A lonely boy
sits in his bedroom. He's a bit of a recluse, a bit of a geek
. It's dark out, but it'll be light in a couple hours. He's at his computer, looking at nothing in particular. Listening to Death cab for Cutie
His friend messages him
"hey man, check this site out"
"what the hell?"
A strange place, he doesn't quite get it.
He starts to look around. It's sort of neat.
he tries it out, creates a login
He starts to get it.
it's a site for writers.
he nodes a little bit, poorly.
"Goddamnit, that writing was good!" no it wasn't
he keeps looking around, reading.
Then it strikes him.
This place is amazing. It's not just writing, it's a place where computer nerds
get together to talk about gangster-rap foodstuffs
and ponder the existence of the moon
There are fun nodes
. There are informative nodes
. There are emotional nodes
. There are beautiful nodes.
He tries harder at writing, and they like it! When they don't like it, they don't make fun of his hair, they don't ostracise him. Even when they don't like it, it doesn't mean they won't like the next thing he writes.
He starts to get to know everyone, or everyone common at least.
This isn't just a site for writers to put stuff up, it's a community
He can talk to these people... He feels accepted like never before. Everyone is friendly
. Everyone likes him
He gets to know some of the people even better. He takes on a couple as mentors
, people who help him think morke like an adult
. More clearly. The show him things
that make him think about things he's never thought about
Then things start to change.
He's not sure why, but the place doesn't have quite the same feel to it anymore. All the old kitchy nodes that he fell in love with are disappearing. Nothing great is taking their place.
His mentors start logging on less and less. They start noding less and less. So does he.
He realizes that he doesn't need the acceptance any more. When he treats people in the real world with the respect he found there, he gets the acceptance he needs, and when he doesn't he just ignores it.
Eventually he just stops coming
He goes to college now. He does pretty well, his writing must have improved since highschool, when he first went to the site.
He meets a girl. They love each other.
They're getting married.
He starts to think about the past, and logs back in. He hasn't been here in 2 years.
It's smaller than before. The writeups are more technical
His mentors aren't there anymore.
He digs up a couple of his college essays to node. They do alright.
He keeps looking around the site. Looks at his personal links
He remembers a couple of them. He remembers them being beautiful pieces of writing. Either funny
, or emotionally moving.
It hits him like a ton of bricks
"This is not the same site I left."
Even if it was, he's grown up now. The reasons he came here the first time no longer exist
His latest visit is like visiting his childhood home. He remembers the place he first scraped his knee. He remembers stealing his brothers' skateboard and playing bumper-cars with his best friend who he hasn't talked to in years. He remembers his bike being stolen. His first kiss
Then he feels sad. All these memories of simpler times. The feelings he had then are gone, dulled by the process of growing up
He takes one last look, soaking up the memories one last time.
He prepares to leave. Maybe for good, but he can always come back to visit again, to see the sights that bring back his memories of times long since past.
He writes one more node. Not really a goodbye, more of a lament.