Just for a Mere Validation
"You look so old!" "You have wrinkles!"
"Try plastic surgery!"
—Was what they said.
She didn't hate her face,
But if others thought so,
It must be right.
The cost, however,
Was too much for her.
Until she found
A shady leaflet.
And her happiness knew no bounds!
Using her savings,
The operation started,
Being the most beautiful
Now couldn't be thwarted!
—Was what she thought.
But mistakes were made.
"Oh my! How?" "Your face is so..."
"Who told you to do this?"
—Was what they said.
Now she hated her face,
And others thought so too.
- - - - - - - - - - -
Let's not let the society decide,
Let's not be ashamed and hide,
Let's not give in to peer pressure,
Let's think for us, not others' pleasure.
As long as we love ourselves,
That's all that matters.
Area 51: The Real Truth.
I snuck around the premesis of the building, pressing my body to the hard concrete. I glanced at the large “51” painted in white on the building, making sure I was in the right place. The fact that I had gotten onto the premesis was a miracle in itself; that’s a story for another time. I was staying on the opposite side of the building that the guard was on. I grasped the door handle; locked again. I grinned as I grasped the key card in my back pocket. I flipped it out and unlocked it. I had gotten it from a guard I had... in short, wounded. It involved an extremely large book and the fact that the gard was asleep.
Really, people seem to think that the security here is much better than it really is. The keypad glowed green and beeped loudly. I froze, making sure no one had heard it. I heard no running footsteps, shouting. I tentatively opened the door and scanned the area. It seemed okay. No booby traps in sight, although hiding is what they’re good at. I took a step forard, then another.
Soon, I was walking swiftly through the pristine hallways. Most of the rooms were empty. I guess they haven’t found as much as people believe, I thought to myself.
My footsteps were the only sound to be heard as I walked through the empty halls. Finally, in Hallway 17D, it got interesting. I poked my head into several different labs, finding ne discoveries in each one. The first one had millions of test tubes, each filled with a different colored goo. All of the slimes were glowing flourcent colors. I wanted to touch one so badly, but I saw a sign next to all of the test tubes. It read: DO NOT TOUCH! Toxins may be fatal. DO NOT TOUCH! I decided to obey the sign. I backed out the door, shutting it softly behind me.
The next room contained a collection of stun guns, tranquelizer darts, and tazers. a chill ran down my spine. I would not want to be the subject of their fury.
I moved on from that room quickly. I followed the hall to the next door. This one had a number of cages and terrariums. This is it, I thought, this is where I figure out what is really in Area 51. I walked silently inside, pressing my face against the glass of one of the terrariums. I couldn’t see anything through the darkness, except for a few specks of flourescent blue goop. I studied the terrarium itself carefully. The top had a small looking glass on top. I put my eye to it and gasped.
The blue was not goop at all. There were tiny creatures milling around in the little blue specks, which were, in fact, homes or villaiges for them. I pulled back, fascinated, and walked to the next cage.
I would call what I saw a bird... but not. It had the build of a bird, but it was flourescent purple. When it opened it’s eyes, I saw that it had black pupils and irises, and where the whites of its eye should’ve been was red. Not like I went to bed too late for the past two months, more like I’m evil and most likely posessed. It cocked its head at me, movements too quick and robotic.
Out of nowhere, it jumped accross the cage at my face. I leapt backwards, startled. Instead of sqwaking, it let out a loud alarm-like bleeping. I plugged my ears with my fingers and sprinted out to the hallway. Most likely alerted by the bird’s noise, I could hear footsteps and raised voices, all getting closer. I ran in the opposite direction, following the glowing EXIT signs.
I burst out of the last set of doors, and ran off of the grounds. I had seen a lot, but still, most of Area 51 remained a mystery.
We hadn’t visited my grandparents house in three years. They live by a huge lake surrounded by a thick lush forest. My parents used to drop my brother and I off there every summer. It was our home away from home.
