I sighed while driving home from Xavier University in my Honda Accord, and it wasn’t long before my mind raced back to my new book: Cover Up, which was my tell all nonfiction book about how there was a vast government conspiracy going on in the United States in regards to aliens and UFO abductions. In fact, I interviewed plenty of people who “claimed” to be abducted by aliens for the book.
A glowing red light appeared in the sky above me while I continued driving home.
I blinked, and the light was gone after I opened my eyes again.
Oh well. Maybe it was nothing. I was probably exhausted from a long day of teaching because Monday was my busiest day since I taught four Aliens in Pop Culture classes.
I returned home sometime later, noticing that there was a red flashing 1 on the answering machine when I walked into the kitchen. I punched play before going over to the fridge to see if there was any leftover food.
“Hi Steven, it’s Cece Stark from The New York Gazette. I was just wondering why you haven’t returned any of my previous six messages. I would love to chat about your book. I think it would be great since we could help each other. Anyway, you have my number since I left it on the previous messages on your answering machine. So call me. I’m serious.”
Cece Stark was a piece of work since she was starting to get on my nerves. Being covered by a reporter from The New York Gazette could have been seen as flattering.
But seven calls? Seriously?
I might have seemed crazy for not taking advantage of the free publicity, but I couldn’t shake the feeling that Cece was only doing the profile on me to make fun of me. I was still worried about what people thought of me even though I had tenure at Xavier University because that didn’t stop people from whispering about me in the hallways, revealing that a lot of people thought I was weird for having an alien obsession.
One thing was clear.
Cece needed to get a life ASAP because it was starting to feel like I had a stalker on my hands. And no! Obsessing about UFOs wasn’t wrong. Doing something that I loved comforted me, as it was something most people couldn’t say. So maybe, just maybe, other people’s opinions were irrelevant.
I went for a walk several mornings later around 6:00 A.M. since it was what I always did before teaching my first class of the day at Xavier University.
Unfortunately, a disc shaped craft started zipping through the sky after appearing out of nowhere. I then ran in the opposite direction because it started following me.
It descended in altitude and was now only a couple hundred feet above me.
A beam of light shot out from the UFO in addition to me being unable to describe my current state of mind. It was as if I was paralyzed or something since I couldn’t move. Either that or I was too scared. It also could have been an altered state of consciousness…
The front of the UFO opened up as the staircase unfolded before the craft descended even lower, and was now no more than fifty feet in the air above me.
Two humanoid size beings stepped out of the craft, shuffling towards me.
Their appearance was closer to a reptile than a human because they happened to have greenish-blue tinted skin even if they were humanoid in size. It also didn’t help that their eyes were at least four times the size of normal human eyes.
The worst part was my expertise on the subject didn’t even matter because for some unknown reason that I concluded from my research, aliens had a paralyzing effect on people, which meant you couldn’t move once you were close to an alien.
The two aliens slashed over to me before I could even scream, and they each grabbed one of my arms.
The UFO sucked us up a moment later while a buzzing sound rolled through the air before the disc zapped away into the sky.
I was strapped down on something that resembled a long chair you would sit on in a doctor’s office a couple of minutes later while each one of my limbs were tied down.
Thoughts such as if I would live or ever get back to Earth flooded my mind even if they didn’t matter since I couldn’t get up.
Four aliens returned to the part of the craft I was at. One of them approached me, carrying a large knife while the other three looked on at me like it was Christmas.
The alien with the knife now stood right next to me, making sweat trickle down my face.
I screamed. “You aren’t going to get away with this!”
The knife dug into my flesh while the alien sliced open the front of my head, making me pierce the air with more agonizing shrills.
I woke up on the middle of the road in my neighborhood sometime later, discovering everything was both familiar and foreign at the same time.
I glanced across the street at one of my neighbor’s houses while a sharp pain pierced my head when my neighbor’s living room light flicked on.
