UFO Crashes Into House

Written in response to: Start or end your story with a house going up in flames.... view prompt

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Fiction Friendship Speculative

      Jeremy had the worst kind of luck. Any small thing escalated into a catastrophe with him. So, when I looked up to see that plotting and scheming look on his face, as he dunked his Oreo into a jar of peanut butter, my stomach tangled into small knots. Wanting to avoid anything he might say, my gaze quickly dropped back to the pages of my book on how to be human and have normal conversations. Something I’d need to learn if I ever hoped to have more than Jeremy in my life.

           “Hey, Cora?”

           I sighed. “Yeah?”

           After a moment of silence, I looked over to see him struggling to chew a peanut butter covered cookie and reaching for his bottle of Mountain Dew to wash it down. Gross, what is wrong with him? “I have no idea how your stomach survives you.”

           “I have a fun idea.”

           No, I don’t want to hear it. I pulled my book to my face in an obvious show of ignoring him and flipped a page even though I hadn’t read the one I was on.

           “C’mon, it’s brilliant.”

           “Fine.” Another sigh. They’re common with him.

           “I think we should make a little UFO and fly it outside random windows at the nursing home tonight.”

           “Why the nursing home?”

           “I’m hoping some senility might assist with my ultimate goal.”

           “Which is?”

           “Making our town believe in an alien takeover.”

           “And why do you want to do that?”

           He smirked and dug another Oreo deep into the container. When he pulled it out, the heap of peanut butter looked too large to fit in his mouth. He crammed it in anyway and light brown squished out of the corners of his lips. Then with a casual shrug, he said, “Why not?”

           “With your luck, it’ll get bad somehow. Maybe turn our town into an alien worshipping cult.”

           “Why’d that be bad?”

           I rolled my eyes. “You’re hopeless. And dangerous when bored.”

           “It’ll be fun.”

           I looked over at him sitting cross-legged on the couch with a dreamy look in his eyes. This plan would somehow blow up in our faces like they always did. Despite this, I’ve been agreeing to these stupid plans for like fifteen years now. That’s what best friends are for, I guess. “If we’re going to do this, we need to do it right.”

           “Oh, yeah?”

           “We need to really know our aliens. Sell a consistent story so when people start talking, it’ll match up. I think we should start at the nursing home, but then branch out. The people there’ll tell their kids and grandkids. They won’t believe them, but then they’ll see it for themselves.”

           “Alright, Alright. I like where this is going. How’ll we know all that information though?”

           “Pick the ones we know, I guess. This town’s not that big. I bet if we watched a few hours during visiting hours, we’d realize we know someone from each family.”

           “If they show up during visiting hours, that is. Sad reality of nursing homes.”

           “Yeah. Maybe it’s wrong to mess with them.”

           “Eh, I wouldn’t go that far. Besides, it’s just a harmless prank.”

           “Right.”

           “We should get some burgers. I’m starving.”

           “Are you kidding me?”

Where all Jeremy’s calories went was one of life’s great mysteries. He was the skinniest person I knew, and yet he could chump down an entire grocery store in an hour if allowed. It’s like he made a deal with the devil.

We got burgers on the way to the art supply store where we would gather all the needed items for crafting our UFO. I regretted leaving the house since my body turned into a swamp of sweat in minutes. 

Since we’re not any kind of technological geniuses, we decided to buy a flying drone to fit inside whatever outer UFO looking shell we created.

“We shouldn’t make the typical flying saucer,” I said.

“Okay?”

“There’s just no way a real one is actually going to look like this stupid thing humans created. They’ll see right through it.”

“Eh, I don’t know. If we don’t do the typical thing, they might not get what it is. I think you’re giving people a bit too much credit.”

I often do. “Well, a UFO can be anything. If it’s flying and flashy and unusual, what else would it be?”

“Maybe we need a glowing light to come out of the bottom at least. Preferably green.”

“I think green is too─”

“You’re way overthinking this.”

It's what I do. We settled on purple. We gathered all the supplies and headed to the cash registers. I looked at each cashier until I spotted Trent. 

"Let's go in this line." 

"Why? It has three people, and the others are…" He looked ahead and I saw the recognition in his eyes. "I don't get why you like him." 

"I... I don't know. He...oh, you don't really care." 

"He might be a werewolf." 

"What? Why do you think that?" 

"So many similarities." 

I didn't push him because we were awkwardly close and Trent could have overheard, especially if he was a werewolf. I think they have good hearing.

"Hey, Cora," Trent said with that smile that dazed my head and rendered me incapable of speaking. 

"Hey," I managed. 

His smile faded as he turned to Jeremy, and with a bit of a snarl he said, "Jeremy." 

He does have particularly sharp canine teeth. Jeremy didn't respond. 

"Working on a project?" Trent directed his sweet, brown, puppy-dog eyes at me. 

"Yeah, it's sort of a secret." 

"Oh, a secret. Exciting." There was a hint of sarcasm in his voice. He started scratching an itch behind his ear. Then scanned the items. 

