tagNovels and NovellasThe Storytellers Ch. 02

The Storytellers Ch. 02

byParis Waterman©

I bought the case of oil and that day's newspaper; for just as Arthur had revealed to me through his thoughts, the town was swarming with Army personnel. They appeared to be preparing a search, and the constant stream of vehicles arriving proved my point, they were definitely organizing a massive hunt for survivors of the crash.

I went into a bar and grill, ordered a sandwich and a beer, and opened the paper. My eyes scanned the page. I have transcribed the article as follows for you, the reader:

Roswell Daily Record

July 8, 1947

RAAF Captures Flying Saucer on Ranch in Roswell Region

The intelligence office of the 509th Bombardment group at Roswell Army Air Field announced at noon today, that the field has come into possession of a flying saucer.

According to information released by the department, over authority of Maj. J. A. Marcel, intelligence officer, the disk was recovered on a ranch in the Roswell vicinity, after an unidentified rancher had notified Sheriff Geo. Wilcox, here, that he had found the instrument on his premises.

Major Marcel and a detail from his department went to the ranch and recovered the disk, it was stated. After the intelligence officer here had inspected the instrument it was flown to higher headquarters. The intelligence office stated that no details of the saucer's construction or its appearance had been revealed.

Mr. and Mrs. Dan Wilmot apparently were the only persons in Roswell who saw what they thought was a flying disk. They were sitting on their porch at 105 South Penn. last Wednesday night at about ten o'clock when a large glowing object zoomed out of the sky from the southeast, going in a northwesterly direction at a high rate of speed. Wilmot called Mrs. Wilmot's attention to it and both ran down into the yard to watch. It was in sight less than a minute, perhaps 40 or 50 seconds, Wilmot estimated.

Wilmot said that it appeared to him to be about 1,500 feet high and going fast. He estimated between 400 and 500 miles per hour. In appearance it looked oval in shape like two inverted saucers, faced mouth to mouth, or like two old type washbowls placed, together in the same fashion. The entire body glowed as though light were showing through from inside, though not like it would inside, though not like it would be if a light were merely underneath.

From where he stood Wilmot said that the object looked to be about 5 feet in size, and making allowance for the distance it was from town he figured that it must have been 15 to 20 feet in diameter, though this was just a guess. Wilmot said that he heard no sound but that Mrs. Wilmot said she heard a swishing sound for a very short time. The object came into view from the southeast and disappeared over the treetops in the general vicinity of six mile hill.

Wilmot, who is one of the most respected and reliable citizens in town, kept the story to himself hoping that someone else would come out and tell about having seen one, but finally today decided that he would go ahead and tell about it. The announcement that the RAAF was in possession of one came only a few minutes after he decided to release the details of what he had seen.

Arthur had known an all out hunt would be mounted for any survivors, or even bodies, lest some civilian discover one and alert the press. A spaceship, with honest-to-god aliens aboard had to be the biggest news since the end of the war, and maybe even bigger.

Without attracting any attention to myself, I finished my sandwich, bought another beer and got back in the Desoto. I gassed up at the local filling station and picked up a case of motor oil. No one even gave me a second glance.

Except for the occasional military jeep, there was almost no traffic on the roads leading in and out of Corona. I kept glancing in my rear view mirror until I was positive no one was tailing me. I even stopped several times and got out of the car to study the sky for aerial surveillance. Satisfied that I was alone in the desert, I returned to the site where I'd left Arthur as the sun was setting in the west.

But he was nowhere to be found. "Where are you, Arthur?" I thought.

"Over here, to your right," his voice said in my mind.

Whirling to my right, I saw nothing but the desert. Then I detected the slightest of movements and knew it was Arthur using a form of camouflage.

I had to laugh. "No one could possibly find you with that stuff," I said.

"Give them a few months, or years," he replied. "The military are making great strides scientifically now that the World War has concluded."

"Are you kidding?" I said, "Almost everyone has gone home, the war's over."

"There's the Berlin Airlift. And Russia and China to think about," Arthur said astutely.