A van approached me a couple of minutes later, coming to an abrupt halt before it almost ran me over. The front driver seat door opened, revealing a woman.
“You must be Cece Stark.” I said.
She crossed her arms. “You know, you really should’ve returned my phone calls.”
I shook my head. “I was busy.”
Cece rolled her eyes at me. “You still should be thrilled The New York Gazette wants to do a story on you. Anyway, what are you doing out here?”
I exhaled a breath. “That’s a good question.”
She flipped her hair over her shoulders. “Are you sure that you’re okay?”
I remained silent.
Cece continued staring at me, refusing to take her eyes off me. “Did something happen to you? You have a big gash on the front of your head.”
I took my right index finger to the front of my head, feeling the metallic texture before glancing down at it. Red stained my finger, proving the wound was still fresh. “What time is it?”
She glanced at her watch. “It’s 7:00 P.M., why?”
“Because I have no idea where I’ve been for the last thirteen hours.”
Cece arched her eyebrows. “I’m not following.”
A lump formed in my throat and I was unable to swallow it. “It’s just odd that over half my day is unaccounted for, don’t you think?”
“So what are you saying?” Cece asked.
I shook my head. The blacking out, disorientation, injury, and being dropped off where I was last seen were all too familiar signs.
A burning sensation soon formed in my stomach, twisting it in ten different directions. “I think I was the victim of an alien abduction.”
I moved around in my bed the following evening. It wasn’t long before a creaking sound scraped the door. The bedroom door burst open, pricking the hairs on my back. The humanoid like figure that cut into me the other evening inched forward while beads of sweat crashed down my face.
“You weren’t supposed to breathe a word about what happened!” The figure’s eyes widened.
I grunted. “You don’t scare me. The United States government will learn the truth.”
The alien wove its arms together. “We might have let you live. However, if you continue to blab about our existence, you won’t be so lucky.”
The alien scurried to the door as a wave of red light flashed through the air before I could say anything. BOOM! The alien was gone.
I rubbed my eyes while I let out a yawn several hours later. The whole thing was just maddening.
I then trekked to the front door en route to get my newspaper. My heart danced inside my chest while each one of my passing breaths required more effort because the front door was unlocked. The strangest thing was that I locked it before I went to bed. I even triple checked it. There was no doubt about it. The alien encounter hadn’t been a dream. It was real.
I handed my visitor a coffee mug the following afternoon before sitting down on my living room couch.
“Thank you for coming Cece.” The grin remained present on my face for another minute.
She brought the mug to her lips, allowing the contents to flow into her mouth. Cece waited a moment before she spoke. “So what was so urgent that you demanded a meeting on such short notice?”
I coughed, clearing my throat. “I have proof of another recent alien encounter.”
Cece snickered. “I doubt that.”
“It’s true.” I pressed play on the video that I pulled up on my laptop before pushing it over to her.
That was another thing about being a paranoid scientist. I had installed video cameras that were linked to a security system in every room of my house since it was only a matter of time before something bad happened to me.
She clapped her hand over her mouth while looking at the footage from my second encounter. I guess there were things that even surprised her.
The video finished a couple of minutes later.
Cece forced a gulp of air into her lungs before she responded. “That was something.”
I threw a gaze at her. “So what do you think? Is there a story here?’
She bit her lip. “Yeah. There’s definitely a story to tell.”
Bio: Chris Bedell's previous publishing credits include essays on the
online magazine Thought Catalog. He has also had stories published on
online literary magazines, which include "Surface Tension," on Crab
Fat Literary Magazine, "A LIttle Accident," and "The House That Never
Was" on Quail Bell Magazine, "The Wrong Murder," "Game Over," "Poof
and I'm Gone," "The Vanishing Girl, "Run, Cecily, Run," and "Burning
Point," on Short-story.me. Furthermore, Pidgeonholes Magazines and
Abbreviate Journal will each publish one of his pieces in December
while Inklette Magazine will publish one of his creative nonfiction
pieces in November.