Of The Muse In You: The Deadline

Welcome to the story which I will write with your help. This project is a simple speculative fiction communally inspired but in the course of its creation I have found other people’s very real stories being told within the lines of my words……
How it works: I tell part of the story and you can be a part of this journey by using the poll at the bottom and or in the comments to let me know how you feel the story should proceed.


Thank you all for your input last month from the story HERE: The Ogbanje Hacker
The story so far:

It all started when I got an email from a stranger, which turned out may or may not be from someone abducted by an extremist group. In my quest to get to the bottom of the story I joined a Facebook group for a religious group that advocated for the safe return of abducted people and held prayer vigils, and anonymous vigilante hacker from this group called my phone:

“Hello my friend, you know me as Mr OG. I believe its time we talked ….:”
I froze…..
The poll indicated a tie of three choices so I will incorporate all three:

poll
Hello” The voice on the other end of the phone squawked again, somewhat mechanically, he must have been using some sort of voice altering software.

“Hang up this phone” whispered a voice at the back of mind, I don’t know if its my guardian angel or just instinct but that’s the voice that keeps me grounded, its probably my conscience. I slid my thumb on the phone screen, to end the call, but as if it had a life of its on the thumb double tapped activating the speaker phone and call recording function.

call-record2
“Hello” I replied in a calm confident tone that was worlds apart from the me who could hear my heartbeat drumming loudly in my ears, as if they were drums being played by someone relaying a black smoke signal that the apocalypse is here abandon all hope.

I would have preferred to wait and gradually introduced you to our world but time is no longer on our side and October is almost over” The mechanic voice droned

I interrupted him as if we all we were having perfectly reasonable ordinary conversation
erm..Look, what, what do you mean about a deadline” my voice faltered a little at first but otherwise held steady.

“I take it you haven’t been watching the news. You need to watch the news more, you need to keep your eyes open and your ears on the ground” He sounded like a parent would lecturing a child indulging in the type of behaviour that is the equivalent of throwing away a bright future to roll in the gutter with pigs.
Never mind let me bring you up to speed, the people who abducted our possible mutual friend executed a medical worker and announced that in a month they would be more killings if their conditions were not met. A month has passed from then and they executed yet another and now here we are.” He delivered his chilling news in the monotone mechanic voice and it helped cushion the shock of the nightmare that was some people’s everyday existence.

So what do we do?” I asked like I was a part of all this craziness as if I could possibly make a difference from the other side of the world.

I need remote access to your email address so we can run an IP address trace and try to ping email servers used by the sender” OG explained it easily

Why don’t you just trace it like you did my phone number how did you even get it” This is what had scared me the most about these guys I had not told anyone my number and it was not listed on my Facebook, if I was to go to the police I needed to be able to explain myself.

That was easy one of your friends posted a screenshot of your whatsapp conversation your number was clearly visible, you ought to tell your friends to be careful of what they share online

Dammit Shingie” I cursed in my head I had told him to delete that post, I had hidden it from my timeline and forgot about it.

The password my guy” The voice squawaked.

Oh I.. I…I… my… my… phone is always logged in I… I don’t remember the password” I tried to stall for time

That’s ok, I have initiated a password reset can you tell me the verification code that was just to your phone ” OG coolly countered.

The phone beeped an SMS notification that I had new voicemail

But how did you do that? I hadnt told you my email address, ok let me hang up and retrieve the voicemail” I tried stalling again.

You don’t have to worry I have accessed your voicemail and retrieving it now…..” in the silence I could hear keyboard keys being pressed then shortly after he announced “and I am in…. dude your emails are so dry there’s no juicy stuff here, anyway that email….. lets see ok … I got it
The was nothing I could do I just stood there as he scrolled through my business I was rooted to the spot like that lady from the bible who was warned to not look back when God was destroying a sinful city but she did and was transformed into a pillar of salt, I should have listened to the voice that told me to hung up…

Excellent, we’ll know soon enough am running the IP trace. Hey listen I need you to go to The Cave to deliver a message” The way he said The Cave made it sound like a sinister place where no respectable individual had business delivering messages.

I don’t know where The Cave is” I declared with a touch of triumph.

Of course you don’t someone will be in touch and guide you, just follow the white rabbit and down the rabbit hole you go… Also one other thing don’t go to the police
The call ended.

