Space Girl Blues
by Bruce Pavalon
A young man with a troubled past falls in love with a young woman who believes she’s been abducted by aliens and that one of her alien abductors has fallen in love with her.
Chapter 11: Wouldn’t It Be Nice...
That evening, Aaron returned to the Victorian mansion with his knitting supplies and the alien triangle ski mask in a large hand-woven basket. He walked up to the massive hardwood door and rang the doorbell.
Dorothy, a small elderly woman with blue hair, opened the door. She was wearing a classic silk robe over her nightgown. “You look very natural,” she said to Aaron.
“I try,” he replied.
“What may I do for you, tonight?” Dorothy’s voice shook from a tremor.
“Is Anini here?”
“Who?” Dorothy leaned toward Aaron, trying to hear better.
“Anini?” he said, unsure if he was at the right house.
“Yeah... Annie...” Aaron was unsure.
“I’ll go get her. What did you say your name is?”
“Okay, Ira, I’ll go get Annie.” Dorothy closed the door, leaving Aaron on the front step.
A few minutes later, Anini opened the door. She wore long underwear, a long sweater, and slippers. He had never seen her in such form-fitting clothes, and he liked what he saw. She was small but athletically built, like a figure skater.
“Hi, Annie,” said Aaron, smiling.
Anini folded her arms. Her eyebrows furrowed from annoyance. “How did you find me?”
“I have my ways.”
“What did I say about boundaries?
“You’ve left me high and dry. That’s not fair. You can’t mess with my head then dump me. I’m a person, too. You can’t just discount me.”
“You followed me.”
“I tracked you.”
“Why are you here?”
Aaron reached into his basket and pulled out the partially knit alien-triangle ski mask. “This is for you. I knit pockets behind the cheeks and forehead just like you wanted.”
Anini took the unfinished ski mask. “That symbol,” she said, fearfully. “It’s haunted me for years.”
“I thought you would like it.” Aaron feared his plan had gone terribly wrong. “What does it mean?”
“I’m not exactly sure. All I know is that it’s a symbol of an alien technology.”
“Maybe if you wear it, you’ll be able to solve it and use it against them.”
Anini examined the ski mask. It was thin and tightly knit. The tessellations were nearly perfect. She was clearly impressed by Aaron’s craftsmanship and design. “Are you going to finish it?” she asked.
“I want to get the right fit before finishing it. That’s why I came here.”
“Come in,” she said while fully opening the door for him. Aaron smiled and stepped into the house. Anini closed the door behind him. The house was magnificently furnished with antiques like a house from an F. Scott Fitzgerald story.
“What a house!” Aaron proclaimed.
“I live in the basement,” said Anini. “Follow me.” She led him to a door in the back and down a creaky wooden staircase into a partially finished basement.
“Cool, subterranean,” said Aaron. He sincerely liked the windowless concrete walls and the concrete floor with a drain in the middle of it. A metallic-tube bed, a table covered with electronics, and a chair were the only pieces of furniture in the dank room.
“It’s safest underground.”
“Who’s the old lady?” asked Aaron.
“My landlord. She grew up in this house.”
“I never would’ve guessed,” said Aaron sarcastically.
Anini picked up a series of three small discs connected by red, green, and blue wires off her table. “These discs need to be knit into the pockets, two discs over each cheek and one centered on my forehead.”
Aaron cautiously took the discs and examined them. “No problem. What do they do?”
“They’ll block the alien signal. I won’t need my umbrella when I’m wearing these.”
“Will it interfere with radio signals?”
“No, it’s totally localized.”
“Great, then you can go to see Pussy Teeth at Olsen Brothers’ Coffeehouse tomorrow night.”
“Maybe. How long will it take you to finish it?”
“Not long at all. Just let me get the right fit.” With the unfinished ski mask in hand, Aaron reached toward Anini.
Anini jerked away. “What’s the matter?” he asked.
“Sorry,” replied Anini.
