-- Chapter 2
- The (mysterious) invite.

Early morning. A long street that is only starting to open it's eyes as the sun slowly stretches itself up over the horizon. Not one person walking, sitting or even laying on the near-by pavement. Even the birds haven't begun tweeting yet and the only thing moving is the bacteria in a trash-can. Big party at the banana peel last night, as the fresh and funky teens made their way home in a not very sober state. But other than that, the main street lay in sleep.

John opened his eyes only to see the ceiling, slowly backing away from him. He put on his glasses which made the ceiling float back to his original and correct position. He had had a wonderful dream about a spy named Grut˛ki and how he had been wearing the same costume for the last 20 years with the idea that he could not be identified. He joined him in a quest to free his son from an evil train. The logic in that, looking back at this point, was very flawed but he had enjoyed the dream nevertheless. It had been like a perfect movie, where you don't remember the adventure but all the emotions hit you like a bag of oranges.

He slowly strugged to his feet, feeling the floorboards bend and shift as he put pressure on them. Walking over to his dresser he was annoyed by the streak of sunshine that hit him on the face as he was opening the door to his clothes. If he had been a bolt, it would have been the screwdriver that an idiot used on him. But this was nothing special. He had felt this way every morning for the last couple of years. He had always planned to put up a plant where the sunshine came from but the only thing that he could handle was a small pocket-cactus and this obviously didn't help much. He liked the cactus though. The sun, on the other hand, hated John Grey. He played little mind games with him. Hoping he would get paranoid. Unfortunately the sun wasn't very bright in that particular aspect. To be honest he was a retard but neither he nor anyone else for that matter knew this.

Grabbing his favourite pair of trousers and a very bright red shirt he strutted to the bathroom. Took a very refreshing shower and put his clothes on.
While he was in the shower, the city began to wake up. Old people were taking up their places on the benches of bus stops. "If only they had somewhere to go, they would be a lot happier" - thought the bench or at the least would have thought the bench had he had any braincells to think with. Birds got into position on the street to annoy the old people and small children were stretching their slingshots to combat these evil foes. The elderly of course disapproved of this and yelled at the youngsters. The micro-cycle of urban warfare in today's society.

John skipped downstairs and turned the open-closed sign to the more inviting state of 'open'. Picked up the mail, tossed it on the counter and began reading of wars in far-away countries and the adventures of drunk celebrities and politicians alike. The number of people that began to read the same paper at the exact same time was amazing to say the least. Half of the population of the city itself, Norfolk, situated in the south-east of Washington DC, opened the paper at the exact same time and the other half could no longer, have not yet learned or did not know how to read.
If this statistic anomaly would come to the attention of any scientist, the concept of 'individuality' would have vanished. Luckily the scientists were busy finding ways to turn bread into cheese with big lasers. They didn't care about the cheese, the laser guns were just fun to play with.

As he was giggling over the comics section he heard the mail-shutter clink and saw a red envelope float to the ground. He opted to read the last panel of Garfield before taking to his feet. He picked up the red piece of unmarked paper and slowly walked back to his comfortable chair. He opened the top and a yellowish-pink paper slid out.

"Dear graduate,

you are invited to the reunion of your class. It has been many years since we last saw eachother.
What have you been up to? Have you discovered the meaning of life or perhaps settled down with a family?

The reunion will take place at our school in a week.

Hope to see you there."

He sat back in his chair and began to ponder. He didn't really succeed so he went about his business hoping to forget the letter for the moment and go on with his day.

Customers came and went but the shopkeeper couldn't really concentrate. The yellow paper kept staring him in the face like the biker you really don't want anything to do with at your favourite bar. He decided to close shop early. Flipping the informative sign to the less-positive position of 'closed', he again sat back in his chair and re-read the letter.

It's content had no changed but his eyes travelled lower this time and he spotted something at the bottom printed in fine-print.

"Mailed to Anthony Wilfred."

He pondered some more and very slowly stepped over to his pet's cage and looked puzzled for a while. He stopped, stared at the paper once more and continued looking puzzled. The gerbil had for the last couple of minutes not payed any attention and kept running around on his little wheel.

He put the paper into the cage and observed his pet, who was a bit shocked by the paper. Not by it's content but by a familiar scent.
He peered over to his owner in a gaze of meaningful insight, which to us humans just looks cute like everything else gerbils do and squeaked in a very profound manner.

John: "Do you know anything about this?"
John: "What the hell am I doing. It's a gerbil."
Wilfred: "Well, technically I am a Meriones unguiculatus, but a gerbil will do I suppose."

Wilfred stopped talking.
John had stopped pondering.
Even the floorboards stopped making sounds and the tap stopped tripping.

To put it as simply as possible. Everything stopped.