My brother and I had returned just last night. My grandmother welcomed us with open arms. The smell of her lavender hair and warm hug brought back so many good memories. She had her summer lemon cookies wrapped up nicely on the kitchen table in the blue cellophane she always uses. It was late when we arrived. Midnight. We could tell she was tired, but she always waited up for us. We were just as exhausted from the drive. Both my brother and I headed up the stairs to our rooms. We listened as my grandmother made her way to her bedroom and settled in. No sooner I hit the sheets, I was snoring.
Tiny bird voices singing and a warm soft streak of sunlight that snuck through the blinds woke me up this morning. It was early. I could feel it. I reached for my phone. It was 5:30 am. I rarely get up this early, but I had too much on my mind. I decided to get up. If I take my walk now, before breakfast, I’ll be able to take it alone. I hopped up, grabbed my scrunched jeans that laid in a heap on the floor and reached for my t-shirt. Quietly, I tiptoed down the stairs and slipped out the back door.
I could feel them coming on, but I held it in. I started to reach the edge of the woods. I took a deep breath and continued on my journey. There they were. The circle of stones.
My grandmother had talked bout how beautiful it was, but I just didn’t have the strength to see it until now. The circle of stones was surrounded by serendipitous plants full of flowers. It was like its own secret special place and that’s what my grandfather would have wanted. I’m so glad she chose this serene place for his ashes. I sat there for a long time reminiscing in my head. I pulled one hand out of my pocket and wiped the tears off my face. I took a deep breath and took one last look. It was time to head back. I’m not sure if I’ll come back to the stones again. It’s too hard.
I made it back to the house. Everyone was awake and, in the kitchen, talking and laughing. My brother could see it in my face, but he shrugged it off. I pulled up a chair. My grandmother gracefully touched my back and said she had just the thing. She poured me a glass of her fresh market milk that we loved so much. I took a huge bite out of my first lemon cookie and smiled. This was still one of my favorite places in the entire world.
“Come here. Take a look at this.”
“Ugh, hold on one second,” Jenny said as she put down her small blue hand shovel.
She loved that shovel. She had been in the middle of repotting a tiny Ming her and her husband just purchased. The Ming looked like a small tiny pine tree with fluffy green spines spurting out all over. Her and her husband Lou retired just about three months ago now and they had become avid gardeners. Jenny rearranged her area and slowly started to get up. She can’t move as fast as she used. Everything seemed to creek and crack now as she moved about. Placing her hand underneath her, up she went, straightened her back, stretched her legs and headed towards her husband. She had been sitting up on their patio underneath the shade of a large willow tree that filled one side of the house. They considered their patio to be their oasis. Its floor was flush with brick red pavers laid in shapes of diamonds and rectangles. It was now overflowing with lush green plants and blooming flowers too. She shuffled around their fire pit and head out into the yard to where her husband Lou was kneeling down. He had been at the back of their property snipping and tweezing some of their show bushes.
As she got closer she noticed something new below bushes. Lou gave her an odd look and gesture.
“Jenny, do you see what I’m seeing?”
She felt her body stiffen, like she had been hit with a stun gun.
“Lou, what is that?”
The shadow below the bush covered a small, what seemed to be, community. They looked like Polly Pocket house’s made out of dirt, grass, twigs and rubbish. Jenny thought out loud, “you think this is just some kid’s thing? It looks so unusual though, like something lives there.”
Lou picked up a small stick beside his left foot.
“What are you doing? Don’t mess with it! It might be some neighborhood kids’ thing. Just leave it. Come help me up by the patio.”
“Shhhhh,” he said.
“AAAAAARRRGHHHHHhhhhhhhhhh ooohhhhhhhhhhhh,” they heard, in a loud whisper.
Both of their mouths dropped as they looked at each other. It was a tiny little yellow looking human that could have been mixed with a gecko and cat running towards them. It had miniature cat ears and a lengthy reptile tail with small hands and feet. It had a tiny white t-shirt on too, no pants.
