J e p h r e y



The alien invasion that wasn't 

The Alien Invasion that Wasn't

Do you remember the alien invasion last month, when one of their space craft landed on some highway while others hovered overhead? Do you remember how the US military attacked, killed lots of them and scared the aliens away? Of course you do! And, if you are like me, you probably doubt that it really was an invasion. After all, the aliens showed no signs of aggressiveness, in spite of the President's certainty that they were invading. Also, in view of the aliens' superior technology – after all, they managed to fly to Earth from somewhere light years away – how is it that not a single human was even hurt during the invasion?

Remember how the president claimed to be conflicted about what to do, but in the end decided that it could only be an alien invasion and the USA had to fight it off? He had seen far too many alien invasion films and that, sadly, seems to have been the basis of his decision -- along with the knowledge that a war is always good for presidential ratings. So, surely, a war against aliens would be even better for ratings.

Of course, numerous more enlightened national leaders begged the president to give the aliens a chance, as did nearly every scientist on the planet. But... Well, I won't replay the debate. I am sure you remember it clearly and have your own opinion. The thing is, I found out what really happened – from one of the aliens.

Of all places, it was a dingy old café in the Alfama district of Lisbon. It was a local sort of place full of neighbourhood blokes enjoying a drink and a laugh. Etched into the wrinkles of their cumulative faces was surely a history of Alfama. I was in the bar because I had been walking aimlessly through the city, something I try to do whenever I visit a city in my travels: walk aimlessly. I had needed a rest and a toilet stop, so I popped in and had a glass of red wine.

A man in an overcoat came in, looked around, spotted me and walked over to my table. “May I join you?” he asked with a curious rasp.

“Be my guest,” I said. He asked for a whiskey and a glass of water.

Watching him, I realised that he was wearing a mask and wig. This was curious.

“It's because I am not from your planet,” he said to me, after the waiter took his order. “The mask does not fit the contours of my head so well, but without it, I would attract far too much attention. Fortunately, no one pays much attention to middle aged men.”

We talked for a bit and it transpired that he was one of the aliens that supposedly invaded America last month. He and a few others stayed on to monitor the situation. He told me the true story of the invasion.

It seems there is an eight year old girl, let us call her “Mary”, for I do not want to share her real name. She has been diagnosed as highly autistic. She is in a way, but she is much more than that. She simultaneously exists in multiple universes. Perhaps you are familiar with this notion of quantum physics: that there exist simultaneously multiple universes all very similar, but not identical. Events vary from one universe to another. In an alternative universe, the Nazis won the War. In another universe, Hilary Clinton would have become president in 2016 and so on.

Apparently, Mary's consciousness spanned uncountable universes. Years from now, according to the alien, she will explain that her reality is one that seems to be full of people, their ghosts and their shadows that divide and come together again. Eventually, she will develop a form of mathematics that interlinks the multiple universes and makes it possible that we exist. Moreover, her maths introduce new technologies that make the universe what it is, what it has been and what it will be.

The thing is, with all of this going on in young Mary's head, she found it impossible to communicate or even interact on any level with her family or anyone in this universe. She was diagnosed as severely autistic and placed in a special school for children with similar conditions.

Every morning, she boarded a bus that fetched her and the other challenged kids in the area and brought them to a special school. One morning, according to a message she passed backwards in time to the aliens, the bus could be hit by a tanker truck that would kill her and most of the other children on the bus. If this happened, Mary would die before she could develop the maths and so this universe would not exist – at least, not as it does now. Entire races might never exist. Life might not even exist.

Clearly, this was a serious thing.

So, the aliens launched a massive spaceship. Travelling through worm holes – identified using Mary's maths – they travelled to Earth. Landing modules departed from the large spacecraft and landed on the highway in front of the entry where the school bus would take to merge onto the highway. Needless-to-say, this brought traffic to a halt, preventing the tanker truck from hitting the school bus.

In a more enlightened world, the aliens would have gone on to introduce themselves to our world leaders. Very likely, we would have been invited into the grouping of intelligent races that exists in our galaxy. The knowledge and technology we could have gained would have been awesome.

But...

Sadly, the American president has seen too many science fiction films and assumed that it the aliens intended to destroy America, burn the flag and turn American citizens into slaves. The country went all patriotic. America was at war with an evil enemy. People were expected to hang the flag from their homes and support the president. Disagreement, as is so often true in times of excessive patriotism, was tantamount to treason. The military was called out and the aliens were attacked as they knew they would be.

Yes, the aliens knew they would be attacked and that many would die. Nevertheless and in spite of a hail of gunfire, they stopped traffic and ensured Mary' bus was unharmed. But, most of them were shot to pieces by soldiers. And even though the aliens did not fight back in any way, shape or form, America told the story of the alien's vicious invasion and how heroic the American soldiers were and so on and so on and so on, as you well know.

And, of course, patriotism in America went into overdrive and overdose. People who failed to put a flag out in front of their house were threatened and beaten. Questioning the attack is to put your life in danger.

Fortunately, we are in Europe. Here, as you know, many question the President's choices. I certainly did.

“Why would you allow so many of your kind to be killed over this?” I asked the alien, once he had finished his story."

“Because the survival of Mary and her mathematics was and is much, much more important,” said he. "We would not exist as we do now if she had died."

“Why are you telling me, of all people, this story?” I asked.

“You have a very active imagination. That makes it easier for you to comprehend us and what I have told you. Less imaginative people would go into a state of denial. The would not see me. We've tried.”

“But, what good does it do for me to know your story?”/p>

“Tonight, you are going to a party in...” Began the alien.

“How did you know? I haven't even decided whether or not to go myself.”

“Mary's mathematics, of course.”

“Of course.”

“At the party, you will meet an American woman named Judith. You will have a brief, but erotic relationship with her during her two week stay in Lisbon.”

“I'm not sure...”

““She is a lawyer who specialises in suing large industries.”

Lord love a duck, I thought as I realised where this was going.

“We want to sue Hollywood for the defamation of character of aliens that led to the massacre. We need her help. You can convince her.”

 

 

 

© 2018 Jeffrey Baumgartner