She's awakened by a swatch of light slashing her eyes. Half-blinded
she caresses her face, trying to brush it away. But then she sees
the alien figure framed in the doorway. A dark robe surrounds its
body which is bathed in the light, and she thinks, "Me, I'm the first contact
for this thing."
The figure moves toward the bed, slowly, and she wonders at its feet
hidden in dark covering like its body. She imagines the cloven hooves,
and the thought "Dark angel, emissary of the beast" brushes her mind like
a misshapen thing alighting on her shoulder. She fears to look at
its face, not with the memory of gargoyles leering down at her last summer.
She sighs and wishes the figure would go away or speak, not just stand
there. Perhaps the figure is waiting for her greeting. But heavens, most
aliens possess the power to read minds. But, as she says nothing,
this idiotic being, as she has begun to consider it, retreats to the shadow
lurking between the armoire and the door.
Finally It says, "any chance of getting breakfast," and she starts giggling.
From her reading, she hadn't supposed aliens ate. She
says, "Bacon andEggs," slowly, hoping it will understand the strange
syllables as meaning nourishment of some sort. As she wanders into the
kitchen, taking out pans and cartons, she wonders, "how stupid of its creator,
sending it out so ill-equipped without basic skills or knowledge.
Almost she feels it should be not a separate figure, but a symbiote
cared for a host. Oh well, she is its host now, or hostess.
She is grateful it stays in the bedroom and does not watch her motions.
She fears its touch, although in imagination she welcomes it.
Without another word uttered, the alien figure seems to know
that the food is ready. She hears its tread coming nearer and nearer
and she rushes from the kitchen unwilling to learn where it will place
the food. Her heart thrusts and beats in an arousal of fear.
Safely back in the bedroom, she closes the door and shoves a chair
across the knob. Then undoes her work. She knows aliens have
strength beyond our largest muscles. She cannot bear watching the
lovely carved door falling in splinters.
Footsteps again, this time in the hall. And yes, yes, she almost
weeps in exhalation. The steps go slowly toward the door, not her
beautiful bedroom portal, but the larger ebony one that leads to the unknown
outside world. Let it bother someone else. Let them have the joy
of contact with this being.
She hears the harsh slam of a metallic door and turns away smiling.
She has her own tasks to accomplish and must don her own robes for them.
She opens the closet door, rapt in contemplation of what she may choose
to wear. On the brink of her consciousness, the whir of the
mechanism propelling its vehicle fades. She begins to hum happily
and hopes now she and her husband have made up their quarrel.
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