One For The Road

Lance…
The entire layout of the Area 51 was setup to have a laboratory feel to it. Even the cafeteria. It was well lit with bright neon lights, white blinding walls with no windows and a comfortable temperature setting. It was set between 55F to 70F. But being in my shoes, that doesn’t matter too much to me anymore. Either way I feel fine. Up until now, it sounds like a general school or workplace eatery, but wait for it…
Once Arrgahal and I made our way inside, he handed me a tray. We approached the food counter and I was amazed by the whole variety of stuff that was laid out for grabs. Yes, I really called it stuff and not food. Honestly, I am really grateful that it was all color coded, otherwise I have no idea what kind of hell i would have put my stomach through… The colors were pretty much corresponding to the food groups that us earthlings are used to consume, and then some…
Like green was coded for different vegetable and fruit salads; yellow was for pasta dishes and eggs; brown was assigned to different kimds of meat; purple was for stew type of dishes and of course gray was where it all got so interesting… It was dedicated to Andromedan little shits and it contained anything from nickelated hardware tools, to jet fuels and gasoline, to fabrics and anything you could think of.
For myself, I loaded my tray with Salisbury steak and mashed potatoes. It was Arrgahal’s advice that I needed to up my calories intake, work out harder and keep a good looking physique in par with my strength. I decided to wash it all down with a tall glass of milk. It all amounted to 3200 calories. Arrgahal on the other hand said he wasn’t that much hungry, but he opted for a bar of copper and some motor oil to wash it down with. I guess he was being nice just to keep me company.

After retrieving the files from the central command office, I made my way to the car, unlocked it and got inside. My hands were already shaking… Beast and fearless; I still had butterflies in my stomach about what lays ahead.. What would my future hold? Whom would I face? I took a good look around the dashboard and the cab of my brand new toy, so I could familiarize myself better with it. Once I pressed “Start”, the whole cab lit up just like an airplane cockpit. There were a bunch of buttons up in the ceiling too, but I had all the time in the world to explore. Thus, I put the car in gear and pushed the pedal enough to carefully navigate through the armored Jeeps. The V8 is not a joke. Outside, in the common grounds, the troops that were working out a few moments ago gave me the salutations upon seeing the eighteen feet long monster. Some of them, were actually cheering me up. Perhaps they were closely familiar with the program. With my rugged hands crutching the wheel amd my feet tapping the pedal, the massive V8 translated the roar into raw power as it pushed those fat Michellins to conquer the desert sand and crunch the gravel. I ended up winding through the sandy snake for a good fifteen minutes before my eyes saw the most wonderful words labeled in the cab… right by the driver’s side column.
Roll Cage Enforced Support Column.
Son of a bitch! The steering wheel went forty five degrees to yhe left; the pedal had a love tap to the metal; and here goes Lanceyyyy!!!
Dune after dune, hill and valley, I finally made it into the black top. Right on the Extraterrestrial Hwy. Alamo’s main stretch.
Since they did not serve any alcohol at Area 51 and I had a long way to drive, I wanted to keep in touch with civilization one more time. They say the curiosity killed the cat; I was itching to know all the myths that were going outside the fence.
Thus, I made a pit stop at Little A’le Inn.

