THE NEXT INSTALLMENT OF THE DIMENSION LAPSE SERIES
Way back in 1983, when I was in my twenties, I watched an old episode of The Twilight Zone called The Odyssey of Flight 33. It was about a jet that was stuck in time, and couldn’t return. The idea intrigued me. When I saw an episode of Star Trek called Mirror, Mirror, about an alternate universe, it gave me an idea. What about if an astronaut from the future were to get trapped in another universe, and a mentor or influence were to be there with him to create havoc of some kind. Thus, Dimension Lapse was born.
For several years, the manuscript was developed and redeveloped, submitted and rejected, and so on. Two years ago, I suffered a back injury that has interfered with leading a productive life as I once did. I’ve had to be careful not to do too much, but at the same time, I don’t want to vegetate in front of a television. I periodically worked on my novel during my working years, but found it hard between raising my daughter, custody battles, and life’s unexpected surprises.
Once I was partially disabled, I figured why not work on my writing. I finished the first one in about a year, the second within nine months, and third in seven months. Once I discovered free self publishing, I decided there was no excuse not to. Prior to submitting Dimension Lapse, I sent it to a publisher in Canada, and two years later, I’m still waiting for a response!
THE STORY OF DIMENSIONAL BREAKDOWN
I decided on the third book that instead of traveling to strange alien worlds, I would send the characters back to their own past, and the world their ancestors left behind. I wanted to tell the story of how Dr. Avery got back to the future in the first place. It is more a tale about how we as humans sometimes make mistakes that can be costly to everyone. Our errors of the past may change the way people look at us, and how we look at the world around us.
There are many familiar faces in the third book, and some new ones as well. We meet Jeff’s grandfather, John Carver’s great grandfather, and his daughter in law. We begin to see the true nature of the hostility of Varloo towards the human race, and his relationship with Batar. We also see a side of the women that we haven’t seen in the previous novels.
I am very proud to present the first part of my sample series, which is a short prologue to the novel Dimensional breakdown. The actual book will be out tomorrow on Amazon and on hardcover on LULU. I will also be offering my first novel free tomorrow and Thursday only on Kindle. Pick up a sample, and get hooked on this exciting sci fi adventure!
On a crisp, clear and cool night, the sun faded from the view on the small Adirondack Lake. The solitude and quietness of the night air was a perfect escape for Professor Martin Avery, his wife April, and their children, Louis and Sara.
They finished their dinner, and the eight year boy and his ten year old sister sat on the porch of the cabin, while their father sat in his favorite rocking chair and smoked his pipe tobacco. Their mother was still inside cleaning up the table and washing the dishes.
It seemed a long time since the last time he was up here; work consumed his life lately, and he was glad just to get away for the weekend. As a nuclear physicist, he was developing a possible fusion alternative to the currently fission based systems, which produced a lot of waste, and were inefficient.
After the President’s speech on alternative energy to reduce global warming, he was pushed by the administration to come up with better ideas. He loved what he was doing; even if sometimes it was a bit overwhelming. It was times likes this he was glad to have the cabin and quiet time with his family.
Little Louis sat bored, while his sister strung beads to make a necklace, which was one her favorite hobbies. “Dad, can I go play in the water?” he asked. “Sarah will watch me!” She gazed at him with a look of disgust into his dark brown eyes, and lowered the beads to her lap in annoyance.
“No,” his father said. “It’s getting late, and you need to stay near the cabin. There might be bears nearby, and I don’t want you far from my
“I never have any fun!” the inquisitive child remarked.
“Nonsense!” Professor Avery said. “We’ll go fishing in the morning, just the two of us. What do you say?”
“Okay,” he sighed, as he tossed his baseball between hands. “Sarah, do you want to play cards or something?”
“Can’t you see I’m busy?” she snapped. “Why don’t you ask Mom?”
He went inside the cabin, and could see his mother was still cleaning up. “Mom?” he asked. “Will you play a game with me?”
“Not right now, Louis,” she told him. “Maybe later. Will you be a sweetheart, and take this garbage out to the side of the cabin?”
“Yes, Mom,” he said, and followed her orders, shutting the door behind him. His father glanced over at him, as he walked around to the side.
“No wandering off, Buddy,” he reminded him. He knew his curious nature, and his inability to always listen.
Louis rounded the corner, opened the lid of the garbage can, and threw it in. He placed a rock on the lid to keep the animals out, turned to go back, and noticed three green and red lights flashing in this distance through the evergreens, near the lake. He guessed from his position it wasn’t visible to the others. He ran to get his father and explain what he saw. He reluctantly rose from his chair to satisfy Louis’ moment of hysteria.
“What is it?” he asked.
“I just saw three lights flashing in the woods,” he said, as he dragged his father by the hand to the side of the cabin. “I think it was a spaceship!”
“I don’t see anything,” his father asked, as Louis and Sarah looked fervently for the object.
“He’s making it up,” Sarah replied.
“No, I’m not,” Louis insisted, and pointed through the trees. “It was right there!”
“Well, it’s not now!” Martin stated, as he took a puff off his pipe. “Whatever you saw is gone now.”
