THE COURT LIFE OF A RANDOM TESTER

Mishaps and near misses

***

Story by Marina Matei

In the great land of Testeria, unknown by man, lived a tester.

His life was a simple one: he kept testing every game that was hurled in his direction. Although he didn’t whine, he sometimes wondered what his life would be if he wasn’t testing all the time. The answer? It would be nothing. Nothing was more important for him than making sure that the game entrusted to him was no less than perfect.

But one day, all of this changed. His perfect testing life was shaken by the worst thing that could happen to a tester. All of it started one morning; a nice, warm one. Nothing predicted the disaster that would soon happen.

He arrived at his office like every other day and sat down at his desk. He picked his controller and tried booting the game. Suddenly, his worst fears came to life: there was no internet connection.

The tester looked at his screen in shock. He didn’t believe his eyes. This couldn’t happen, not to him. He got up and began walking to the castle’s grounds. There, he searched for the Great King’s lair, the home of the great Project Lead.

‘O, Great King, we are in big trouble!’ said the tester, kneeling down in front of Project Lead’s throne.

‘What would be the problem, Random Tester? Why aren’t you testing?’ echoed the king’s voice throughout the throne chamber.

‘We have no internet connection, your Majesty.” answered the tester, his voice and legs shaking at the greatness that was in front of him.

‘Let me see what I can do.’

Project Lead got up from his throne and went into a nearby chamber. He spent several minutes there, doing God knows what, only to come out looking defeated.

‘Random Tester, I am afraid that we forgot to pay the Internet bill.’ said Project Lead, a small tear forming in the corner of his eye.

‘No! This can’t be!’ Random Tester was already panicking. What was he to do if he couldn’t test?! ‘Please tell me there is something I can do!’

‘Fortunately, you can. As I cannot leave the castle unattended, I am trusting you to go to the Will Not Fix village and pay our internet bill.’ answered Project Lead.

Random Tester started shaking once again. He couldn’t refuse a direct request from Project Lead, but the thought of going to the Will Not Fix village was terrifying. That village was the home of all the bugs that were not worthy enough to be repaired. The longer a bug stayed in there, the crazier it got. They became so crazy, that they would attack every tester in sight, including their authors.

Still shaking, he took the money Project Lead handed to him and began walking towards the village.

He arrived quite shortly, as Will Not Fix was pretty close to the Testing Kingdom.

As soon as he set foot into the village, he began hearing some strange noises coming from every direction possible. That was it. The bugs heard him coming; His life was done for.

He kept walking cautiously towards the Lords of Internet, trying to ignore the strange sounds and screams that became clearer and louder the more he ventured between the shabby houses.

Just as he was becoming more and more accustomed to the sound, a strange creature jumped in front of him. It was no taller than a cat, with its strange long arms dangling around like soup noodles. It had a small round body, an eye on the forehead and one where an ear would be. Above the bug’s head, there was its description: “A leaf is clipping with another leaf”.

‘I am a crash!!!’ screamed the bug as it charged towards poor Random Tester. He felt the pain first, and, looking at his hand, saw that the bug had just bit him.

Screaming in pain, he began shaking his hand in order to make the bug fall off. Eventually he was able to break free of the bug’s attack, slamming it against a wall.

Thinking that the fight was won, Random Tester resumed his path and finally made it to Lords of Internet.

After he paid the Internet bill, he got back to the Testing Kingdom. He was not even afraid of the bugs anymore, as he felt so good thinking that Project Lead would be forever thankful for his good deed.

He went straight to the Throne Room to inform Project Lead that the bill was now paid; they had Internet, so they could test all day!

‘Good job, Random Tester!’ said Project Lead joyfully. ‘You did a good thing today that I will make sure will be remembered.’

However, just as Project Lead was praising Random Tester, there was a sudden white lightning, and then darkness set all around them.

‘What was that?!’ asked Random Tester, his voice trembling at the thought that something was once again blocking his testing.

They searched and searched for something that would explain the situation better, but they found nothing. Suddenly, there was a strange noise coming from one of the castle’s towers, and a high-pitched voice screamed: ‘I am a crash!!!’

That was the moment Random Tester realised his mistake. That was the bug that attacked him back at the Will Not Fix village. It probably climbed Random Tester’s backpack when he wasn’t paying attention and now he chewed at the power cables. There was no power in the entire Testing Kingdom and, without any power, there was no way that the testing could resume.

It took over a day for the power to be restored in the Kingdom, and Random Tester was never allowed to set foot in Will Not Fix village again.

It’s safe to say that he didn’t even want to hear that name again, after what had happened. He felt so much guilt, that he wasn’t brave enough to look Project Lead in the eyes anymore.

However, in the blink of an eye, testing safely resumed in the Testing Kingdom and life went on as expected.

Everybody was happy again.

***

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