Hey everyone, how are you?
As promised, here is the first chapter of my new short story – Virtual Reality.
Valerie got home from a long day of school and an after school shift the local superstore. Kicking off her trainers, which she had left on after her PE lesson and changing out of her work clothes and putting on a playstation t-shirt. Slumping down onto her single bed, with the television and gaming console set up at the foot of her bed. Looking around her bedroom, it was nerd-varna. Si-fi and fantasy books and films piled high. Posters of video game characters on the wall. Miniature statues of her gaming heroes, Nathan Drake and Lara Croft placed in pride of place on a shelf by her bed. Valerie liked to think that they kept watch over her each night whilst she slept. Valerie’s room was her own little piece of heaven.
Booting up the playstation, Valerie logged into her account, Vals_reality20. Scrolling through to see if anyone was online, thinking that some of her friends might be since it was just gone dinner time. Although she remembered that Mr Cline had given them a beast piece of homework and knew that her more studious friends would be working on that. It was then that she noticed that a free game had installed on her console, “Ithe World”. Curiosity getting the better of her, she scrolled to the game and pressed x on the controller. As the main screen of the game appeared on her screen, it became a form of graphical waves lapping towards her. Hitting x again for a new game a white dot appeared in the middle of the screen. As the game loaded it got bigger and bigger, until it had consumed the television and was started to consume Valerie’s room. Then it stopped and started to become small. Valerie noticed that whilst this was happening, she began to glow. Before she could stop the game, she was being sucked into her television. The bright light diminishing as she went through the screen. Before she knew it Valerie was lying on a beach, was she in the game? Where was this place? How the hell does she get out? The only certainty Valerie could muster was that she was no longer in her room.
Ithe was an island surrounded by rough sea with waves that crashed against the shore. Ahead of Valerie was a forest filled with a wide range of traps and mercenaries. Beside Valerie was a note and a chest. The note read:
You are on the island of Ithe. Your aim to get back home is to simply get to the other end of the island. In the chest is everything that you will need.
Valerie reread the note and then knelt down to open the chest. Inside were: two guns an AK47 and 9mm, one medical kit and crafting equipment which included a knife. Underneath was some ammo for the guns, but it was limited meaning that she would have to use it sparingly. Looking at the contents of the chest and the note, Valerie knew that getting to the other end of the island would not be easy. But the thought did not fill her with dread. For she had played Uncharted, Tomb Raider and The Last of Us, so she had an idea of what she had to do.
Standing up, Valerie took the items from the chest and strapped them to her body. Tentatively taking a few steps forward towards the forest. Trying to keep her head clear and push away any thoughts about dying. On the ground there was a path leading to the forest. Continuing along the path her start point went further into the distance. Along the way Valerie looked for any extra ammo, supplies or even signs of any other players thinking about the potential of safety in numbers. But there was no one that she could see, only the forest, which now was becoming thicker and darker as the trees began to hide the sky. With no signs of anyone else being about Valerie thought that she should set up camp and see if there was anything that she could craft together with her crafting supplies. It was starting to get dark and cold. Valerie walked some more to gather some wood in order to make a fire. With a fire burning, she would have some warmth and it would be a potential deterrent for any creatures that maybe lurking. Valerie felt tired and started to drift off to sleep under her makeshift shelter.
A sound of a twig being stepped on close by woke Valerie from her light sleep. Unsure of how long she had slept for as it was still dark and the only light she could see was from the embers of the fire. Squinting through the darkness there was nothing but silence. Valerie wondered if it had just been the fire that had woken her. Turning to settle back down to sleep, she suddenly heard voices whispering. Grabbing her guns Valerie moved quickly and quietly as she could. Noticing that near her was a pile of rocks and took cover. The whispering and footsteps were becoming louder, until they were at the other side of the rocks.
Grabbing the 9mm that sat on her hip, Valerie peaked her head around the corner of the rocks. There stood two men in combat gear, shaved head and clean shaven, clearly ex-military. They were standing there observing their surroundings, holding AK47s ready to fire:
“Can you see her?” one of the military men said.
“No,” the other replied, looking around. But thankfully he did not look behind the rocks. Valerie slowly drew the 9mm from its holster. She had never fired a real gun before, only ones in video games. Slowly and as quietly as she could she loaded and cocked the gun. The small sound that was made echoed and the military men turned towards the wall of rocks. Signalling to each other, they moved forward raising their guns.
Quickly Valerie spun out from behind the rocks and fired the 9mm. The kick back took her by surprise, but she managed to hide it well. Her actions made one of the mercenaries fall to the ground leaving the other temporarily stunned. Refocusing her aim Valerie shot again hitting the second mercenary in the chest. Knowing that the bullet would have lodged in the bullet proof vest, she ran at him. Drawing the knife from its sheaf on her other hip as she ran, plunging the knife into the neck of the mercenary. He was dead as he hit the ground. Valerie got up and turned to the first mercenary, there was a faint moving in his chest showing that he was still breathing:
“How many are there?” she asked, adrenaline pumping through her body.
“A couple hundred” came his reply, his voice was weak from blood loss. Valerie sighed, the adrenaline was starting to wear off, but not before she stabbed him in the neck, making sure that she hit an artery.
Valerie knew that she had to suppress what she had done and that she would have to do it again if she was going to survive. Moving quickly forward she could see that the trees were starting to thin out. She needed food and water. As she moved through the thinning trees, huts came into view. But there was a catch. A lot more mercenaries.
Thank you for reading and I hope that you have a good day.