“Chapter 1: Registration Opens”
It was 6:55 am, and Ace sat hunched over his desk with the night light on. Staring at his computer screen, Ace had the two fingers of his left hand crossed and hovered the fingers of his right hand over the mousepad ready to smash that enroll button like his hand was made for it. The anticipation was causing him more stress than being sober at Devine’s. He couldn’t wait to be done and go back to sleep.
The clock slowly ticked by, and Ace swore for a moment he could hear the 800 other freshmen nervously breathing at their desks too. All these first-registration window freshmen, including Ace, wanted the same thing–their perfect schedule. The perfect schedule was different for each person. Some believed in early classes. Some believed in late classes. Whatever it was for each person that all hung in the balance of registration and the few spots remaining in classes that us sophomores, juniors, and seniors had already vultured over.
Ace’s roommate’s snoring soon tuned out all those thoughts, and Ace was just left with an undercurrent of anxiety. This uncertainty of it all was eating away at him, as the atomic clock he’d Googled this morning ticked down the last 80 seconds until registration. Soon, Ace felt his heart beating along to the ticks. It got louder and faster, until the last 10 seconds, when Ace was pretty sure his heart was beating to the tune of the bass drops at the Louis the Child concert. The clock hit 7:00:00, and Ace’s index finger slammed down on his mousepad like un toro bravo at the start of the Pamplona Bull Run. “No wonder my ex-girlfriend was ‘so excited to hang’ in two weeks,” thought Ace as he again slammed his index finger down on the Finish Enrolling button with the reflexes of a Greek Gd.
Instantly, Ace felt the primal dopamine rush associated with the expectation of reward. And as Ace stared at the screen, a sudden tingling sensation overtook his bones and soon his entire body. Ace felt his body turn into nothing but this sensation. But soon, the sensation took an otherworldly turn as Ace’s body was translated into a series of 1s and 0s, and Ace’s conscious information was absorbed into his laptop and sent miles away to the DukeHub server in a matter of just seconds.