His father went back to smoking, Sarah went back to working on her necklace, and Louis just sulked the rest of the evening. He was sure he saw the lights; so after everyone went to sleep, he quietly sneaked out of cabin and walked down the quarter of a mile path which led to the lake.
When he reached his destination, he peered eagerly out at the water, hoping to find a sign of something, but nothing materialized.
He heard the melodic symphony of frog croaks, and the occasional splash of a fish leaping out of the water for bugs. He watched for several minutes, finally decided it was a waste of time, and figured his parents would be looking for him anyway. He was just about to turn around, when a beam of light shone down on him. He felt paralyzed and unable to move.
Facing the lake, he could see a large triangular craft at least half the size of the mile wide lake, which detailed several red, green, and yellow lights that flashed wildly. It hovered over the lake about one hundred and fifty feet in the air.
The beam’s luminosity shone upon him, and was so strong it lit up the cabin area, thus waking his parents, who ran out to see what the commotion was.
“Louis!” his mother yelled from the porch, and tried to get his attention, but saw that he didn’t turn around. The child felt an enormous tug on his body, and was lifted into the air by the beam towards the craft. When he reached it, a door opened, and he vanished into it.
April Avery fell into her husband’s arms in tears, as Sarah awakened and came out to see what the commotion was all about. Her blond, frazzled hair sparkled in the light of the craft, as it slowly lifted above the lake. There was a bright flash, and the craft disappeared into the night sky.
The ship flew away at a rate so fast Professor Avery knew it couldn’t have came from Earth. They stared in disbelief, it vanished from sight, and the night grew dark and quiet as it was before. How could he, a renowned nuclear physicist, explain that his son was abducted by an alien spaceship? He knew his son’s curiosity would get the better of him; he just didn’t expect anything like this.
Ten years passed since the incident, and Sarah was now a beautiful young woman. Although therapy was long and extensively painful, she somehow managed to rebuild her life, working as a research scientist in the aerospace division of the base.
Her parents passed away in late 2015, during the nuclear war, when Iranian terrorists detonated a stolen bomb, starting WWIII. Sarah survived, but went through many years of therapy, as she lived in the underground NASA facility her father worked for. Unable to accept her parents’ death, and her brother’s abduction, she partly blamed herself by not heeding his warning, and totally ignoring his repeated requests to keep him occupied.
Advanced space travel was still a few years away, considering the catastrophic events which took place a few years earlier. NASA completely restructured itself to work on new rocket systems under radioactive conditions on the Earth’s surface. Rockets were launched from underground, through enormous bay doors at the top of the Rocky Mountain facility.
The atmosphere was a poisonous mix of radioactivity, carbon monoxide, dioxide, methane, and the lack of adequate oxygen. Several underground facilities were built to accommodate five thousand people at each; with enough food and air to survive the thirty years it would take to rebuild a craft big and powerful enough to reach space.
Earth’s last hope was to leave the planet all together, at least temporarily. It would take generations to rehabilitate the world, and for NASA, that just wasn’t an option. At least in space, there was a hope they may find a suitable world one day to terraform, such as Mars, or perhaps develop a cryogenic sleeper ship that could take them to the next star. Titan and Europa were also promising prospects. Earth was a little similar to Venus now, a 110°, poisonous world with noxious air. If it weren’t for the underground growing facilities that produced oxygen, they all would
have surely perished. These types of systems were already implemented on the ISS space station to some degree, but in the future they needed to be produced on a much larger scale.
Her father transferred here just before the war, and her parents were on a second honeymoon when disaster struck. She was staying with a
family friend, General Albert Carver, commander of the base, and the chief Astrophysicist, who eventually took her under his wing. He promised Professor Avery he would care for her in the event of an emergency.
On July 18th, 2020, everything began to change. Sarah was part of a team of thirty to forty scientists who were working on a fusion propulsion system, expanding on some of her father’s ideas. General Carver acted a little suspicious lately, diverting her every time he walked by her. She thought he was angry with her about something, but she couldn’t figure out what.
He went into a highly classified area every day where Sarah didn’t have access. She watched from afar, as he typed in a code and used a fingerprint scanning device. Her brother’s curiosity haunted her, and she wondered what was going on behind closed doors. She knew Carver would kill her if she was caught inside, but the unknown projects peaked her interest. She decided to come back at night to see what was going on. She had to think of a way to gain access, and she thought about a friend or two in personnel that could help her.
She went down to the floor where records were kept to see her friend, Terry. “Hi, Terry,” she said, and sat down in front of his desk.
“Hi, Sarah,” the twenty two year old sandy colored hair man with brown eyes said. “What can I do for you?”
“I need a really big favor,” she explained.
“I need a copy of General Carver’s fingerprint.”
His eyes grew wide at her request.
“Why don’t you just ask me for the moon?” he asked.
“I’ll make it worth your while,” she said, leaning over the desk.
“I could lose my job.”
“I’ll make us dinner. I’ll wear that pretty blue dress you like, and maybe a little extra present. Besides, he won’t find out.”
“I’d need something more substantial than that,” he stated. “Like a new job? Besides, the file won’t help you anyway. You need his actual prints.”
“Just get them for me anyway, please.”
