Young Andre must convince mankind of aliens' message for them amongst the cruelty of others..
Young Andre must convince mankind of aliens' message for them amongst the cruelty of others..
It was so nice to visit my aunt and uncle this week in Canada. I also stopped in parts of Maine to visit some of my other aunts and uncles. Getting away from the big cities and seeing how the forests can darken the day and color the sky a deep green was such a refreshing feeling to have again.
It was also good to brush up on my French, especially in the suburbs of Québec, where my relatives live. Québec is not like any city I know stateside. True, they are bilingual and very polite in speaking English with me, sensing that my French doesn’t brand me une vraie canadienne. At least my relatives were polite enough to discourse with me in the native tongue, although I suspect they’d also prefer to do it in English, a sad thing for me.
Even my relatives, raised in Québec, have all taken up English. This isn’t the Canada I knew when I was young. English, although spoken, was much harder to find back then. I struck a deal with my relatives. They could speak to me in English, but I would speak to them in French. This way, we could compliment each other on how well we each spoke the other’s language.
It is a luxury to have nothing to do. I confess that the Kline case has not quite faded from my consciousness. I always liked sci–fi to a degree, and have brought what John considers to be sci–fi classics along with me to read, in an attempt to understand more clearly his perceptionsof aliens.
Well, Stephen, I will say ’bye for now.
I am most impressed with the clinic. The grounds are very well kept. I feel sorry that you don’t appreciate verdant New England. I haven’t visited very often. I didn’t think things could look any greener from John’s room.
The trees pretty much blocked out the afternoon sun. He stated that the plants of this planet were a key to all he had to say. Before I could think or answer him, he stated that, although it was quite amazing that such diversities could evolve, they provide our oxygen—nothing compared to the plants on Metamo.
I asked him about the spindly plant that grew about two feet tall on his desk and what importance it had besides decoration.
He said, “My friend Stephen gave me some yellow–eyed bean seeds. He’s liked them since he was a child. He knows that I grew up on a farm and like growing things. Stephen would have liked to do some gardening this summer, but as usual, things came up. He wants to come back in about a month, when they should have the pods on them. That will be kind of sad, as the bean is an annual, and it will be dead soon afterwards. I grow the plant not only for Stephen, but also in honor of Metamo. It is a very fundamental part of their culture and evolutionary process.”
I did more listening than talking, which I’m sure John appreciated. At times, he seemed impatient about the things I didn’t know, as though they should have been obvious to me. At least he did take the time to explain and to answer my questions. I wonder if being in your care for five weeks must have frustrated his imagination. I suppose he can come up with all kinds of coping mechanisms.
We both went outside late that night for a couple of cigarettes. I figured that being natural in such a restrained environment was the best thing. He pointed out all kinds of smells, insect noises, bird calls, and the like. I must confess that I felt an appreciation for nature that I hadn’t in quite some time.
I engaged him in some discussion. I began, “So, John, how long have you been thinking of the aliens?”
He answered, “I was made aware of them on an alumni weekend a few years ago. The Schegnans were really the spokesmen for the Metans. They would make first contacts through human minds, and then, if one was receptive to the idea, he would meet a Metan.
“I met mine on a hot summer night two years ago. Oh, by the way, Doctor, the Schegnans have made it impossible for you to catch me in a trap. No matter how many different ways you rephrase a question to me, you will find it impossible to find fault with my story.”
John was quite alert and aware at all times. I wonder if finding inconsistencies in his story would be of any use. I mean, I’m told that even a few good writers make errors. I couldn’t resist calling to France to see how the progress on his sample was doing.
John was very consistent in not telling me anything about it. He would often say, “Oh, you’ll find out in good time, and then you might even believe me. Besides, what are you so worried about?”
I am grateful that this summer in Paris has been very rainy, or I would probably never have gotten around to your sample. I must say it was a pleasure doing this work for you. I regret that there is not much sample left to send back to you, as most of it deteriorated within a few hours after exposure to air.
You were not correct about the wax. The material that sealed the test tube was a very hard commercial plastic. I doubt that it was done by hand. The sample had a lot of spirals, with colors from plant shades to flesh tones, the beiges of many seashells, whites, blacks, violets, greens, blues, and numerous other colors.
Fortunately, I made a lot of computer records of the images from my scanning electron microscope and other instruments. As I said, the sample deteriorated long before I could finish studying it in real time. I took pieces from as many places as possible, slicing it up and examining them. By the time I got to the core of the material, most of it had evaporated. I have the core, which is about the size of a grain of sand, in a nitrogen freeze, and will await your instructions on it. What a shame! The sample was about the size of a large bean when I started. Luckily, I can study the photos and other data I recorded. I would have found out a lot more if it hadn’t broken down.
When the sample dissolved, it turned into nothing. It smelled a bit like ammonia, gave off a light blue steam, and left no traces. I am hoping you can provide me with more samples, and do tell me where this came from. It certainly must have been a brilliant scientist who contrived this mass of flesh and plant, or a cross between the two.
I have never seen or heard of anything with so many chromosomes. I identified at least 709 of them. Again, please tell me what source this comes from. I can’t find any colleague who could identify any plant or animal that it might be. My suspicions are that it was made by some brilliant genetic engineer. If so, he or she could certainly be famous. I don’t think there has ever been anything approaching this type of sophistication.
John and I had a nice breakfast in his room at my insistence. I want to thank and commend your staff for their gracious cooperation and accommodations. I had a good night’s sleep and was very refreshed for talking with John before I went back to the West Coast this afternoon.
As you noted, his general knowledge is impressive. His knowledge of geography and other countries is commendable. I see you omitted the fact that he has a BA in psychology. This fact is very interesting as well. We talked quite a lot about this subject.
His understanding of general science and current events is also notable. He is very interested in the less fortunate people of the world and feels frustrated that he can’t do something to help. He is, over all, a very stubborn person, but no more than you were when you were my student.
This innate inflexibility of John’s is no defense mechanism or attempt to repress any unpleasant events in his life. He felt free to discuss the good and bad experiences he had in foster care when he was a child. If nothing else, his unchanging convictions are presented to show others that he is correct. He can be impatient when others don’t see it his way, but can easily admit when he is mistaken, or that he is not all–knowing.
I instructed our Parisian colleague to copy and send back any and all data on the sample. I asked him to hold the remainder of the sample for the time being, until we meet in Boston for the convention next month. That sample is an enigma.
John insists that the information he possesses be shared with the people of the entire Earth, and that it would be a crime for any of us to hold these facts back. I think we have some interesting decisions to make. I commend you for not having given him any medications, for I suspect they would have only clouded his reasoning skills. I wonder what course to take. Have you any ideas? Are you going to release John on the 15th?
I see no reason why he should be held any longer. I must say I am professionally embarrassed not to have realized that John’s ideas could be viewed as a religious belief system. His famed sample could be one of the mysteries of his religion. If you find that I shouldn’t release him, please let me know. That is the schedule as far as my staff and I are concerned.
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Stephen A. Theberge Bio