Posts Tagged ‘aliens’

The Believers

Posted: September 2, 2011 in Fiction
Tags: , , ,

“…as with sundogs, which are not so rare, and St. Elmo’s fire – which is also not so rare but we are seldom in the right place to witness it. Both act as mobile networks for mapping or spying on us or whatever it is they wish to do with their meteorological computer. But the Aurora Borealis, with its backdrop of snow making it highly visible from up there, is both the mainframe and navigational beacon for UFO’s in deep orbit around earth.”

“And what about rainbows, Doctor?” Eddie asked into his mic. “Do they pose a threat?”

“Huh? Oh no, they’re just pretty.”

“Thank you, Doctor,” Eddie said. “It’s forty-two minutes after midnight and you’re listening to Shore To Shore 83.1 on your AM dial. I’m Eddie Skinner and with me in the studio tonight is Berkeley University Professor of Meteorology, Dr. Eugene B. Esterly; author of Santa Claus is Not Alone. Let’s take a call. Mike, who do we have?”

Mike turned his bulk from the switchboard. “We have Alex on line one.”

Eddie nodded to Mike, who flipped a switch.

“Good morning, Alex. You’re on the air live Shore to Shore. Where are you calling from?”

Rapid breathing came across the line. “You gotta help me! I’ve been abducted,” Alex said.

“Abducted, you say?” Dr. Esterly leaned forward in his chair.

“Okay Alex, take a second to catch your breath.” Eddie said. “Where are you?”

“I don’t know. Some road. There’s forest on both sides.” Alex was nearing hysteria. “I can’t stop long. I think they’re after me.”

“Are we talking about people, or…” Eddie asked, leading the caller.

“People! The only people I’ve seen in years have been other abductees.” Alex gasped.

“How many other people, would you say?” The doctor produced a pen and pad from his suit pocket.

“Hundreds!”

“Alright, wait,” Eddie interjected. “How is it you called us? Are you at a gas station or a rest stop?”

“No!” Alex cried. “I- I don’t know. I grabbed what I thought was a molecular scrambler and ran when the ship landed. I thought I could defend myself with it. I pushed a button and there you were. They’ve been listening to you!”

The doctor’s face paled. He dropped his pen.

“You gotta help me, man!” Alex sobbed. “You gotta help me. The needles! The needles…!”

“Alright Alex, here’s what I want you to do. Stay on the line with us, but walk at a quick pace away from the landing site. Don’t stop moving, and don’t hang up,” Eddie ordered.

“Okay,” Alex’s voice fell. “I can hear them behind me. They’re in the woods.”

“Just keep moving. We’re going to help you.” Eddie reassured him.

“I can see the lights! They’re here. Oh no. Oh no!” Alex began to scream. “No! No more. Oh Nyaaaah! No!”

Several hard footfalls echoed over the phone line. A moment later a high pitched squealing rhythm was heard. Alex’s screaming was muffled. The line broadcast an audible rush of air. There was an impact that made the three men in the sound booth jump.

“Alex?” Eddie tried to maintain his professional tone.

Silent moments passed. Something scuffled in the speaker.

“Alex?”

“Who is this?” a stern voice demanded.

“What have you done with Alex?” Eddie fought the urge to be quiet and hide in the silence. “Are you a Man In Black?”

“Are you a weatherman?” Dr. Esterly added eagerly.

The line went dead.

The three men looked at each other, stunned. Almost a minute later Mike mouthed to Eddie, “Dead air!”

“Uh, ladies and gentlemen,” Eddie paused, fumbling for the words. “I’m not sure what we’ve just heard. We’re going to alert the authorities and keep this line open in the hopes of making further contact with Alex. Please, if you’re on the roads tonight keep an eye out for anything strange. And be safe. Alex – wherever you are – good luck. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.”

Five minutes later the switchboard lit up. The rest of the night Eddie tried to make sense of scores of conflicting calls from across the nation. Earnest callers reported U.F.O. sightings and misidentified hitchhikers until well after sunrise.

___

Malcolm slipped his cell phone into the pocket of his gray scrubs. Policy is policy, but Dr. Gibson shouldn’t have thrown my phone into the ditch, he thought.

The medical staff were several yards away, pushing the patient strapped tightly to an old gurney. Malcolm ran to catch up, his flashlight beam bouncing off the mist hanging low over the road. Fox Gully State Mental Hospital was at least a half mile away, and Malcolm didn’t want to be left behind in the dark woods.

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