How are things on earth?
The other day the Mammamarians put me into a bubble-shaped cart that hung from a steel wire.
And with great speed it travelled along the rope till it came to a halt that felt to me just in the nick of time, as just inches away from where it stopped was a perilously tall building that looked to be made of graphite.
And once I overcame my shock from being in new surroundings and the movement and near crash of my cart, I saw a vast network of tall buildings like the one I had stopped by before me.
There were no windows or doors on these buildings, none that a man’s eye could see anyhow.
But at once, a hole opened up in front of me, and my bubble cart moved slowly through the hole.
The hole instantly closed behind me, and I was inside the graphite tower!
And many small Mammamarians ran up and down little ladders and over many, many landings like boobacious spiders!
My ball cart moved with a slow precision as another hole opened up. I was back outside, on the other side of the building.
And the speed returned with force forcing my face up against the glass; my nose squashed against it.
The cart came to a sudden halt just as it did the first time, and after a moment or two of waiting, a hole opened up, and the cart slowly entered.
And once I entered the building, the cart started free-falling!
And down I went, my heart beating violently against my chest and my eyes no doubt bulging from my head in terror!
My hands against the glass, I screamed, my fingers trailing through the fog of my breath on the window.
And then there was a wailing sound like a crying baby.
The more I screamed, the louder the crying became, as if competing with me.
The ball cart luckily came to a halt when a giant metal hand grabbed hold and connected us back up to another steel wire.
A hole opened up in the wall before me, and the bubble cart entered a room that looked like any other room you might see in a house back home!
That was when I saw the source of the wailing: a baby in a cot, arms above their head and legs up in the air.
Next to the cot was a space currently behind drawn curtains.
Would you like to hazard a guess as to who was behind the curtains?
Well, if it wasn’t Alice!
‘My god!’ I recall myself saying, ‘Alice! Where have you been…’ But as the words escaped my mouth, it dawned on me, ‘The baby is yours?’ hoping my shock didn’t afflict my face.
Alice smiled that wistful smile, the same smile I saw her lips bear last time, ‘It is our baby,’ She said, holding out her hand. ‘Come on,’ She said.
I grabbed her hand, and she spun me back to face the baby in the cot.
‘I thought you were…’ I looked down at the baby’s feet which were up in the air, ‘I thought you were an android.’ I gulped.
‘I am.’ Alice replied.
‘But,’ I pointed at the baby, ‘How?’
‘I have an artificial womb.’
Can you believe that? An artificial womb in an android?
I never expected to have a child, what with mainly fucking men and rarely being able to orgasm if I slept with a woman.
Not to mention that back on earth, back on that sweet blue, green home, I was told by a doctor that my swimmers weren’t very…well up for swimming, quite frankly!
I looked at Alice, stunned! ‘How…But I..’
‘We had to help your little guys out a bit.’ She smiled.
‘Yea?’ I said, picturing sperm with armbands on like a cartoon.
‘Don’t worry about it. The fact is, now you have a little daughter!’
Well, what indeed was I supposed to say to that?
‘I know you’re in shock.’
‘Shock? That’s….That’s an understatement. I’m horrified.’
‘You don’t like your daughter?’ Alice asked, a look of disdain on her android face.
I looked down at the baby in the cot, but my brain could not compute that this little ball of flesh and bone was my child, my daughter.
‘I don’t know that I believe any of this is real,’ I replied finally.
‘Pick her up, hold her.’ Alice said in an enchanting voice.
I swallowed my scepticism, which went down my throat like a frog.
I picked up the little bundle of flesh and bone, and the baby spread her fingers out on her little hands, looked up at me and with salty tears making tracks down her face from the crying, she smiled up at me.
I put her hand in mine, and it felt real.
But so did Alice. So did Spoon.
‘What are we going to call her?’ Alice asked.
‘We?’ I looked at her, the babies hand still in mine.
‘Yes, we.’ Alice tilted her head and looked at me like I was an alien. Under the circumstances, I couldn’t help but laugh a little at that.
‘Well, she should take your surname.’
