"You're a shitty Jailor, you know that?"

I groaned and placed my head in my hands. If only I hadn't chickened out of that execution-if only I had followed through with the plan. I dragged my mouse towards the leave lobby button, and my eyes followed, grazing themselves on the "Mafia wins" sign dipped in mocking crimson.

I leaned back in my chair as I observed my character-the Poisoner skin-keeling over next to two numbers, her legs bent at awkward angles. Then I looked at my elo. Minus one for a town loss. I let loose a sigh of relief. Ranked was so dead at this hour that the whole mafia team was probably in masters. I left the lobby, catching glimpses of white text poking fun at their elo loss and gain. I was just about to check the shop to see if I was anywhere near close enough to buy that house I had been saving up for when-

"You have been chosen to join the Town of Salem Public Test World!"

I squinted my eyes at the new popup on my screen. What? Did they mean the Public Test Realm? I thought anyone could play on that server-it wasn't a closed beta or anything. Although I had never considered playing on a public test realm, I moved my mouse over to the confirm box anyway.


Nothing really happened. The popup vanished, and I was left with the Town of Salem home screen again. I sighed and shut the lid of my laptop.

My name is Tabitha. My mum picked it on a whim when my gender was revealed-at least, that's what she's been telling me. Everything about me is a contradiction. I choose my actions based on whims— yet I'm afraid of the consequences. Even my hair is a contradiction— it's brown, which is a mixture of the lightest possible hair colour and the darkest hair colour. Picking one thing and one thing only is not an option for me. It never has been.

I sighed as I curled up on my bed. Another day gone. Another day closer to starting school. If only something would happen. If only the days would go by like this forever. I don't know which one to pick.

I soon managed to drift off.


"Welcome to Salem!"

I suddenly jerked awake. Was it morning? No— still dark. I was about to lie back down on my bed, when—

"Oh no, don't go back to sleep! I have to explain the rules of the game to you!"

I snapped my head around, but there was nothing. "Who's there?" I asked cautiously.

"You're being sent to Salem— you know the game? You're bored with your everyday life, right?" The voice continued, as if it never heard me. "We've selected fourteen other players, just for you! Isn't that fun, Tabitha?"

I sat and slowly let the idea settle in my mind. Fun? Killing others didn't sound fun. I slowly shook my head. "No thanks. That sounds awful. Good night, and please don't come back."

The voice was silent for a bit, then spoke up again. "You don't understand. This game needs you, and you need this game. You're the only one who plays this game that can save everyone. So say goodbye to your family for now, because we're sending you to Salem."

"I said no," I mumbled.

"Too bad."

Then my world was flipped upside down, shaken up and down, and rolled all over. It felt sort of like a rollercoaster, except rollercoasters don't happen in your bed.

What was happening?

Who cared… I just wanted to sleep.