The Astronaut Part 2
The Astronaut Part 27 mins 124 7 mins 124
"How are you Dagger?"
I stood by her bed looking at my young understudy. It has been a week since Tiago, the Gliesian at large, had left her barely clinging on to life. It was my fault, if I hadn't trusted the fiend, this would never have happened.
"I am fine Monsieur Scimitar". She looked away from me and fixed her gaze on a small mirror. She has grown so pale.
"I am sorry to put you through all of this. If it weren't for me...."
"It's not your fault Monsieur. When I signed up for the AATF, I knew very well that situations like this would become the norm. You have been a father to me Monsieur Scimitar. Please update me on Tiago. I wish to be of assistance". Dagger adjusted herself on the bed, still on saline.
"Nothing yet, it's been a week since that bastard escaped. He clearly mentioned 'we', so there's more of them hiding on Earth. So far, they have completely avoided our radars, no sign of any spacecraft or alien activity. They are still at large, planning to eradicate humanity". I closed my eyes, haven't had a good sleep in days. Too many clouds shrouding my thoughts, why can't I get to the bottom of this?
"Sometimes you need to look into the mirror to truly know yourself Monsieur. I've been looking at this mirror ever since I regained consciousness. Sometimes it shows the little me playing in the French countryside with Papa's sheep. Sometimes it shows an unknown woman from the future, accomplished like you. Sometimes it shows the pale, helpless girl lying on this hospital bed who couldn't stop an S rated threat from escaping". Dagger let out a big sigh of despair.
"Mirror !! That is it! Thank you, Dagger! You're awesome!"
She was left confounded and befuddled by my sudden eureka moment.
" Tiago broke the restraining cuffs and disappeared, right? Next, he appears on the metal briefcase you held. Then he appears on every mirror and window and shiny surface in my study! That's it. He can travel through reflective surfaces! He can manipulate light waves and travel from one reflective surface to another. That's how he escaped. That's how those Gliesians are hiding!" I sprang up, blessed Dagger and rushed out of the room, leaving her as confused as ever.
I logged on to my system and rang up M16, director of the US AATF, Area 51.
"Such technology is not beyond the reach of Gliesians. They do not possess this light wave manipulating power according to our data, then this must be the work of some gadgets. But the question is, how did the gadget remain hidden after thorough scanning?" said M16, a man in his 50's, broad, black and big.
"We must improve our scanning machines once we catch hold of Tiago and his musketeers but we need to find out where they are hiding or what their motive is. Even if we find those bastards, how do else deal with this light manipulation technique?" I asked.
"Not to mention, we are dealing with an S rated foe, highly intelligent with telekinetic powers. They can easily manipulate human behavior and make slaves out of us. Not on a large scale, but one on one, every human is in danger of being controlled". M16 paused, wiping the sweat off of his forehead. "Scimitar, have you deciphered the cube yet?"
The cube. Inside the parcel, the metallic suitcase that had facilitated Tiago's escape was a cube, no bigger than a Rubik's cube. It has strange symbols and hieroglyphs inscribed on three sides and a small aperture on the other. It lies on my table under the microscope. So far, the only conclusion I've reached is that the material is hibernated, found only on Gliese. This is our only lead to save Earth from destruction. I exchanged goodbyes with M16 and focused on the cube again. These hieroglyphs seem familiar, a bunch of symbols strung together to make pictorial representations. What had Tiago said that night?
"Jane, bring me the tape from the night of the escape please". Jane, from Mercury, genderless, sent to earth before the extinction of her species. I took it in as a little baby and it has been with me for 20 years now. It calls me dad, my skinny, blue-skinned, intelligent child.
I switched on the tape from the CCTV camera.
Tiago sits face to face with me, licking and gulping down a banana smoothie. Unomeda....creator.....experiment...Itzumna...Mayan civilization...
That's it. Found it. Mayan hieroglyphs, that's what these are. Time to ring up Gauntlet!
"Hermano! Como Estas? Bien?" The guy is always upbeat. Just love this dude. Gauntlet, Head Inspector of AATF, Lima branch, Peru.
"Hey Gauntlet, we are coming, reaching there tomorrow. Need your help amigo". Time to spring into action.
The next morning, I got down at Jorge Chavez international airport in Lima, Peru, accompanied by Spear, whom I have introduced to you before. M16 and Kalashnikov flew down from Nevada and Moscow respectively. Gauntlet himself picked us up and headed us deep into the Peruvian Andes AATF base. As soon as we reached the facility, I noticed quite a lot of activity and dozens of aliens, far more traffic than what my base in Andaman receives. I took out the cube and placed it on a dimension analyzer, instantly the three walls with the inscribed hieroglyphs blew up on digital projections, magnified. Gauntlet's eyes lit up.
"Interesante, Hermano. You are at the right place. This is indeed Mayan text and I shall decipher it for you with the aid of my best-kept secret". Gauntlet took the cube and beckoned us to follow. M16 and Kalashnikov exchanged nervous glances as we entered a dark cave carved out through rocky mountains, guarded by metal doors of the AATF base.
We walked for 10 minutes or so in pitch darkness, following Gauntlet's footsteps. Spear pulled my coat and we came to a stop.
"Why are you here? Have you brought me food?" An otherworldly voice echoed through the cave. Calm, eerie and cold. Gauntlet pulled out a small item from his pocket and the gem floated in mid-air, letting off a strong blue hue. The being whose voice we had heard, became visible. 10 feet tall, human-like winged creature, as in Tiago's description. An Unomedan.
I could barely calm my senses, I felt sweat running down my spine. If Tiago is to be believed, I am standing before God.
"Please bow down before Shigori". Gauntlet addressed us and we all followed suit, even Kalashnikov, infamous for eliminating nearly a thousand alien threats. The aura of the Unomedan had us all encaptured. Wow. The alien spread its wings and the cube flew out of my hands under some invisible magnetic pull.
"Father". Said Shigori, collapsing on his knees, covering his face in grief with his talons. "Father".
Gauntlet spoke. "Shigori, I seek your help, o great Creator. Please divulge the secret of this artifact".
The creature lifted it's head and looked at us all. "Sacrifice".
"Blood". Shigori's eyes lit up. "Blood of a Gliesian".
Gauntlet looked at me and Spear as if to state the obvious fact that the last Gliesian on Earth was in our custody. I did not disappoint. I had brought blood samples of Tiago with me, mainly to decipher the light manipulation technique. But it came to a different use. The winged beast took the vial of blood from my hand and poured it on the small aperture on the smooth surface if the cube. The cave started disappearing and within seconds we found ourselves facing a podium. I looked around to find hundreds of ancient Mayans surrounding the elevated stage, chanting a mantra in unison, pumping fists in the air. A priest progressed towards the stage wearing a mask portraying an eagle and false wings made of feathers, presumably to imitate the God Itzumna. Against the sunlight, the priest placed an unconscious creature atop the stage and started performing a ritualist dance. Then he pushed a dagger through the heart of the creature. The being, the size of a small boy lay dead, seven eyes, tentacles, mauve skinned. A Gliesian.