Corey looked around the park again once he reached the bench. There was not a soul in sight which was odd for a Saturday morning. He shrugged and sat down to wait for the joggers. He slipped his earbuds on, then yanked them out of his ears as he flinched in pain.
A loud buzzer blared in his ears for the split second he had them in. He stood up and looked around the park again, but still saw no one. Corey sat down with a confused look then pulled his invention out to check the settings. He built it into a black, bulky portable cassette player he found in his grandfather’s attic. It was still set to “aux”, which meant the sound came from another nearby device. He lowered the volume and put a single bud in his ear. Corey did not hear anything for almost a full minute. As he was about to give up he heard a deep male voice.
“Zone: Fairy Graveyard.” Then more silence. He glanced around the park without standing up and noticed a pair of joggers in the distance. They headed towards him, but they were still beyond the range of his gizmo. “Penalty: Friendly Fire. Luchadoras, Torque,” the voice said.
“Ooooooh baby,” a feminine voice sang in Corey’s ear. He realized the joggers were close enough to hear their music now. He sighed, pulled out the single earbud and looked over the device. He had been content listening to whatever audio was closest until that point. Now he realized he needed a way to target it. He put both buds in and stood from the bench. He walked towards, and then past the joggers to get them out of range faster.
“Yeaaahh baby, yeaaahh,” the song faded out after Corey passed the joggers. He stopped at the next bench. He saw no one else in range and sat down to listen. He hoped he was still close enough to the mystery voice.
“Ms. Sharp expects us to act like a team. If it happens again you’re out. Clear?” A youthful female voice said. Corey waited for an answer, but the girl kept talking as if she received one. “When you’re back in work with Dirge to keep their paladin busy. She’s easy to handle early on but if she gets too many laps she’ll be unstoppable.” Corey dug his cellphone out of his pocket to take notes; he seemed to be listening to a game and wanted to keep track.
“… then she
“I’m tagging you in on the next lap. Take out their bard before the elementalist gets back in,” a different girl said. “Get ready. I’m co-” the audio cut out for several seconds, then he heard a new voice.
“What about the programmer?” The response must have been hilarious because laughter filled his ears. “No, I didn’t know she was a Zero.” the girl chirped. “That’s too funny.” Corey realized the girl that laughed was the one that got tagged in. He guessed he was sitting on a team bench of some kind, which meant the other bench belonged to the other team. He was curious about how he was listening to the sounds, but he found himself invested in the unknown game. He left the bench and returned to his favorite bench, the one in the middle.
“Zone: Camelot,” the deep male voice said.
“I guess this is the announcer’s spot,” Corey thought to himself.
“Magi-Knights Card: Bounty. Target: Luchadoras, Dirge.” Corey jumped from the bench and rushed to the Luchadoras bench to his right.
“New plan. Once you’re in go for the cardmage. Dirge can worry about herself and Dread will stall the paladin.” Corey bolted off the seat and ran back to the Magi-Knights bench. He was thankful the park was so empty that morning. He thought he might look like an idiot running between benches, trying to keep track of the game. Once the penalty was over the Luchadoras bench stayed quiet, and he stopped running to it. He guessed their team did not have any benchwarmers.
Despite not knowing everything happening Corey found himself involved in the game. He ran between the two benches for almost an hour. He cheered when Torque, the girl that was penalized, knocked the Magi-Knights cardmage out of the game. He was sitting at the announcer’s bench when a buzzer sounded.
“Game!,” the voice said. Corey realized he did not know the score, or even how they kept score. Luckily the announcer answered his question. “Winners: – Luck be a lady toniiiiiiiight…” another song cut in.