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Funny Science Fiction

"I know this is short notice," Aten said, an apology in his voice and a tremulous smile on his face. He looked up at her from where he knelt on one knee. "And I swear I meant to ask you in a way that had all the fanfare you deserve, but I can't wait one more night." He pulled a small box from the pocket of his coat. "Lindy, will you marry me?"

Lindy gasped. She was not expecting the sudden proposal but when he went down on one knee, what else could it be? By the mixed emotions of her family, no one expected this when her boyfriend barged into the middle of their family dinner. Her sister was thrilled. Her mother was crying - from joy or sorrow, Lindy couldn't tell. Her father looked like he was ready to throw Aten out the window. "I can't believe this," she whispered. "Yes!" 

"Yes?" Aten echoed. A smile burst across his face as he lept to gather her in his arms. "Yes!"

"Congratulations Lindy!" Lyra hooted. She casually moved in front of their father before he could act on some less than gentlemanly impulses. 

Her mother squealed and lept out of her chair with a lack of grace, bumping into the table and causing the good plates to clink. "We're planning a wedding!" She wrapped her arms around her daughter.

"Not tonight we're not," her father groused. He remained in his seat with his arms crossed tight over his chest. He wore a frown though Lindy suspected it was a permanent one from long before she and her sister were ever a thought. 

"Of course." Aten stepped back to allow Lindy's mother and sister to cling to her. "Tonight's about family."

"Welcome to the family," her mother said with a giddy laugh. She clapped her hands and then hugged Aten. "This is so exciting!" 

Lindy hugged her mother next. "Thank you, mom." She gave a pointed look to her father. 

"Yes," Aten enthused. "Thank you."

"Let's sit," Lyra suggested. She picked her chair off the floor from where she knocked it during her drastic leap of celebration. "I want to make a toast! And I am already putting in my request to be maid of honor."

"No alcohol!" Her father barked. Her father was strict when it came to drinking. He wouldn’t even use cooking wine. Though Lindy had a hard time thinking of what her father wasn’t strict about, even outside of the kitchen. 

"Dad," Lindy complained. "Can you just be happy for us? For tonight?"

"He interrupted family dinner," her father complained right back. He glared at Aten, arms crossed solidly across his chest. He flicked his eyes at the finely set table. A large bowl of pasta sat in the middle with generous helpings of meatballs and a light dusting of parmesan cheese. Next to it was a crystal bowl filled with lettuce, cheese, radishes, and cucumbers in an Italian dressing. 

"I'm sorry, sir, I just..."

"I know," her father huffed. Lindy couldn’t make out the grumbled words that followed. Finally, he sighed. "I was in your shoes once." He held up a finger. "I'll let it go tonight."

"Howard," her mother scolded. "He is family now." She swatted her husband on the arm. “He should join us for dinner and we celebrate. I’m so glad I made a cake for tonight! And Howard, you made more than enough pasta.” 

"Mary," Howard muttered but didn’t argue. 

"Thank you very much," Aten said, scooting past as quickly as possible. He hovered by an empty chair at the table. The glares of his future father-in-law kept him from actually sitting.

A loud siren caught them all off guard. "What is that?" Lindy asked. She grasped the top of the chair with a nervous hand. "Is that…” She peered out the window. “Is there a tornado?" The sky was clear and sunny. Rain wasn’t even in the forecast for the day. 

"Could it be a warning?" Lyra asked as she fished her phone out of her pocket. "There's nothing on the weather service."

Lindy went to the window. She peered closer when a large dark object came into view. A flashing light shone along the streets, nearly blinding her when she looked. "Do you see that?" She pointed.

Her mother came up next to her. "It looks like ..." She stared at the large shape in the sky and nodded. "It's a weather blimp." Her words came out with the such assurance that Lindy almost believed her. 

"A what?" Aten ran to the window. Anxiety radiated off him in waves. His eyes widened when he saw the blimp. "They shouldn't be here."

"That doesn't look like a blimp..." Lindy frowned and then looked at Aten. His words registered in her mind and it only made her more confused. "What did you say?"

"What?" Aten squeaked. He cleared his throat. "I mean, what?"

"That's the same thing," Lyra pointed out.

"You said they." Lindy pointed at the dark object. "Who are they?"

"Can we talk in private?" Aten asked. "Just for a minute?"

He gestured for her to follow him. Lindy crossed her arms.  "Why are we talking privately? This is starting to feel like something out of The X Files or Roswell."

"Because this is not at all how I wanted you to find out." Aten fired off the words as if there was a time limit if he stopped to breathe Lindy would leave him. And she might. He was reluctant to admit the truth, especially with the glare from Lindy’s father who already didn’t like him. This would surely put the man over the edge. "My family's in."

"I'm sorry, what?" Lindy asked, blinking at him. 

"They snuck up on me," Aten continued. "Literally. I set their ships to ping me, but did I get a ping? No."

"What?" Lindy said, louder, catching the attention of her family who turned to listen in on their exchange. "Are you saying that your family is here on spaceships?" 

"Yeah," Aten offered her wobbly grin. "I'm an alien."

September 07, 2022 04:47

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1 comment

Corey Melin
17:08 Sep 14, 2022

Good natured read. The father reminded me of mine. The twist at the end was good


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