「Whoa! Did it actually work!?」
Suddenly, everything in front of me goes dark. Then, a shrill voice mixed with surprise and joy reaches my ears.
「…Just because it worked, why are you acting so shocked, dude!?」
The voice flips instantly, sounding slightly choked up and on the verge of tears.
「What’s the big deal?」
「Wha?! It spoke!」
A blur shifts, letting out a scream.
「Well, of course I talk. I’m human.」
The voice sounds young, like a kid’s… It’s so dark. Off in the distance, there’s a dim orange glow, revealing the silhouette of a small figure.
「…Wait, where am I?」
Something feels off. Just moments ago, I was somewhere else. But where exactly was that somewhere else?
「Man, it’s dark.」
Should I use my phone’s flashlight? My phone… Wait, where’s my phone?
「Ah, my bad! I was alone, so I forgot. Give me a sec to get some light.」
The silhouette rustles around, flipping a switch? For a light bulb? Or maybe it’s a lamp?
The room brightens, revealing… a bedroom with a lot of wooden furniture?
Standing proudly before me is a short kid with unkempt hair, a mischievous glint in his eyes, and a slightly chubby frame… Is he just a kid?
「Who are you?」
「Huh? Don’t you know?」
「We’ve never met before, right?」
The kid’s in pajamas. Does that mean we’re close? But I still have no clue who he is.
「Hmm? Do you remember your own name?」
「Of course, I am…」
…Wait, what? Who am I? Damn, did I lose my memory? I need to tweet this. Where’s my phone?
「You seem pretty confused. Here, can you see this?」
The kid reaches out with something in his hand… It looks like…
「Board? Well, it’s shaped like one. Is something displayed on it?」
「There’s a video playing.」
It’s a dark video with white lines falling – rain, or maybe a waterfall?
「Hey, there’s my phone!」
Lying on the ground and glowing is my smartphone. I can tell it’s mine; we’ve spent countless hours face-to-face.
──But the guy sitting near it, wearing a worn-out jacket over a tacky printed T-shirt, with a fraying bag slung over his shoulder and eyes closed… Who’s that?
Suddenly, memories flood back.
「Do you remember now?」
「Great! Can you tell me your name?」
「It’s… Tsutsubuki Yasukichi.」
A regular 27-year-old guy.
「And you are…」
The proud kid. His voice sounds familiar.
「…The ‘I’d like a Famichiki’ kid?」
「What the heck is that!?」
I try to recall. It all happened just before I finished work today…—
『Sigh. Seriously, this is so confusing. How do otakus even make a business out of this? The last place I called, they actually came to my house to fix it.』
「I’m sorry, but our company doesn’t offer on-site support…」
『Whatever. It’s working now, so it’s fine.』
The call ends abruptly on the other side.
…Not that I’m mad or anything. This happens all the time. It’s one less formality I have to go through, so there’s that.
Still, it’s annoying as hell.
Pretending to write a report on the system, I enlarge another browser window.
A blue screen pops up with a prompt: 『What are you doing now?』
I type in my reply quickly.
bookie @ttbk-omt - 1 second ago Poop poop.
「There we go.」
Thank you, Twitter. You’re the reason I can stay calm. I take a quick look at my timeline, and everything seems to be flowing nicely.
By the time I’ve cooled down, it’s almost time to end my shift. I just need to finish up this report, and then I can go home—
──My thoughts are interrupted by the phone ringing.
It’s one minute before the end of my shift. One ring. No one answers. In our tiny internet service provider’s support team, I can see everyone’s face just by looking around. Everyone’s trying their best to look busy.
「Sorry to keep you waiting. This is Tsuzuku Internet’s support line.」
Part of me feels guilty for trying to skip out, but two rings? It’s the pitiful nature of call center workers.
『Uh, sorry for calling so close to closing time.』
A young woman’s voice. She sounds considerate, but I stay on guard. Most of the time, people calling in aren’t the most… stable.
