In the Skies Above the Farm

Submitted into Contest #210 in response to: Write a story that includes someone saying, “We’re not alone.”... view prompt

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Funny Science Fiction Fiction

George Hightower was madly in love with his new wife Ethel, for about half an hour. Let’s establish that first and foremost.  

It wasn’t the look of the girl that changed his mind, certainly not that. She was as pretty and respectable a girl as Waycan County ever produced, with long, flowing blonde hair that fell down onto her breasts, curled at the ends and shimmered like alchemist’s gold in the sunlight. And with big, emerald green eyes that sparkled when she laughed, like the way raindrops do when they settle on cedar branches.

It wasn’t her social status either. She was the daughter and only child of Edwin Welles, the owner of the state’s largest bank, and was seen as something of a local socialite. Her parents had tried to sway her into marrying a local entrepreneur or even a bank employee, but to no avail. She had always desired a more modest, quiet lifestyle and thought she fit the role of a farmer’s wife perfectly.

So what was it then? What could possibly have changed George’s mind? 

“Isn’t the house a little close to the barn?” she asked on their first night together as man and wife. “I sure hope that smell don’t creep into the bedroom. That ol’ rooster ain’t gonna crow too early is he? I got to have my eight hours. Oh honey make sure you get me some fresh eggs for the morning please.”

That, that’s what changed his mind. Remember, “she thought she fit the role of a farmer’s wife”. Operative word “thought”. 

For the next thirty years they lived in ever growing silence and resentment, Ethel growing more and more fed up with farm life and George growing more and more fed up with Ethel. The years ate away at them until George was reduced to an old, skinny, miserly fellow; and Ethel had become plump, gray, and as ornery as one of their old cows.

“Geooooooooorge!” his wife’s screaming voice soon became as common to George’s ears as the rooster’s crow in the early morning.

“What do you want with me now woman?” George shouted back. “I got to tend to these animals! Pipe down!”

“Don’t you talk to me in that tone!” Ethel said. “If you can’t talk to me no better than that just don’t talk to me at all!”

“God! If I had only known it was that easy all them years ago!”

“Oh hush up! I’m going into town to visit my sister for a while. For the love of God while I’m gone shut them animals up and clean yourself up before you come in my house. If I see any mud tracked in on my carpet I’ll…”

We’ll spare you the details, but it was unprintable in any respect. This was the daily routine, George and Ethel, and certainly their neighbors, were more than accustomed to it. Every day followed this routine, and the morning of July 8, 1902 started out like any other day. 

The air was warm and still, a light breeze caressed the leaves of the sycamores, and the orange sun started peeking lazily over the hilltops, spreading its light over the dew laden haze of a blue southern morning. George was out early, heading towards the barn, and Ethel was hot on his tracks. She stepped in a pile of horse dung and exclaimed that classic benediction of southern women, “Dammit!”

George ignored her the best he could and kept his gaze fixed intently on the barn, but she eventually caught up to him.

“George! I’ve had it, I’ve had enough!” she shouted.

Only took ya some thirty years,” George said under his breath. He didn’t feel like arguing this early and thought it best to hold back his verbal attacks, or at least say them a little quieter; what she didn’t hear couldn’t hurt her.

“I am ready to sell this place, you hear me?”

Unfortunately I do.”

“We are too old to attend to this place anymore.”

What do you mean we?”

“I want us to go into town and meet with this man, he’s looking for at least 100 acres to build a new factory and he’s offering lots of money.”

Ah like hell.”

“I don’t know why I put up with it this long!”

“You and me both.”

“We should have listened to my daddy, I don’t know why you didn’t take his offer to work at the bank. Why didn’t you listen to my daddy?”

“Yeah where’s your daddy now?”

“But in any event, we’re going to town today and meeting with that man, I’m going inside to get ready so you do whatever you want to do out here. I want you to get me some eggs.”

Already gave you some.”

“I want you to clean up all this dung we got around here.”

“I’ll start with the dung in the dress.”

“I want you to milk the cows and get us some fresh milk.”

You’re lactose intolerant.”

“I can hear you George! Now stop being smart and get ready!”

She turned around and started across the yard towards the back door, being careful to avoid the pile of horse dung this time. George looked after her, took off his glasses and rubbed his eyes.

“God”, he said to himself. “Till death do us part sure is taking a hell of a long time.”

He stepped out of the barn, dragging his boots heavily along the ground, and hanging his head low. 

“ ‘Those who marry will have worldly troubles, and I would spare you that.’ Yeah, I hear you on that one brother.” he said somberly. 

He raised his head and looked up into the sky.

“I know we’re not alone,” he said. “I know you’re out there Lord, now I don’t know what I did thirty years ago, but believe me I’ve paid my dues and I do repent! I’m not asking you for much Lord, I’m just asking you to intervene. Please, I can’t lose my farm, please intervene!”

