Shana and Michael:
It all started last July. I was baby sitting my younger cousin Kristian while my aunt was out of town for the weekend. As it was getting late I put Kristian to bed and I began to watch TV... 
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She's From:   United States
He's From:     United States

The story starts sometime in February 1998.

My husband at the time and I, had received a computer for Christmas and finally decided to put it to use.
 

  We decided to go online and join the rest of the world. We had been having marital problems and thought that going online may help us spend some quality time together. So, by the end of February we had an AOL account and were learning to use our computer to itís fullest.

We had begun playing online games and spent most of our free time exploring the games that the world wide web provided. One day mid-March, in a game called Slingo, another player suggested the game Acrophobia.
 

 

 



   

 

 
 

Being that we were not familiar with this game, we wanted details and were sent the URL to find this game. After downloading this game, we were faced with the biggest challenge, creating a name for the two of us to use together when we played. We thought about this for quite some time, and agreed that since we were both huge Pink Floyd fans and it was often the basis of our communication, we became WeLuvPnkFlyd.

At first Acrophobia became a game that we played in our spare time, but soon it consumed every free minute that we had, from the time we came home from work until the time that we went to bed. We were really just room hoppers playing wherever there was space to fit. After a while, I started to play Acro as soon as my husband would leave for work, giving me a few hours before I had to leave for work to play.

One morning while playing, a player suggested that he send me e-mail, and I answered with, "Nah, canít get e-mail, my hubby would be too upset that I was talking to other people". I instantly received a private message from a player who offered to help me set up mailbox on the web so that Rob would not be able to read my private e-mail. Enter painpill. I was a bit beside myself at first, knowing of all the strange people that lurk on the web. Then this player disappeared, and I followed him into a room with no players, just him and I. When I approached him about this, another player came in and the mysterious mail-box man disappeared. I followed him yet again into another empty room when he said he was getting tired of being intruded upon , he gave me his phone number and told me to call collect. I responded, "If I call you, NO PHONE SEX".

My next move was asking advice from a friend from the web about what I should do, call this man to see what he had to say, or leaving matters alone. After being persuaded not to call him, for almost two hours, I finally hung up with my friend and found myself dialing the number that this mysterious man had left for me. I didnít know what it was that made me do it, maybe the excitement of it all, but next thing I know, the phone was ringingÖ the first of many collect calls from N.Y. to CA. As I heard a manís voice answer the phone after leaving my name with the collect call operator, I would have hung up the phone except for the fact that he knew who was on the other line.

I took a deep breath when he answered and found the courage to muster up a hello. Then we started talking and he was extremely helpful and actually set up a mailbox as promised, to allow me to receive e-mail without my husbandís knowledge. But then the conversation ended, we hung up, and for some unusal reason, I found myself already missing this personís presence. That was the last I heard from him that day.

Whether it was the next day or a few days later, I cannot recall, but painpill and I wound up running into one another not long after we had talked. I told him that I had been thinking of him and somehow I ended up calling him collect again. This time we talked about the game and other little things. He was so easy to talk to you and so easy to trust. He told me that the Bachelor Pad was the room that he played most frequently in, and I informed him all about the situation between me and my extremely jealous husband. He actually listened, cared and understood. It was all new to me to be able to confide in a stranger the way I was able to, to feel the trust that I felt. It was such a great feeling that I dreaded the converstion ending. This time when it ended though, we made arrangements to meet in the Bachelor Pad first thing in the morning, after my husband walked out the door. This went on for some time, hubby would leave for work, I would jump out of bed and head for the computer to talk to this person who mesmerized me so well.

This continued over time, we would meet bright and early in the Bachelor Pad during weekdays after my husband would leave for work, and we would just talk. At the same time, the name WeLuvPnkFlyd was becoming well known in the Bachelor Pad, and I had convinced Rob to play there as our regular room. As time grew on, painpill and I were becoming closer and closer, as my husband and I were drifting further and further apart. It seemed as though painpill posessed my every thought and was the only person that I could trust when I really needed someone to talk to. My husband and I had began fighting over the time on the computer, he hated the fact that I was online or playing while he was not home, almost as if afraid that he would miss something. He began becoming suspicious. Painpill and I had devised a plan so that if hubby were to come home while we were spending time together, all I would have to do is type in a word that we had designated as a signal.