“It will only take a second. I promise it won’t hurt. I’m just going to quickly mark it in a few spots. There’s nothing to be afraid of.”
Anini relaxed, and Aaron placed the unfinished ski mask over her face and head, covering everything except her deep brown eyes and her heart-shaped lips. He felt like kissing her, but the time wasn’t right. He marked the ski mask in several places then carefully removed it from Anini’s head.
“That wasn’t so hard,” said Aaron. “I can finish it right now, if you’d like.”
“Could you help me with something else first?” asked Anini.
“What do you need?”
Anini handed him a toolbox. “Follow me.” She led him up the creaky wooden stairs and up the back service stairs to a door on the third floor of the mansion. She opened the door, and they stepped onto the outside deck.
Red brick chimneys and a square tower rose above them, reaching toward the clear, star-filled sky. An array of eight parabolic dishes surrounded them, pointing in every direction. Aaron stepped into the middle of the deck and looked up at the stars.
Anini took a handheld jamming detection mechanism out of the toolbox, and walked around the array of dishes pointing it at each dish. She stopped in front of one and crouched down. “Flathead screwdriver,” she said, holding her hand out for Aaron to hand her the screwdriver.
Aaron stood musing at the stars in the clear winter sky.
“Flathead!” repeated Anini with more force.
Aaron stopped staring at the stars, pulled a flathead screwdriver out of the toolbox and placed it in Anini’s hand. She took it, made some adjustments to the dish, then rechecked the dish with the jamming detection mechanism. “That should do it. It wasn’t as bad as I initially thought.” She handed Aaron the flathead screwdriver, and he put it back in the toolbox.
“What did you do?” asked Aaron.
“I secured the fort.”
“What do these dishes do?”
“They jam the alien signals. I don’t have to use my umbrella in the house.”
“Is there something like this on top of Schroeters’?”
“I rigged an array of dishes on top of Schroeters’ the night before my first day of work.”
A colorful display of the Northern Lights kaleidoscoped through the sky, catching Aaron and Anini’s eyes.
“Is that what a flying saucer looks like when it descends upon you?” asked Aaron.
“No, that’s what cosmic particles look like when they’re ionically sorted by earth’s polarity,” answered Anini.
“That’s how science explains it.”
“Do you have a better explanation?”
“Eskimos believe the aurora borealis are the spirits of miscarried babies returning to heaven.”
“That’s a nice way of looking at it.”
“It’s the explanation I choose to believe in.”
The Northern Lights faded into the starry sky. Anini looked at Aaron and said, “It must be nice having the ability to choose what you believe in.”
“Don’t we all have that ability?”
“I believe in what my reality forces me to believe.”
“Your reality has many possibilities, and if you aren’t open to them, it’s like never opening Schrödinger’s box. The cat will forever remain both alive and dead and will never really be a cat at all.”
“That sounds nice and everything, but it’s not that easy.”
“You won’t know until you try.”
“Wouldn’t that be nice?”
“I want to open the box and find myself with you.”
“That’s what you really want? Are you sure?”
“Yes, I’m sure.” Aaron moved closer to Anini. “I’ve just been afraid to open that box.”
“Me, too,” said Anini. She moved closer to Aaron. The space between their lips shrunk, and their lips met. They kissed and held hands while they kissed. It was a loving kiss, a perfect kiss. It lasted less than thirty seconds, but it was the most meaningful kiss of Aaron’s life. Their lips parted, but their faces remained close. There was a strong attraction and desire, but there was also apprehension.
Aaron feared intimacy. It wasn’t due to lack of experience. Aaron was no virgin, at least as far as sex was concerned, but love had never worked for him. He feared going too fast and ruining what had already been a strange and rocky romance, but he needed to express his feelings. “I feel a connection to you, unlike anything I’ve felt before,” he said.
“I also lost my family when I was a teenager.”
Aaron’s eyes swelled with sorrow. “The house my mother and I lived in caught on fire. Only Bessie and I survived. My mother didn’t make it.”
