Of The Muse in You: The White Rabbit

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 Deadline

The story so far:

It all started when I got an email from a stranger, who turned may or not be someone abducted by an extremist group. In my quest to solve this curiosity I made contact with A Facebook group and an anonymous  hacker had called me and told me not to contact the police and to go to a place called The Cave

The poll results indicated I should go down the rabbit hole……

And if I may point out an insightful comment from Michele about how even though that would seem the natural progression of the story, it should come with some type of motivator.

Long after the call had ended, I stood there, rooted to the spot as if I was an ancient tree, with roots that ran deep, and branches that swayed in the wind but did not break, but of course, I might be easy to sway but I was not a tree and my roots, well I was still discovering those.

Then I remembered I had recorded the phone call, I plugged in my hands free headset and replayed the conversation. Even if I took it to the police it was, circumstantial at best. Circumstantial was that even the word, no. The word I wanted was something that said all this crazy and in the next moment I would wake up to discover had fallen asleep watching an episode of an investigative drama series.

I hadn’t even noticed I had started walking, I was deep in thought or rather lost in it to be precise when I noticed a homeless man on a park bench trying to get my attention waving a tin cup at me, I presume asking for change. I shook my head and tried not to make eye contact ashamed I did not have anything to give, but instead he stood upright up and placed himself right in front of me on the narrow park pathway.

I have something for you” he mumbled before handing me a flyer which at a quick glance indicated was for a kindergarten, advertising that early bird enrollment for toddlers in classes beginning next year had started. I thanked the man and squeezed past him.

Good luck” he whispered as I walked away.

It felt surreal the whole encounter and so I looked at the flyer again it was for an Alice in Wonderland themed  nursery school and on the right there in the middle was the white rabbit pocket watch in hand with the words

“I am late, I am late I am late for a very important date not time to say hello only goodbye”

The words triggered a memory from the phonecall with OG he had mentioned something about a deadline and told me off for not paying attention to the news and current affairs. I was close to an internet café and figured I needed to change my password anyway. One can not have people logging into their emails with impunity. I walked briskly and decisively to the internet café and paid for a one hour session, their prices were fair and the internet session was valid for seven days so even if I did spend the whole hour then I could always come back.

The internet is a powerful tool with the power to educate, inform and empower yet also to misinform and even take bullying and stalking to unprecedented heights. First thing I did when logged into a computer was to unclick the keep me logged in feature, this is how some people got hacked when they used public terminals, next thing was to change all my passwords.

I had a new email from OG Banje the hacker, it was links to news websites he thought I should catch up on. One of the links showed how an article about how the abductors had executed a a health worker after the deadline they had issued had passed and that it had been declared that the abducted girl would be made a slave for life since she had refused to renounce her religion whilst the other girls who had been abducted with her had been released.

One of the last links was from a declaration by the president that his government condemned the executions and abductions by the extremist group and  would not rest until the last remaining girl had been released. The last link was to a post on how one of the leaders of the extremist group had supposedly been killed by soldiers showing the army was committed to ending the terror abductions; if it was true who knew how the group would react and did the government really have control?

With this in mind I decided the least I could do was to follow the white rabbit and deliver the message the OG guy seemed to want to be an agent for the good guys. Its funny how when I came to this decision that’s when I noticed something scribbled at the back of the flyer the homeless guy had given me….

Follow the white rabbit

I quickly logged out of my internet session and raced back to the park but of course the homeless man was gone, I was not even surprised, in a strange way it made sense. Looks like I had to go the kindergarten, follow the white rabbit.

There was an address but it was in an unfamiliar neighbourhood, bless who ever invented GPS and Google maps because in a few minutes I was at Alice in Wonderland Day Care Center and Nursery

The precast wall around the day care centre was a mural of characters from Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, and there beneath the life sized painting of the white rabbit sat the homeless man I had met in the park.

 “Took you long enough” he said ….. and for the umpteenth time I froze.

What do I do next

  1. Run and don’t look back
  2. Take his photo then run
  3. Tell him I am not surprised to see him
  4. Ask him if he is the white rabbit
  5. Walk into the Day Care Center see what/who else is there

~B

Post themed education

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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.