Meanwhile high above the cave Jack and Jane were beginning to get quite worried about Sally and Archie. It had been some time since they had last seen Sally follow Archie down behind the rocks that masked their view of the cave entrance. They had heard a strange throbbing noise for a while but this had now ceased however there was no sign of their two friends in the cave below.
Jane told Jack, “I must go back through the hedge to check on Sunbeam. You keep watching in case either Sally or Archie reappear.”
Jack agreed and continued to lie on his tummy staring down the cliff face to the rocks far below him. He noticed that the tide had now gone out a long way since they had been there and had almost reached its lowest point. The rocks that Archie had first landed on when he went down the rope earlier were now much higher above the wave line breaking against them.
As he watched the waves throwing up spray as they broke over the rocks, Jane rejoined him at the cliff edge. She told him that Sunbeam was still very contented back at the milk float and was still happily chewing the oats in his nosebag.
While Jane was telling Jack about Sunbeam, Jack suddenly spotted something strange at the water line. He pointed out a dark patch in the rocks that only showed up in the troughs between the waves. While the wave was at its lowest point in the trough they could just make out a flat gully of smooth dark rock that looked almost like a pathway cut into the main rock outcrop. This path led from the water directly towards the cave entrance, and from their viewing point high above the path, it appeared to be smooth and shiny black.
Jack said, “I have never seen any rocks that looked anything like that before. It is very strange.”
“I agree” she replied.” It looks as if something has cut through the normal rocks with a large knife.”
Jane continued,” I am getting very worried about what Archie and Sally might have found in the cave. They have been gone some time. I can’t wait to see them appear again safe and sound.”
Far below in the cave Archie and Sally may not be safe, but they were certainly sound. Sound asleep!
As they both slept together in a deep trance, Archie and Sally were having the same dream at the same time.
In their dream they were sitting comfortably on a sunlit grassy bank, surrounded with pretty wild flowers and overlooking a smooth blue sea. It was all very peaceful.
The creature, which in fact had put them both into a deep trance, was sitting opposite them. Its voice in their dream was soft and gentle and not a bit scary.
It explained that it was a scout for an investigation unit, and they had been watching England for many years. They had come from another world many light years away and were peaceful space explorers. The scouting unit the creature belonged to only viewed England and noted every thing that happened to its people. However, there were many other similar units watching most other countries on Earth
The space explorer’s task was to watch how other worlds acted and developed, but they would never interfere with the lives of the peoples on other planets unless their own live were put at risk.
They were always closely monitoring events that could prove dangerous to Earth, and then possible effect on other planets in the Solar System. The voice in their dream explained how worried all the watching units had been by the World War that had started in 1914 and ended in 1918. Now they were again very concerned with what was happening in England and other countries in 1938, in case another war was to break out.
People on earth were developing their skills all the time. Some of these skills were weapons. The space travellers were getting very worried that soon fighting on Earth could affect the rest of the galaxy.
So for the first time the space explorers brief had been changed. They had been told that they might be allowed to make direct contact with humans to try and help all the people of Earth find a more peaceful way of living together.
It was just after these new orders had been issued that a problem had occurred with their spacecraft. Their small scouting craft was flying far away from the mother ship when it developed a major problem and had crashed into the sea, near to its secret base just off shore.
Their scout craft that was called Explorer had been working on its own, and, following the crash had been badly damaged.
Normally all the space travellers could repair almost any problem that occurred in the various craft in the space fleet, but the crash had severely reduced their vast natural powers. The creature also explained it was normally able to transform its self into any shape, animal or person for a short time. However, because of the severe damage after the crash it had only managed to transform itself into the white bird, with only very limited means of communicating to others.
The stones that the children had found were in fact important scouting modules on the space probe and now they needed to be refitted into their power source. This space probe was what the children had thought was the large strangely marked stone in the cave. The probe had been separated from the Explorer spacecraft during the crash and its vast energy drive was running out. It had managed to create the cave by using extreme heat to melt the rocks, but the two scouting modules that the children had called stones, were thrown out during the crash.
The creature that had managed to transmute itself into the white bird was the Explorer’s pilot, but it had also lost almost all of its own normal extensive powers. So it had decided to find helpers from the people of Earth.
That is where Archie and Sally came into the space creature’s story.
The pilot in its guise as the white bird had been watching over the two scouting modules after they had been washed up upon the beach following the spaceship crash.
It had watched as Sally and Archie had picked up the modules thinking they were just rather funny shaped stones. The pilot had also used its powers to enable the stones to fly back when the children had first tried to skim them out to sea.
Since then had also helped to ensure that the children had kept both modules safe. Disguised as the white bird, the space pilot had helped lead Sally and Archie, together with Jack and Jane, to the cliff top. It also made sure that both Archie and Sally finally got into the cave, and then enabled them to return the modules to their own notch on the space probe’s surface.
Slowly the dream voice faded and both children came out of their trance to find that they were sitting with their backs to the cave wall facing the creature that was standing in front of them.
The strange thing was now neither Sally nor Archie was afraid, nor did the appearance of the space traveller now seem unusual to them.
They both had a feeling of total calm as they got to their feet, and held out their hand towards the pilot in an act of friendship. The creature moved towards the children and gently touched their hands with its tendrils.
It then spoke them in a soft voice saying it to was very sorry that it had made them go to sleep so that it could speak to them in their dream, but that was the best way to communicate without frightening
Archie agreed. “It was a very good idea, I don’t think I could have stayed and listened to you when you first appeared, I was much too scared. Now what can we do to help you.”
Sally asked, “What is your name?”
The strange spaceman replied, “My real name would not translate into English but you can call me Watcher, as this is what I do on Earth.”
Archie said he did not like that name, “Why don’t we call you Starman.”
“I think I have a far better name, said Sally. “Let’s call you Starbird.”
The creature made a laughing sound and agreed. So Starbird became the fifth member of their gang.