“What’s this all about?”
“I’d rather not say at this point until I know more.”
“Very well,” he said. “Dinner will be fine. I wouldn’t want you to think I was taking advantage of the situation. But there is something you can do for me.”
“Put a good word in for me upstairs. I’m tired of keeping track of everybody’s personal information.”
“Consider it done.”
“And don’t get caught, whatever you’re up to. We’ll both be in hot water if you do!”
“I’ll be careful,” she said. Terry went back to the records room to pull Carver’s file. He came back with a slide of a fingerprint.
“Here you go,” he said. “I don’t suppose you’re going to tell me what this is all about?”
“It’s better if you don’t know,” she said, smiling.
“General Carver’s probably thinking the same about you.”
“Terry, I have more request. How do I get the code to the classified section of the base?”
“What kind of trouble are you getting us into?”
“Uncle Albert’s been acting a little strange, I just want to know why.”
“You’ll have to get that yourself. I don’t know anything about that. And, Sarah-be careful.”
“Thanks, Terry,” she smiled, and kissed his cheek. “You’re an angel. See you tomorrow night.”
“If I live that long,” he quipped.
Later that day, she watched a couple of the classified research team enter the restricted area, trying to catch a glimpse of the code. One older gentlemen watched her, and covered the keypad when he found out what she was trying to do. He thought she hadn’t seen his numerical entries, but she did in fact, and wrote down the numbers as soon as she had the chance.
That evening, she made her way back down to the section. When she saw there were very few staff wandering about, she quickly punched in the
code, and placed the fingerprint slide over the identification device. Much to her avail, it didn’t work. She heard someone coming, so she quickly hid around the corner. When the man opened the door, she quickly grabbed it before it closed.
As the man walked down the stairway, she hid behind a computer panel on the catwalk. She noticed only a few people inside, mostly on the lower section. She looked over the observation deck, and froze in shock. There was a large area below her which housed a triangular craft similar to the one she saw ten years earlier, only smaller. There were also several engineers and scientists examining it, and two small holding rooms with glass windows. In one room, there was a small gray creature, and in the other there was an eight year old boy with black hair. “Louis!” she said, and began to cry. She heard the door open, and as she turned, was faced by the General. He hugged her, as she fell into his chest in tears.
“I hoped to spare you from this,” he said. “How the hell did you get in here anyway?”
“If I tell you, will you promise not to yell at me?”
“You shouldn’t be here,” he reminded her. “This area is off limits for you or anyone else that isn’t authorized. I love you very much, but it’s protocol, and violating it could jeopardize what we’re trying to do here.”
“Why is my brother down there, and why hasn’t he aged?”
“It’s a bit complicated,” he told her. “If I tell you, will you let us do our job, keep it quiet, and stay out of our way?”
“But he’s my brother! Why are you keeping him in that room, and what the hell is that gray thing down there?”
“It’s an extra terrestrial,” he said. “His ship crashed, we retrieved it, and that’s about all I’m going to say. Come on, Sarah, it’s time to go back to bed, and forget what you saw here.”
He could see she wasn’t going to give up that easily, and tried to get her to leave, but she refused to until he answered her.
“My brother was abducted by aliens ten years ago. Explain to me why he’s here, and why he hasn’t aged.”
“We don’t know exactly,” he reluctantly said. “We think he’s been traveling faster than the speed of light, or possibly through time itself.”
“Not for our extraterrestrial friend it’s not.”
“How long are you going to keep them both in there?”
“Well, we have to run some tests on your brother and the Grey. I don’t actually know. How ever long it takes.”
“Uncle Albert!” she yelled, and knew all too well he was trying to get her to believe everything was all right.
“Maybe a month or two,” he answered.
“Can I see him?”
“I’m afraid that’s out of the question.”
“He wouldn’t recognize you,” he said. “You’re ten years older, and he’s still a boy who believes his sister is ten years old.
“Why didn’t you tell him the truth?”
“He wouldn’t understand, just as you don’t understand. Sarah, you really need to go now,” he said, and grabbed her shoulders, pushing her through the door. “Stay in your quarters, and please don’t force me to put a guard on your door.”
“Yes, Uncle Albert,” she complied. “Will I get to see him in a month?”
“We’ll see,” he said. “At least you know he’s still alive.”
“To be used as a guinea pig!”
“We’re more humane than that. We wouldn’t perform the tests without his permission. He’s agreed to help us.”
“In your own words, he’s still a boy,” she argued. “He doesn’t know what’s happening to him!”
“Relax, Sarah. We won’t hurt him, or the Grey.”
“I promise. Now go back to your room and go to sleep.”
“Yes, Sir,” she said, and walked out the door.
General Carver walked down the stairway, and approached one of the scientists.
“Dr. Thompson,” he said. “How did Avery’s sister get into this area?”
The older gentleman, a balding man about five feet with a mustache and glasses, shook his head and waved his arms.
“I don’t know, Sir. We caught her eyeing the pad earlier for the code, but she couldn’t have got through the fingerprint device without help.”
“Exactly,” he answered. “I want to know who gave her the information. And switch the code, I don’t want her
interfering with the project.”
“Yes, Sir,” he answered.