“Although, if you wanted to help–”

“No, I doubt he does.” Jeremy said. “Probably has plans, being a full moon tonight and all.”

Trent laughed and gave him a strange look. Was it confusion or surprise? Then he sniffed the air. 

“Shit, I’m bleeding.” A cashier behind me said. “Stupid papercuts really hurt.” 

Did he smell her blood? Then a strong whiff of someone’s perfume practically choked me. Stop it, Cora. Werewolves aren’t real. Don’t let Jeremy put stupid ideas in your head.

“Sure, why not?” Trent said. “Don’t have anything else going on.”

“Ah, lone wolf type, huh?” Jeremy muttered.

“Great! It’ll be fun.” I said too excitedly.

We agreed to meet Trent at his house later. Well, I did. Jeremy groaned. Then we bagged up our supplies and headed home to build our UFO. 

We gave it a diamond shape, spray painted it white, and hid the laser in such a way the light would come from the bottom. We decorated the sides in what looked like strange carvings and another language. We added random stickers to look like buttons that might be on a fancy space thing. 

When the pink and purple swirled sunset faded to twilight blue, we crept over to the nursing home. We hid behind a brown, crisp bush a few feet from the window of a pacing elderly woman. The grass crunched beneath the palms of my hands as I crouched. 

"Everything's so dead."

"Drought. It's been bad." Jeremy wiped sweat from his forehead. 

I pulled on my shirt trying to make a fan of it. "It's not getting any cooler either." 

"What do you think she's doing?" Jeremy asked. 

The woman kept throwing her arms in the air and pacing. "Praying to rain gods. Let's get this going." 

Admittedly, it took a while for us to get the hang of using the remote control. So, maybe we never really did actually. At some point, we did get the drone to hover outside the window and the woman took notice. Her eyes and mouth widened. We could hear muffled screaming and see her pointing. Then she ran. We both threw hands over our mouths trying to hold back the laughter.

Then we crept behind the bushes a little further to the next window. An old man sat on his bed staring out the window. It was like he could see us, but we were cloaked in darkness. With some effort we finally got the drone to move to his window. His eyes widened too. Then his hands grasped his chest, and after what looked like a few struggled attempts at breaths, he fell over and stopped moving.

“We didn’t give him a heart attack, did we?” I gasped.

“No, no. That’d be absurd.”

“It is one of your plans. They always get out of hand.”

“It’s fine. Don’t─”

“Let’s get out of here.”

Jeremy groaned, but then tried to bring the drone back. The drone flew around the building at rapid speed, and we heard screams erupting all over. Lights were being switched on. As soon as the drone came our way, he grabbed it and we ran. We jumped in the car and sped off.

“I don’t think we should do that again,” I said.

Jeremy laughed. “That was the best! Can you imagine what they’re thinking? I can’t wait to hear the rumors.”

“Let’s go home.”

“What about Trent?”

He had me there. I couldn’t pass up a chance to finally spend time with him. Maybe there was something else we could all do.

“We should fly it around his house. Try to scare him.”

“I don’t─”

“C’mon. It’s not like he’ll have a heart attack or anything. Or…he might show his true wolf form.”

“Why do you even think that?”

“Eh, I don’t really anymore. He’s too short.”

“Why do you hate him so much?”

“He’s a dog,” Jeremy smirked.

“Really?”

“I don’t know. High school stuff I still cling to, I guess.”

“Did he bully you or something?”

“No.”

“You can tell me.”

“No, it wasn’t like that.”

“You know I’d pick your side, right? You’re my best friend.”

Jeremy nodded and then became unusually quiet. I blasted the air conditioner. Everything was so hot and dry.

We pulled up to where the GPS said his house was, but the building didn’t look like a place he’d live. It looked old and very neglected. Some of the windows were boarded up.

“Do you think he gave us a fake address?” I asked.

Jeremy jumped out of the car and took the drone with him. “This is exactly the kind of place I suspected he’d live.”

“What does that mean?”

“Shh! We’ve got to be careful. There’s a lot of people around. In a neighborhood like this, they might have a watch or something.”

It was a nice neighborhood. One of those little suburban streets that dead ends. There was a basketball hoop at the end for local kids to share. This rundown house looked out of place.

“It doesn’t even look like anyone’s home if this is his house.”

Jeremy started up the drone anyway and flew it to each window that was open. “Maybe he’s messing with us. Hiding in there and waiting. We’ll get him first.”

The lawn looked like it hadn’t seen water in years. Then again, most lawns looked that way these days.

“Shit!” Jeremy whispered aggressively. “It’s stuck.”

The drone was teetering on the edge of a gutter.

“Is that smoke?” I could have sworn I saw some rising from the drone. The drone tipped over and crashed into a dried-out bush. The bush flared up in flames. Jeremy and I exchanged panicked looks.

The house was surrounded by dried-out bushes and the fire was leaping from one to the next, greedily consuming each. Then it caught the bottom of a wooden board hanging loosely from the window. Soon the fire was climbing the house.