What should I do
1. Call the police
2. Pretend none of this happened
3. Follow the white rabbit
4. Move, Change phone numbers and get a new identity
5. consult a cyber terrorist unit


~B

this entry story is also a blog battle entry themed Cave

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Of The Muse In You: The Ogbanje Hacker

Welcome to the story which I will write with your help.

How it works: I tell part of the story and you can be a part of this journey by using the poll at the bottom and or in the comments to let me know how you feel the story should proceed….

becoming

Thank you all for your input last week  from the story HERE Hero

The story so far:

A stranger who emailed me may or may not be a missing person, abducted by an extremist group. I was invited to join a Facebook support group of people who pray for the safe return of those taken. someone sent me a private message asking me to give them access to my email account so they could run a trace the email

The popular poll result was that I should run a back ground check on Og Banje so here goes

I opened a search engine tab and typed Og Banje and pressed search.

Could not find a match Did you mean Ogbanje? Showing results for Ogbanje

In Igbo lore an ogbanje is a reincarnating  spirit that would deliberately plague a family with misfortune. The ogbanje child would die and be reborn again and again mostly before the child reached adulthood or got to an age where they could do anything of potential. The curse would be broken if a priest could find the ogbanje’s iyi-uwa (a stone that the ogbanje’s way of coming back to the world) and destroy it. The child is confirmed to no longer be an ogbanje after the destruction of the stone or after they successfully give birth to another baby

Well that was an interesting lesson on the Igbo myths  of West Africa, but it did not get me any closer to finding out my mysterious connection. I decided to check out other posts from the Facebook group while I figured what to do with Mr OG. Mr OG that’s how I had been referring to him in m head. There was an update in the group;

“Authorities have announced that one of the abducted girls is still alive after a voice recording was received of her (as confirmed by her parents that it was her voice) asking the government to rescue her. ”

That was good news indeed as some people had started thinking maybe the reason some of the girls had not be released was because they had died.

I typed a new post to add to the group:

Hi I got a private message from someone called Og Banje after the last message I posted in this group and I wanted to know if its someone that can be trusted.

A few seconds later a reply popped up

Ah we see you have had an encounter with our resident white hat hacker. Nobody knows who he really is or where he is and the authorities keep trying to get his account shut down but it keeps coming back to like a curse to expose government secrets and criminal activities, kind of like a phantom online vigilante.

Ogbanje

I typed whih read  “thank you and if I could ask__”

Before I could finish the comment, my phone started ringing, the caller was on incognito mode and the number did not show.

Hello” I answered.

“Hello my friend, you know me as Mr OG. I believe its time we talked ….:”

I froze, what should I do next:

  1. Nothing, hang up the phone
  2. Start a conference call to emergency services
  3. Put on speaker and record the conversation
  4. Find out how he got my number and what he wants then go to the police
  5. Find out what he wants and just wing it from there

~B

Day 18 of My Blog Everyday Challenge Themed Africa: Stories From Home

Of The Muse In You: Hero

Welcome to the story which I will write with your help.

How it works: I tell part of the story and you can be a part of this journey by using the poll at the bottom and or in the comments to let me know how you feel the story should proceed….

Thank you all for your input last week  from the story HERE  ABDUCTED

becoming

The story so far:

A stranger who emailed me may or may not be a missing person, abducted by an extremist group. I was invited to join a Facebook support group of people who pray for the safe return of those taken.

The popular poll result was that I should find an IT expert to trace the original email and those who wrote in comments said Join The Facebook Group see what happens that seemed like a good idea …. So I will fuse those two ideas and see where the story goes.

I clicked the link to join the Facebook group and a pop up screen asked me a few questions to help the admin decide if I would fit in the group. I scrolled through the question then answering them as I went along.

Do you think all people were created equal?

Yes *I clicked*

Do you think everyone has a right to their opinion whether you agree with it or not?

Yes *I clicked*

What quality makes a hero and are you one?

I paused, thinking of a response. Being a serial binge watcher of superhero movies I wanted to write that, “a hero was someone with extra-ordinary powers doing extra-ordinary things with the powers vested in him whether by being bitten by radioactive spiders or marvels of modern science  or mythological connections and even by virtue of being an alien with godlike powers.”