“I’m so sorry.”
“I’ll never understand why Bessie saved me and not my mother.”
“Is Bessie your sister?”
“Bessie is my dog. She was also my mother’s dog. She loved my mother, but she left her in the fire. I just wish I knew what happened.”
They sat down together on the icy stone deck and watched a tentacle-like display of the Northern Lights stretch through the sky from a distant point like a giant colorful cancer cell.
“The thing is that my mother didn’t have long to live anyway,” said Aaron. “She had developed an autoimmune disease from the meat processing plant she worked and was barely able to breathe when our house burned down.
“I’ve always suspected foul play. She was going to make those corporate bastards pay for what they did to her, but the fire pretty much ended that. The official cause of her death was carbon monoxide poisoning from the fire, and the official cause of the fire was space-heater malfunction. That fire effectively ended her investigation, and the meat processing plant got off scot-free for what they had done for her.”
“What company did she work for?”
“The processing plant was called Porky’s Meats Incorporated, but they were just a front for a major food conglomerate to avoid liability. The pigs they processed all went to the same place.”
“To the factory that makes SHAM.”
“SHAM is people.”
“That’s what my mother used to say,” said Aaron, surprised to hear his mother’s words come out of Anini’s mouth.
“Maybe our connection is deeper than meets the eye.”
“Maybe. There’s one more thing. I know it sounds crazy, but I have this vivid memory of the Jolly Green Giant being there. Sometimes, I even think he started the fire.”
“The Jolly Green Giant?”
“Yeah, the Jolly Green Giant. That’s why I built the igloo where it is. I thought it would help me figure things out. You think I’m crazy, don’t you?”
“No... Not really. I haven’t told you everything about the aliens.” Aaron listened intently as Anini continued. “They originally came to Earth hundreds of thousands of years ago, and they were gods. Humans worshipped them.
“The aliens loved it, so they decided to stay. But as the years passed and human populations grew and spread throughout the Earth, people lost interest, and the aliens faded into obscurity, only serving as fodder for myths, religions, and monster stories.”
“This all makes so much sense. I’ve always suspected something like this.”
“But, in recent centuries, the aliens have made a comeback. They not only sparked the industrial revolution, but they now control multi-national mega-corporations.”
“This is huge.”
“And money and power isn’t good enough for them. They need more. They’re totally egomaniacal. They not only want to own everything, they want to be worshipped. Unfortunately for the aliens, the public is too cynical to worship gods like they used to. The aliens have settled for the next best thing; they’ve become the mascots of their corporations. Ronald McDonald, the Michelin Man, Tony the Tiger... They’re all aliens!”
“We’ve got to warn the public.”
“Don’t waste your time. No one will take you seriously. What would you say?”
“And what is the truth?”
Aaron thought for a second. “I see what you mean, but there must be something we can do. Your stun gun keeps them away. Right?”
“Not exactly. My stun gun confirms they’re aliens. They aren’t grounded to the Earth like we are. Fifty thousand volts wouldn’t even cause a flinch.”
“So you shocked me to make sure I was a human being?”
Anini nodded. “Exactly.”
“What would you have done if it hadn’t shocked me?”
“That’s what the green laser is for, but I need to be sure before using it. It packs a big punch. It could burn a hole right through a human being, and I wouldn’t want to hurt an innocent person.”
“So you think the Green Giant is an alien?”
“What else could he be?”
A green spiral of Northern Lights lit the sky. Somehow, sitting on top of a Victorian mansion surrounded by an array of parabolic disks next to the alien abductee he had fallen in love with made Aaron’s life make more sense than ever before.
They went back to the basement, and Aaron finished the ski mask. Anini had to work in the morning, so Aaron went home. Their goodnight kiss was short and sweet, but Aaron left the Victorian mansion with the hope of spending more time with Anini and finding the truth.
Copyright © 2015 by Bruce Pavalon