Chapter 6 - The Clouds Begin to BreakMature

The ride home had been everything Toshi had dreaded. Mariko had asked enough questions to fill the overbearing parenting handbook. Toshi Senior had apparently avoided that handbook and merely grumbled his son had not even defended himself. Mariko snapped at him for this and an argument ensured. Toshi had focused on the raindrops that hung on the car door's window and watched them drift slowly. Soon, a large drop was born of all the tiny droplets. It wasn't long before he tuned out his parent's arguing and retreated to his room the second he stepped out of the car.

In the dimly lit safety of his room, Toshi snapped open his laptop ready to forget today. His emails were still open from before including the creepy 'Raining Room' one.

But a new email from PMR caught his eye. Against his better judgment, he clicked it to reveal nothing but a hyperlink. It simply read The Raining Room.

Toshi shuddered but it was nothing to do with the cold. Here before him lay what could possibly be a dark joke or a virus. If the urban legends were true, he was about to star in his very own J-Horror film. He saw Katsu's leering face in his mind's eye and remembered the previous email: Don't be shy. We've suffered just like you.
Sighing, he clicked the link and his screen was suddenly flooded with a dense blue light. Spindly fonts illuminated in white glared at Toshi. Is this from the nineties? So blocky he thought. He had a point; it's chunky presentation and threadbare appearance gave it a late nineties, AOL dial-up feel. Four names appeared in bold in the left column. They read PMR, Desperate Angel, Black Flower and Pulp Fiction. However, Pulp Fiction was grayed out.

Words appeared next to PMR's handle. Welcome Toshi. I'm so glad you joined us.

Toshi drew breath sharply. Adrenaline surged through his veins as a thousand questions illuminated his mind.

How do you know my name? How did you find me?

A pause. Then almost instantly, PMR responded.

This is a haven for bullied students. Word gets around. We come here to vent.

More typing from The Raining Room.

Speak to us, Toshi. Desperate Angel had joined the party. What did the bastard do? added Black Flower.

Toshi sighed deeply and began to type. Before he knew it, he had typed an essay on the torment he had suffered because of Katsu. Wiping his face, he realized he felt cold. His pain was onscreen to a group of strangers and, rather than catharsis, he felt a strange chill in his bones.


Time is an odd thing. Minutes can fly by without notice yet hours can crawl on to the point of absurdity. Toshi finished his manic typing and wiped a film of sweat from his forehead. He had typed an essay any university student would be proud of yet only twenty minutes has passed.

PMR replied. It was greeted with joy from Desperate Angel and Black Flower.

He sounds like an evil piece of shit, Toshi. How on earth do you put up with that? You must have an iron will. Don't worry. He'll learn his lesson soon enough.

Toshi blinked. What did he mean by that? He typed this thought almost to the letter.

We're a support group. We take care of each other. Just do your part. Talk to us tomorrow and we'll dig a little deeper.

Confusion laced with regret coursed through his mind. Maybe it was just how it was worded but just do your part rubbed him the wrong way. He shook his head. You're getting paranoid. It's not like they want Dad's credit card or anything. No one's asked to see my doodle either. Either way, he was busy tomorrow. Once again, his Father was making a poor attempt of a family outing. He typed this.

Though he was looking at a screen, he sensed (or imagined) something off.

I don't think so, Toshi. You have to let us know if you hear anything from your bully. You wouldn't want anything else to go wrong. Now, Desperate Angel has had a rough day and I think we should listen.

Desperate Angel typed their own essay. Toshi could only watch dumbfounded. His parents milled around outside his door unaware of what their son had stepped into.

The End

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