There was once an invisible man…

There was once an invisible man. He wore a balaclava and only came out at night. He spoke through a relay of masked men to another balaclava-clad man who typed the words on to my screen. Sometimes he blinked back the sunlight and typed by this method during the day.

He didn’t know me. I didn’t know him. Sometimes he was a young lady hooked on fashion, with a hearty appetite, and uproarious laughter. Other times he was an old man, nearing the grave, almost fainting with loneliness. Today he was a young lad. Heart broken.

If ever he suspected he was about to be discovered, he changed his balaclava. Today he wears an orange one.

On the worst of days, he died. He’s done it a thousand different ways. He re-emerged in tartan balaclava, with a Scottish highland accent, and a rowdy bagpipe mp3. He didn’t miss his friends, because he didn’t know them, and neither did they know he. They got re-acquainted, and they all enjoyed him being someone new.

He invented an online family, also never to be seen. Except for clips taken from public domain, and shifty identity-creation websites. We all felt sorry when his dog died. And later his uncle died too. We no longer received Uncle Ted’s invented comments, churned out of his anonymizer too.

My invisible friend never posted videos, and avoided video phone. Too hard to keep up with which balaclava, was it maroon? My friend laughed, behind his tartan mask, because he truly believed no-one knew. Shh… it’s my secret, and now it’s your secret too.

A bit of fiction based on a strange scenario where a writer in an online group invented a friend, and later she ‘virtaully’ killed her off. There were those who knew something was fishy about the situation. And those who were drawn right in. Take care in our virtual world, dear online friends.

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