Although neither of them had any idea what this thing was, they didn’t feel nervous or scared.
“Hello?” said Lou.
They could both tell the little things’ mouth was moving but they couldn’t make anything out. Jenny nudge Lou with her elbow and nodded her head. Lou lowered his hand to the small creature motioning it to climb on.
The creature gave a nod and proceeded to head into Lou’s hand. Once the creature had seemed to settle in and sit securely, Lou began to lift his hand from the ground. As the creature got closer into both Jenny and Lou’s vision they could distinguish more details. It had bright yellow colored skin and short orangish red spikey hair. Its skin seemed scaly but soft thin feathers wisped in the breeze, almost unnoticeable. Its eyes were big and round, like puppy dog eyes.
As the creature hit eye level, it moved its tiny hands towards its mouth, as if to shout.
“HI, I’M TONY!”
A new species has emerged from the ruins of the old war.
They are like nothing I have ever encountered in my whole career as a zoologist.
We named them the Raan after the strange moaning roar they are capable of producing, and some imbeciles mockingly call them Pan, in reference to their strange flat bodies. They really are fantastic creatures, but I am unsure whether or not to call them animals as many do, because of the close contact I have had with the Rann. I have learned since being assigned to the research team, that they are an incredibly intelligent species and amazingly innovative as well!
Unfortunatly many who are unaccustomed to the strange sight of Rann’s flat crablike body, are disgusted by the creatures, especially by the very un-crab like sight of their hundreds of millipede like legs and almost humanoid heads that crane like a turtles from beneath their rust colored shells, and peer about with three pairs of intelligent pupil-less eyes.
I have tried, and astronomically failed, to convince people that they are harmless creatures who only eat by absorbing energy from the nutrient rich mosses and plants that grow up like small gardens from their cracked sells, but humanity is slow to change. Many fear that these strange creatures that we found six years ago, crawling through the radioactive Atlantic dust sea, are invaders or brutal killers. Many band together and cry out in the streets of the metropolises, demanding the extermination of the Rann. I walk sadly up to a Rann who I had nicknamed Flore because of her shell-garden of tiny flowers. She was the youngest Rann in the research base, and had taken a peculiar liking to me. I couldn't help smiling as she lightly skittered her six foot two ton body over to my side and bopped me affectionately with her forehead, while happily blinking her six black eyes down at my face.
“I hope people will see sense and leave you and your kind be” I muttered as I patted her smooth copper head.
Flore let out a mournfully cry, and nudged at my hair, still keening the typical Raaaaraa sounds of her species. “Don’t worry” I soothed giving her another pat. “I wont let anyone take you away...ever.”
After Humans (an excerpt from a short story)
The group spun through space to land in the middle of an overgrown city.
Futuristic buildings of super-light alloys were bent and twisted with signs of war. Their walls were still gleaming and immaculate, despite the grass and moss that snaked up them.
Stain and rust-proof, Bailey guessed. She was studying structural changes of metal on a molecular level. To design new alloys with precise characteristics. Down to the last atom.
Although it looked abandoned, the city was far from empty.
Giant rats scurried through their feet, darting in and out of holes in broken, black concrete. They travelled in packs that would break into mini squeaking wars.
Bailey noticed slight differences in the body-types. Some were longer and leaner, with the first hints of long legs showing from their furry bodes. Others, had broader heads and teeth that looked halfway to being fangs. “The rats are evolving.”
“Well spotted,” said Gazelle. "The only animals left, are the ones that thrived under human conditions.”
The air was thick with insects, too, which, thankfully, buzzed right through the group without a clue they were there, unable to see or bite them.
There were swarms of giant mosquitoes and iridescent flies.
A strange kind of insect that looked like a cross between a wasp and a dragonfly, buzzed around feasting on other insects. They had long bodies and wings like dragonflies, but the yellow and black stripes and distinctive stingers of a wasp.
