* * *
The gravel crunched with the arrival of Sergeant Moroney’s squad car. He decided to come himself and not delegate the job due to the curious nature of the phone call. What also helped was the fact that Nora McMahon was an attractive woman with no husband. There weren’t too many of those around in this remote area and the Sergeant always had a soft spot for her.
“Mrs McMahon!” he called with his head sticking sideways around the front door. “Mrs McMahon!”
“In the back kitchen!” she shouted.
As he approached the ajar kitchen door he saw Mrs. McMahon in profile looking into the room, her visage was pale & sweaty. “What’s all this nonsense I hear you calling about?” He said with a presumptuous grin on his face.
“Remember how we always say nothing ever happens around here?” Said Sheila without looking at Moroney.
Her nod towards the back door prompted him to open it fully and see the incredulous sight in from of him. His smirk turned to a gape then to horror in fluid movements like a stroke in three acts.
The alien who was still standing just inside the back door which meant the island in the middle of the kitchen was between him and the humans, around ten or twelve feet away. The sergeant’s head rotated slightly while simultaneously raising one eyebrow, pupils still staring directly at the beast. His eyeballs then flicked toward Nora; “Eh” he began, “Eh, sweet Jesus divine. What the hell is that?”
“I think he’s an alien” Conor intervened.
“Really?” said Sergeant Moroney “You think?” Sarcasm dripping from every word.
After a pregnant pause of twenty or thirty seconds Sgt. Moroney found some bravery - now that he noticed he hadn’t been bodily attacked and slowly started to shuffle along the edge of the table, his hands gripping the edge as if holding him up.
He arrived in instalments and eventually stopped some seven or eight inches from the Alien’s face, if that’s what it was. The eyes were an impenetrable sheen of brilliant black, the only movement an intermittent sideways flick of the snake-like lids. He searched but found no human qualities to cling on to.
The pot on the cooker boiled over, removing it’s lid and removing the sergeant from his trance. He remembered himself and pulled back to the safety of the island in the middle of the room and looked around. “Where did you find him Conor?”
“I saw him out the fields there” said Conor pointing, “I think he crash landed or something.”
The sergeant couldn’t think of any better plan at the moment “Take us to where you found him” he said, stretching upright to regain some authority.
He stretched out his arm and nodded to the doorway. The Alien walked out accordingly ‘We have at least got body language in common’ he thought to himself.
Conor & Nora filed out the door to complete the motley party.
“This is where I met him”, said Conor, “he came from that direction” proudly gesturing past the hedges.
They had walked for another six or seven minutes when they caught sight of the unearthly craft dug into the barren earth. As they approached, Nora noticed the Alien make a slight, but deliberate, hand gesture which causes the tendons up it’s arms to tense and a slight change in hue of the eyes. A slight hissing, hydraulic, sound came from the craft but only Nora spotted the sequence.
“Did you see that?” Nora whispered to her son.
“See what?” he said.
“I dunno, I could have sworn I noticed a change in eye brightness, just for a second.” But she doubted whether the unusual situation has caused her to see things and believe things that were not real.
“I didn’t see anything” Conor replied.
Nora wondered about it for a moment but decided it was just one more strange thing in a day that was already strange up to that point.
“The door is shut” said the Sergeant, as if he could accomplish something were he to gain access to the ship.
With a childish sense of awe he commented “I’ve seen nothing like this in all my years”, somehow referencing the local case book in his head.
“Funny that” smirked Nora. “What next?”
“Jaysus, woman. I dunno, let me check the local procedures on extra terrestrial spheres, like”
“Well, we can’t get in. We can’t talk to that. We need to do something” she said.
“Who are you - my boss?” The sergeant protested.
“No, but that’s not a bad idea. This is clearly above your station, get someone higher-up on the phone. No offence like”
The Sergeant gave her a black look, but reached for his phone anyway. He called up the station and waited impatiently for seven seconds, before giving them the lowdown on what transpired so far. “Get me the army…. yep, you didn't hear me wrong….. Emmm, I suppose we’d need a few of them. Maybe a lieutenant and a platoon? ….. Jesus I don’t know! Just let them decide, give them the facts they can cover it themselves.”
There was nothing left to do but wait and they didn’t know how long it would take. Awkwardly, they all sat down and formed a circle and the Alien followed suit. They were a little surprised in how he followed suit so easily and became part of the circle. They didn’t know if he needed to eat or go to the bathroom or anything like that, he just seemed calm and unresponsive. The unlikely bunch all sat staring into the centre of the circle at each other except for the Alien whose line of vision trailed off into the hills in the distance. Nora wondered what he could be looking at.
“Beautiful isn’t it?” She tried. The Alien did not move his gaze. Nora sighed and rested her elbows on her knees, while Conor played with a stick in the dirt. She rubbed his back in comfort which made Conor smile back at her. He seemed to be taking it in his stride but Nora began thinking about the situation and implications it would have for her and for everyone else.