Nightmares|Bruhad Dave

Bruhad Dave

Simon was in the CIA. But his job was even more secretive than what was usual for the Agency. He was their inside man in Area 51. The fabled, and much fictionalised zone where aliens were supposedly studied by the government, was where Simon spent his days working his fingers off. He was a record-keeper with the highest level security clearance, meaning that he could note all observations and occurrences without exceptions. He was standing inside the security perimeter looking at the Cryo building. It was low and square, and inside, in special cryogenic chambers, the 4 dead aliens were preserved.-54 degrees was found to be perfect for the job. Simon walked in. There was no one around. Suddenly, as if on orders, he jerked his head in the direction of the chambers, and a moment later, he walked up to the sealed door, pulled on a sky blue cryo-suit and entered, swiping his clearance in front of the sensor. It beeped, the red light turned green, and the seal opened with a soft squelch. He entered, and the door glided closed behind him. Still as if following orders, he pulled up one of two insulated plastic chairs, and sat down, contemplating the thing in front of him. It was remarkably human like, but it was all red, its skin crimson. Doctors had found a high amount of iron oxides instead of melanin in the skin. Its hair, or rather tentacles sprouting from the head were jet black : high carbon content was responsible. Its vascular fluid was dark crimson, with something similar to haemoglobin detected in it.

As Simon sat recalling all these details from the initial autopsy, the lights suddenly went out and the emergency halogen flashed on dimly. All at once several things happened; Simon fell backward off his seat, the equipment table with all the surgical equipment went flying, and there was a jerk of movement from the corner where the dead creature lay. Slowly, he picked himself up, rubbing his elbow where his suit had torn, and approached the corpse. In the dark, he could see a movement under its closed eyelids. What he had spied as he fell was the movement of the thing’s arm, upward, away from its side, onto its sinewy torso. A scalpel lay on its front, embedded in the anomalously raised hand. It seemed to have moved its arm to protect its chest from the falling knife, knocked into the air by the overturning of the equipment table. The tough skin on the back of its hand had protected it. He could feel the cold seeping in through the rip at his elbow. As he leaned closer to the alien, he saw that it seemed to be dreaming; in fact, it seemed to be having a nightmare: its eyes were moving wildly under the crimson lids. It also seemed to be twitching, and it seemed to be very alive. At this point, he was very close to the alien’s face, when suddenly he jumped as he heard a thudding noise. His foot came down, on a thick roll of gauze, and he slipped. He was on his way down, when he stopped in mid air with a jerk. The alien’s arm had moved again and prevented his fall. This had stopped him from impaling himself on the pile of surgical instruments, many of which were quite sharp. The thudding had been the support staff, who had detected the heat from Simon’s slashed cryo-suit from inside the Cryo. They had obviously read the heat spike his torn suit had caused. They had come to rescue whoever it was from inside. Simon was badly shaken.

Later on, when the corpse of the alien had been moved to a cryo-tube, he approached. “Guess I should thank you,” he whispered. To his great horror, a hoarse voice replied, “You guess correctly, alien.” The thing raised his arm and slapped it against the wall surrounding it.

Simon awoke with a jerk. “What is it?” came from the other side of the bed. He had clearly woken his wife. He told her his nightmare. Still half asleep, she concluded her minute-long convalescent speech with, “You should resign Simon, this work at Area 53 or whatever it is, is getting to you. And anyway, Martians don’t exist; where the government cooks up stuff like this, only God knows. ” Simon privately agreed about the resigning.

The next morning, after driving past the security checkpoint, he parked his car in the lot, and went over to the office. As he walked by all the buildings, he noticed how empty all of them were. On the way, he passed the mess, which, contrary to the name, was still spotlessly clean. He heard a loud silence, emanating through the doors and windows. He decided to peep in to see just what was going on. And what he saw inside made him stumble back out of the room. He cautiously poked his head in a second time, and sure enough, the room was full of red aliens, rather than people. What was more, all these aliens were in human clothing, and none of them was moving a muscle, all slumped onto their tables. He rushed back out, and raced into the site manager’s office, more eager to resign now than he had been before. Thankfully, the SM was still human, but he was deathly pale. “ I’m resigning,” said Simon, and he pulled off his ID Card and threw it onto the SM’s desk. “You can’t leave. You are the only one left………Not infected…” the SM croaked in what was most definitely not his normal voice. His face was growing red now, rather than white. Suddenly he sprang up and grabbed Simon’s wrist. “You must not leave!” he hissed and as he did he began morphing into an alien too. Within minutes the transformation was complete. As soon as he turned all alien, the SM slumped into his chair and Simon nearly had to break his fingers to release himself. Just as Simon succeeded in pulling off the last of the six fingers, the SM jumped up again and in his normal voice, in a tone of considerable fear, he said, “Save yourself!!

At this, Simon woke up with a start. “What is it?” came from the other side of the bed. He had clearly woken his wife. He told her his nightmare. Still half asleep, she concluded her minute-long convalescent speech with, “You should resign Simon, this work at Area 53 or whatever it is, is getting to you. And anyway, Martians don’t exist; where the government cooks up stuff like this, only god knows. ” Simon privately agreed about the resigning.

The next morning, Simon went up past the security checkpoint and parked his car in the lot. The Tharsis spread in front of him, all around the security perimeter. The sheer number of volcanoes in the vicinity made it safe from prying eyes and the shade of the Olympus Mons made the facility itself safe. As Simon walked into the main complex, he was greeted by an unnatural silence. As he walked by all the buildings, he noticed how empty all of them were. On the way, he passed the mess, which, contrary to the name, was still spotlessly clean. He heard a loud silence, emanating through the doors and windows. He decided to peep in to see just what was going on. And what he saw inside made him stumble back out of the room. He cautiously poked his head in a second time, and sure enough, the room was full of white aliens, rather than people. When he reached the site manager’s office he opened the door apprehensively. But the site manager was still normal. “I’m resigning,” said Simon, and he pulled off his ID Card and threw it onto the S.M.’s desk. “But you can’t, you are the only one left, not infected by that…..that…” the SM’s voice had changed drastically. And he himself was changing, becoming smaller, whiter, turning into an alien. The SM slumped back onto his chair, unmoving, eyes closed. Then suddenly they opened and Simon stared into their unnatural hazel pupils for precisely 3 seconds before screaming.

At this, Simon woke up with a start. “What is it?” came from the other side of the bed. He had clearly woken his wife. He told her his nightmare. Still half asleep, she concluded her minute-long convalescent speech with, “You should resign Simon, this work at Area 53 or whatever it is, is getting to you. And anyway, Earthlings don’t exist; where the government cooks up stuff like this, only god knows. ” Simon privately agreed about the resigning. He took his wife’s hand in his, admiring the smooth red skin of her palm. It was nearly morning. He got up and went down to the kitchen. Soon he had brushed his teeth and was sitting down to a cup of tea at his kitchen table looking over the rolling hills on one side and the rolling plains on the other side. His wife was right, he thought. There was no life on Earth and what he saw at work was only an elaborate prop. He put it out of his mind, and leaned back in his chair, concentrating on his own planet, looking out onto the beautiful scenery. Mars is so beautiful, he thought.

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