“Have you found out anything from the boy yet?”
“He keeps saying that he doesn’t remember anything after the beam
“What about the alien?”
“He’s been uncooperative. He won’t speak to us, but he seems to be reading our thoughts.”
“How do you know?”
“His brain waves are off the charts, indicating telepathic abilities.”
“Then he can communicate through our minds?”
“Yes, but so far he’s refused to do so.”
“Did you inject him with truth serum?”
“Yes, but so far it’s been ineffective.”
“What do you suggest then?”
“That we try hypnosis on the boy.”
Carver was surprised at the suggestion. “Hypnosis, Frank? You can’t be serious.”
“It can’t hurt,” he said. “Nothing else seems to be working.”
“Very well,” the General said. “You may proceed. I want you to continue to sedate the Grey. We don’t know if he’s hostile or not yet.”
“Wouldn’t you be hostile if you were held against your will?”
“Good point, Frank. You better put an extra guard on the door.”
“Yes, Sir,” he said. “I’ll keep you informed if I find out anything.”
“Thanks. And make sure Sarah stays out of here!” He climbed back up the stairs, and exited through the door.
The next day, General Carver came down to the restricted area to meet with the psychologist and eight year old Louis Avery. He shook hands with the boy, and introduced himself.
“Hello, Louis,” he said. “My name is General Albert Carver. I’m in charge of this facility.”
“Where am I?” he asked.
“You’re under what used to be Colorado.”
“What do you mean ‘used to be?”
Carver looked at the psychologist, and then back at the boy.
“It’s hard to explain. You’ve been gone for ten years.”
“Where did I go?”
“We were hoping you could tell us, but apparently, you don’t
remember. But that’s okay, because Mr. Reynolds here is going to help you remember.”
“By putting you to sleep. Once you’re asleep, you’ll remember it clear as day-we hope,” Dr. Reynolds stated.
“But I’m not tired.”
“You will be after I give you a shot.”
“Will it hurt?”
“Not anymore than when we draw blood.”
“Okay,” he said. “What about what you said earlier?”
“What was that?” Carver asked.
“About Colorado being gone.”
“There was a war, a nuclear war,” he explained.
“What about my parents?” Louis asked.
“Louis, don’t worry, you’re in a very safe place.”
“Where are my parents?” he asked again, now annoyed.
“I’m afraid they didn’t make it,” Carver stated. The boy bowed his head in sorrow, as tears ran down his face.
“What about my sister?” Carver wouldn’t answer him, as he stared at the psychologist.
“Dr. Reynolds, we need to start the procedure,” the General said.
“I asked you a question,” Louis said.
“Your sister is still alive,” Carver said.
“Can I see her?”
“She’s ten years older than you.”
“I still want to see her!”
“Not yet,” Carver said. “We need a little more information from you.”
“No!” he yelled, and folded his arms together. “Not until I can see my sister!”
Carver sighed, and looked at the doctor.
“I can’t perform the hypnosis or administer the shot against his will,” he said.
“I’m not asking you to,” Carver stated. “I’ll tell you what, Louis. You do what the doctor says, and I’ll see that you see your sister tomorrow.”
“Promise?” Louis asked.
“Yes,” he said. “I promise.”
Louis laid down on the bed of the room, and the doctor injected him with the sedative. In a matter of seconds, he became drowsy. Dr. Reynolds gestured for Carver to leave the room, and listen from the outside
intercom. Carver complied, and watched through the window, his arms folded behind his back.
“Louis,” the doctor began. “I want you to go back to the night you saw the bright light. You’re standing at the side of the lake, looking out at the water. What do you see?”
“A large ship,” he said. “With three bright lights.”
“The light is shining down on you now. What happens next?”
“I am lifted in the air, and into a doorway.”
“What’s beyond the doorway?”
“A large room, with a table that I’m put on.”
“Who put you on the table?”
” A gray man with black eyes. He’s as tall as I am. He’s talking to me, but his lips aren’t moving.”
“What’s he saying?”
“He’s telling me to relax. He says he has to perform tests. Now he has a needle that he puts in my neck behind my ear. It hurts really bad.”
‘What happens next?”
“I see pictures, lots of pictures, but I only see them in my mind.”
“Pictures of what?”
“Numbers, letters, and symbols.”
“Do you know what they mean?”
“Let’s go back to the gray man. Does he say anything else to you?”
“Yes, it tells me that it’s necessary to do this to me. He tells me if I do, it will save mankind.”
“He doesn’t tell me that.”
“Does he say anything else?”
“Only that I will have a daughter, who he has met already.”
“Does he say why he told you this?”
“Yes, he says she will change things.”
“Can you tell me more about the ship?”
“Yes, it has an antimatter warp drive, a wormhole generator, and runs on exotic matter and plasma. It’s capable of traveling through space and
Dr. Reynolds looked at the General in disbelief. ‘How could he know this,’ the two of them thought. “Did you travel through time?”
“No, just through space.”
“Tell me more about the gray man. Did he say where he was from?”
“Yes, a planet named Aldron.”
“Where is this Aldron?”
“In another universe?”
“Another universe?” Reynolds asked. “How did he get here?”