I realized he was absolutely right. The Cold War, not yet officially named as such, had already begun. The Berlin Airlift had been implemented with great success, and many other potential conflicts had been avoided or aborted. But it was readily apparent that the Russians were a thorn in America's side.

"Your world is on the brink of nuclear war," he said, opening a can of oil and taking a sip, as a gentleman might from a glass of fine wine. "The Russians and the Chinese will stop at nothing to learn how to make their own bomb. That means they will pay exorbitant amounts of money to those with sufficient knowledge or means to provide that information to them. They are a persistent people, and will succeed in this, although it may take longer than they think to accomplish."

I had no reason to doubt him, but still, I was stunned.

I decided that we had better get out of the area, and shared my thoughts with Arthur.

"How do you propose to do this?" he said telepathically.

"I'll hide you in my car, and drive to a safer place; it's obvious enough."

"Yes, but . . ." his thought trailed off.

"You suspect there may be other survivors around?"

"No, there are no survivors. I am certain of that."

"Then what, Arthur?"

"There may be evidence left that has not been found by the military."

"Can you locate it before they find us?"

"I do not know. But I feel I should make the attempt."

Our little impasse was resolved for us when the unmistakable sound of a helicopter reached our ears.

"If we can hear them, they can see us," I yelled, motioning him to get in my car.

Arthur opened the front door and leapt in, and lay on the floor on the passenger side. I waited a few seconds and then waved at the helicopter; whose pilot I'm certain gave me a close inspection while ignoring my waving at him. Then to both Arthur's and my relief, they moved rapidly away in an easterly direction.

"Roy, I bow to your superior knowledge about the situation," Arthur said. "We should leave as soon as possible."

"They know we're here. At least that I'm here, so we can't stay. If they spot us driving toward Corona it will make us less suspicious."

"Why do you think that?"

"Why would an alien trying to escape head directly into their encampment?"

"To lose one's self in their midst, of course," he replied.

"So it's not a good idea?"

"I do not mean that," he said. "It is a sound strategy, and may well work."

"We have to go in that direction," I said. "We can pass on through without stopping, and once we're clear of the area we can head in any direction you want to go."

And that's what we did. It was dark as we approached Corona, Arthur lay on the floor next to the back seat, with all manner of paperbacks and newspapers and empty beer cans placed on and around him. At Arthur's suggestion, I stopped in Corona, essentially to allay any suspicion that just passing through might rouse, and bought food and water, and at Arthur's suggestion, a late edition of the local newspaper and some more oil.

I decided on Los Angeles as our initial destination for no other reason than it was my original destination, and placed a significant distance between us and the military forces combing the countryside looking for Arthur and his spaceship. I stopped again for gas when we entered California, and decided to make use of a rundown motel to rest for the night. Once inside Arthur and I read the Roswell newspaper for any new information they may have allowed to leak out. There was plenty. I showed it to Arthur, knowing instinctively that he could read English and probable every other language spoken on Earth.

Roswell Daily Record

July 8, 1947

Special Edition

AP −An examination by the army revealed last night that mysterious objects found on a lonely New Mexico ranch was a harmless high-altitude weather balloon - not a grounded flying disk. Excitement was high until Brig. Gen. Roger M. Ramey, commander of the Eighth air forces with headquarters

The bundle of tinfoil, broken wood beams and rubber remnants of a balloon were sent here yesterday by army air transport in the wake of reports that it was a flying disk. But the general said the objects were the crushed remains of a ray wind target used to determine the direction and velocity of winds at high altitudes. Warrant Officer Irving Newton, forecaster at the army air forces weather station here said, "We use them because they go much higher than the eye can see."

The weather balloon was found several days ago near the center of New Mexico by Rancher W. W. Brazel. He said he didn't think much about it until he went into Corona, N. M., last Saturday and heard the flying disk reports. He returned to his ranch, 85 miles northwest of Roswell, and recovered the wreckage of the balloon, which he had placed under some brush.

Then Brazel hurried back to Roswell, where he reported his find to the sheriff's office. The sheriff called the Roswell air field and Maj. Jesse A. Marcel, 509th bomb group intelligence officer was assigned to the case.

