Fun Fact. Did you know that small packages of fortune cookies are incredibly difficult to get ahold of… For the CW session this evening had the choice between a) small number of really $$$ cookies b) large number of reasonably priced ones or c) no cookies. So I made some fake fortunes using Google and some clipart from a label template on Word that in hindsight is unusually creepy.
The prompt I chose from the pile of prompts was:
An alien of some sort will be appearing to you shortly! [taken from an internet site, prompt not my creation]
“Your call is very important to us, please hold.”
I wrapped the phone cord around my finger, listening to the dull tones of some old Muzac in the background.
This wasn’t a normal call. It was important. Surely something could be done to make sure that they picked up this call, right now. I needed them to listen.
My eyes darted over to the corner of the room, the forbidden space that I wasn’t supposed to look at it. The gelatinous blue blob was still there, pressed against the far wall as if it had always belonged there.
“You are currently number,” there was a small pause followed by a more robotic sounding voice, “1,206 in the queue.”
Over one thousand people above me? But right there in the corner was the little jelly creature, waiting for me to look at it. I wasn’t stupid, I knew what would happen if I gave it more than a second of my attention. They’d gotten my Aunt June just like that and I wasn’t going to let it happen to me.
The blob was looking at me. I could sense it.
“If you would like an operator to ring you back then please press 3,” the voice, sounding even friendlier than before, said. A call back wouldn’t take that long at all, surely, and it might be better than waiting for the list to slowly tick down from 1,206 to 1. That or I’d finally look at the blue alien blob in the corner and everything’d be fine.
My finger hovered over the number three. Three was my lucky number once upon a time, until the aliens came down to earth on the 3rd Saturday in the 3rd month of the 3rd year of the 3rd decade of the 3rd millenium. That’s 19th March 2033 for anyone who was already completely out of touch by that time.
I believed in lucky numbers. Not fate or anything so… permanent. Just that things could be predicted. So I didn’t walk on cracks, or under ladders or anything so dangerous as all that.
“If you would like a call back then please press 3,” the voice repeated, sounding so cheerful I could almost picture the person’s face being glued into a permanent smile.
I wasn’t going to fall for that trick, even if it continued to say that on repeat instead of the crappy background music.
It was getting a bit irritating though. I turned around, facing the wall rather than the window, so that I had my back to the blue blob. It wasn’t as if it could do anything to me while I wasn’t looking at it. I was completely safe, as long as I didn’t look it in the eyes.
A distraction was needed, something to stop me from falling into the temptation of looking at it. After all, it isn’t every day you see an alien. We always thought that first contact would be some magical experience. It wasn’t. Just some blobs of jelly beaming themselves into your house and using some kind of mind control wizardry on you if you dare to even try and welcome them to the planet. And they’d make you want to welcome them too, make it so that all you could think about was turning around to greet them.
I opened the cupboard above my head, careful not to look in the mirror attached to the back of one of the cupboard doors. Cans of soup I couldn’t open without a tin opener – which was on the other side of the room – and a few boxes of cereal. I stood up on my tip toes and leaned over to look into the back of the cupboard.
I could almost feel it’s little jelly eyes staring at me, trying to make me turn around.
“You are now 1, 204 in the queue,” a robotic voice told me and I resisted the urge to spin around and laugh in its face. Didn’t it see, I was going to make it to the front of the queue! Someone was going to come and help me.
But then I realised, it made no difference if someone would come and help if by the time they got here I’d already looked. The phone wasn’t a good distraction (and no-one was coming really, were they?)
I took down the box that was hidden at the back of the cupboard. It was a dusty box of fortune cookies. I’d always loved them as a kid.
Cracking one open with my spare hand while holding onto the phone with the other, I looked at the fortune.
Huh, wasn’t that funny.
Something incredible will happen to you very soon.
Well, that was a coincidence wasn’t it?
Because there was something amazing and odd in my kitchen.
And all I’d have to do was turn around and –
“You are number 1, 197 in the queue. Please hold, your call is important to us.”
I slammed the phone down against the receiver.
Making first contact with an alien. That’s something incredible, right?
I turned slowly, fortune cookie shreds still in my hand. I’d seen others screaming as their mind seemed to melt from the inside out but that wasn’t predetermined to happen to me.
I might see something incredible
I looked up.
To see the little blue jelly blob staring back at me with a cute cartoon grin on its face. I smiled too. It looked almost like something off Cartoon Network or CBBC. Funny, that.
But then it seemed to shift, as if the air was vibrating.
It wasn’t a cute, cartoon jelly blob at all.
It was —