The Animå

By: JamiE

It seemed not a second had passed between the time Koushirou had opened his new Animå until it was set up on the living room floor. The screen gleamed with an innocence of never have been used, and all the buttons looked so enticing to the 8 year old boy. He stared at it for awhile, his jaw agape, in sheer wonderment of the machine.

"Now remember Kou-chan, you can't keep your computer on the living room floor like this", his mother said, smiling.

"Oh, I know, I just want to get a feel for it. That's all", the red-headed boy said, smiling back up at his mother.

He turned back to the machine, the looming black box, with wires criss-crossing baout. He struck the "power" button and watched the monitor fill with light and the speakers with sound.

"Enter login name", the Animå spoke to him.

"K...O...U...S...H...I...R...O...U", he typed slowly ,letting his fingers glide slowly over the new keys.

"Welcome Koushirou", the computer said and the boy smiled again.

Days had passed and they had all found Koushirou at the desk in his room, always on his Animå. His partents were becoming worried that he was spending his entire summer locked up in his room, but this was where the boy was happiest.

It was dark, both outside and in Koushirou's tiny room. His lights were out, butt the blinding illumination of the Animå screen lit his face up. He was a distorted white and green and blue, all at the same time. The Animå's internal motorwas relatively quiet, but in the pulsating silence it hummed and Koushirou feared his parents might hear. He continued work, tapping out words, downloading ideas. He blinked as to not ruin his eyesight and when his eyes reopened and had focused all of his information was gone and the monitor produced a giant grey fizzled image. Koushirou squinted at it, while pressing key codes to try to fix it.

Soon the grey subsided and he could see the Animå's welcome screen.

He sighed, his mind absently wondering about the quality of his eysight.

"Now Koushirou-chan, I want you to remember that your new Animå is only a tool for learning. I don't think it's healthy for you to spend all of your time on it", Mr. Izumi said, over breakfats the next morning.

"Oh, I won't. It's just very interesting to see how it all works", he replied, pushing at his food with his chopsticks.

His mother beamed proudly at the boy, while pouring him more juice.

"And, if you don't mind...can I go back to it?". he asked extra-politely.

"Well, since you have been really good lately...alright", his father said.

"Thanks!", Kou siad, bounding from his seat.

He ran back to his room, and quickly pressed the "power" button on the Animå.

"Enter login name", the voice said, and he typed in his nsmae, just as he had the first time he turned it on.

Koushirou sat back in his chair to think. If what he haf thought he had received througth the computer was a transmittion of some sort...then to try to get it in better he would need a tuner.

"But where to get one?", he mused, glancing ta his empty piggy bank, and remembering the fact that he was 8 and couldn't even go out by himself. He checked it out on the internet, and soon, found out that he can easily access transmittion waves by altering a few peices of his computer.

"Well, I don't know if Ican do that...", he thought, his mind drifting to what his parents would say if he broke his brand new computer.

But it all looked so enticing, and everything looked so easy, he decided to at least give it a try. He snuck around his house, picking p household tools to aid him, all the while trying not to act suspicious.

Koushirou retruned to the Animå, it's screen still brightly lit. He swiitched it off, and studied the back of it. Slowly, as not to break anything, he lifted the cover off, and was so amazed by all of the circuitry that he forgot to breathe for a moment. He switched around a few wires, moved some peices, and in a few hours, had completed what the site had instructed.

Koushirou looked proudly at his handiwork, and after turning it on to make sure it still worked properly, laid down on his bed for a short nap.


Koushirou opened one groggy eye back to the Animå, which he had accidentally left on.

"Wha?...", he absently asked.

The beeping continued, even as he got up to examine the contents of the screen. It was becoming fuzzy again, but this time there were hints of color. Koushirou could make out a few trees, some water, and...some wierd-looking bug.

"He-hello?", he asked the Animå. It responded with more beeps and some buzzing nioses.

The bug was moving around the screen frantically, and Koushirou wondered why it didn't look like any of the insects he had spotted outside.

Lines were starting to appear over the already fuzzy picture, and a few seconds later it had disappeared altogether, as abruptly as it had come.

The silence enveloped him again, he was becoming afraid of what he saw.

[-2 years later-]

Koushirou flipped open his new PineApple Laptop, ran his fingers along it's soft curves, enjoying the vibrant colors of it, compared to the now obsolete Animå that now sat in a corner of his room. He had rememebred being so afraid of it when he was 8, after those wierd transmittions would come through.

He laughed to himself for a moment, until the screen fizzled on him once more, a brief flash of pixels. He furrowed his brow, why was this happening again? The screen was dark again, but he didn't notice four tiny green letters at the bottom of the black screen, "help".

Koushirou didn't have time to analyze this, to scare himself with the prospect that someone could be hacking into his computer, that his privacy was dead. Besides, he had to pack for summercamp...

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Email the author: JamiE