At that moment, the clear blue sky was enveloped by a wall of thick gray clouds, and the wind picked up. 

“I reckon it’s fixing to rain,” George thought.

Soon, a sound reverberated about the landscape, it sounded as though a twister were barreling towards the farm. George looked all about in a panic, but saw nothing. After a while a light caught his eye, one singular light in the middle of the clouds. Then the light began to blink, and, seemingly, to multiply. Before he could react, the one light had split into two, then three, then four. George stared at the sky in disbelief, his fear froze him in place as though his feet were chained to the soil. A shape then materialized out of the clouds, a round disc-like shape came lower and lower out of the haze, until George was face to face with an aircraft; the origins of which he knew could not have been earth. 

The wind ceased to breathe, the clouds parted, and all was calm again. The ship, with all its blinking lights, sat before George, deeply embedded in the mud, staring at him just as much as he stared at it. George looked up into the sky again.

“So this is how you intervene nowadays isn’t it?”

No sooner did the words escape his lips did another sound begin to emit from the ship. It sounded as though long compressed air was finally being released. The front of the ship began to lower, like the drawbridge of an ancient castle, and white smoke poured out as the door opened wider and wider. George stepped back, and held his hands out in front of his face. From within the ship, three beings soon emerged. They stopped just at the base of the ship and glanced around at the farm. George was again frozen, his bottom lip trembling, and a scream logged deep in his throat. 

The creatures finally stepped out onto the soil, and walked cautiously up to George. They were around three feet in height, with large, bulbous heads the color of rich, green grass. Their eyes were large, almost too large for their faces, and blacker than night itself. You’d almost be tempted to light a match just to see if there was anything at all beneath that darkness. On their small hands were only three fingers, the tips of which were rounded as though they were suction cups. The rest of their bodies were adorned in long garments that reached to the ground covering their feet, and made of colors George had never seen before. Finally, one of the creatures spoke.

“Greetings,” it said in a nasally voice.

“Ahhhhhhh! Oh oh ahhhhhhhh!” George said. 

The creatures recoiled back and made a collective sound similar to that of small beeps.

“Who- who are you?” George said, his voice shaking violently. 

“We come from the planet Puketon,” the leader said.

“You come from where now?” George asked.

“We come from the planet Puketon, outside of your galaxy.”

“Puked-on?” George asked in a puzzled tone.

Then the creatures again made their collective sounds, occasionally interrupted by the words, “Puketon, yes Puketon.”

“Well, what do you want with me?”

“We are here to take you.”

“Take me?”

“Yes yes, take you.”

“We seek earth specimens for our experiments,” one of the other creatures said.

“Well what makes you think I’m a good candidate, don’t you have a map on that there ship? You couldn’t have gone to one of the colleges ‘round here, or the government, you had to come to me?”

“We are here for you, we seek specimen for experiments,” the leader repeated.

“No, no you can’t take me!” George shouted in fear.

“Specimen, specimen, specimen!” the creatures began to say at once while closing in on George.

“Wait! You don’t want me, I’m just an old man you see. You don’t want me, me no good brain, me dumb see,” George said.

The creatures looked at each other.

“Tell you what I’ll do, I’ll find you a much better specimen. How about that?”

“We are listening,” the leader said.

“But where will you find this better specimen?” one of the others asked.

“Geooooooorge! You better be ready by the time I get out there, I want to make this quick!”

George’s face lit up. 

“I know the perfect specimen for ya,” he said. “And here she comes right now.”

“George, who are you talking to out… ahhhhhh!” Ethel said as she walked outside and caught a glimpse of the creatures. 

“Oooooh specimen!” one of the other creatures said.

“What the hell’s going on George?” Ethel said clutching her chest.

“This right here fellas, this is the finest specimen of them all,”.

“What do you mean specimen?” Ethel asked.

“Much better brain than me, me dumb she smart you see.”

“Specimen, specimen, specimen!” the creatures began to circle Ethel.

“Hey hey now you best get away from me!” she shouted. 

“Specimen!”

“George! George do something!”

The creatures grabbed hold of her arms and walked her to the ship with surprising strength.

“George! What’s happening?!”

George couldn’t help but laugh.

“You bring her back in one piece now ya hear!” he called after the creatures.

“George,” Ethel said coldly. “You get these things off me I swear to God!”

George fell to the ground laughing as Ethel was bathed in a pale blue light. She stood there frozen as the ship began to rise into the sky again.

“You’ll be sorry George, you just wait!” she said.

Ethel began to slowly rise off the ground, up towards the ship.

“I’ll be back George!” she called down to him. 

“Alright now what did I have to get done today,” George said, standing back up.

“I’ll be back George! I’ll be baaaaaaaack!”




August 12, 2023 03:51

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