"This is it! I am going mad!"
Newman wasn't saying this aloud, but he was thinking this - over and over in his mind.
Standing at one of the numerous bylanes of Westminster, he was as inconspicuous as anyone amongst the busy, touristy crowd walking around him, gazing at the sights of London's embezzled architecture.
He wasn't mad. Quite the opposite actually. As the assistant librarian of the public records library of Battersea, he was known to be a very structured, organised person - someone who could be depended upon a solid piece of advice on many a varied subject. He wasn't an overachiever of any sorts his entire life, but he had made a decent career and had a moderately happy life with his family of four.
That is, until a week ago, when he had first checked out one post that had popped up on his regular social media feed. One that most of us would have just standing up and asking how. Something in the post had his undivided attention, as he had stopped and read through it, again and again. A moment of disbelief later, he had assumed it to an mischievous one which was meant to get his attention. "Well, you have it now miss", he thought to himself that day, while returning home .
The same post the next day, around the same time, had his intrigue locked in. And the day after, exactly at the same time, the same post on his timeline got him alarmed. As Newman kept on getting the same post, every day, for the past 7 days till today, he kept on getting edgier and edgier.
And at the moment he saw the post today, he muttered it to himself "That's it. I am going mad."
Head lowered, he walked in to the subway station nearby and caught a 4.30 pm local for Ealing. The station was mostly empty and so was the metro, mostly due to the fact that rush hour began only half an hour later. He was thankful to have started out early and eased in to nice cozy corner , putting his head down, thinking how silly it all was. And maybe, today was the last day he would see this post again. Maybe he could talk it out with her and get her to stop writing this everyday.
He awoke from his slumber in an empty train, and walked out dazed to a dim evening sky. A small stroll later, he was in front of his home and went straight to his bed feeling tired. A second later, he was completely asleep, exhausted from all the thinking that had consumed him after he had seen the post.
His wife and their neighbor were downstairs. They had sore eyes, both of them as they looked at his children playing away.
"Its unfair, but life's got to go on Anne" said the neighbor to his wife.
Anne teared up, unable to say a word, and went upstairs to their bedroom.
She opened the door, quietly picked up his phone from the bed and came back down to her.
"I know it is unfair and it has to go on, but please explain this to me" She said as she pushed Newman's phone in to her friends hands
"It switches on everyday at 4.30 pm, on its own. It has the same post on it from the same feed. Everyday for the past 7 days.
As the friend's shivering hand held the phone, she saw the post on the feed.
"Cant let you go Newman. Not this soon. RIP wherever you are!"