The Blog 10/1/19

A Short Story by Richard Bleil

“Well that one sucked.”

“What?” Tom looks up at Susan as he picks up the coffee to take a sip.

“Oh, this blog,” she said. “Bleil’s blog.”

“Oh, BleilBanter?”

“Yeah, I don’t know why I still read it.”

“Well, he was your friend,” Tom says putting down his coffee. “It’s nice that you support him.”

“Yeah, but he writes every day!” Susan complains. “Does he really think he has THAT much to say?”

“But you said it’s different topics.”

“And some things are not so bad I guess,” Susan replies.

“When was the last time you spoke with him?” Tom asks absent-mindedly, picking up on his laptop where he had left off.

“It’s been awhile, maybe I’ll send him a text today.”

Just texting to say hi. How have you been?

THIS USER CANNOT RECIEVE TEXT MESSAGES.

“Odd,” Susan thinks to herself.

Are you there?

THIS USER CANNOT RECIEVE TEXT MESSAGES.

“Hmm….”

“You know, I tried to text him yesterday like you suggested,” Susan says as she wearily reads the newest blog.

“Who?” Tom asks, focusing on his Facebook page.

“Rich.”

“Who?”

“You know, Bleil, my friend with the blog.”

“Oh, how is he?”

“I don’t know,” Susan looks up from the post. “I couldn’t get the message through.”

“Did you try to call?”

Susan sits back, furrowing her brow as the thought never really crossed her mind. “Good idea,” she says, “I can go ‘old school’!” smiling at the thought, making Tom chuckle at the phrase.

She glances at the time, and decides it’s not too early. It’s been a long time since she actually called him, but finds his name in the director and makes the call.

THE NUMBER YOU HAVE REACHED IS NO LONGER IN SERVICE. IF YOU BELIEVE…

She hangs up. She looks at the phone, and can’t help but try one more time.

THE NU…

She hangs up. “Out of service,” she says.

Tom looks up. Susan notices the concerned expression on his face. “I’ll send an email.”

“By the way,” Tom asks looking over his morning coffee at Susan, “did you ever get ahold of your friend?”

“What friend?”

“The, you know, the blog guy.”

“Oh, Bleil,” Susan says. “I sent an email; hang on.”

She opens up her email app, and refreshes for new messages. “I sent him an email maybe a week ago,” she says. “No reply, though.” Quickly she types out another one. “I know he suffers from depression, so sometimes he won’t respond right away. But, he’s still writing blogs. I’m sure he’s fine.”

“Ooookay,” Tom says, drawing out the word. “If you’re sure.”

“Still no reply,” Susan thinks to herself. “How long has it been?” She opens up her email and looks in her “sent folder.” She furrows her brow; it’s been that long since I sent the second email?

She opens up Facebook. She stopped “following” him a couple of months ago, but he’s still in her friends list. She searches from him, and clicks on his profile.

“Tom, I don’t get it,” she says. “I haven’t heard back from Bleil, his phone was disconnected, he hasn’t posted in facebook for months but he’s still blogging. What else can I do?”

“Did you try calling him again?” Tom asks. “You mentioned he was having trouble finding work; maybe he missed a payment.”

“Good idea,” she says.

WE’RE SORRY…

Susan hangs up. “Nope,” she says dejectedly.

Tom looks up. “Odd. I’m not sure what else to suggest. Do you know any of his friends?”

“Not well,” she replies, “but, wait, here’s an idea; I can post a message on his Facebook.”

Bleil is still blogging, but I can’t reach him and he hasn’t posted here on FB in a long time. Does anybody know how to get ahold of him?

“Ready?” Tom asks, climbing into bed next to Susan.

“Hang on,” she replies, “just want to check that post I put on Bleil’s Facebook. She’s shocked by the string of comments that follow.

“I haven’t heard from him in a long time.”

“Usually he’s really active here, isn’t he?”

“I tried reaching him today but couldn’t get through.”

“His phone has been disconnected.”

“I haven’t; has anybody seen him?”

“Does anybody live near him?”

“Didn’t he move recently?”

“He moved to Omaha.”

“He’s still blogging, I’m sure he’s okay”

“What service does he use?”

“WordPress, I think.”

“Just looked up the features at WordPress. You can set up to publish blogs in advance.”

“Omaha Police Department.”

“Yes, I’m calling because I’m worried about a friend of mine. He has been missing for a while.”

“How long has he been missing?”

“I don’t know,” Susan replies. “I noticed it about a month ago.”

“What makes you think he’s missing?”

“I haven’t been able to reach him, and he hasn’t been active on FaceBook. I didn’t think about it because he still posts on his blog.”

“Then why do you suspect he is missing?”

“Apparently you can post in advance and schedule when it goes out.”

“Okay, hang on…what is his name?”

“Rich Bleil.”

“How do you spell that?”

“B-L-E-I-L.”

The delay seems excessively long, but Susan assumes she’s just nervous.”

“B-L-E-I-L? Richard?”

“Yes, that’s him.”

“Ma’am, we had a John Doe that was found in the street about five months ago. Apparently, heart attack. He didn’t seem to have an insurance card, so we assumed he never went in. He was identified as one ‘Bleil, Richard E…”

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