Each incoming mail sounded a chime through the speaker on his new laptop.
Possible spam. Are you sure you want to allow remote content?
Sean wasn’t sure at all but could not resist the temptation to find out what the subject “We know you know you have an obligation to share” referred to and who was behind the sender’s email address firstname.lastname@example.org.
Elaine first, just so you remember, son. A deal is a deal.
Okay, okay. Sean pulled the post-it note off the touchpad in the centre of the keyboard rest and placed it face down on the wooden surface of the old desk he had rescued from a skip outside the house next door a few weeks ago.
Knew you were going to do that, son. Elaine first, just saying.
Okay, okay. You win, Doc. Sean opened his mum’s latest email in a new tab and quickly scanned through it. She was still new to this contemporary means of communication but had started coming around to it, largely ignoring capitalisation rules and avoiding punctuation and line breaks like the plague.
The usual rant about the weather, the inquiry as to when Sean would come visit. Then something about a woman she had befriended over in England who claimed she had the gift. Claimed she had what?
meredith is her name and she wants to meet you sean says she can help you face the dark woman and get her to leave you in peace her gift isn’t strong enough for remote sessions so won’t work through email you’ll have to come over soon meredith can’t travel showed her the photo of you and your dad the doc as you keep calling him outside the millsite cafe and she got all agitated about the dark woman who is holding on to you holding you back i have no idea what that means sean but she’s spooked me and i’m worried of anything bad happening to you promise you keep yourself safe don’t walk under ladders if you know who that dark woman might be don’t interact with her is what meredith says you can look at her with steady eyes that’s safe enough just don’t blink while you’re looking look away if you have to blink and don’t under any circumstances talk to her
Sean lifted his eyes off the laptop screen and took a deep breath. All of this had been written without any punctuation and line breaks and he felt breathless after reading it.
“Okay, mum,” he typed, “I’ll check back with the Doc about going over for a visit soon. We’ve been getting on fine lately so he might let me out of his sight for a bit. As to the dark woman I have no idea what your friend is talking about. Don’t worry about me. I’m fine.”
(c) Ash N. Finn, 2013
To be continued … (watch out for next month’s flash post)