Flash Fiction – by Linda Jo Martin – Something I wrote during one of our local writers club meetings…
Emil got out of his Lexis after parking on Second Avenue, across from the old mercantile building. He looked around slowly, sensing the old well on the far corner, now covered with concrete. He felt the light patterns of busy Happy Campers during the past 150 years, and the fragrance of ancient, more primitive early residents of the area. He reached back into the Lexis for his iPhone, and switched it on, but no connection was available.
He smiled. “Remote places like this have such terrible reception,” he muttered.
Instead he sent a mental message to Sal. “Arrived on site.”
“Check!” Sal replied almost instantly, then a flash from above Slater Ridge showed him that Sal was on the job and in place.
He crossed the street and walked west to the Second Avenue Bridge. Rather than getting on the pedestrian walkway he slipped behind the fence.
“Too many blackberries,” he muttered. He glanced around to be sure nobody was there, then levitated and floated over the tops of the brambles. He plopped down into the chill of Indian Creek and started drilling into the creek bottom with his displacement pen.
“How did you do that?” The voice came from under the bridge.
Emil groaned. He looked up into the wide-eyed face of a teenage boy. The boy looked more curious than frightened. What to do? What to do?
Emil didn’t want to harm anyone. It was against the directive edict to do so. “Gather evidence, do not harm!”
“I should have been more careful,” he said. “Now you’ve seen me.”
“How did you float like that? And what are you doing?” The boy slid down the embankment toward Emil slowly, but unhesitatingly.
“It’s easy, really,” Emil told him. “If you believe you can, you can. Simple as that.”
“But I don’t believe I can.”
“Then you can’t.”
“But nobody around here floats, except on water. Not in the air.”
Emil watched his displacement pen’s progress in removing stones and gravel, tossing them aside from the depths of the creek bottom.
“It’s the middle of winter. Aren’t you cold? The water is freezing.”
“I’m not too cold because I believe I’m not. You on the other hand believe you’d be cold so if you got into this snow-melt you would become hypothermic, no doubt.”
“Where are you from?” the boy asked.
“Ah, you wouldn’t believe me if I told you.”
“You look different. Long face. Pointed ears.”
Emil smiled and pulled out a light pistol. He pointed it at the boy and stunned him into inactivity.
“We have a problem, Sal,” he mind-communicated.
“What now? I sense a human?”
“Got it. I need transport.”
“I’ll come in cloaked.”
Two minutes later the ship landed in stealth mode and collected the boy. “Take him home,” Emil told Sal with a wink and a cheery smile on his face.
“How about you?” Sal asked.
“I’ll be there in a few hours.”
Emil finished uncovering the vibrancy box which was encrusted with gold and diamonds. He elevated it from its position twenty feet under the creek bed, concealed it under his coat, and then filled the hole back in with the displacement pen.
He was back home on Mars within an hour and a half. He showed the boy around the colony explaining the terrain and some of the technology.
“Too bad I can’t let you remember any of this,” he said.
“Why not? I want to tell my mom.”
“It’s all classified, sorry, young man. But here’s something you might like and I can let you take some home with you.”
He pulled the gold and diamond encrusted vibrancy box out of his pocket and opened it. The boy peered inside where there was the essence of the souls of anyone who had ever lived in the Klamath River Valley town of Happy Camp.
Emil reached inside and picked out a small golden nugget. He held it up to the filtered sunlight so the boy could see it glisten and shine. “This is permeated with the vibration of your people at their best. Keep it with you and always you’ll be healthy.”
The boy accepted this gift and put the nugget in his pocket. Then Emil put his thumb on the boy’s forehead. They placed him in a transport craft and sent him back to Happy Camp, setting him carefully on the ground under the bridge.
* * *
Later when the boy woke up he could not stop thinking about his strange dream. He got up to go tell his mother, and as he did, reached into his pocket, touching the nugget. Immediately he was transformed, with ethical uprightness, vibrant health, and clear perception.
“Maybe Emil was real,” he said to his mother, “but I’ll never know for sure.”