No idea where this is going yet, but it started
Went back in time to
and now continues below.
Ok so I have a bit of a confession to make.
I guess I really shouldn’t have said what I said, honestly I was just trying to be funny and make light of the situation. I wasn’t trying to make out that my slightly crazy but downright fun, entertaining, interesting and creative American friend was a fool and couldn’t recognise a clock when she saw one. She might not have known exactly what it was when she posted it but she knew it wasn’t a clock.
I know I showed you the note that Téa sent me with the package, the note where she claimed she hadn’t seen a clock like the one she was sending me, but after the third time reading the note I knew there was more to what I was looking at. What I was looking at contained a secret message only a handful of people would recognise.
Let me explain.
Téa was of course telling me that she found the clock, she wanted to see if it worked and whatever else the words in the note contained but it was the secret message which I did not immediately see because I was not looking for it that told me more. We hadn’t used the secret code for a few months and those times we had used it was really just a test to make sure the messages were understood. So the last place I expected to see it was in a message that was sent to me in a package she had already told me was on it’s way. Was she just testing me? Was she making sure I remembered the codes? Or was she in trouble and needed my help? I couldn’t be certain, but what I did know was that I couldn’t ignore the message in her note.
In Téa’s note there was five lines starting with the singular letter of “I”. Of course the contents of the note had value but it was the five leading “I’s” which told me what I needed to know. Had any one of them been the first capitalised letter of a word the situation would have been different, but they weren’t, they were singular. I’m not going to tell you why Téa set up the coding system in the first place, that is her story to tell, but in the years I’ve known her I have learnt that only four people have been trusted with the secret.
The five “I’s” was code for whoever received it to log onto a specific internet chat room and make contact with Téa. No real names, no identifying information, which included logging on through anonymous proxies, and no open chatting, she’d be hiding on the forum in a name only four people knew, waiting for contact to be made. The reason the five “I’s” was chosen as the secret message was because if someone was to break the code and work out what those five eyes stood for the majority of the results that came up in a Google search would relate to a multi-government allegiance and it’s amazing how many people give up searching on the internet when their results started returning websites related to government security and the spread of personal electronic data. It was nearly the perfect hiding system.
Immediately I swivelled my desk chair around and grabbed the desk below my keyboard. With one swift yank I pulled my chair towards the computer screen, almost before the chair had stopped I had the mouse in my hand. I went through the rigmarole of logging on through my VPN, if I was trying to hide from the government I wouldn’t have been too confident using a VPN but since I was hiding from, well I didn’t exactly know who I was hiding from but I didn’t think it was the government.
With a few clicks of the mouse and a few keystrokes I logged onto the internet forum Téa had chosen and went looking for her name. Because of the way the chat room was set up it was easy to find her hiding in amongst a stack of conspiracy nuts and “flat earthers” who spent their days on the forum trying to convince themselves that every government in the world was against them and their data were being mined purely so that their respective governments could keep tabs on them. These guys were even too crazy to believe in Aliens and the need for tin foil hats, like I told you the perfect place to hide.
The chat room was a plain text chat system, no hidden coding and no images. About all a user could hope for was a bit of ASCII art and coloured text to pretty things up. The forum creators made it that because they were dead convinced that the government controlled everything and using even the most basic of emoticon could hide secrets they didn’t want to share.
Even before I had a chance to click on Téa’s nickname, which I wont tell you, a private chatbox popped up at the bottom of my screen, four of them actually. Three were automatic pop ups from users who greeted everyone that logged on, they were warnings about what was tolerated and what wasn’t and the usual propaganda crap that would be expected from such whack jobs. I only cared about the one from Téa so I closed off the other three without opening them and clicked on the one flashing her name.
A new box opened up over the top of the main chat screen, it was a plain white background and the only text on the screen was the message from Téa.
<***********> You took your time!
Typical Téa, blunt and to the point. She’d probably been waiting in the chat room since I sent her the e-mail telling her I had received her parcel. Even with the time difference between Australia and America and the randomness of parcel delivery times I had no doubt that Tea would have been waiting by her phone for a message of me receiving the package ever since she posted it.
<******> Apologies, I’m a bit embarrassed to admit it took me a few minutes to “read” the message you sent.
<***********> A few minutes…yeah right : )
<******> Quit with the cheek and tell me why I’m here.