Sunday, 25 August 2013

Escape from Candy Crush

by Sarah Harvey

Mia sat at her desk and sighed at the mountain of paperwork in front of her. She was so bored. She got up to make a coffee and stared playing Candy Crush on her phone as she waited for the water to boil. Her colleague, Harper, walked into the kitchen sucking on a lollipop. She frowned at Mia.
‘You should be careful of that game, Mia.’ Harper warned. It’s highly addictive.’
‘I’m just having a coffee break,’ explained Mia, not looking up from her phone. ‘I’m just stuck on level 99...’
‘Well just don’t let Mr Rogers see you playing it. He hates it when Katie sits at reception and does it.’
‘Sure, sure. Hey I don’t think I want a coffee now. I’m going outside to get some lunch and some sun instead. Want anything?’
‘I’m fine. Got a lollipop to suck on...’

Outside in the sun Mia ate some fruit and continued in vain to complete the Candy Crush level that she was on. The sun was warm and made her sleepy. Before long, she had dozed off...

Then she woke to the sound of a scream. Startled, she got up and looked around, but saw no one and the yard was deserted. What was going on? Suddenly, Katie, the young receptionist, raced out of Mia’s building in a blind panic.
‘Help! Help me someone! Please!’
Mia rushed over to her. ‘Katie? What’s wrong? Where is everyone?’  Katie’s eyes flooded with tears.
‘I can’t get off! I’m stuck!’ She grabbed Mia’s shirt and pulled it towards her, pleading in an urgent whisper: ‘Help me, Mia, please!’
‘What do you mean “Can’t get off?” I don’t understand.’
‘I can't get off this level! I’ve got no more lives!’ Katie was beside herself with grief.
‘No more lives?’  
‘Look out!’ Before Mia knew what was happening, Katie grabbed her arm and pulled her a few metres to her left. An orange-striped boulder crashed in front of them and made a hole in the concrete pavement the size of a crater. Seconds later, a booming voice echoed around them:
‘YOU DID NOT CLEAR THE JELLY! YOU HAVE FAILED!’
‘Oh my God!’ Katie screamed. ‘I have to do the level again!’ Katie ran off in tears and disappeared into the dust. Mia coughed and looked up in complete bewilderment at the huge rock now parked in front of her. She thought it best to move on too, and quickly.

As Mia scampered along, she was plagued by what seemed to be a countless number of flying coloured balls; blue ones, read ones, green ones, yellow ones, striped ones, and multi-coloured ones – all different shapes and sizes. Hundreds flew past her as she ran and then simply exploded in above her head. A hypnotic tune played over and over in her head, and a deep voice occasionally cried: ‘TASTY!’, ‘SWEET!’, and ‘DIVINE!’ every now and then. Eventually she stumbled across a slippery tiled surface that she had not seen before. The tiles glistened, and everything was very quiet. There was a middle-aged man stuck in between two of the tiles. Mia recognised him immediately.
‘Mr Rogers? Is that you?’
The man looked up, startled. ‘Oh Mia, it’s only you. How are you? Have you finished marking up that document I gave you this morning?’
‘Oh, I um...’
‘Oh, silly me, of course you haven’t. You’re here with me, in the game.’
‘In - the - the - game?’
‘Yes. Blasted Candy Crush. I knew the minute my daughter got me onto it there would be no escape.’ Mr Rogers wriggled around. He tried to push himself out from between the tiles. He looked very uncomfortable.
‘Are you stuck, Mr Rogers?’
Mr Rogers laughed hysterically. ‘Stuck? Hah! That’s an understatement and a half. I’ve been on this level for 167 days!’
‘But there must be a way off. Can’t I help you? Can’t I give you a life or something?’
‘Oh you can’t give me a life unless we’re Face book friends, and that would be against our work company policy. No, I’m afraid it’s too late for me...’ And with that, Mr Rogers slipped and disappeared between the two tiles. Mia gasped and covered her mouth. She took a moment and then staggered on, determined to continue on through the obstacles before her.

Finally, on the level that Mia had been stuck on in the kitchen at work, she saw Harper, who was perched up on a floating striped candy. Harper was doing some paperwork, and still sucking on a lollipop.
‘Harper!’ Mia called over to her. ‘What are you doing here? Give me a hand will you?’ Harper looked over at Mia and glared at her.
‘I warned you, Mia. There’s no escape from this game once you start it...’
‘Oh, shut-up and help me get through this level!’ Mia barked as she slid her way across the jelly-covered candies.  
‘Well alright,’ Harper snapped back. ‘There’s no need to be snippy.’ Harper pulled the lollipop out of her mouth and held it in front of Mia. As she did, the lollipop grew, and grew, and grew.
‘Is that – a Lollipop Hammer?’ Mia asked.
‘Sure is.’ Harper started to smash the jelly tiles around her with the lollipop. With each whack, the tiles shattered on impact and the coloured ground beneath them began to rumble and shake. Mia was losing her balance.
‘I’m smashing the jelly and locked candies on this level for you,’ Harper said calmly above the noise. ‘I’m only going to do this for you once and then you’re on your own in the next level. I’m not going to rescue you again. Understood?’ Mia nodded. ‘Now if I was you, I’d take off before all these candies disappear underneath us and you have to start all over again...’   

Mia started to run... and run and run and run and run and run and run and run and run and run...

‘Mia? Mia! Wake up! You’ve been out here of an hour - Mr Rogers is looking for you!’
‘Wha-? Where am I? Harper?’
‘Did you even get any lunch? Or have you been sitting here playing that stupid Candy Crush game the whole time?’
‘Uh, sorry, I must have dozed off...’
‘Well hurry up.’ Harper turned and walked away. Mia rubbed her eyes and looked down at her phone.  She smiled.

Wonderful! Level completed...'

2 comments:

  1. Awesome piece Sarah. Haha - I am definitely a Candy Crush addict and have a lot of trouble getting off levels. :)

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