“Through a wormhole.”
“Did he travel through time as well?”
“Did he say from when?”
“Did the gray man hurt you in any way?”
“The needles hurt.”
“Did he stick anything down your throat, nose or in your private parts?”
“Was he mean to you in any way?”
“No. He told me he was here to help me. That he was my friend.”
“Do you remember anything else?”
“All right, Louis. Thank you, you’ve been very helpful. I’ll let you rest. When you awake, you won’t remember our conversation.” He then left the room, and greeted the General.
“Quite a story,” the General stated.
“It’s not consistent with other abduction cases, however,” the doctor said. “In most cases, there is significant pain in the tests, and invasion of the sexual organs, nose, throat or brain. He doesn’t appear
to have experienced any of these.”
“He stated the alien is trying to help mankind. Do you believe that?”
“I believe he thinks so. Whether it’s true or not remains to be seen.”
“I want some cognitive tests done on him.”
“Do you think the alien did something to him?”
“I’m not sure yet. I want to see what his mental capacity is. He seems
to know things beyond our scope of understanding.
“How is that possible?”
“Maybe the alien rewired his brain somehow. Tomorrow, we’ll talk to
the Grey. Maybe he’ll cooperate when he knows we talked to Louis.”
“Very well,” Reynolds said. “I wish I could have found out more.”
“We’ll get to the bottom of the truth, sooner or later.”
“I hope you’re right,” Reynolds said. “If the boy’s telling the truth, the future of mankind may depend on it.”
Sarah put on her blue dress for her dinner date, and finished cooking the cordon bleu, rice, and asparagus. She set the table, and heard a knock at the door. “Seven o’clock,” she said to herself. “Right on time.”
She opened the door, and was greeted by her friend Terry.
“Hi, Sarah,” he said, as he entered, and gave her a hug. “You look stunning tonight.”
“Thank you,” she said, and walked over to the bar. “Would you like some wine? It’s a 2004 cabernet sauvignon.”
“Before the war, heh,” he said. “There’s not too many of those left. Especially that expensive.”
“I have my sources. I’ve been saving it for a special occasion,” she said, and used the corkscrew to open the bottle.
“And what’s the occasion?”
“Terry, I’ve found my brother.”
“Yea. He’s down in the restricted area I was telling you about.”
“Why’s he there? Is he all right?”
“Yes, but he’s still only eight years old.”
“What?” he asked in disbelief.
“They found him in an alien spaceship.”
Terry rolled his eyes, as she handed him a glass of wine.
“Are you feeling all right?”
“Yes,” she said. “What I’m telling you is the truth. They have an alien down there as well. I’m not supposed to be telling you any of this Uncle
Albert said, but I have to confide in someone.”
“How could he still be a child? You’re a grown woman!”
“Apparently, he’s been traveling at the speed of light. Uncle Albert said I could see him tomorrow.”
“And you believe him?” he asked her, doubtfully.
“Why shouldn’t I?”
“Because I think he’s just telling you what you want to hear. From what I’ve known in the past, they don’t usually
allow civilians in restricted areas, unless they’re engineers or scientists.”
“For me, he’ll make an exception.”
“I hope you’re right,” he said, and sat at the table. “Does Louis know about your parents?”
“I’m not sure. Uncle Albert didn’t mention anything about that.”
“He’ll be devastated,” Terry said. “I know I was when I found out mine didn’t make it. Like so many of us that lost loved ones to the war.”
She brought the dinner in, and placed it on the table.
“I hope you like it,” she said. “It’s cordon bleu, rice, and asparagus.”
“Sounds delicious,” he said, as he took a bite. “Tastes delicious as well. Where did you get the chicken? That is usually off limits to the general public.”
“I have my resources for that, too.”
She took a bite, and there was another knock at the door.
“Not that I know of.” She opened the door, and was confronted by her Uncle Albert and two military police. “Uncle Albert?”
“Hello, Sarah, Terry,” he said. “May I come in?” She nodded, and Carver waved for the police to stay outside, as he
shut the door.
“Do you want me to leave? Terry asked. “I can come back later.”
“No,” Carver said. “What I have to say, I can say to both of you. Terry, I know that you tried to help Sarah get into the restricted area.”
“Uncle Albert, please don’t blame him!” Sarah pleaded, as she rose from the table.
“He knows damn well what the protocol is around here.” Carver stated. “I’m afraid due to the nature of the project, I’ll have to impose some kind of penalty.”
“Please, Uncle, don’t fire him!”
“I’m not. Terry, you’re on a three week suspension, and confined to
your quarters until then. I’ll let you finish your dinner, and then you can go with the MP’s.”
“What about me?” Sarah asked. “Am I confined to my room too?”
“Of course not,” Carver said. “But I don’t want you downstairs anymore, unless you’re with me. Your brother won’t cooperate with us unless he sees you, so I’ll have to bring you down tomorrow morning to see him. But after that, you’re restricted from the area until we’re finished. Is that understood?”
“Yes, Sir,” she said, frightened. Carver started to walk toward the door, and turned when she spoke. “Uncle Albert?”
“For not throwing the book at him.”
He smiled, left the room, and the two of them were alone again.