The place was almost empty. On the small bar counter, I grabbed a stool between an old gentleman donning a bomber jacket, and a woman around my age. I couldn’t pinpoint her age though cause she carried herself well. Although I couldn’t go wrong by saying she was around late 20’s or early 30’s.
“I’ll have a cold Corona,” i said to the bartender. “Have you ever seen a real alien, by the way?”
“Nope, butI’ve heard about a new program that they are testing.” The bartender relayed. “Something about creating immortal men and sending them into the battle field so they can finish their wars. Weird name also… Beast or Monster…”
“Bullshit!” The bomber jacket yelled. “What will be next? Google powered terminators? Bring me one prototype right here, right now and I’ll snap their head like a bird’s. I survived ‘Nam! What’s one more guy?”
The old bags words were riling me up. Part of me wanted to teach him a lesson and make him fly across the counter, but that would mean that i would blow my cover. Therefore I decided to order some good food and celebrate the stupidity and ignorance that goes on outside the fence.
“Got anything to eat, my man?”
“Just hot pies and deserts from the kitchen, for now. The rest of the kitchen staff is on break.” The bartender was looking at me weird, creepy washed gray reflecting from his eyes.
“I can’t eat an entire sugar bomb right now..”
“We could share…,” the girl brought her stool next to me. Our elbows touching. “My name is Sierra. How does an apple pie sounds to you?”
“I’m not an apple pie kind of guy.” I said a bit annoyed. She was really pretty but I had a new world of unknown in front of me and I wasn’t expecting company and more after all, if shit hit the fan I would hate to drag her down with me. “Lance is the name, by the way.”
“Well. What kind of guy are you, Lance?” She threw her hair on the side with impeccable delicacy.
“The kind of guy that would fuck your brains out and then leave you wanting more while I’m dozing off. And it will be cheesecake.”
By the time the plates were licked clean, Sierra told me all about her life. How she grew up in a poor struggling farmer’s family in Potato Country, Idaho to her college years in Seattle; her job as a quality inspector for different bolts and nuts that go in the airplanes at the Boeing plant in Everett, and now she is backpacking the entire nation while she is on her six month paid vacation which she accrued through the past ten years working at the plant. I asked for the check and then it hit me. Might be a slight chance that my wallet with all my credit cards is in an evidence box somewhere in a Boston Police facility…
But intuition works wonders sometimes. I reached unconsciously in the inner pocket of my jacket and I found a stack of rolled $20’s and I left one on the counter under the plates. Sierra touched my arms as I was getting up. “Can I come with you?”
“I’m heading to San Francisco and from what I recall Idaho is on the opposite direction of the country… ” As much as i wanted to sink my lips on her soft skin and smell the sweet feminine scent radiating from her, I was trying my best to discourage her from getting herself in a situation that she might regret later.
“Please?” Her puppy look in her eyes was killing me. “Hmmmm… You know sweetheart. You can come, but only up to the first sign of civilized dwelling grounds. Then we separate ways. Deal?”

We made our way outside to the parking lot and the look on Sierra’s face when she saw the Caddy was soooo amusing. A mix of horror and curiosity with a dash of excitement.
“Are you a funeral director or something?” She asked bewildered.
“Not really. I just happened to enjoy driving this type of car and the coffin in the back is there for entertainment purposes only. Want me to show you?”
“No. Uggghhh! It’s so hot in here. And it’s just December. Plus it’s getting dark.. can we go please?” Sierra was right. We should hit the road before it gets too dark and the adventures of the night begin.