Col. William H. Blanchard, commanding officer of the bomb group, reported the find to General Ramey and the object was flown immediately to the army air field here. Ramey went on the air here last night to announce the New Mexico discovery was not a flying disk. Newton said that when rigged up, the instrument "looks like a six-pointed star, is silvery in appearance and rises in the air like a kite."

In Roswell, the discovery set off a flurry of excitement. Sheriff George Wilcox's telephone lines were jammed. Three calls came from England, one of them from The London Daily Mail, he said. A public relations officer here said the balloon was in his office "and it'll probably stay right there." Newton, who made the examination, said some 80 weather stations in the U. S. were using that type of balloon and that it could have come from any of them. He said he had sent up identical balloons during the invasion of Okinawa to determine ballistics information for heavy guns.

The press release caused a media feeding frenzy and phone lines into New Mexico and the Pentagon in Washington D.C. became jammed as reporters clamored for more details. Within an hour of the release, the head of the Eighth Air Force in Fort Worth, Texas, Brigadier General Roger Ramey began changing the story. The object retrieved was now a weather balloon with "hexagonal" radar target attachment. He would later describe it on the radio as "remnants of a tin foil-covered box kite and a rubber balloon" and denied there were any identification markings or instruments found with it.

United Press also reported that Ramey said, "He couldn't let anybody look at the thing or photograph it because Washington had clamped a 'security lid' on all but the sketchiest details." However, he thought "...it was nothing to get excited about. It looks to me like the remnant of a weather balloon and a radar reflector." He said he would bring in a weather officer to confirm this. Soon after, a weather officer was summoned to make the identification official. Ramey had pictures taken of the weather balloon and radar target displayed in his office, which he said was the recovered Roswell debris.

Gen. Ramey also had Major Marcel make a statement for the press. Instead of the object being found "sometime last week" in the original press release, Marcel was quoted by Associated Press as saying the object was found "3 weeks previously" (or mid-June). Further, when Brazel first found the debris he "bundled the tinfoil and broken wooden beams of the kite and the torn synthetic rubber remains of the balloon together and rolled it under some brush."

When Brazel first learned of the "flying disks" on Saturday night, July 5, he "hurried home, dug up the remnants of the kite balloon on Sunday, and Monday headed for Roswell to report his find to the Sheriff's office."(AP story)

While the new date of discovery agreed with Brazel's account a few hours later of first finding the debris on June 14, it conflicted sharply with his story of when and how he collected it: "At the time Brazel was in a hurry to get his round made and he did not pay much attention to it. ...on July 4 he ...went back to the spot and gathered up quite a bit of the debris."

"Smells like a cover up," I said to Arthur.

"Cover up?" he said, quizzically.

"Um, cover up, a kind of twisting of actual fact. In short, they're lying to the public. This stuff about the spaceship being a balloon is purely to distract the public from the truth of the matter."

"Yes, that's exactly what they're doing. I wouldn't expect anything else from them. To allow the public to find out that we came from another planet would most likely cause a panic in the streets worldwide. That strategy should work to my advantage," Arthur said thoughtfully.

"Well, that's good," I offered, "but how can you contact the next ship that comes here looking for you?"

For the first time I saw Arthur smile and it was a beautiful sight to behold.

"Why, the same way I talk to you," he replied sending the words directly into my mind.

I nodded and continued to scan the newspaper. Another sidebar item provided yet more information:

In Roswell, the discovery set off a flurry of excitement. Sheriff George Wilcox's telephone lines were jammed. Three calls came from England, one of them from The London Daily Mail, he said. A public relations officer here said the balloon was in his office "and it'll probably stay right there." Newton, who made the examination, said some 80 weather stations in the U. S. were using that type of balloon and that it could have come from any of them. He said he had sent up identical balloons during the invasion of Okinawa to determine ballistics information for heavy guns.

The following morning, I picked up a copy of the local paper and found the story still on the front page. It read as follows:

The press release caused a media feeding frenzy and phone lines into New Mexico and the Pentagon in Washington D.C. became jammed as reporters clamored for more details. Within an hour of the release, the head of the Eighth Air Force in Fort Worth, Texas, Brigadier General Roger Ramey began changing the story. The object retrieved was now a weather balloon with "hexagonal" radar target attachment. He would later describe it on the radio as "remnants of a tin foil-covered box kite and a rubber balloon" and denied there were any identification markings or instruments found with it.

