"Look out, there's a sniper hiding in this building. I don't know where this nut got a sniper from."
"Zoro, you had better not be looting now, we need support on the other side of town."
"I don't know why the hell you'd want to go all the way across town. I have harped on you to remain united on numerous occasions. We can get by with the loot we find here. We can kill the other teams and move on."
"I don't know what it is about some individuals, but they're so selfish and material!"
"What should we do next?"
"Just hear me out."
This was the conversation going on between Robin and his friend over the earbuds he'd purchased for his average-priced mobile phone. Robin was just your average guy from Guwahati, India (which is in the Northeast of the country). He was 5'10, not the top student in his engineering class at the state university where he received his degree, just like the other average Indians who tended to be slightly better than the mean in academics. Even though his parents had been pressuring him into pursuing a career in engineering, Robin had no interest in doing so.
He finished his engineering degree mostly because his parents wanted him to and because he wanted to avoid the crushing debt he'd incurred by then. Given that it was a state-funded university, he paid very little in tuition but if he didn't finish he'd still be in considerable debt.
After finishing school, he finally fulfilled a lifelong ambition, becoming fluent in a new language and using it professionally to earn money. He had put forth special effort to master Spanish and was currently doing so with Japanese.
He was fluent in Spanish and he earned his living doing translation work. He took online Japanese classes to enhance his skills and improve his portfolio. And in his free time, he played PUBG Mobile with his pals.
It was one of those marathon gaming sessions where he had been playing alongside his buddies for three hours without taking a break. Throughout the entire time, he had been shouting into his microphone, caught up in the excitement of the game.
"Robin, you need to put down that game and join me for lunch."
The sound of his mom's voice rang out from the kitchen, pulling him out of his virtual world. In India, it's common for young people to live at home with their parents, but many still venture out to work. However, some young people prefer to work from the comfort of their own homes, enjoying the familiar surroundings and the warmth of their families.
Since Robin did his job from home, he decided to do so from his parent's house, which allowed him to make a financial contribution to the household by taking care of groceries and other tasks. Even though the apartment was in his father's name, Robin insisted on paying a couple of the monthly utility bills (such as electricity, gas, and water) as a gesture of gratitude. His parents may not have approved of his profession, but they still supported him throughout his journey.
"Oh, yeah, ma. Coming.. Just a moment... Zoro ... I will rescue Eren, who has been singled out for special treatment. If I get killed, I'm quitting the game. Now watch my back." Robin stated as he ran to the nearby building in the game, while tinkering with the game on his finger. Between the building that Eren was in and the building that he was in, there was a significant distance with no cover.
Hearing nothing from the church, he took off running again.
"What the hell, Kenny..." His two teammates yelled out his PUBG ID, Kenny. Robin's lack of indication that he would proceed onto the open roadway prompted them to raise their voices. Robin was regularly reprimanded because of his hastiness in making such choices.
And today definitely qualifies as one of those days!!
A Kar98 aimed for Robin's head and fired. If fired at an adversary's head, this weapon is guaranteed to cause instant death. Robin, on the other hand, was only wearing a level 1 helmet, which is considered to be below average, therefore he was instantly taken out of the fight. This is because someone wearing a higher level helmet has a better chance of being saved and will only lose a portion of their health.
The following shot was a dead giveaway, a fatal head wound. Poor Robin couldn't even make it to safety by crawling.
"What a moron...
"Don't act so hastily, as I warned you."
"Why does this jerk have to be the one to tear us down every time?"
"You made a mistake by attempting to save me. There would be no point in your coming; I warned you."
The loudspeaker crackled with a never-ending stream of complaints, causing Robin to slouch in defeat. He had never been one to shine in crucial games, and the pressure was beginning to get to him. When his mother's voice rang out, summoning him to lunch, Robin felt a sense of urgency to end the fight as quickly as possible so that he could escape her constant nagging.
"I am truly sorry, all of you. I have to leave.. It's time for lunch my mother is calling." Robin said into the microphone in spite of the ribbing from his pals.This was just par for the course in their long-standing friendship. Returning to the home screen, he immediately logged out.
As the main menu loaded on the screen, Robin stood up from his seat and took a step forward. Suddenly, he let out a yelp of pain as his toe collided with the side of his bed. Despite not being clumsy, he couldn't seem to catch a break – earlier, he had accidentally glanced at his phone's home screen while walking down the street and stubbed his toe.
