The first time we met was in the comment section. She was being sarcastic about the story, how distasteful it was, while I was sobbing my eyes out and trying to calm down enough to leave a coherent response.
Her words stood out from the rest. I was offended. The author had poured his or her heart into it, how could she be so inconsiderate. I had to confront her, so I clicked the little letter icon near her display picture.
"Hi," I started, "I have read 'Phantasmal' and happened to come across your comment." I typed a couple more sentences and hit the backspace and retyped so many times the words started to collide into each other and lose their meaning. In the end, I couldn't be bothered anymore, so I just typed, "You were being so inconsiderate in there, please keep in mind that there is a real human being behind those words," and hit send.
As soon as I hit send, I went back and read and reread and reread my message, and began to feel like an ass myself. I felt like I should've written something longer and more eloquently, but words had never been my forte, and what was done was done, so I closed the tab, and soon forgot about it.
It was a whole week later, when my inbox told me I had a new unread mail. I noticed it was from that site. User isthereacatornot had replied to my comment. I recognized the name within two seconds. Oh shit, is the first thought that came to my mind.
"Sorry," it read, "If I have crossed you in anyway. I was trying to be honest, since the author had stated that she welcomed all kind of feedback, but perhaps my words are too harsh for your good, gentle heart."
Dammit. I didn't expect that. I had to respond.
I tried to be cool about it, and ended up writing an entire 500-word paragraph on the topic of 'Being honest doesn't mean you can act like a little shit' only to realize later that I didn't sound calm at all.
She responded within 3 minutes. There were only 4 sentences in there.
"You have a point. I like you. Here's my twitter acc: @isthereacat. Let's learn more about each other."
Needless to say, I was totally dumbfounded. But I opened Twitter in another tab, and searched her username. There she is, at the top of the search results, with an adorable tabby cat peeking out from a cardboard box. I was admittedly very curious, so I turned the white 'follow' button into a blue 'following'. I could always unfollow her later.
I discovered that she shared my enthusiasm for the paranormal/thiller movies/shows, and that we loved the same kinds of books (although we tended to start a thread of 300-reply discussion about it later), and that she was really, really, really into cooking.
We became kind of, maybe, probably best buddies after that.