Alice smiled, ‘And her first name?’
‘I don’t know!’ I baulked and put the baby back in the cot.
‘Aww look, she’s going to sleep now she’s seen her daddy!’ Then Alice crept as quietly as possible towards me and put a hand on the small of my back, ‘Shall we go to bed now and try to get some sleep?’ She said, with a yawn, pushing on my pack to usher me behind the curtains.
So that’s all the latest news for you! I’m out of the fish tank, and now it seems like playing ‘happy families’ with Alice somewhere on this boobacious planet!
I hope my last two letters greeted you soon enough on your doormat.
The artificial nights and days have merged so much that I’m not entirely sure I’m sane anymore, but should a person ever be so sure they are sane?
The Mammamarians took a keen interest in my relationship with Spoon after initially turning a blind eye.
To be truthful with you, I can’t get it up with them watching so intently.
I told Spoon, ‘I’m impotent towards you now; it’s over.’
Spoon didn’t cry; he just said, ‘I’m an android; I don’t care if you’re important.’
I repeated to him, ‘I’m impotent.’
Spoon turned to me and said, ‘Alright, big head.’
Since Spoon and I came to an end, they have introduced a new android, a female one.
She’s called Alice.
‘Hello, Alice, I’m Holden’ I introduced myself awkwardly, not daring to look into her very blue eyes.
‘Hello, Holden,’ She said, ‘Would you like to be my lover?’
I thought to myself this is very forward and quick on the draw.
‘I don’t know about that yet,’ I told her.
She looked over at Spoon, and when she turned back to me, she frowned, ‘You prefer the men?’
I shrugged, ‘It’s not so much that, it’s that I barely know you.’
At this, she smiled, ‘I heard you didn’t know Spoon that well before you spooned him.’
I thought on that a moment, and she did have a point.
I took a few days to get used to Alice’s presence.
Spoon kept glaring at me and then walking heavily around the tank.
‘I meant no harm,’ I told Spoon.
‘You can’t harm me; I’m an android.’ He told me.
‘You are acting pretty hurt,’ I told him.
He’s been like that with me ever since.
Now at night, when the Mammamarians turn off the artificial sunlight, they flash strobe lights as if I am out clubbing and then Alice starts dancing and trying to entice me closer to her.
But if she is hearing music, I do not hear any!
Which only makes her dancing appear more strange to me!
I asked Spoon one night when I felt like I was disassociating from reality, ‘Is Alice real or a hallucination?’
Spoon just nodded and said, ‘Yes.’
‘Which one are you saying yes to?’ I asked him.
He just sneered at me, lay himself down, and went to sleep!
Then last night, all things seemed to come to a head (quite literally), legs were tangled, and hair was ruffled.
And in the deep blue pools that were Alice’s eyes I lost myself in the moment, and alas, I came to with a shudder, and she looked up at me with an ever so wistful smile, ‘That good for you?’
I hesitated to reply; my humanity and thus, inability to not keep my animalistic passions in check was burdensome on my shoulders.
I must admit to feeling like Frankenstein’s monster, as her human-like blue eyes reflected her regret at me.
‘It wasn’t so good for you.’ I replied.
‘I’m an android; it neither felt good nor bad.’
And what a jarring reply! Yet despite her supposed neutrality, the misgivings afflicted her face with an all too human expression.
When I awoke, Alice was nowhere to be found in our little domesticated fish tank.
I have asked the Mammamarians where Alice is through Spoon.
And Spoon did speak with them, but I can only trust his word that he did ask on my behalf.
He told me that the Mammamarians told him, ‘Alice’s whereabouts are of no concern to us.’
Whatever the hell that is supposed to mean.
And so I am left with Spoon and the other androids who pay me no mind, talk none and flit around the tank like goldfish.
I may be foolish enough to hanker after Spoon’s company again come artificial night.
I’m writing again to tell you more about my life on Mammaroon since being abducted.
We have artificial days and nights, and all concept of time has become meaningless.
They turn on a sun lamp and turn it off when they please.
