The On Going Surveillance
Trent’s friend Bobby who was in the Army, called him in a frantic tone. “Trent. Come toKentuckyasap.” and hung up.Trenttried to call him back several times but he didn’t pick up. This left him wondering that it must’ve been a crisis. But he couldn’t fathom what would be worst then when Bobby went into combat inAfghanistan.
Trentwas in a manic state, while purchasing airline tickets. He thought this was one impulsive move and he would have to miss a class to take this trip. But he hadn’t seen Bobby since he enlisted in the Army after high school.
He took off fromMarylandand landed inKentucky. Bobby was waiting at the airport. They got into Bobby’s car and on the way to his house,Trentasked: “What the hell happened? You had had me worried to death not picking up your phone like that.”
“My friend Thomas took one of my guns while I was outside and blew his head off. He was a close friend and always came to my house to play ps3 and noticed I always left my gun on the table.”
“Why was your gun lying around? Are police going to charge you? ”
“No. They just confiscated the gun. I was negligent but I just bought a $999 safe. I’m glad you’re here. I’ve seen too much death inAfghanistan but this is the worst of all of what I’ve witnessed. Just when I thought this PTSD has gotten somewhat better.”
“We grew up together man. I’m here for you.”
Trentwondered how come the police just let him go without further investigation. But he was glad he could be there in hard times.
Trentmade it to Bobby’s house and settled in. He experienced strange occurrences.Trentfelt like dead Thomas was watching him as he played PS3 with Bobby.
Bobby askedTrent: “How’s your class?”
“It’s not going so well. I’ve been manic ever since your phone call and still manic. I told my professor that I might be having hallucinations in class and now this woman’s sitting in the corner of the class watching me. Everyone thinks I’m going to shoot up the school.”
“You’re hallucinating again. No one’s out to get you. Don’t worry about it. Just pass your class.”
Three days of playing ps3 gotTrentstressed and bored but Bobby enjoyed it. It was time forTrentto go back toMaryland. On the way over to the airport, Bobby asked: “Thanks for coming out here man. I’m feeling a whole lot better.”
“No problem. I’m glad you’re doing better.”
They shook hands andTrenttook off and landed back home inMaryland.
The next day he went to class. Dead Thomas had followed him home and nowTrentstarted to see an image of dead Thomas flickering in class. He noticed his classmate would look at him funny wondering why he would look next to him at an empty seat.
Then dead Thomas spoke. “Your classmates think you’re going to shoot up the school. Don’t you notice many students have dropped out of class? Don’t you see that woman sitting in the corner all by herself monitoring your behavior? They got a behavioral response team in schools now. Security is all over you. Remember when that student said Asians are hard workers and you got offended and said: “I’m Asian and I’m not a hard worker?” I bet the FBI are watching you too. It’s time to show them that just because you act the way you do, doesn’t mean you’re going to shoot up the school.”
He was right. He had some symptoms of a potential school shooter. He stared blankly into space for the whole class, rarely spoke, and would look angry. And now he was seeing dead Thomas.
After class was over, he went home and texted Bobby: “I’m seeing Thomas in class. He told me people are thinking I’m going to shoot up the school. And that the FBI is watching me.”
“That’s bullshit. Don’t worry about it you’ll make it.”
A text message popped up from a third party provider telling him to download an image that expired in three days.Trentgot angry that his phone was being tapped. Maybe Thomas was right that the FBI were watching him. But then again he was manic and questioned his state of mind.
Trentdecided to listen to dead Thomas. He needed to show them that just because he has symptoms of a school shooter didn’t mean he needed to be under surveillance.
The semester was almost over and on the college website there was a course evaluation link. He typed:
“If you guys don’t stop monitoring me, I’m going to shoot up the school.”
Trenthit submit thinking he should just ignore the surveillance and pass the class but Thomas was right, this needed to stop.
