasant but already fading dream left him with a general sense of well-being. He was comfortable in his bed, the temperature was mild… and so when his hand failed to wipe his eyes the memory of his captivity came crashing back all at once. His mood instantly plummeted.
It was a tight fit, but by using more of the talc supplied in the gym bag he was able to work a finger into the mouth hole of the hood and worm it all the way up to the inner corner of his eye, clearing the tiny but infuriating chunks away. He worried the suit might zap him for tampering, but it allowed his action without interference. Even so, the effect on his mood lingered, and didn’t get better as the day went on.
He had promised Eva he would spend the afternoon at her sister’s birthday party. Prior to a few days ago, he would have told anyone who would listen “I’d do anything to get out of going!”. Now, today, he realized that there were limits on what “anything” might mean; an afternoon with Eva’s family started to seem downright appealing in comparison. Still, there was no way he could show up there. She wouldn’t like it, but he had to tell her he wasn’t going.
Texting seemed best, although it was awkward with rubber-coated fingers. Eva would have preferred he call, but that would have meant a 20-minute-long bitch session he was in no mood to listen to. So he sent a quick “Sorry got 2 cancel 2day. Will make it up 2 u promise.” She took a while to respond, but when she did, to his relief, it was to say “Thats ok, know u don’t like this kind of thing,” which was much better than he expected. He sent back “Thanks, ur the best” in appreciation.
Then it was a scrounge for breakfast – food was running low; he would need to grab some groceries soon. Preferably downtown, far away from home. There were no visitations from muscle-bound deities, so he was on his way by noon.
Continue reading VRansomwear – Chapter 3