After time, painpill had managed to win my husbandís trust as well. When the three of us played, we always had fun, and painpill and I hid our secret very well. So well indeed, that this went on for months. As the troubles between my husband and I grew worse and worse, painpill and I would talk more deeply everyday. When my husband and I would fight, and I was left to cry as he walked out the door, I would call painpill without even thinking twice and cry to him. He always made time, he always listened and most importantly, he always cared. As he would listen to my troubles day after day, he tried to convince me that I should get out of any situation that made me miserable. He offered me a place to stay all the way across the United States even though he had never met me. I felt so close to him after being able to share my deepest most darkest secrets. I wanted nothing more than to be near this guy. Then we talked about meeting more and more, we were growing so attached to one another that it hurt to talk, thinking that we may never meet in flesh and soul.

Finally, the fights were becoming too frequent between my husband and I to the point where I could not bear to live that life any longer. I called painpill during my last week in N.Y. countless times. I knew that I was leaving, it was just a matter of how. We had talked about airplaneÖ too expensive. We had talked about the bus, too long of a travel. We talked about my car, but I was un-licensed, un-insured and un-inspected. It seemed hopeless untill that week hubby and I got our income tax return check in the mail, totalling over $1,800.00. My had asked me to deposit it into my bank, being that my bank cleared state checks and federal checks within 24 hours.

I called painpill seeing this as my way out, and informed him that after all these months of talking, I was truly on my way to CA to meet him, to be with him, to fufill the dreams we had so often talked about. Thursday night, May 28th, my husband and I had a huge fight, I told him I was leaving and he walked out the door. I called painpill crying once again as we set up the final preparations to get this journey underway. I packed my bags, some clothes and of course my computer, and hoped for the best but was prepared for the worst. Friday morning, I called Amtrak, reserved a seat and then withdrew all the money from the income tax return check. I called a cab, and it seemed everything was in order.

The only problem was that I ran into was my husband coming into the house as I was loading up the cab with all of my bags. He made a snide remark, taking the situation all too well, and waved goodbye as I left. When the cab arrived at the train station, my heart started to pound. I was hit with the realization of what I was doing, and realized that I was too far in to back out now. I boarded the train, bags and all, and was headed to the Amtrak station. Finally, arriving in NYC after what seemed like hours later, I boarded the Amtrak train, and started to become uneasy. What the hell was I thinking? What the hell did I think I was doing? What if this was all wrong?

Sometimes the heart knows best, and your brain is the worst enemy. Calling painpill from every possible stop that I could on this 3 day 3,000 mile trip, we knew that this was really happening. I donít think that I wanted to turn back around until I got to New Mexico when I realized exactly how close I really was to reaching the final destination. Thank God for small favors as there was nothing that I could do except get back on that train and continue westward.

Finally after so many calls along the way, and 3 days later I was there, here, in beautiful San Diego. Meeting this man that I had fallen in love with for all the things he had done, finally feeling that our talks had brought us together not just emotionally but now physically, it was an incredible feeling. It seemed to almost make all the misery that I had suffered in my marriage worth it. Strange thing to say, but it is what brought painpill and I together from the beginning. And that was June 1st, 1998. After all we had shared, we truly loved one another, and though we had never met, both of our hearts just knew. Upon seeing each other at the train station for the first time, all we could do was hug. Iím not sure how he felt, but our first real hug was overwhelming with feeling, with desires, with all the love we felt just pouring and flowing between the two of us. It was one of the hardest feelings that anyone could ever have to describe, it was just pure emotion.

And so life may be hard to define, as I will have to go through a divorce, and learn to love and trust all over again, but I have this wonderful man behind me, to help me, to guide and support me. It seems all worthwhile, and I thank God everyday that I was so lucky, not only to get out of a terrible situation, but to be blessed in the end with a man like painpill. I truly found the pot of gold at the end of my rainbow.

"ILuvPnkFlyd"