Two hours later the police showed up atTrent’s house. The cop said:
“You said you were going to shoot up the school. You’re in trouble. You’re going to jail.”
“You guys have been watching me since mid-semester. And why are you guys tapping my phone? I got no guns. I’m not going to tolerate this kind of treatment. You know what? I need to go to the hospital. I’ve been manic sinceKentuckyand seeing this dead guy.”
Trentfigured if he was going to be charged with conspiracy, his escape route would be doing a few days in the psych unit and come out with a new personality.
“What are you talking about?
“You guys think I’m a school shooter? I’m just like you and everyone else, just because I act like one doesn’t mean I need to be under surveillance.”
“Ok. You think you need to go to the psych unit. This is not going to ruin your future. Let’s go.”
At the hospital, doctors drugged him up and turned him into a zombie.Trentwalked around like a zombie thinking they’re drugging him up to silent him.
A few days later,Trentwas discharged and the FBI called him telling him there was a case pending against him and that he was required to go to a community for mental health services.Trentthought it could’ve been worst and that he could’ve had federal charges slapped on him.
Trentwas kicked out of school and he thought this was not right. He wouldn’t have made that threat if everyone would just leave him alone.
The FBI investigated as to whetherTrenthad access to firearms. The investigation eventually led to Bobby and he was arrested for supplying firearms. On the news Bobby said: “I wasn’t supplying firearms toTrent. Why don’t you guys leaveTrentalone?”
I Had to do What I Had to do
I was out of luck when I was fired from McDonalds and ran out of money for child support. I also had to pay my phone bill. I suppose I could live without a phone this month.
I had to do what I had to do. I got home and sat comfortably on my recliner. I called Aerowave and a voice spoke:
“Welcome to Aerowave. What is your pin?”
“How can I help you today”?
“I need to waive my termination fee. I keep getting disconnected and have static in my house.”
“I can send you an airwave which will give you extra reception.”
“I don’t want one. What if it doesn’t work? I don’t trust you guys. This is getting too risky. I can’t afford to miss another call.
“I assure you if you pay for it, it will work.”
“I spent top dollar for this. I will not spend any more money on something that doesn’t work. Of all places why my house?”
Let me send you to the cancelation department. I can’t disconnect a line. Please hold.”
While some elevator music was playing, I thought I got a deal from a third party dealer and the phone was free and valued worth $800 on Ebay.
“Welcome to the billing department? What is your pin number?”
“I already told the other agent. I need to waive my termination fee. It’s all logged on your computer.”
“I see in our notes that you keep getting disconnected in your house but you have coverage in your area. I can send you an airwave free of…”
“I know. I know. The other agent told me the same thing. I don’t want it.
“I’m going to let my supervisor know. They will call you back.”
“You’re going to have to talk to my supervisor to ok this cancelation.”
“Ok. Transfer me over.”
“Welcome to the cancelation department. How may I help you today?”
“I’m all setup to waive my cancelation fee and port my number over to another carrier. I followed everyone’s instructions.”
“I understand but what is your reason?”
“I told everyone already. It’s on your computer.
“One moment while I read the notes. I see you’re getting disconnected in your house. We can send you an air…”
“I don’t want it. All agents told me to disconnect and port today. I’m following all their instructions step by step.”
“I have credited you the termination fee but you must send the phone back to your third party dealer where you signed up for the plan with us or they may charge you a fee.”
“I’m going to do that now. Make sure you get this on the computer. Do you have some sort of record or id number of this conversation?”
She gave her id number, then said, “Would you like to take a survey about our customer service?”
“I’d be glad to. Go for it.”
I talked about the survey and hung up. The third party dealer required I send the phone back or they’ll charge a $250 fee. But I didn’t send the $800 phone back. I got it free as part of the deal.
I got my bill in the mail and the termination fee was waived. A few months later I never heard from the carrier or third party dealer, so I put up an auction on ebay for an $800 phone. I thought to myself I had to do what I had to do.