「No worries! What can I assist you with?」
Is she signing up? Paying her bill? Having connection issues? With our company not having automated voice prompts, we have to categorize inquiries ourselves.
I hope it’s not a connection problem. I really hope it’s not──
『I can’t connect to──』
Not being able to connect to Twitter? That’s a serious crisis.
Twitter, the pinnacle service that accumulates every human’s ‘tweets’, is essential. Not being able to access it is like not breathing.
I get it.
Being unable to connect to Twitter even for a second is unbearable. You have to be constantly immersed in the flow of the timeline, tweeting as naturally as breathing.
「I understand. We’ll definitely get you connected!」
After quickly verifying her identity, I check her user details. She’s been a customer for a few years. Pays her bill via bank transfer without any issues.
「So, you can’t connect to Twitter. Are you using a smartphone or a computer?」
『My phone. It works outside, but not at home.』
Sounds like there’s an issue with her home Wi-Fi, but the carrier network is fine.
『I’ve left it like that for a while, but now I’ve used up all my data, and it’s getting slow.』
Sounds like she’s maxed out her data.
「Can you access your phone right now? If you can check a few things with me, that’d be great.」
We go through her phone settings and verify the Wi-Fi connection. It was working fine before, but not recently. As I suspected, her Wi-Fi isn’t connecting to the internet.
「Do you know how to configure your router?」
『My brother set it up, but he moved out recently.』
We check the router model and I guide her step by step to the router’s management page via her phone’s browser. She logs in using the default password. The WAN settings seem fine. I ask her to reconnect. No dice. We double-check the details. It all seems correct.
「Well… this is…」
This problem’s beyond the support team’s capability. It requires the tech team to diagnose and fix. But our tech team? They’re not the most cooperative with these issues. Plus, they’ve already clocked out.
Usually, this would be the end of our support. We don’t have the authority to go further.
──She can’t connect to Twitter!
How can I just abandon someone in such dire circumstances?
「Please hold on for a moment.」
If a little workaround can save a lost Twitter soul, it’s worth the risk.
Following the instructions I once got from a member of our super prideful tech team, I log into an authentication server — a server we, the support team, aren’t technically supposed to touch. My aim? To search a customer’s internet connection account. Something’s fishy. It’s showing that it’s connected?
Wait a minute. I’ve seen this before.
「Are you using this on another device or at another location?」
『I’m not sure. I don’t think so…』
I trace the route of the assigned IP address. The last point of arrival? The Internet gateway. Given our conversation, there’s no way this person is connected from their home, but the situation suggests otherwise. The account seems to be active.
Probably some “someone” other than the customer I’m talking to is using the same account elsewhere, leading to a connection conflict. That’s gotta be the answer.
The odds of both the account and password getting leaked to a third party are slim. Must be an inside job. Like, probably the brother she mentioned who manages their router.
Usually, at this point, I’d just tell her to check with her brother and leave it at that. Play it safe, don’t rock the boat.
I mean, come on! We’re talking about not being able to access Twitter here!
This is a major crime! Unforgivable, right?
I quickly recheck the contract details. The inquirer is indeed the contract holder. The address matches up. No mention of this so-called brother.
「Could you try connecting again? I’ll change the password to something new.」
“Maybe the customer made an input error.” That’s why I decide to change the password.
And then, I input a command to terminate any ongoing sessions on the authentication server. After ensuring the sessions have ended and the error logs line up accordingly, I instruct her to try reconnecting.
『Oh! It’s working now!』
「How about Twitter?!」
「Oh, it’s nothing.」
Victory! Problem solved. The world is saved. I couldn’t care less about the brother (probably) who was mooching off his sister’s internet after moving out. He’ll probably call in a few days complaining he can’t connect. But claims from unauthorized users? Meh, doesn’t bother me.
This might not have been the “right” way to handle things.
But it was a slick move to solve the issue instantly.