“We need to call the fire department,” I said.

“We need to get out of here!” Jeremy said.

“No, we can’t just run away. This could spread to other houses.”

I pulled out my cell phone, but the battery was dead. Of course. I’m with Jeremy. I showed Jeremy.

He searched his pockets for his own, and then his head dropped. “I left it at the house.”

“Did you guys do this?”

We turned to see Trent behind us pointing at the house. His t-shirt was all ripped apart and I think I saw a twig in his hair. Why?

“It was an accident. We’re so sorry. I... I─” I could speak. Tears flooded down my cheeks and clogged my throat.

“You want to call for help at my house?”

“This isn’t your house?” Jeremy said in an almost disappointed tone.

“No, I live back there.” He pointed to a long dirt driveway next to this house.

I felt relieved and then guilty for feeling relieved. We were still burning down a house, and not knowing who lived there shouldn’t make that better. “Do you know who lives here?”

“No one. It got condemned for some mold issue. Though there are some rumors. Kids say they see ghosts or strange not quite human figures. Adults say it’s drug…We should get out of here in case it is drugs. Might blow up.”

We all exchanged worried looks and ran down Trent’s driveway. I used his phone to call the fire department, but I already heard sirens. Someone must have seen it and called. A few minutes later, there was a loud boom, and everything shook like an earthquake. We dropped to the floor and covered our heads.

When things were still again, I cautiously crept to the window and stared out. There was a dark object hovering over the house. I couldn’t tell what I was looking at for sure. Then a white light beamed down through the roof. Several things unlike anything I’ve seen before floated into the object. It happened so fast. I could tell they had limbs. They had these Medusa-like heads with these wormy things wiggling around where hair should be. Their skin seemed mint green. I blinked unsure if I was hallucinating and they vanished. My mind is playing tricks on me.

I turned to see if they saw it, but Trent had left the room and Jeremy was staring at a wall, rocking back and forth.

“This is officially the end of your plans!” I said firmly.

Jeremy nodded. “Yeah, I understand.”

“How does this even happen?”

“Do you think we’ll go to jail?”

Trent came back wearing new clothes. We all sat outside under the stars, watching the fire department spray the fire down. Jeremy made himself a bag of popcorn and sprinkled shredded cheese all over the top. I had no idea how he could be eating at a time like this. Trent put an arm around my shoulder, and I leaned into the soft comfort of his hoodie. I closed my eyes and smelled that disgusting chemically smell of a cigarette he smoked. At some point I passed out leaning on Trent’s shoulder and had nightmares about being thrown in jail for the rest of my life. People don’t like arsonist. We weren’t really, but would they believe that?

By morning all the headlines read "UFO Crashes into House" or "Alien Attack?" It was all click bait. Reading the whole article revealed the real details. A child looked out his window and saw what I know was our drone crashing, and reports ran wild with it. Then interviews with residents of the nursing home started. Since most people only read headlines, it didn't take long before the whole town really did believe our alien takeover. They might not have believed any one person alone, but all the sightings made a difference. After that little glimpse I think I saw, I did too. I didn’t tell anyone though.

August 27, 2021 14:35

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7 comments

John Hanna
22:14 Sep 13, 2021

Great insights! Great dialog in an imaginative and nice story. Then you threw in real aliens but only one person saw them. Great!

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Annalisa D.
22:48 Sep 13, 2021

Thank you so much! I'm glad you liked it and appreciate you taking the time to read and comment.

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Danny G
21:20 Aug 27, 2021

I liked this one. I liked how you created a character who gets into all sorts of mischief and the reluctant best friend who follows. The story was engaging and the mystery of the ending leaving the reader to wonder if Trent was a werewolf and did Cora really see a UFO. And which ‘UFO’ did the people see? They were all really well done. :-)

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Annalisa D.
21:25 Aug 27, 2021

Thank you! I'm glad you liked the mysteries and friendship. Thank you for reading and commenting!

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Eric D.
20:19 Aug 27, 2021

I adored the characters especially Jeremy had some funny quirks and moments. Got a little confused in the end just because I was so focused and following the alien plan but there were references to the werewolves which I thought maybe they're just messing with him a little but then trent was a little suspicious in the end. And there were other like apparition sightings. Just felt like some some things were harder to connect to the main plot or just drew my attention somewhere else. Overall was really interesting and I liked the fleshed out c...

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Annalisa D.
20:29 Aug 27, 2021

Thank you for reading and the comment! I'm glad you liked the characters. I enjoyed creating them. The ghosts were just mentioned from people saying what they thought they saw, but they likely saw whatever Cora did at the end there but they thought ghosts. The werewolf plot was left open ended for you to decide. Kind of the whole thing really because you may assume Cora was just imagining the aliens too. I'm considering doing a part 2 in the future and getting more into the werewolves.

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Eric D.
20:35 Aug 27, 2021

Ah okay that makes sense to me now. I'm gonna look forward to the sequel and seeing where the werewolf stuff goes.

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