United Press also reported that Ramey said, "He couldn't let anybody look at the thing or photograph it because Washington had clamped a 'security lid' on all but the sketchiest details." However, he thought "...it was nothing to get excited about. It looks to me like the remnant of a weather balloon and a radar reflector." He said he would bring in a weather officer to confirm this. Soon after, a weather officer was summoned to make the identification official. Ramey had pictures taken of the weather balloon and radar target displayed in his office, which he said was the recovered Roswell debris.

Gen. Ramey also had Major Marcel make a statement for the press. Instead of the object being found "sometime last week" in the original press release, Marcel was quoted by Associated Press as saying the object was found "3 weeks previously" (or mid-June).

Further, when Brazel first found the debris he "bundled the tinfoil and broken wooden beams of the kite and the torn synthetic rubber remains of the balloon together and rolled it under some brush."

When Brazel first learned of the "flying disks" on Saturday night, July 5, he "hurried home, dug up the remnants of the kite balloon on Sunday, and Monday headed for Roswell to report his find to the Sheriff's office."(AP story)

While the new date of discovery agreed with Brazel's account a few hours later of first finding the debris on June 14, it conflicted sharply with his story of when and how he collected it: "At the time Brazel was in a hurry to get his round made and he did not pay much attention to it. ...on July 4 he ...went back to the spot and gathered up quite a bit of the debris."

"This is good," Arthur said, of the newspaper article.

"How so?" I asked.

"It lets the public know that it is possible for another life to visit their planet. The fact that the Army denies my vessel exists serves two purposes: First, the issue is now subject to public scrutiny. Second, it limits the length the Army can go to in order to locate me."

He touched my left shoulder and I felt a great warmth flow through me.

"I would like to go to Utah. There is a mountain range there, and I will wait there for my friends to come to my aid."

"What about subsistence and shelter?"

"I can make do, believe me, Roy. I would require just some of the motor oil, and not that much. I'm replenished now. The excitement of the crash and having to watch the others perish caused me to use up much more than I would normally."

"You saw the others perish?"

"I heard them, each one of them, as they died."

"How many were there?"

"We were four in all. That's all, just the four of us. We have been observing you Earthlings for thousands of years, coming to visit every hundred years or so. We have left marks in various places around the world. It was inevitable that we do so. The ancient peoples of your world thought us gods and built monuments to us. When your communication skills improved we decided to keep our distance, and observe from afar. Still, your ancients told and retold the stories of our visits. You still talk of our visits from thousands of years ago. You call them legends, myths, and in some instances religions have sprung up using those visits as their basis, or at least to partly support their basis."

"Can you tell me about your spaceships?"

"What's to tell, Roy? They are small in size, when compared with those bombers your country used to bomb Germany and Japan. Each ship . . . yes, there's more than one. Although I don't think any others are still here. Normally they berth a crew of five. They are capable of traveling huge distances in a short time. They are built from materials not available here on Earth, and they are fueled by a substance you will not conceive of for some time yet."

"Have you or your species . . . is that all right to say?"

"Perfectly all right, Roy."

"Well, have you given mankind any . . . gifts during your visits?"

"Why, yes, of course we have. And many suggestions that later led to amazing discoveries; a few of which even surprised us."

"Can you give me an example or two?"

"We enabled mankind to improve on their ability to communicate. First with language, later picture graphs. You have several ways of describing this: hieroglyphics, drawings in caves . . . most but not all in France. I should add that more will be discovered in time. And from this you made the jump to the written word . . . all by yourselves. For that you deserve our congratulations," he said, with what passed for a small smile.

Report Story

byParis Waterman© 1 comments/ 3417 views/ 0 favorites

Share the love

Report a Bug

Next
2 Pages:12

Forgot your password?

Please wait

Change picture

Your current user avatar, all sizes:

Default size User Picture  Medium size User Picture  Small size User Picture  Tiny size User Picture

You have a new user avatar waiting for moderation.

Select new user avatar:

   Cancel