“Who do I call?!” screamed a terrified female voice from behind the closed office door.
“Call the Men in Black!” I shout sarcastically towards Dee as I throw chocolate donuts at the approaching purple tentacles flailing around the kitchen knocking bowls and pans off the shelves. “Call the Ghostbusters!” I chuckle manically over the clatter of metal as I fend off this killer alien and hear her sobbing on the other side of the door:
“B-be serious Sam!”
Had I not been beating back a tentacle intent on throttling me, I would have thrown up my hands in frustration. “Why don’t you call Oprah and see-” I began sarcastically before a tentacle darted past my jabbing kitchen knife and wrapped itself tightly around my throat. Hacking at the slimy purple appendage, the sharpened knife broke through the flesh and the stink of rotten cabbage came out. Gratefully willing air back into my starved lungs, I gasped and choked as I barely managed to stay standing against the onslaught of flying tentacles and the burn around my throat from where the last tentacle had gripped. “CALL THE COPS!” I positively scream as I back against the door, all thought of domestic mockery aside.
All of this because my wife wanted to let in a customer after we had closed for the night.
It had been a boring night at the bakery not fifteen minutes ago as I had waited sitting in a chair by the computer for Dee to finish closing the registers so we could go home. Stifling a yawn, I reached into my pocket to check my phone for the time when I hear the sound of a fist pounding on the door. 9:09 P.M… Sorry I’m not sorry buddy we’re closed. The pounding continued and my wife’s face appeared around the corner, speaking as she came, “Honey will you please open the door and see what that guy needs he seems really insistent.”
Cursing under my breath, I grabbed the keys from her and opened the door to go out into the dining room. I walked to the door and sized up the guy who was even still rapping repeatedly on the glass door in an extremely annoying tap-tap-tap-tapping that suddenly made me sympathize with goldfish.
Customers who try to come in after a business closes fall into only two categories: either they are lost or know exactly what they want. This guy was somehow a little bit of both. He looked normal enough on first glance. A young man wearing a red slim polo shirt and a pair of khakis he looked as if he could have just gotten off of a shift at Target.
As soon as I opened the door he positively shouted at me in a high pitched very hysterical voice, “DOYOUHAVEEVERYTHANGBAGALFATEOFSPECIESDEPENDSONYOU.”
I stared at his strange violet colored eyes for a second before responding, “Errr… what?”
He smacked himself in the head three times as a horse swishes its tail to brush away flies and repeated in an understandable but still hasty manner, “DO-YOU-HAVE-EVERY-THANG-BA-GAL?! MY-PEOPLE-WILL-DIE-WITHOUT-THE-BAGEL’S-WISHES.”
This guy really is nuts I think to myself but instead say out loud, “I’m sorry sir but we’re closed now and no more bagels left for the day. We will have some in the morning we open back up at 6 A.M.”
Backing up so as to shut and re lock the door, he stuck a hand out to catch and hold the door to prevent me from shutting it. Panicking slightly now at his nerve, I make to shove the door so I can just lock this crazy guy out but he suddenly displayed remarkable strength I wasn’t expecting in such a small looking man and shoves the door open with ease.
“Hey we’re closed!” I protested loudly as I tried to shove him back out of the door. He pushed me aside with a lazy flick of his hand and I stumbled against a table, knocking over a chair which echoed loudly in the suddenly silent store. Striding around the bakery looking incessantly the man spoke all the while, occasionally bathing us in the glare of those unnatural violet eyes.
“TOMORROW IS UNACCEPTABLE. OUR PLANET RAPIDLY RUNS OUT OF BREATHABLE AIR AND WE REQUIRE DEVICES TO RECYCLE ALL OF OUR POLLUTION OTHERWISE EVERYONE ON MY HOME PLANET WILL DIE. YOU HAVE THE EARTH’S BEST ‘EVERY-THANG BA-GAL’. YOUR LORE INDICATES THAT IF WE RUB THIS BA-GAL THEN A GENIE WILL COME OUT AND GRANT US THREE WISHES. THEN I WILL USE THE OTHER TWO WISHES TO GET MORE OF THESE ‘EVERY-THANG BA-GALS’.”
He finished this speech leaning over the empty glass display case cover. He sniffed the air twice with two long measured breaths and then turned to me with narrowed eyes and dilated pupils the size of quarters, “I CAN SMELL IT.” Fear coursed through my body as I watched this strange creature stalk slowly towards me.
Suddenly fearing for more than my own safety as I realized Dee was still in the restaurant with us, I screamed out warning her, “Run!!” She came sprinting in the wrong direction towards me to try to save me. Reaching an arm over the counter to grasp my arm she glared menacingly at the ominous figure crouched like a tiger on all fours as if to pounce upon me.
Then, quite unlike any tiger on Earth, it began to shed its skin with an unnatural shudder through its body. This was no man, some otherworldly creature of constantly moving purple tentacles with no visible head or torso emerged from the meat suit it had used to live among us for who knows how long. I sat there gaping with my mouth open as my mind struggled to catch up to my eyes and make sense of this unearthly creature. This wasn’t a movie or one of my son’s video games, the hot slime that flicked off the tentacles as the alien drew near me was very real; It was acidic enough to begin sizzling where it landed wafting the acrid smell of burning chemicals to my nose.
Suddenly the danger I was facing made my adrenaline fire as the tentacles came within feet of my feet. I started scooting backwards and sprang to my feet, almost slipping as the purple acid had begun to eat away at the bottom of my sneakers from when I had sat dazed. I sprinted to the back of the store with Dee in front of me and this creature seemingly released from the depths of Tartarus in hot pursuit.
So that’s how I had found myself backed into a corner fending off the creature as it made to get past me and the flimsy wooden door that shielded my wife. Threatening to be overwhelmed by the mass of flailing tentacles, I spun the key in the lock wrenched the door open and closed and locked it. Panting as I looked to my wife, I exchanged a look in which I tried to convey that this might be our last moment together and how much I loved her. She held my gaze in hers for a second before closing her eyes and grasping my hand as she had apparently run out of terror and wanted to leave this world with grace. Except the end for us wasn’t in that small office. We waited cowering against the far wall for many hopeless minutes before I realized that the monster wasn’t going to come and finish us off.
Examining the damage told us that it had rampaged throughout the rest of the kitchen and destroyed most of it in its frantic search for the bagels. The alien had apparently found the bag of day old bagels in the walk in fridge leaving behind only a scattering of poppy seeds and onion in its place.
To this day the rest of my family agree with the paramedics who arrived and said that it was a very strange gas leak and explosion that had caused me and my wife to hallucinate the scene straight out of a 20th century horror movie we both remembered as happening exactly the same with perfect clarity. My wife and I will always know the truth. Somewhere out there in another part of the universe speeds the lone member of a species, desperately doing all in it’s power to save it’s race.