Then I remembered something printed on a t/shirt worn by the conductor in the taxi I had taken on my evening commute home.

Not all heroes wore capes, some simply hold the door

He smiled as he slid the door open and so passengers could get on. “I want only two serious passengers we are about to go” he would periodically shout even though the taxi needed way more than two people before it could leave, and he was quite theatric in convincing people to get into his taxi than pick any of the other that were also trying to get passengers.

A hero is someone who perseveres against the odds *I finally typed*

Congratulations you are in the group, a notification flashed

#freeLeah

I was surprised to find the group full of people from all over the world, strangers bound together with a common need to fight for injustice and to pray and to lobby governments for the safe return of all abducted people.

There was a pinned message on the group wall:

This group is as a safe place new members introduce yourself and tell us your ideas on how we can achieve our objectives. Faith Without Works Is Dead

I felt nervous and more than a little scared but the word hero echoed somewhere in the back of my mind. What was I getting myself into I thought as I typed:

Hi I am looking for friend who may have been abducted. They contacted me via email is there a computer expert in the group who can help with a trace.

*Ping* A new Facebook message notification. A message from someone called Og Banje, his name, I assume he was a guy because the profile picture was of a guy with a handkerchief around his face like a western outlaw; his name reminded me of something I couldn’t quite put my finger on.

Ogbanje

Og Banje

The message was short and to the point.

“If you give me remote access to your email I might be able to run an IP address tracer and ping the servers of the email you received to track location and find service provider.”

I reread the message as I decided.

What do I do next

  1. Allow Remote Access to email
  2. First run a background check on OG Banje
  3. Ignore the message
  4. verify with group admin
  5. Go to the police

~B

day 12 of my blog everyday chllenge themed Africa: stories from home.

Of The Muse In You: Abducted

Welcome to the story which I will write with your help.

How it works: I tell part of the story and you can be a part of this journey by using the poll at the bottom and or in the comments to let me know how you feel the story should proceed….

Thank you all for your input last week  from the story HERE :DEAD END

becoming

The story so far:

I received an email from a stranger called Nya who simply wanted a friend and a sympathetic ear to listen. Wary of internet scams I had google searched the email address before replying. Just I discovered the email belonged to someone from an area where nightmarish abductions occurred thats when I got a delivery notification that the email failed.

The popular opinion was: Go to tagged Facebook post and contact 

I felt goosebumps as I read again the message from the email server:

Message not delivered

I closed the notification and opened the Facebook Post Nya had been tagged in. It was a post from a page formed by a group of people who had come together to pray for the safe return of victims of the terror abductions. According to the page over 1000 girls have been kidnapped by the Boko Haram since 2013 in Nigeria. This includes the 200+ Chibok girls in April 2014 of whom 100 were released and more than a 100 taken in February beginning of the year though most of those were returned a month later countless others remain “missing”.

I was in shock, I thought those abductions had ended ages back had I not read somewhere that they had some form of uneasy ceasefire going. I thought all the kidnapped people had been returned, so many thoughts flashed through my mind. What if they never really stopped, what of the stories that never made the news and what if the person who had reached out to me was a victim. I clicked the message page tab and typed up short message:

Hi I am trying to contact Nya. She sent me an email but I am failing to contact her.

I pressed send and waited for a reply because the page was marked as “typically responds within mintues”. Minutes grew into hours and longer still, then into days until I even I almost forgot what I was waiting for, almost. The one day months later *Ping* Facebook messenger notification

It was a message from the page admin.

Good day Sir. 

Thank you for getting in touch

It’s highly unlikely that Nya could contact you, as it would be next to impossible for her to get email access. She is one of the girls who were not released when the others kidnapped with them were returned, the ones we fear either are still in captivity or might have died. Those who would not renounce their Christian faith. Today marks 200 days of their captivity if you will join us in a prayer vigil for their safe return RSVP and join the FB Group in the link below……..

I read the message again as I tried to understand……. so who had sent me the email I wondered.

What should I do next

  1. Nothing: The End
  2. Join The Facebook Group see what happens
  3. Find a computer guy to trace the original email
  4. Contact the police
  5. Contact one of those who returned

~B

Day 6 of My Blog Every Day Challenge themed Africa: Stories From Home

#MyAfricaMyWords