I could feel the tension between Sierra and I. And it wasn’t sexual; her travel pack was resting between us on the long traditional luxury bench that every Cadillac has ever had since the beginning of the production.
For some reason a fly had a sweet tooth for my windshield. And that little fucker was fearless. I kept swatting it with the wipers but it kept returning. After the third time, I think I got the point across. It didn’t come back. The dashboard screen started beeping. It was a video chat call from Central Command.
I reluctantly touched accept. My intuition leading me to the conclusion that Arrgahal or one of the other Andromedan little shits would be on the other side initiating it. And I was right. Before hand though, I wanted to ensure that Sierra wouldn’t be startled from the ungodly sight of their faces so I told her a faux story about my nephew who suffered from a speech impediment due to multiple throat infections and his love for alien culture, thus he dressed like that to stay in character…
“You fuck face! Did you just destroy a monitoring drone?” Arrgahal sounded furious. “That was an one point five billion dollars piece of equipment.”
“No drones in sight for the current part of my drive. No idea what you are talking about… Little shit!”
“Hey, show some respect to your mentor. The drone that you happened to swat with the wipers.”
My whole attention was divided between driving and dealing with Arrgahal, thus I totally forgot about Sierra. Oh god! Her jaw had dropped and she wasn’t about to pick it up anytime soon…
“Who are you?” Her facial features set in bewilderment were beginning to look sexy by now.
I ended the call with Arrgahal and gave all the attention I could muster beside the driving to her.
“The question is… What am I? Hmmm… I am an experimental bad ass motherfucker that got himself in so much shit, thanks to my great grandfather being part of Americas’ elite rank. I happen to enjoy the benefits…”
“Wait… You’re part of the program that the barkeep was talking about?”
“Yep…”
“Are you a killer?”
“Not yet… Remember when I said that with the first sign of civilization we separate ways? That’s what I fear… I don’t want you to be part the unknown that’s out there for me… As a matter of fact, the coffin in the back is full of weapons. Arms that I need for a rainy day throughout my missions..”
Funny enough the words that would make anybody run, had the opposite effect with Sierra. She threw her travel pack through the divider, and it landed on top of the coffin with a ‘thunk’. Then she leaned closer to me, burying her face on my neck. “I wanna be part of it”, she murmured. Her lips were nibbling my shoulder blade when something on the road caught my attention. I slammed on the brakes. The two ton steel enforced funeral Caddy came into an abrupt stop. I definitely felt the rear end lift off the ground a couple of inches… Through the dusk light I saw a Mercedes 240D with hazard lights on. The driver and the passenger door were open. Sierra was begging me not to go out and investigate since this is a lonely stretch of highway and it might be a trap. I guided the Caddy carefully around the Benz and I spotted on the ground a couple laying down intact but unconscious. Their suitcases open on the road next to them. But the trunk of the car was closed. It doesn’t make sense… I started gliding my foot harder on the gas pedal when in the rear view mirror I saw a dozen or so people crawl out from behind a rock. Shaken I stepped on it while Sierra sent the central command a written message:
“Bunch of people hiding behind a rock.
Fake accident scene.
We dashed.”
Since I was doing 110 mph the return reply came about 5 miles later…
“Ahhh, the famous Ramselle’s Peak thiefs.
They dwell in the small ghost town called Ramselle, NV. Quick question for you, Beastie… Why are they still alive?”

The little Andromedan shit had a really good point… I eased the hearse on the side of the highway, and after making sure that we weren’t being followed, then tried to sweet talk Sierra into waiting for me on top of a rock with a shotgun for her safety… Any attempt was falling in deaf ears. We compromised on a middle ground. She would ride in the coffin bay where she would hand me any weapons that I might need during this mission through the divider. My very first mission.

I drove back to the scene and I caught the bastards just in time as they were trying to overwhelm another clueless driver. As they were making their way out of the hideout of the rock, I stepped on it. Adrenaline pumping high! The fat Michellins pushing ahead then crunching flesh and bones. Nobody messes with innocent hard working people. Not on my watch. Through the headlights I could see a trio of the bandits running, then “crack”, several flashes of light…
“You motherfuckers. It never had to come to this… Sierra! Gun!” I couldn’t believe my own voice bellowing like that… What had I become? She handed me a pumped action Remington 1100 shotgun. I exited the Caddy and started blasting through the night. Successful hits denoted by the moans and gurgles of those miserable bastards. After taking a deep breath, I relayed a message to Arrgahal:
Subjects down.
Ramselle’s Point a blood bath.
I’m dashing.”

Three miles ahead, i pulled on the side. Sierra was still a mess. I went around the back and craddled her on my arms as I tried my best to comfort her. I was shaken too, but not as much..
Her arms wrapped tightly around my neck, I whispered a vow to her. A promise to never let anything hurt her as long as she is under my wings. Her response came in the form of a kiss. Passionate… moanings… it felt good but it didn’t feel right to go all the way. It felt like taking advantage if I did… Sierra begun to snore softly on my arms…
I hit the radio. A wonderful guitar intro followed by a meaningful voice:

“Hush now don’t cry
Wipe away the teardrop from your eye
You’re lying safe in bed
It was all a bad dream
Spinning in your head
Your mind tricked you to feel the pain
Of someone close to you leaving the game of life
So here it is, another chance
Wide awake you face the day
Your dream is over
Or has it just begun?”

Another tiny voice joined here and there, or so I thought..
I lowered the volume knob and there it is… the Andromedan little shit…
“Arrgahal! How do you…. Where are you?”
“At the Command… Your two way was open… How’s the reproduction coming?”

Ahhhh, f……

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