It has a routine, much like the days and nights on earth. But some days and some nights feel so long and tedious that I can’t be sure it’s not just random!
Loneliness hit me sooner than I thought it might, given my propensity to be alone.
But alas, I felt driven mad by loneliness; perhaps it was the lack of certainty of time.
Anyhow, the reasons as to why don’t much matter in the scheme of things.
When on earth amongst other humans, it’s easy to forget you are human. But on an alien planet with aliens watching you like in a zoo, your own humanity dawns on you and beckons you back to earth.
If only such psychological beckonings could be a form of transport!
In a state of loneliness, one artificial night, I crept into the bed of Spoon and began to spoon him.
He didn’t flinch at my touch; he didn’t seem to mind.
I could be confident of this impression when he started grinding up against my crotch.
But it was through these bodily explorations I came upon a stark truth!
Spoon was no man, no fellow human!
Spoon is, of course, an android!
‘It feels like this is something you should have told me,’ I said to him.
‘It is not protocol for me to tell you. Indeed it is not protocol for any of us to tell you.’
‘Any of you?’
‘Yes,’ He rolled over in the bed to face me, ‘All of us here in this tank,’ he nodded his head at me, eager for me to complete that conclusion.
‘There are no other humans in this fish tank with me!’ I said.
‘Correct,’ Spoon smiled at me.
Of course, it all makes more sense now! I wondered how Spoon could translate the alien’s communication technique, which to my ears, is entirely silent!
Despite my low mood spurned by loneliness, the Mammamarians still treat me well.
I am fed, and they allow me to shower once a week which is more often than I did at home! Although showering while they watch me can be pretty disturbing!
The Mammamarians also appear to be turning a blind eye to the filthy things I do with Spoon in the artificial nights!
And so, all in all, I can’t complain too much!
I hope this letter reaches you well!
I am writing to inform you that the Mammamarians have abducted me.
Their name, ‘Mammamarians’ originates from the name of their planet, Mammaroon.
And the planet is called Mammaroon because it is shaped like a pair of boobs.
It’s called Mammaroon because calling it Mammarygland (pronounced Mamaryg land) is too on the nose. (This I was told by another abductee named Spoon. I don’t know why his name is Spoon; he isn’t shaped like a spoon).
To keep you abreast of my situation, I am being looked after by the mammamarians, (Did I mention that they are shaped like boobs too)? However, I have yet to be anally probed. (much to my disappointment).
The Mammamarians communicate via antennae from nipple-like nubs on their heads. In addition, they have cilia (like little bits of hair) around what I will call their areolae, which are very sensitive to their environment.
Picture if you will, a woman lying down, her breasts pert and nipples erect and pointing to the sky. This is essentially the shape of the Mammamarians but with six legs sticking out, three on each side.
They have me contained within a fish tank-type arena whereby many mammamarians stand and watch me.
Spoon says he was one of the first to be abducted, and never once have they mistreated him, so if I can take Spoon at his word, it seems like my life here may be relatively simple and without much concern. In fact, it so far has been easier than my life on earth!
We are fed, and each abductee is provided with his or her own bosom pillow!
It seems the mammamarians took that song that sang ‘everybody needs a bosom for a pillow’ very literally.
They have asked me (their weird form of communication translated to me by none other than Spoon) what a brimful of asha is. I was unable to answer their query.
They slammed on the glass of our tank angrily at my lack of knowledge which alarmed me, but then they scattered away.
It’s not like I can fault them; we all get irritated from time to time.
The following day they came back and were pleasant as breasts again, with no residual tension felt or seen.
And so I write to you in high spirits, and long may that continue!
I hope this reaches you in high spirits too!
It was chilly out, and snow had started to swirl in a heavy breeze. I’d sat down to eat my dinner when my golden retriever, Darwin, raced to the windowsill, standing on his hind legs with his front paws on the sill. I slurped soup off my spoon and some if it dripped back into the bowl on the table, “What’s going on?” I asked Darwin.
Darwin turned his head to look at me, his paws still on the sill, his ears twitching. Then there was a knock at the door.
I dropped my spoon into the bowl with a clatter and headed towards the door.
