I thought Anndie said they spoke English here.  I don't know what they speak, I just know I can't understand a word of it.  Okay, I understand beer, and they drink lots of that.  But they talk about football, and I find out they're talking about soccer.  I mean, football's football, and soccer is soccer.  Right?

We're staying with Anndie's pal Karen Aldridge.  Karen's a nice girl, she's got a small place but there's enough room if I sleep on the sofa.  No, me and Anndie aren't doing whatever the guys woud be kidding me about.  I like Anndie a lot.  She's a great girl.  We're good pals.  Funny thing is, I don't think she wants to be more than pals.  I'm not sure I wanna be more than pals, either.

See, the funny thing is, when I'm with her, I keep thinking about Yves.  Yeah, I know her name's Lois, but she hates that name, and I respect her way too much to call her something she hates.  I'm not gonna say anything about it, though.  I don't wanna lead her on but she's just been through some real bad stuff, so I don't wanna hurt her feelings, either.  I'm not sure where she's at, but we had a real good time in Hawaii.  I ate poi.  It really doesn't taste like anything.  Sort of looks like the stuff they put in blueberry Pop Tarts but doesn't have any flavor.
We went surfing, too. I got up one time, it's a lot harder than it looks.  Went snorkeling too.  That was so cool.  Karen says we should go snorkeling while we're there, should make a trip to the Great Barrier Reef, wherever that is.  I'm not sure where anything is.  I'm just still figuring my way out around Melbourne.

Melbourne's really a neat city, actually.  People are pretty friendly but they're not snoopy.  This is real good, because me  and Anndie don't feel like talking much about what's gone on before we got here.  Karen takes us to the pubs a lot, and we get to go to the zoo, and we had a great time there.

Now if I could just figure out what they're saying.  They could be talking Greek for all I know.

Being in the pubs is good and bad.  It's good because it's kind of fun, even if they don't know what real football is, and it's bad because it reminds me of hanging out with the guys and all the fun we had.  I really miss 'em, big time.  I don't know when I'm gonna see 'em again, and that's real hard.  I can't really explain it to Anndie.  She doesn't understand how like these are my brothers, not just my friends.

She also doesn't know how I feel about Yves.  I haven't told anyone, not even the guys.  She went underground after she found the guys at the consolidate.

All I know is, I think she's in danger and I've gotta find her.  I dunno how I'm gonna explain that one, to either the guys or Anndie.  But I gotta do it.

I'm supposed to set up this email thing.  I should really do it.  Frohike's gonna have a cow if I don't check in soon, that is if he got access.  I'm sorta thinking he did seeing he was gonna go see someone he knew from online.  Wonder if he's having fun in the Caymans. Where are the Caymans?  I think Byers said they were in the Mediterranean but I really can't remember.

I gotta find a computer.  I don't wanna ask Karen to use hers.  She doesn't deserve to have trouble.  She's been real nice to us and she knows we're having problems but that doesn't mean she's gotta have 'em.

So me and Anndie go out and buy a laptop.  God, things cost a lot here.  I used to go shopping with the guys and they'd always get stuff on the cheap.  Anndie knows lots about laptops.  She like Macs.  I see her drooling over this little tiny skinny white Mac that she says she's gonna get for herself, but I need one for myself, too.

She says she's gonna get a job doing something.  Karen's trying to get it so she can hire her to come and wash dishes in her lab or something so maybe she can get back to doing what she does best.  Anndie's real smart.  She should be using her brain.  I hope Karen can do something for her.

I've got the instructions the guys gave me to set up, but I'm no good at that kind of thing.  Anndie's better than me and Karen's real good, so we get it set up finally.

Byers gave me directions to look for them online, what names they were gonna use and stuff, how to get into the underground boards.  I'm kind of nervous about doing this.

First thing I do, I look for Yves.  I got a list of all the different forms of all her names, we had that hanging up in the office, it was kind of a joke for a long time.  Not a joke anymore.

I even try her under Lois.  Nada.  I feel like putting a post on the otaku boards but Frohike'd kill me if I even tried.

So I look for Byers next.  Nope.  He's not set up or he did it different.  I hope he's okay.  Hope he gets on soon.

Langly's next.  Nothing there, either.  Course, they're out in some jungle somewhere, that's what they said they were gonna do.

So I try Frohike.  Bingo.  He's got his address all set.  I'm gonna have a hard time with all these addresses.  They don't make sense, they're just a jumble of letters and numbers.  Langly says it's harder to trace people that way, so I guess it's okay.

I screw up typing Frohike's address three times before I get it right.  I make Anndie read it back to me.  You see, I got a learning disability.  In school they said I had dyslexia.  Makes it hard for me to read and write and stuff.  They didn't tell me this till I was in 10th grade, so all that time, I thought I was just dumb.  I didn't even tell the guys for a long time.  They thought I was an idiot too.  I finally told Byers one day.  He said he sort of thought I had a problem like that.  He was cool about it.  He probably told the other guys, because they still kidded around with me but they never got all over my case again because I had trouble reading and writing stuff.

I don't type so good, either, but I get the address.  Then I sit there, thinking what I'm gonna say to Frohike.

I just say, I'm here.  Where are you?  Are you okay?

Karen takes us to this nice seafood place for dinner.  You eat a lot of fish here.  It's that or lamb, and I just can't eat a baby sheep.  The food's really good.  Karen asks me what I'm gonna do while I'm here.  I don't think she can keep us forever in her little tiny apartment.

"Not sure,"  I say.  Actually, I know what I'm gonna do, but the guys, especially Frohike, are gonna have my ass when they find out.

Or maybe they don't have to find out.  Maybe I don't have to tell them.  The way they got me set up, I could get on anywhere and they wouldn't have to know.  Maybe when Byers can get on, I'll talk to him.  He'd understand.  I mean, after Susanne and all that, he should know what it's like to be in love with someone and you can't see her because it's too dangerous.

I'm hoping I did it right.  When we get back to Karen's I check my email.  There's one new message.

"You never write, you never call, you leave me to worry alone in the dark."  I smile.  Yep, it's Frohike all right.  "The weather is here, wish you were beautiful. Others?"   I think he means have I heard from Byers and Langly.

I mail him back, tell him I'm okay, I don't know where the guys are, but that's all I tell him.

Tomorrow, I'll talk to Anndie.  I hope she understands.  I feel like such a jerk.  I don't wanna screw up everything for everyone.  But I have to do it.

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