“That was close,” Terry said after he left. “At least I still have a job.”
“I’m so sorry,” Sarah said, and grabbed his right hand with both of hers. “This is all my fault.”
“I warned you something like this might happen. General Carver is a tough bird.”
“Well like you said, at least you still have a job. I’ll make it up to you somehow.”
“I can think of a way after dinner to make it up to me.”
“I thought you didn’t want to take advantage of the situation?”
“I think you owe me that much at least.”
“You’re so naughty,” she said, and hugged him tight.
The next day, two military police came to her door to escort her down to the restricted area. It was clear General Carver no longer trusted her, and wanted to make sure she followed his orders. They made her face away from the keypad and the fingerprint device upon entering. She walked down the stairway, and saw the Grey was still in the opposite room under heavy sedation. Louis sat quietly as Sarah reluctantly entered the room.
“Sarah?” he asked.
“Yes, Louis, it’s me,” she answered. “Are you okay?”
“Yes, I’m fine.”
“Are they treating you okay?”
“Yea, they treat me great here. I have plenty of things to read, and
there is a computer room where I can play video games.”
Sarah thought this was a strange statement, since Louis was never much of a reader, and preferred the old traditional board games instead of video games. “You never used to read a lot before.”
“I’m different now,” he stated.
“Different? Why are you different?”
“I don’t know. Ever since I got back, all I want to do is read, and learn new things.”
“What did the alien do to you?”
Carver, who was at the door listening, reminded her of protocol.
“Sarah, please refrain from asking any questions about the extraterrestrial,” he told her.
“Does he know about our parents?” she asked Carver.
“Yes,” Louis said. “I do, and I understand.”
“You seem different, like you’re more mature or something.”
“I just see things a little differently now. Don’t worry, Sarah, I’m all right. General Carver says as soon as I’m done helping them, we can be together again. Isn’t that right?”
“Yes,” he said. “That’s right.”
“Well, okay,” she said. “I guess I’m you’re really big sister now, huh?”
“I guess so,” he laughed. “I should have listened to Mom and Dad, and stayed away from the lake.”
“Yes, you should have, but then again, did you ever listen to them?”
“No,” he laughed again. “You’re right!”
“Visiting time is over, Guys!” Carver said.
“But she just got down here!” Louis cried.
“I know, but we’ve got work to do.”
“What kind of work?” Sarah asked cynically.
“Sarah, don’t push it,” Carver reminded her.
“What kind of work?” she asked again, as Carver gestured for the guards to remove her from the room. “All right, all right! I’m leaving.”
She reached down to give the boy a hug.
“Goodbye, Sarah,” he said. “See you in a few weeks.” Tears ran down both their eyes, as she hugged him goodbye.
“Goodbye, Louis,” she said, and gave Carver an evil stare. “I used to
respect you, now I think you’re just a monster like that alien thing in there!” She walked quickly up the stairs, as the guards followed her.
“She’s lucky I don’t throw her in the brig.” he said to himself as she left, and then turned to the boy. “Well, Louis, today we are going to test your knowledge.”
“With some games. Dr. Reynolds will be down shortly to play with you.”
“That’s great. I like Dr, Reynolds, and I like games.”
“I’ve got to go next door and talk to your friend.”
“He won’t talk to you.”
“And why not?”
“He doesn’t trust you.”
“Maybe if you were to talk to him. Would you like to try?”
“I’ll try, but I doubt he will.”
They walked into the next room to where the Grey was. One of the other scientists in the area approached Carver, as
he opened the door.
“Sir, do you want me to give the alien more sedatives?” he asked.
“No,” Carver answered. “I want you to wake him up.”
“Sir, don’t you think that’s dangerous?”
“It’ll be all right, we’ll stay out here. Let the boy go in and talk to him.”
The doctor came in the room, and administered the shot to wake the Grey up. As he did, he left the straps of the table tied, so if the alien tried to escape, he couldn’t. He then came back out with Carver, and the boy went in.
The gray alien awoke, his black eyes staring up at Louis.
”Hi, Varloo, how are you feeling?” he asked.
“A bit groggy,” he stated through thought transmissions. “Why am I tied up, and where am I?”
“In a government facility, on Earth,” Louis answered. “Or, I should say under Earth. There was a nuclear war.”
“Ah, yes,” he said. “I remember now. My ship crashed, and Garlona was killed. The humans refused to listen to my warnings about war.”
“Who is Garlona?” he asked.
“He was my friend, and my crew.”
“How come I didn’t see him when I was there?”
“He was below deck. Why am I here?”
“They want to study you.”
“What if I don’t want to be studied? Arrogant humans! Always prodding what they don’t understand, They have no idea what is about to become.”
“They want to speak with you.”
“Well, I don’t want to speak to them. Unless they agree to release me.
Louis turned toward Carver and the doctor, and spoke through the intercom. “He said he won’t talk unless you agree to release him.”
“I can’t do that,” Carver said. “He might be hostile toward us.”
“Stupid humans!” Varloo sniped. “Don’t trust any of these people, Louis, they don’t care about us, only their precious research. You are better than that. You’ll become a great man someday, with a beautiful daughter just as intelligent as you.”