“Dragon wasps,” Gazelle said, when she caught Bailey watching them. “When plants became scarce, wasps grew longer bodies and wings, to travel longer distances between pollinations. Then they developed a taste for the live smorgasbord that exploded to life.”
She must have meant the millions of bugs swarming the air. So thick, it was like a living black mist.
Above the clouds of insects, giant crows floated with wingspans as wide as falcons, diving into the swarms to scoop up great mouthfuls with long, flattened beaks.
“Fascinating,” said Ranger Pat. “Life goes on.”
“As it always does on earth. Empires rise and fall. Species rise and fall. They all think they’re immortal when they’re at the top. By the time they realize they’re not, it’s already too late.”
“Every time?” said Swift.
"A new species has been discovered and it's... different."
"Different, is what manner?"
"Well, Mr. President..." The scientist lowered her voice so that it, the creature in the cage behind them, couldn't hear. "We haven't been studying it... It has been studying us."
The POTUS snorted. "Damn right it is. I'll see that for myself..."
And with that, he pushed the Area 51 workers aside and made his way to the glass prison it was trapped in. The Prez's bodyguards stayed close beside him, despite him having waved them off.
The animal, alien, or whatever it was looked like a ever-changing cloud of colors and sounds, and turned its many eyes to the people approaching its cage.
"Hello, Kevin Thompson, 50th President of the United States." It floated up to level with the commander's head.
"How did you know my name?" He asked, the same questions the scientists had earlier. "And how can you speak?"
"Well, you're currently wearing a name tag, so the first question was quite obvious... but I could have used my abilities anyway for that, as I had to learn your silly tongues... do you know what I am called?"
"Wait, don't--" One of the workers yelled as Thompson replied with "no".
The noise that this being made next was similar to that of silverware scraping a plate and nails running across a chalkboard. The guards pointed their guns at the cage as everyone else doubled over.
"The rough translation of that to your language would be 'the Observer'." A mouth materialized in the vivid cloud, smiling toothily. This provoked more swears and shuddering from the room.
"I am the last of my species, from a planet in the Andromeda galaxy that was engulfed in a supernova. I have come hear seeking a new home, collecting information about this world before deciding to blend in."
"Blend in?" The president prompted.
At this, the Observer grew larger, filling the entire glass casing with shapes and bright lights. The scientists immediately began taking photos and notes as the cloud shifted within the cage. More horrible sounds, like those of bones cracking, made Thompson cover his ears and look away from the container.
He didn't look back until silence filled the room and the scientists stared at the cage with wide eyes.
There, where the colorful mass had once been, was a person. They wore a sweater with a 'little green men' alien on it and jeans, and beneath the hoodie was a young face with brown skin and hair.
"As to quote one of your famous philosophers..." Their voice, with the rest of their appearence, could only be described as neutral. "Behold, a man!"
As the Observer said this, another scientist burst into the room, face drenched in sweat. "The DNA samples changed," he said. "They resemble that of a human's, with intersexual chromosomes that we've never..." At the sight of what, or who, was in the cage, he collapsed to the ground, the test results still in his shaking hands.
"I've been waiting for you to meet me before transforming, Mr. President." The Observer stalked their cage, gazing at Thompson with nonexpressive eyes. "So now that you're here, I have something to ask you..."
"Wha... what is it?" The guards lifted their weapons once more to the Prez's anxious tone.
The Observer put their face so close to the glass that everyone near it was afraid that they could go through it.
"I was wondering if I could complete the process of becoming a US citizen? I know I'm a, you know, illegal alien and all... but I think I'm exactly what this country needs right now." They produced a business card from their pocket, holding it against the glass. "We can keep in touch, since I know I'm a totally different species from what the men below you usually deal with. That's all!"
"...Uh huh... erm, we'll consider it." Thompson muttered, writing down the info and making his way out of the lab. As he walked out, he glanced at each of the scientists, exchanging a "good luck with that" look with them.
"Hey, I observed that!" He heard that strange discovery holler on his way out of the base.