By the Barn

by J. Brundage © 2002

When I looked out the window, I nearly soiled my britches. There were two of them, over near the big tree by the barn. They were short, bug-eyed, freakish things. They had yellow green skin stretched taut and shiny like apples. They moved like chickens, even scratching the ground with their rake like toes.

I grabbed my shotgun from the table where I had just finished cleaning it, and went back to the window, crouched down. It was a really windy day, but that didn't seem to bother them at all. They kept standing there, doing their freaky alien chicken-scratching thing. I didn't see a spaceship; it was probably behind the barn if anywhere. Maybe they beamed down or something. I just didn't want them here. They chattered shrilly, and I tried to imagine what they were saying.

The brighter green one said, "I'm bored, there's nothing here but open space."

The one with more toes replied, "Yeah, but we're used to space. Isn't there somewhere to get food, or do research on this planet?"

"Nope. If we try to go anywhere populous, someone may try to kill us."

"Oh. Yeah. Huh. So. what do you want to do?"

"I dunno, how about you?"

"It doesn't matter, but food sounds good."

"Mmmm, okay. They got anything to eat around here?"

"Maybe, we could just take a few bites out of everything until we find something good."

"Great, sounds like a plan to me."

I saw them stop talking, and start moving around, nibbling at the side of the barn, the tree, and dandelions. It made me really nervous. They appeared to be working their way over here. I thought fast, and ran to the kitchen. I piled a couple of plastic trays full of bread, cheese, fruit, peanut butter, vitamin pills, and leftover casserole. I quickly shoved them through the doggie door, and then bolted it. My heard was pounding, and I hoped that they couldn't hear it.

The kept nibbling here and there at various and sundry things on the ground outside, until they saw the trays. They chattered enthusiastically, and produced some strange metal containers, then filling them with most of the food. They buried the vitamin pills, and then ate the trays. They chattered even more enthusiastically, and ran off.

I can't say I was happy that they ate my good plastic trays, those were for company. but upon further thought, I guess they were company.

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