the Last U.F.O. Report

by James Bronson


Chapter 8 - Night Visitor

            It was 2:00 AM, and I was dead to the world.  I was asleep on the bottom bunk.  The room temperature was at a steady 68o night and day with the air being filtered of pollen and dust.  All but one weak neon light was off.  A solid door stopped most of the noise from the night crew.  A lone guard walked the length of the room once an hour, just to make sure everything was okay.

            The professor slept above me and our partner, Megan, slept in the women’s quarters across the hall.  All was quiet in Still Waters.

            Then, something woke me up.  I lay in bed half asleep.  The handle on the barrack’s door turned, making an almost inaudible click.  I heard the soft shoes of the night guard crossing the room.  The light from his low-powered flashlight crossed my face.  It put my fears to rest, and I fell back to sleep.

            Not a sound.  Not a sound.  Someone was standing next to my bunk.  I forced my eyes open.  I was looking at an apparition.  I couldn’t see.  I couldn’t see.  A dark fog figure.  It was big, over six feet tall.  Not a ghost.  Not a ghost.  “Go away,” I thought.  It wants something; I can feel it.  “That’s mine,” I thought.  I felt its thoughts, “Says you.”  In a blink, it was gone.

            I was left with a heart pounding hard.  In the air was a faint but foul odor.  Just a nightmare.  The old man was above me, a possible source for the odor, and the rest was just my imagination.  I’m not going to think about this, not now.

            In the morning, I didn’t bring up my night visit.  For some reason, I wasn’t ready to discuss it.  If you know my background, I’ve dealt with ghosts before.  It didn’t feel like a ghost.  It didn’t feel human.  Maybe the space aliens sent some form of energy to check me out.  Maybe they implanted thoughts in my subconscious.  Maybe they want to take over my mind, turning me into a will-less zombie under their control.

            Pop interrupted my mindless reverie.  “Kid, ever put your head up a camel’s ass?”

            I stopped shaving, holding the government issued disposable razor in my hand.  “No, not that I recall.”

            “Well, that’s what it’s like.”


            “The aliens’ bad breath.”

            I suddenly realized that this was a long playing gag to get a laugh on the new guy.  In the army, the new recruit is told to go to the armory and bring back the key to the flagpole.

            “Oh, I thought you were asking me to explain how it smelled sleeping on the bunk below yours.”

            “Wise guy.”

            “Have you ever stepped into a stuffy room where an old dog has been farting all night long?  That would be my description.”

            “Okay, I get it.  No more rookie jokes.”

            “Fine.”  Of course I knew that he meant for now.

            We showered, dressed in clean khaki uniforms and desert boots.  Pointing to my collar, I said, “No insignia, no name tag, no badge.”

            “You want a badge, son?”

            “How about Space Patrol?”

            “We’re Desert Rats.  We don’t need no badges.”

            “What about Megan?”

            “She definitely needs no badges.”

            We walked over to a pickup area.  A long tunnel ran off in either direction as far as you could see.  Megan joined us in the same nondescript uniform.  Pops jolted awake and went over to greet her.  He was right about one thing, she definitely needed no badges.  From the big grin on his face, you would never guess that he didn’t trust her.  She came over and shook my hand with a grip like a man.  She looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Don’t be nervous even if the aliens can put their pants on both legs at a time.  They don’t need a support cup, if you know what I mean.”

            I could feel the professor’s stare.  He didn’t want me to come under her domination, as I suspected he was.

            I answered, “The professor told me that you had a sex change operation and that I should keep my distance.”

            I was sure it would throw her.

            She answered without taking her eyes off me.  “I’ll bet he did.”  She gave him a look of disapproval.  “Did he tell you when he slept with me?  Was it before or after my sex change?”


            “Well, he is getting to that age when he forgets things, even what hole he was in.”

            The tension was broken, and we all had a laugh.

            “Believe me, Sparks,” she continued.  “My carpet came with the house.”

            “Yes, ma’am.”

            “Now, young man, there’s one thing you need to know.”


            “Never let the aliens know that you can smell their bad breath.”  Now it was her turn.  Still, it seemed to me that the three of us would make a fine team—two brains and a reporter, all together, three wise guys.

            The sound of an electric motor came up from behind.  I turned; it was a white elongated golf cart driven by a park ranger straight from the set of a 60’s James Bond movie.  We climbed aboard our 1960’s theatrical wonder and headed straight up the tunnel.

            I kept a smile on my face, but I felt my stomach drop.  The image I saw last night popped up in my mind and it wasn’t friendly.


Next Chapter


 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10



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