Robin held his phone in an awkward position as he checked his toe for any signs of a skin rip, relieved to find none. After examining his foot for any more damage, Robin checked his phone again to finish the game. Suddenly, his eyes widened in shock and his jaw dropped as he saw something that left him petrified. He couldn't believe what he was seeing.
Robin watched in horror as his thumb accidentally slid off the screen and into the game, causing chaos on the virtual battlefield. He had never experienced anything like this before, and he was terrified.
Oh, my God!!
The first thing that came to Robin's mind was that there might be something wrong with his phone. But upon closer inspection, he found no flaws. The most unbelievable part was seeing his thumb appear as a two-dimensional object inside the game.
"What is this, exactly? Could it be a problem with my phone or am I just imagining things? is my thumb severed from my hand?"
Robin's heart raced with fear at the thought of his finger being cut off inside the game. He gingerly removed his thumb from the screen, half-expecting to see a bloody stump in its place. But as soon as his thumb was free, he breathed a sigh of relief to see that it was unharmed and everything was back to normal.
"What the heck went down?"
Despite his initial shock, Robin couldn't resist trying again. He placed his thumb back on the phone's screen, this time with the intention of inserting it into the game's menu. With a mixture of trepidation and excitement, he watched as his thumb once again entered the two-dimensional world on the screen.
'What the heck is this?'
After his first success, Robin's curiosity got the better of him. He decided to try with his other fingers and see what would happen. To his amazement, his index finger followed his thumb and slipped into the game, poking its way through the virtual environment
'Is this my power?'
Robin's thoughts were racing with endless possibilities. He experienced both a sense of empowerment and anxiety at this unusual new ability. Was he losing touch with reality? Despite his confusion, he decided to give it another try, this time with his other hand. To his amazement, his fingers effortlessly slipped into the game's menu, just as they had before.
Robin's mother's voice cut through his panic like a knife. "Robin, you better come for lunch at once!"she yelled from the kitchen. Suddenly, Robin was aware of how much time had passed and how hungry he was. With a deep breath, he pulled his fingers out of the phone and shook his head to clear it.
Robin took a deep breath and tried to calm himself down. "Stop panicking! Take it easy," he whispered to himself. "Once you've eaten, you can examine your hands to find out what's wrong." With that thought in mind, he made his way to the dining room for lunch.
As he ate, Robin's legs trembled with nervousness, betraying the turmoil in his mind. His mother noticed and expressed concern. "Are you okay? Is there a problem?" she asked, her maternal instincts kicking in.
Robin paused for a moment, contemplating whether to confide in his mother. But instead, he decided to keep the strange experience to himself and replied, "Don't worry, mama; everything's okay. In fact, I just got a new project that needs my undivided attention. Since then, my schedule has become completely full." He lied through his teeth, trying to maintain his composure as he practically inhaled his meal.
After finishing his meal in a hurry, Robin hurried back to his room and shut the door behind him. The urge to investigate the phone's strange capabilities was too strong to resist. He unlocked the screen and attempted to insert his fingers into the phone once more, but to his disappointment, nothing happened.
'What exactly is going on here? So, I guess I don't have any power anymore, huh? Maybe I was just hallucinating."
Despite his initial disappointment and confusion, Robin eventually came to the realization that this strange ability was all part of the game. He shook off his apprehension and trusted that his fingers were not going to suffer any harm. With renewed determination, he launched PUBG Mobile once again and tried the strategy once more.
There it was!
As he had hoped, his fingertips were able to pass through the display. When he saw it, Robin nearly leaped out of his seat.
One can well ask, 'What the hell is this power?'
His fingers now travelled over the screen for a short distance as he reached out to the guy holding a regular M4 rifle, just to see if he could make contact with him. In spite of the fact that his finger went right through the standing guy, he was still able to feel the solid M4 in his grasp.
He couldn't believe it!
He felt around for the M4 with two fingers and made an attempt to draw it out. Then, suddenly, the miracle occurred!
Like magic, a miniature M4 appeared in the game. The M4 appeared to be about the size of a finger, and he could have easily gripped it with two or three fingers. His legs were shaking, but as he stared down the barrel of the revolver, he steadied himself. Due of its diminutive size, it served no practical purpose.
A mere stage prop!
Disappointment crept over Robin as he stored the miniature M4 on a neighbouring table. The moment he set the weapon down on the table, it began to grow in size, and in an instant, the miniature weapon had expanded to the proportions of a regular M4 assault rifle!!!