Snow softly fell and clung to the fabric of his peacoat, his hands deep in his pockets for warmth.
I stared at him blankly for what in hindsight feels like too long. His blue eyes stared back at me, and a strand of hair hung above the rim of his glasses, his forehead creasing with tension.
“Mr Ashworth?” He leaned in.
I licked my lips, “Yes, whose asking?”
Darwin sat next to me, his head tilted with curiosity.
“I’m Jerry, Jerry North.”
He told me his name with a look on his face that suggested I should know who he was. I shook my head, “I don’t know any Jerry North!”
“I know your son,” He turned back to me, “Well, I know him very well actually,” He bounced on the balls of his feet and looked down at his shoes with a meek smile curling the corners of his lips.
“How,” I frowned, “He…” I faltered. It had been a long time since I’d talked to anyone about my son.
He held up his hands placatingly, “I know what you’re thinking,”
I gave him a scornful glare, “You have no bloody idea what I’m thinking!” I hissed and started to close the door on him.
He jutted his foot in the door, “I know he died when he was five,”
I swung the door wide open again, “What?”
“He died when he was five but,”
“But?” I asked him, bug-eyed, “But what? He died when he was 5, and that was that. What do you want?”
“Have you ever heard about the Soul retrieval facility, Mr Ashworth?”
I scoffed, and my face reddened in anger, “You,” I pointed accusingly, “Stop with this sick prank!”
“Have you heard of it?” He asked sternly, his hand on the door.
“I’ve heard the conspiracy theories!” I spat, “It’s nonsense!”
“What if I said that it’s true?” He leaned further into the doorway, “And,” He held up a hand to ward off any protest, “And that your son was retrieved there not long after his death.”
“I’d tell you what I’m telling you now; you’re sick! Playing a sick joke on an old man who still…” I could feel it in my throat. The hot swell of tears.
The blue-eyed man placed a hand on my shoulder gently, “Listen,” He looked me straight in the eyes. His stare was intense, and despite myself, I found something trustworthy about his eyes.
“Your son is 35 now,”
“Would be,” I hissed still not giving entirely into that trust.
“I’m his husband.”
My jaw dropped, and I scanned his face for answers.
“Listen, he was retrieved along with a lot of other children in the facility and,” He took a long breath and looked down at the ground sadly, “They were experimenting with this new technology. Downloading souls into clones.”
I baulked at the absurdness of what he was saying with a wry smile tinged with sadness, “Downloading souls? Clones?” I shook my head with a sigh, “I don’t know who you are but leave me alone!”
“I swear,” He shivered, and his lips tinged purple, “I swear it’s the truth!”
I would have slammed the door on him, but his foot remained on the step, and he held the door open with a strong looking hand. “Listen,” I started dejected, “Maybe you did know my son, maybe you knew him from the nursery,” I looked at him sadly, “But you’re clearly ill or,” I raised a brow at him, “On drugs?”
He shook his head, “If you’d just let me in!”
“No,” I held up a hand, “Next you’ll be telling me Elvis isn’t dead!”
“He isn’t,” He replied earnestly.
“What? See! You’re just like those usual crackpot conspiracy theorists!”
“Bowie isn’t dead either!”
I snorted, “You’re kidding me! Surely if either of them were still alive, they’d have been seen!”
“No! Their bodies are dead; they got cloned into different bodies to help them blend in unnoticed!”
“So those crackpots that reckon they’ve seen Elvis?”
“They’re just that, crackpots. He’s still alive, but he looks nothing like Elvis anymore!”
I didn’t know what to do. What was I supposed to believe? It was snowing, and we were both getting cold, “I don’t want to speak with you anymore,” I told him waving my walking stick at him, “Don’t ever return, do you hear?” I stepped forward and got in his face, “Do you hear?” I enunciated the question carefully.
And that was that. He held up his hands as if surrendering and stepped back. But there was sorrow in his eyes, and for a moment I nearly cracked and opened the door again. But in the end, I locked it up, put the chain on the latch turned the lights out and went to bed.