“They just want to help me understand what happened, that’s all.”
“Is that what they told you? Liars! They will go on to colonize the solar system from what they learn here today, and rape the natural resources of other worlds, just like they did to their own planet. And you will end up being part of their plan.”
“So you won’t talk to them?”
“What do they want to know?” he asked, disgusted.
Louis turned toward General Carver again.
“He’s wants to know what you want?”
Carver relaxed a little bit.
“Well, that’s better,” he said. “Ask him what year it was when he left the other universe?”
“He says it was 2165.”
“2165,” Carver said, in disbelief. “Ask him why he came here?”
He turned to Varloo again.
“He came here for me.”
“So I can help you to understand.”
“Why you should let him go.”
“Why should we let him go?”
“Because he has to change the future.”
“What’s going to happen in the future that needs changing?”
He stared at Varloo, but felt him clam up, and refuse to answer him. He turned to Carver with disappointment.
“He won’t tell me that.”
“We’re done here for now,” Carver said to the scientist.
“It’s obvious he won’t cooperate. If he doesn’t tell him anymore information by tomorrow, I want him dissected so he can be examined, and his ship reverse engineered.”
“Yes, Sir,” the doctor said.
“Wait!” Louis screamed. “He’s my friend!”
“Well,” General Carver said. “If your ‘friend’ doesn’t want an autopsy done on him, he’d better learn to cooperate!”
Louis turned to the Grey, and stared into his dark eyes with concern.
“Don’t worry,” Varloo said. “They have no idea what they’re getting themselves into. They will regret this day, and my wrath!”
“Please don’t hurt them,” Louis pleaded.
“I only do what I have to do to protect myself. Please remember that.”
“I know that,” Louis said.
“Time to go, Louis,” Carver said.
He placed his hand on Varloo’s shoulder. As he did, he felt a very strange feeling, and almost passed out.
“You now have my knowledge. You will be a great scientist one day, but not the way you think.”
“Goodbye, Varloo,” he said.
“Goodbye, Louis,” Varloo answered.
He left the room, and stared back at Varloo, as he did the same, almost as if there was a mental bond between the two of them. It was then he knew Varloo didn’t expect to be dissected, and had his own plan of
escape. He was led back into his room, but before he entered, he turned to General Carver.
“Will you be the one who jeopardizes the future for your own curiosity?”
Carver was surprised an eight year old asked such a question.
“I’m willing to take the risk if it can benefit mankind,” was his answer.
“What if it does the opposite?”
“Then I’d have to say you were right. But once again, I’m willing to take the risk.”
“Risks are dangerous, especially when they involve things you don’t understand.”
“You’re especially astute for a young boy. Would you like to go to school once we’re done with our testing?”
“Can I learn science and math? They’re my favorites.”
“I kind of figured that would be what interests you.”
“I don’t care what Varloo says about you,” Louis stated. “I think you’re a nice guy trying to help.”
“Well, I’m glad to here that. Varloo’s his name, huh? Just what exactly does he say about me?”
“That you’re arrogant, stupid, selfish, and making a bad decision.”
Carver smiled. “Of course he would say that. He knows we’re going to experiment on him. Try to get him to cooperate. He seems to have a mental bond with you. In the meantime, Dr. Reynolds will be here to run the tests.”
“Yes, General Carver,” Louis answered.
Carver left the room, walked up the stairway, and into the hall, closing the security door. He stepped in the elevator, which took him to the floor where Sarah was living. He knocked on her door, and she answered, still in tears.
“What do you want?” she asked in an angry tone.
“To apologize, for one,” he said. “Are you going to let me in, or leave me in the hallway all day? And why aren’t you at work?”
“I took the rest of the day off!”
She opened the door, he came in, and they both sat on the sofa.
“Look, Sarah. I can say I’m sorry for what I have to do, but I have my orders too.”
“But you’re in charge of this place!”
“Only this section! You know there are nine others bases, and they are all run by the coalition. Whoever is in charge of the coalition itself is in charge-and that’s not me.”
“Yea, but the coalition doesn’t know Louis. They’re not his sister,” she said, as she cried loudly. He put his arm around her, and hugged her tight.
“There, there, Sarah,” he said. “I only need him for a month, and then I’ll let him stay with you, I’m promise. I kept my word today, didn’t I? You got to see him, right?”
“Well, there you go. You know, before your parents died, they said to me, ‘please take care of our girl if anything ever happens to us.’ We can’t afford to lose her too. And I kept my promise, didn’t I? I gave you a home, bought you new clothes, even got you a job, just like I would my own daughter.”
“You have been good to me.”
“I’ll have Dr. Reynolds come by tonight and give you something to sleep better, okay?”
“Okay, thank you, Uncle Albert.”
“You’re welcome, Honey,” he said, gave her a kiss on the forehead, and got up to leave. She showed him out the door.
Carver left there, and returned to the research area, greeted by Dr. Reynolds.
“Sir,” he said, as he carried a clipboard. “You won’t believe this one. Louis Avery’s brain level is off the charts!”
“What do you mean off the charts?”
