October 2016 writing challenge: The Emails

Ugh. There it was again. That soft chirping beside her that was barely audible most of the times, but in the early hours of the morning with her brain still half asleep and her eyes refusing to cooperate and open fully, it was as loud as a jack hammer would be if it was going off inside her head. Not that she ever had a jack hammer go off inside her head or anywhere within a few metres of her for that matter. The chirping came back. Did it get more annoyed with her with each chirp? She knew that wasn’t possible, but she was happily allowing her brain any kind of tangent on mornings like today. She already knew it would be a bad day, but that was pretty much her normal opinion or any day in those dark and horrible moments before her first cup of tea.

With the next chirp she had enough, opened her eyes and grabbed her phone that was half buried under the pillow next to her. Unlocking it, she saw it was an email notification. Confused she furrowed her brow, she had only one notification per email, who would have emailed her so much this morning? The little envelope icon showed over 30 unread emails. She tapped the icon and waited impatiently for it to load on her slow smartphone, the next phone upgrade wasn’t for another few months. A long list of emails from Rachel B. were in the inbox. Had she scheduled emails again? She couldn’t think of a reason she would have emailed herself so it must have been a different Rachel. She skim-read the subject lines:

Wake up.

Wake up.

Wake up!

Rachel, you need to wake up!

Wake up!!

Come on, wake up!

I hope you’re awake now!

You’re in danger!

You have to get out now!

At 8.30am you will have to be gone

READ THIS EMAIL FOR INSTRUCTIONS.

Confused Rachel sat up in bed. This must be a joke from one of her friends. Her mind wandered around her circle of friends wondering who could have done something like that but none of them were practical jokers and she couldn’t imagine one of them doing something like this. Her mind briefly flashed to her on/off boyfriend of a few years, but she almost immediately dismissed that. Not only was he not the kind to play jokes, but also he would probably want to see the results and he was currently backpacking on the other side of the world. She clicked on the last email in the list:

Rachel,
I know this is hard to understand, but you have to trust me. I am you, just a future you, and I am here to warn you to get out of your flat NOW. They are coming. They will be there at 8.30am.

YOU ARE NOT SAFE.

You need to take the dark purple leather bag, wear those soft straight leg jeans, a black button shirt, and the pale pink jumper you knit last year. Take all the money from the emergency pizza stash and your phone charger.

YOU HAVE TO LEAVE NOW BEFORE THEY COME. HURRY.

Go to the second floor of the library and look inside the red book on Viking history which is hidden in the politics section behind other books. You’ll find all your answers there.

GO NOW. YOU ARE NOT SAFE UNTIL THE LIBRARY.

Rachel x

Rachel’s eyes flit to the phone’s clock. It was 7.35am.

Words: 583
Inspiration: There were about three different writing prompts on /r/WritingPrompts that I saw that dealt with the same subject matter [message to self from the future] just slightly different and I kind of liked the base premise though I don’t think I did a good job with it. Such is life. I’m also not too sure where this would continue to, whether this would have been a joke or something supernatural or historical or set in the future or an alternate plane. So many options yet such little inspiration!

At the beginning of the year I did really well to write a little bit each day, but that tapered off due to reasons. For the month of October I’m challenging myself to write at least 250 words on some short story or scene or something per day. I’ll probably use Story Cubes and Writing Prompts for inspiration. These will be unedited and probably rubbish, but by posting them it feels like I’m holding myself accountable and thus will hopefully finish the month.

All stories live in this category: October 2016 writing challenge.

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