『Thank you so much! It’s like magic!』
And that’s how I saved a customer and got her back on Twitter. I bet even the universe would turn a blind eye to minor rule bending like that. Still, calling it magic might be a bit much. Advanced tech indistinguishable from magic, perhaps?
「That’s all from my side. Anything else you need assistance with?」
『Nope, I’m good! Thank you so much!』
She thanks me, and I end the call on a high note.
I hang up. Looking around, it’s just me left in the dimly lit office.
bookie @ttbk-omt - 1s Saved another one...
I tweet that out before wrapping up my call report. I gloss over the fact that I intentionally cut the brother’s connection, framing it more like “I thought maybe it was a bug?” Good enough. My boss probably won’t look too closely at it anyway.
「Time to head home.」
Outside, it’s pouring rain.
The moon’s hidden behind clouds, and the streetlights are fragmented by the downpour.
I hop on the train home, and though there’s no place to sit, an available hanging strap is good enough for me. Left hand on the strap, right hand scrolling through my phone. And of course, I’m on Twitter.
bookie @ttbk-omt - 1s Perfect positioning for the ride home again.
I tweet. It’s just another mundane thought among the deluge of posts on my timeline: useful info, profound thoughts, crazy rants. All flowing past me. It’s my favorite time.
You see, Twitter is my life. The only connection this loner salaryman, distant from family and friends, has with the outside world. My only source of joy. The one thing that lets me forget the uncertainties of life. Without it, I’d probably lose the will to live. It’s that essential to me.
bookie @ttbk-omt - 1m ago Perfect positioning for the ride home again. ｜ Golden Fishball @hadaka-golden-ball - 6s ago It's easier to snug in when it's cold, right? ｜ bookie @ttbk-omt - 1s ago That's not what I meant!
Always ready to dunk on those ridiculous replies. Whether it’s a genuinely funny response or the downright absurd, they all flow down my timeline. Every tweet holds its own unique, precious value. Twitter is an incredible space, creating connections that real life just can’t match.
「…And that’s that.」
But of course, Twitter isn’t perfect. There’s defamation, content stealers, and sure, things catch fire (in the viral sense). Ghost accounts made by dodgy companies are a void in themselves. I’ve grown adept at reporting and blocking them instantly, but times like these still feel empty.
But hey, that’s Twitter for you. If there are tools available for the users to handle these issues, then we just need to find our niche. Still… I wish they could tighten things up a bit. I get that it might be technically challenging, but still…
Lost in these thoughts while tweeting, I switch trains and finally disembark at my local station, heading down the familiar path home. A narrow road in a residential area where cars rarely pass.
「LOL, gonna retweet this.」
Naturally, I’m on my phone while walking – or should I say, ‘Twitter-walking’. Umbrella in one hand, Twitter in the other. My timeline flows endlessly, like rain that won’t stop. As long as there’s Twitter, I’ll never be bored. It’s intertwined with every aspect of my life.
「Man, I’m beat. I wish they’d lay off the overtime. So draining… Like, soooo draining… Huh?」
A sudden brainstorm.
A potentially viral tweet idea.
「『Drained-Daloo… Sooo Drained-Dal.』 Would that work? Is it a bit too religious? Too sensitive? Nah, it only matches the last part, it’s fine.」
I ponder on this silly idea. Gotta give your all to those random tweets, but also don’t want to stir the pot too much.
Musing aloud, I type, delete, retype on my phone.
And then it happens.
『Can you hear me… Can you hear me?』
I hear the “voice”.
『I am speaking directly to your heart right now.』
It might not have been a hallucination. It didn’t feel like a voice, so I didn’t even check if someone was around.
But more importantly,
I have to tweet this! Right now! There’s something talking inside my head! Probably just a weird hallucination from exhaustion, but this is pure gold for content!
『Uh, excuse me, can you hear me? There’s danger approaching──』
Forget Drained-Daloo, this is way cooler. Hmm, how should I start the tweet?
In the next moment, I lose all sense of gravity, and everything goes black.
August 2023 Patron: GoatBeards
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