How to Clean Everything

A/N: eh, this is a Minesweeper fic. That kind of speaks for itself, doesn't it? I hope you like it. And for the love of Lucifer, remember to review!


Sarah went to a private school, which meant her peers were outcasts among each other. Most of her peers were either child prodigies or spoiled to the bone due to their parents' excessive luxuries.

Sarah, however, took her parents' wealth for granted and spent countless hours, hogging and sitting in front of the family computer, and challenging it to endless rounds of Hearts. Although Sarah won most of the games and wasn't really challenged by Hearts, her interest never faltered.

Sarah, after winning her one thousandth consecutive recorded Hearts game, felt a strong urge to brag to one of her classmates – the king of all geeks, Mark.

"HEARTS?" Mark squeaked in a low voice. He started laughing manically. "Sarah, you are officially a loser! A L-O-S-E-R! With a capital L-O-S-E-R!"

Sarah was offended. "Y-yo—I'm not a loser…" she muttered. "…You're just jealous."

Mark paused for a moment, fixed a stare onto Sarah's face, and the resumed laughing in the same, awful tone. "GWAHAHAHAHAHA… jealous? JEALOUS? Of you?"

"…Yes," Sarah squeaked timidly. Mark stopped laughing and narrowed his eyes at Sarah.

"Sarah – I can EASILY win 1000 games of Hearts. But I wouldn't bother, since Hearts is a game to challenge such strategy novices… such as yourself. If you want to actually do something worthwhile for your noodle, you would play a more difficult game, like Minesweeper. Now, that's something to brag about – I beat the expert level in 57 seconds, and—"

Mark's endless prating absorbed into Sarah's numb brain, which focused on nothing but sheer disappointment. She didn't even know what Minesweeper was. But to prove herself to Mark, Sarah was determined to find out and conquer Minesweeper 1000 consecutive times with ease.

'That'll show him,' Sarah thought bitterly.


For the whole day, the thought of Minesweeper never once left Sarah's mind. What exactly was Minesweeper? Was it as difficult as Mark had told Sarah? And would Sarah be able to beat it, let alone 1000 consecutive times? As she walked home from school, her curiosity rapidly changed into nervousness. Sarah couldn't deny the fact that it was absolutely ridiculous that she was getting nervous over playing a simple game, but there was no denying the fact – her mouth became dry as she sat in front of the computer. Her eyes bored into the computer screen, unsure of what to do.

"You know what, forget it – this is ridiculous," Sarah said out loud.

"What's ridiculous?" Sarah's older brother, Fred, who was in the dining room doing his homework, said in an annoying, fecicious tone.

"…I'll just play Hearts and see if I can break my record," Sarah said to herself, completely ignoring Fred.

"Talkin' to yourself again, eh, Sarah?"

Sarah opened up the Games folder, and what caught her eye stunned her. Right next to the hearts icon, was a spiky looking ball and below it was the word 'Minesweeper.'

Sarah gulped. Nervousness mounted above her heart again. Why didn't she notice this before? Was this… destiny? She shakily moved the mouse toward the icon, and closed her eyes while she double clicked it.

Despite Sarah's worse fears, nothing traumatic suddenly happened. Sarah opened her eyes. The only change to her computer was that a small rectangular box appeared on the screen. The rectangular box was tiled with 3-D squares, and right above it was a …a Smiley smack-dab in the middle of two numbers. The three things Sarah hated the most were tessellations, numbers, and smiley faces. She grimaced.

"What now?" Sarah asked herself.

"What was that, Sarah?" Fred said from the other room.

Instead of ignoring her older brother like she usually did, Sarah decided to ask Fred something.



"…Have you ever played Minesweeper?"

"Eh, yea, I've never won though." Sarah grinned to herself. It couldn't be THAT hard if Fred couldn't defeat it, right? After all, Fred was about as sharp as a butterknife.

"Oh, so how do you play?" Sarah immediately felt stupid after she asked the question, and her thoughts were confirmed as Fred's chuckles echoed through the dining room.

"Damn, Sarah, you're stupid! …Just click on the little square thingys and… well, yea, click on the square thingys."

"That's it?"


Sarah couldn't believe it. That was all there was to it? Sarah shook her head. If that was it, how was Fred unable to beat it? Well, whatever, Fred is Fred, after all. Sarah grinned and clicked on a square to the upper right. The number '1' appeared. Sarah blinked. She clicked on the upper left most tile. Another number '1' appeared. She clicked on the squares on the two other corners, revealing more sets of 1s, and started randomly clicking on random tiles until one of the square uncovered a black thing resembling a star. It uncovered 9 other stars on the field.

"Okay… what do I do now?" Sarah tried clicking on a different tile, but the computer didn't respond.

Then she saw it. She saw the Smiley, but this time, its eyes were x-ed out and his mouth was spread out into a large frown.

"Awwwwww!" Sarah screeched loudly. Something about the Smiley made Sarah suddenly become… infatuated with it. "It's so cute!"

"Sarah, shut up," Fred demanded.

Sarah absent-mindedly clicked on the Smiley with her mouse. It smiled at her.

"ACK! It… it smiled at me!" Sarah squealed. Sarah kept on clicking on the Smiley, but it just merely smiled back to her after each time. Sarah, finally bored, clicked on another tile, still keeping her eyes on the Smiley. Its eyes grew wide and its mouth curved into a symmetrical 'O,' which immediately turned back to a broad, and in Sarah's opinion, cute smile.

For the rest of the day, Sarah kept clicking on the Smiley and the tiles as if she wanted the Smiley to do something more than gape and smile at her. Although it continued repeating the same actions, Sarah's attention span didn't reach any sort of limit. If anything, she could just play Minesweeper until she died.


Will Sarah prove to Mark that she too could indeed beat a game of Minesweeper? What will become of Sarah's relationship with the Smiley? Those questions and more will be answered in the next chapter of *dum dum dum* How to Clean Everything!