This is a work of fiction.
Today’s the day.
It’s the first Saturday in August, I know how to turn on a computer and do some basic things, but I don’t know if I’m going to accept the quadruplets’ invitation.
I stand in front of my closet, unsure of what to wear.
If I don’t go, my usual outfit of jeans and a T-shirt will be just fine, but somehow, it doesn’t seem appropriate if I do go.
The black dress I wore to Aunt Bev’s funeral would probably be good, but I don’t want to put it on ever again.
The clothes I used to wear to school seem as though they belong to a younger, more innocent version of me.
I settle on the navy slacks and white blouse that I usually wear to church.
I haven’t gone to a regular church service since the Sunday before Aunt Bev died.
The morning drags. I try to read about computers, but I can’t concentrate.
To go, or not to go, that is the question.
I don’t decide until 1:45.
I go to the door and put on my shoes.
The house isn’t far, so I walk. It’s hot, but at least there’s a bit of a breeze.
The house is like most of the others on the street. There’s a flower garden at the front, and I suspect that there could be a vegetable garden at the back.
I climb the steps, take a deep breath, and press the bell.
I hear a crackling sound, and then a female voice.
Strange, but I’ve come this far and announced my presence, so I can hardly back out now.
I pull open the door and see a deserted living room.
The voice says, “Close the door behind you.”
I do, and then I start to feel uneasy.
“Come into the kitchen.”
“Where is it?”
“Through the other door in the living room.”
I walk across the room and open it.
The kitchen is fairly large, and there’s a table against one wall. Seated around it are four people. They’re all turned to face me, and their faces are identical.
They’re all wearing blue jeans and no socks or shoes. One has a yellow shirt, one a blue shirt, one a red shirt, and one a purple shirt.
The one wearing red says, “Good, you’re here.” She sounds like the person who spoke to me through the speaker.
“Yes. It’s nice to meet you. What are your names?”
“You can call us by our colors. I’m Red, and these are Yellow, Blue, and Purple.”
“Um, okay, but I don’t feel really nice calling you by your shirt colors.”
“Get over it,” Blue says.
Purple’s expression is something like a smirk.
“If we ever trust you, we might tell you our names,” Red said. “If you want it to be fair, we can call you white.” She points to my blouse.
“I’d prefer to be called Alexis, thank you.”
Blue’s chair creeks.
“So,” Yellow says, “I guess you don’t know why we wanted to meet you.”
I shake my head.
“We want to show you something,” Blue says.
Red says, “Here.” She picks up a cell phone and turns the screen so I can see it.
At the top, there are two words: character name.
“Character? Do you mean like in a script or a story?”
Purple shakes her head.
“Pick a name,” Yellow says, “and make it a good one.”
“I don’t know if I want to do this.”
Red says, “We aren’t going to hurt you. We haven’t talked to outsiders since we were little.”
“Pick a name,” Blue says.
“Not bad, but Steven is dull,” Blue says.
“Something more creative,” Yellow says.
“That sounds disgusting,” Blue says.
Purple nods. So far, she hasn’t spoken.
“I give up.”
“Like Brightmoon,” Red says.
“No, not like that,” Red says. “You have to make it match, but it has to be different words.”
“Close,” Blue says.
“I don’t know, Thunderingheart Silvermoon?”
Blue laughs, and Purple sticks out her tongue at me.
Four smiles and four headshakes.
“No!” Red says, and all of them give me emphatic headshakes.
“I don’t know, can you make up a name for me?”
“Which words aren’t good?”
“Train,” Red says.
Blue says, “Golden is nice, but not with thunder.”
“Is thunder okay?”
“It’s not bad, but it has to make sense,” Blue says.
“Walking on water is only for Jesus,” Red says.
“Is Soldiersword okay?”
“Awkward,” Yellow says.
“Yes,” Blue says. “You need a last name.”
“Perfect,” Blue says.
Red types the name into the phone.
The screen changes.
It now reads: male or female?
“Male,” I say.
Purple nods and touches the word, which promptly disappears.
The next screen asks questions about height and weight.
“I don’t know. Maybe six foot three and average.”
They still haven’t told me what kind of game this is, but at least it’s sort of fun.