There was once a young man named Kyle.
Now, Kyle was a cheerful, easygoing boy. He had a close circle of friends. He came from a happy, close family. And he maybe fought with his parents and older brother sometimes (doesn't everyone?), but he still loved them, and maintained a good relationship with all three. Sure, he had some things to be stressed about, and like all people, there were days when he just couldn't take something and broke down crying, but no major life trauma. His life was, all around, pretty good. In fact, he got the kind of idyllic, happy life that most people these days rarely get.
Now, Kyle had a brother. His name was Alan. Alan and his little bro got along pretty well, and enjoyed spending time together. And then, one weekend near the end of the school year when Alan came to visit Kyle for his birthday, the elder brother decided to show the birthday boy a neat little YouTube series that one of his roommates had contributed to Horror Movie Friday.
That series was called Marble Hornets.
Kyle enjoyed the series, even though horror wasn't really his genre of choice, and started looking into it. He found more series starring the same mysterious beings. He kept watching, kept reading, kept getting drawn deeper and deeper in. The paranoia started getting to him. He started hearing noises. He started seeing things. It starts small, and he tried to get over it, but the paranoia just got worse and worse. The trees everywhere seemed to be watching him. He kept feeling presences outside his windows.
And then he saw the one thing that he had been both expecting and dreading itself.
His brother could tell that something was wrong, no matter how hard he tried to hide it. He sat down with Kyle and had a talk with him. Kyle couldn't help but tell Alan everything. After all, he trusted his brother. Alan scoffed a bit, as he had only seen Marble Hornets a couple of times and thought of it as just a stupid video series, but he was still concerned for Kyle. He told him to back off for a while, not to let it get to him. He even let Kyle stay with him for a bit so that he could keep him company. Kyle calmed down some. Surely a change of scenery to get his mind off of all those stories would do him good. And it did, to an extent.
But Kyle couldn't fight the paranoia completely. And, as it turns out, it wasn't just paranoia. The same thing that had stalked him back home was stalking him at his brother's house.
And Alan saw it himself.
The night after Kyle saw it at Alan's house, it showed up outside the window. Kyle, asleep on the couch, was blissfully unaware. Alan, however, saw it. He opened the door and stepped outside.
"Hey," he said, hoping it would understand. "Look, could...could you leave my brother alone? He's a nice kid, and he really doesn't deserve any of this. After all, I was the one who got him involved in this in the first place." He felt kind of silly after saying it, as he realized how terribly lame and weak it sounded. "Look," he tried again, "I hear that there are people who work for you. People who do things so you don't have to get your hands dirty. I'm a hacker, you know. I can...get onto people's blogs and deliver messages or something. Look, I don't care what it is you want. I'll work for you, just as long as you leave Kyle and everyone around him alone."
The faceless man sort of tilted his head a bit. Then, he reached out an arm to Alan, and what sounded like a thousand whispering voices filled his mind. He couldn't understand anything they said, but he still somehow understood the intent: the faceless man accepted his offer.
Alan quickly headed inside, scribbled down a quick lie to let Kyle and his roommates what was going on, and followed his new boss into the night, terrified of an employer that, not half an hour ago, he had thought was fictitious.
Yeah, Kyle, you were right. It's me. Pretty good story, huh? Enjoy it at all? Now quit bothering me about it. You don't have to read it anymore to figure it out since I know how much you hate the blogs. You and your friends just go back to making your vlog. All these other nice writers are waiting for me to continue my story to play their game. You happy? Now promise me you'll stop reading the blog and just leave me alone with this, okay? I don't need you starting to comment and messing up my immersion. No offense, of course. You just tend to screw things like this up a bit, isn't that right, bro? ;)
-Don't Shoot The Messenger-