“Well, we asked him simple arithmetic on a third grade level, which he easily surpassed. We then gave him problems designed on a high school level. He again surpassed them, so we gave him college level.”
“And your conclusions?”
“He currently has a college level math background, and he is fluent in physics and calculus. He understands five languages currently, and speaks backwards as well in those languages. And his science level is that of a nuclear physicist.”
“Really?” he asked, again in disbelief. “Our extraterrestrial friend seems to have given our young boy a boost of knowledge. Maybe we’ll keep the Grey alive after all. Let’s take some blood from both the alien and the boy and test it to see if the blood is similar.”
“Do you think he passed it on through his blood?”
“That’s what I’m thinking. And do me a favor, will you?”
He lowered his voice to a whisper. “Go up to Sarah’s room and inject her with enough Propfol to put her out for a couple of months until we’re done.”
“You know what you’re asking me to do? The risks of putting her under that long in a drug induced coma can cause irreversible damage.”
“Just do it! That’s an order!”
“Yes, Sir.” Reynolds said, and walked away.
Carver turned to leave again, and he could see Louis stare at him differently now, as if he knew what he was about to do, and was angry. He gave him a look back, and started up the stairs, and out of the area. Reynolds followed him up the stairs as well, administering the General’s order. The boy’s look worried Carver, and he felt he was changing as well, and that maybe this wasn’t a good idea after all.
Later that day, Carver and Reynolds came back down to draw blood from their captives. They entered the boy’s room first, and Carver was greeted by a resentful young boy.
“Varloo was right about you!” he said, as Carver entered. “I shouldn’t have trusted you!”
“Come on, now, Louis,” Carver told him. “We’re only here to help you. We just need to draw a little blood, that’s all.”
“I know what you did to Sarah!”
“What are you talking about?” Carver asked.
“You know what I mean! You drugged her so she wouldn’t interfere!”
Carver was surprised at the statement. How could he know that, unless he could lip read, or read minds?” How do you know about that?”
“Varloo told me. You better stay away from me!” He began to throw lab equipment which was in the room at them.
“Louis, be reasonable,” Carver said. “We don’t want to hurt you.”
“Why not?” he asked. “Because you need me as your lab rat?”
“Reynolds, get the syringe ready,” Carver said. “Louis, please don’t force me to get physical.”
“You’re not getting my blood!” he insisted.
Carver cornered him, grabbed him in a bear hug, and held him, while he kicked. “Get a sedative!” he told Reynolds. He followed his order, and
injected him with the drug. In a matter of seconds, Louis stopped struggling, and Carver placed him on the bed. Reynolds drew his blood, obtaining three full vials.
“He’s going to be uncooperative from this point on,” Reynolds stated. “You do realize that?”
“I know,” he said. “But it had to be done. Once we test the alien’s
blood, I want him moved to another part of the facility. Hopefully, their mind meld has a range limit.”
“I hope you’re right. We still don’t know how the alien is going to alter the future, if what they’re telling us is the truth.”
“I really don’t care,” Carver said. “All I care about is what we can learn from them.”
“Maybe what we learn from them is how we alter the future,” Reynolds said.
“That could be, but I still don’t care. Let’s go get the blood from the alien.” He nodded, and they left Louis’ room, and went into the alien’s quarters. “You sure he’s still sedated?”
“Yes,” he said, as prepared the vials for the blood samples. Carver watched, as Louis’s face turned to face the glass next to them.
“Wake up, Varloo!” he yelled. “Wake up.”
Dr. Reynolds unstrapped the Grey’s arm to place the intravenous needle into him. He pushed it in, and the blood began to flow into the vial. The Grey awoke, reached and grabbed his arm, and squeezed it until he let go. When he did, the needle syringe began to float in mid air. Carver watched in amazement, as he helped to try to release his grip on Reynolds. The needle jabbed him in the arm, he screamed in pain, and threw it on the floor. Varloo touched Reynolds’
forehead, and he fell to the floor, unconscious.
Carver turned, as he pulled his M9 revolver out and pointed at him, but the Grey used his telekinetic powers to yank it from his hand to the floor. He waved his arm, and Carver also became unconscious. He unstrapped himself, glanced at the two of them, and waved his arm to open the door.
Upon leaving, Louis became excited. “You’re free! You’re free!” he yelled.
Several guards approached the Grey, he waved his arm, and they were also unconscious. He turned to Louis before he left. “Goodbye, Louis, and good luck,” he said.
“I don’t like it here,” Louis said. “Take me with you! Please?”
“I’m afraid I can’t. Not this time. Take care, you will see me again in the future.”
He began to cry, as he watched the Grey climb into his spaceship, and
prepare it for departure. He watched in wonder, as the triangular craft rose, and the bay doors opened at the top of the structure.
“Goodbye, Varloo,” Louis said. “At least you’re free!”
The humans began to awake and the ship left the hangar. Carver scrambled for his gun, and pointed at the craft, but it was already gone. He stared at the sky, and then at Louis, who was dancing around the room in joy. He then looked at the mark in his arm, wondering what implication it would have from the alien blood., what the future held for them, and how it was to be altered from the gray humanoid. He also wondered what was to become of this child prodigy, and what effect the alien would have on his future as well.