6/23/2017

Outer Yet Same (Pt. 1 of 7)




Reality is partial to symmetry and slight anachronisms.
  • Jorge Luis Borges, Collected Fictions



In a bunker a lone hand starts a device in the dark. A projector, as dusty as anything can get. In it, a film documentary about a disaster. The device produces cracking noises, and a white screen is illuminated on the other end of the room. Slowly, the sound of trumpets accompanied a black and white introduction.
"PUBLIC ACKNOWLEDGEMENT DOCUMENTARY #37: Contact"
And as it faded to black, a soothing voice started talking to the audience.
"Good morning, boys and girls! I'm..."
Several tiny voices snickered throughout the room, followed by a strong shoosh.
Several shots from rural areas appeared on the screen, forming beautiful landscapes as the narrator spoke.
"...and this time, we'll talk about the feared other world inhabitants. Yes, boys and girls, the real green small and big-headed humanoid creatures that haunted our world's drive-ins screens and night long dreams.
But, oh, would you know, kids? Those creatures had nothing to do with our mundane imagination! Well, nothing but a teeny portion that happened to be their whole.
But way before anyone would even accept such ideas of extraterrestrial life as undoubtedly true, in a small town in..."
A harsh mechanical tone interfered with the recording.
"...A young lady named Amanda..."
Another tone.
"... Lived peacefully with her parents, until the strangest happening occurred to her. No one believed her, but our dear AGENCY happened to store the discarded interviews done to dear Amanda! For humankind's thankfulness, her words came into great use after her death. May Amanda rest in peace."
The voice stopped for a couple of seconds.
"Now, let us hear what our countryside oracle predictions of what now is past, and see the first glimpses of the war that is about to define us as the greatest of all cosmos..."
The device crackled, and a small and nimble voice talked. It was probably a young very literate lady, small bits of an accent passed through. It was as if she didn't like it much.
"Erm… Well. Are we being recorded?"
"Yes.", a dimmer, stern voice replied.
"Oh, okie. What should I say?"
"You came here to report, missy. You tell us what's happening, as you've insisted so much. Just say it to the recorder while I take my break over there."
"Will you be listening?"
"The machine will. Save me the time."
A sound of a door shutting came right after.
"Sure, sure. Sheesh. I don't quite know when it started, those strange things. Everyone here in town has seen one or two funny lights every now and then. We've gotten used to it by now. People say those have always been jumping around at night. Papa told me those were gases or something, I don't quite know.
What I do know is that no one talked about the flashes. Only aunt Lou talked about those, and no one talks to aunt Lou. She speaks of the devil's grasp and its blinding laughter. Well, she used too, until uncle Tom started to keep her in her room.
About a month ago, I had one of them happen to me.
I-I didn't tell anyone, I was sure I wasn't going… y'know? But, I didn't want to risk it. People say the new docs are just the harshest.
Erm, what happened… What I saw. I saw long, white strange things. They crawled among themselves inside the light. I wasn't quite sure what they were at the time, but as time went on… God, I wish I didn't figure it out.
Those forms made shapes, shapes I knew very well. They made a cross, a house, a triangle, and even..."
She whispered.
"A penis!"
Tumbling laughter went across the room, followed by an even harsher shoosh.
"... But, God forbid that was just unholy! Just the sight made me cover my eyes! I thought that yes, that must've been the devil! What else could that be?
Still, could the devil be made of light and come from the sky? I looked at my palm. The sky was getting dark, I ran home and had Ma tuck me in.
I felt just… Wrong. I suspected that to be only my head, I felt an urge to confess and was afraid to have that happen to me again. I was lucky it didn't.
But I wasn't lucky about the other things that were about to happen.
After a couple of days, I started to see the most unholy things.
Strange shapes and lights homing over other people's heads, making them behave… Off.
The first time I saw it I was coming back from school. Ma asked to pick a couple gallons o'milk with the Clenstens. Judith helped me in, while Mr. Clensten chopped wood in the back. As she poured the milk for me, I saw the man's head covered in light. He stopped for a second, and when a poor rabbit jumped by his side… He hit it with his axe. He chop it mercilessly, without flinching, without a single change to his face.
I knew that man, I've had known him from the day I was born. He loved the small critters, he'd caress them when they'd come nearby and hated the idea of hunting.
But there he was, as I held the jug he turn the animal into a mash.
Judith looked at me strange, I said I was fine.
I ran back home, I thought I was making a fool of myself. That couldn't be real.
I swear I saw more of those lights on my way home, but I didn't dare look. I was running too fast to see what they were causing.
I myself never had those lights happen to me ever again, but from that day onwards I started to see them everywhere.
A couple of days later I saw one of the Marshes handing Father Connaghan. Misty light above both of their heads, their faces blank. I-I... turned my sight.
The next day I saw little Billy kneeling in the riverbank, forcing his own head down on the stream. He'd force himself down, wait and come back up, gasping for air, but… His face also lacking what makes it human.
I ran to pull him out from there, but he struggled. He seemed mad at me, but not in a normal way. He looked at me like an animal, and flailed his arms as if he didn't quite know how to use them.
I tried to talk reason into him, but he just grunted at me. After trying to hold him down, he bit me and ran off.
Later that day, I saw him with his parents. He was normal again.
I am very worried about all of this. I thought about talking to you at the time, but I wasn't sure it that was for the best. Sheriff and his boys got replaced by you folks now, and you constantly say
'We're busy, only come to us if something seems really urgent'.
Well, at the time I wasn't sure. God's law surely was being broken, but never yours… And the last time I tried to contact you you said it didn't matter.
Now I know of something that darn matters.
I know about the disappearance of mayor Crickets.
You must, please, must hear what I have to say.
I saw him, being… Ugh.
Slaughtered.
Being slaughtered by the white devils from the sky."


...


It seems the country folk lack the word 'Alien' in their vocabulary.
Well, we could guess it to be a result of living in the 30's.
Or maybe the fact that these creatures are not alien at all.
Come stop that arm from scratching your head right here!


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