|Purple Rain creatchi story |
| 6/13/2016|| 2|
This has been rewritten and published here
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/13/2016|| 2|
June 13 Chapter 4 - The girl's daddy began to worry that his little girl was spending too much time alone in her room, and began tempting her to stay out of it with him, "Let's bake cookies!", "Let's play in the living room with your legos!", "Let's color coloring books in the yard on a picnic blanket!", became his every-day-parenting-strategy. Each time she said "yes" she seemed a little more unhappy. He did not know why. So, he was unhappy too.
June 13 Chapter 5 - Finally, all was resolved when he happened into her room to find her playing with a creature he had never before seen! His relief at finally understanding made him warm to the creature immediately, and now the three became inseparable. From cooking dinner, to TV movie family night, to teeth brushing and tucking-in, all was done with the three, and the creatchi found he had two parents, a playful one, and a very larger & wiser one.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/14/2016|| 2|
June 14 Chapter 6 - Many experimentations now came into play: What can it eat? Does it like wearing clothes? Will it drink tea? Why is it staring unblinkingly at the light on the microwave? What will it think of music? And many times came the concern "Where did it GO?" as the small mysterious being loved to fit itself into small spaces and wait discovery: a shoe, a purse, a laundry pile, a dirty cup in the sink.
June 14 Chapter 7 - After much research the father came to the conclusion that he had no idea what to call the baby, as a living being. Because he could find no evidence that there were more like it on the internet, he laid a ground rule, "No one else can see it or know about it." This rule was soon tested as the neighbor boy, "Mitt" came over to borrow salt for his mother who was cooking soup. Instead of knocking, he walked right in, while the critter was scurrying up the kitchen curtains to sit on the curtain rod and ride it like a horsey. Even so young, baby sensed the change in the father and daughter's demeanor, and sensed something was wrong. He froze like a statue until the new human left. All three sighed heavily. Then laughed.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/15/2016|| 1|
June 15 Chapter 8 - To maintain secrecy, the creature was then "trained" to hide when a knock on the door happened. This was VERY easy training because 1) the baby loved hiding anyway and 2) each time he did it well, he was given a slice of carrot, which made him concentrate very hard on the task, for the carrot was supremely his favorite food. By using the hiding theme, the two humans had tried to teach the critter to "hide" his poo poo in the toilet. This had mixed results. Once, he swam in after and almost flushed himself - this training was abandoned.
June 15 Chapter 9 - By this time, the creatchi had grown a bit, and the father decided it must be a boy after all. "But I named her Purple Rain Sprinkles!" complained the daughter. "Let's call him PRS, for short." For some reason this made the little girl sad, which made PRS worry. She went to the living room and pouted on the couch. He crawled into her lap, laid on his back, and looked into her face. "eem very happy" he said suddenly, in a wee wiry voice, after which she squealed, grabbed up PRS, ran to the father in the kitchen and told him what happened. PRS could SPEAK! Sadness over, joy and wonder commenced.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/16/2016|| 1|
Chapter 10 - They kept the little one successfully secret for several days, as young PRS now faithfully hid when various people came to the door, he obeyed cautiously when all three played and explored in the woods-deep back yard, and he knew to be quiet whenever someone called on the phone.
There were only two further close calls. The first was when the UPS man, Sam, had a package to deliver and walked up to the door just as the father had opened it on their way out to play in the the back yard. PRS was already perched on the girls hand and struck a full legs-out arms-out pose and FROZE, pretending to be a stuffed toy. She giggled the entire time. As he left, Sam looked back at her quizzically, as if he wasn't sure about certain things.
The next time it was a boy selling candy for his baseball team. The nornchi leapt from his hiding place behind the kitchen door in the waste basket on to the top of the door, peering down at the boy, for the heady aroma of chocolate lured PRS to un-hide. The little girl gasped, and the father, attempting to distract the boy from looking up, started clapping his hands, singing, shoved money at him, grabbed two candy bars, and shut the door, grabbing PRS before it slammed shut. But one day, it was hiders end game.
Chapter 11 - PRS was publicly discovered on a Wednesday, only two weeks from hatch date. How it happened was this: Mitt, the kid from next door, came over to pay back the salt that his mother had borrowed. He hummed and held a salt container in one hand. His dimples were showing, as though although not really smiling, he felt a happiness.
The father opened the kitchen door to the knock, chatted a few moments, but not asking him in. But then, wildly, PRS leapt out of hiding in the big 64 crayon box by the girl, bounded over the kitchen table, and jumped straight on to Mitt's face, little fingers locked in Mitt's hair, belly full on his nose, and paused.
Then PRS turned 180 degrees by working hard to grab face and ears and hair and chin, like a backwards ticking clock, and went scurrying downward like a squirrel down to Mitt's chest and right into the inside of his jacket! The father's jaw dropped open, the girl stood up in shock from the kitchen table where she had been pretending to color, and everyone just stood there for a full 5 chilling seconds, breathing hard with hearts a beating and eyes darting. Out from the jacket zipper popped TWO nornchi heads. Mitt was quickly whisked inside and much human talk ensued.
I am always never sometimes serious.
Chapter 12 - Discovery
It was then that some common truths came out, which Mitt now explained to the three.. truths which had been whispered and hidden for several days among many, but not publicized to all. There were in fact many creatchi scattered throughout the town, all having come from the same rain storm. All hatched in secret. All the same age, until they began discovering one another in various ways. There began to be secret human meetings and "creatchi play dates" around town- discussions on topics such as food and care, and so much joy each time another creatchi was introduced to others of their own kind. Fast friendships were created between human and creatchi neighbors. In this small town, people often ran in to each other at the post office, doctor's office, church, store or school play or sporting event, and knew each other to some general extent. So now, every "creatchi owner" kept an eye out for any neighbors "acting odd" in case it indicated a hidden creatchi within a family, in order to discover other "creatchi families" and bring them into the known fold.
Chapter 13 - Mitt's Scouting
Mitt had become the best creatchi hunting scout in town due partly his active-boy habit of moving all about town all week for various reasons, and also due to both his own keen observations and the bubbly social nature of his own nornchi. He had grown to suspect his own neighbors just might be harboring a creatchi based on three things. First, when he happened to spot them at the market one day, he noticed they had bought a lot of fruit and vegetables and less canned soups and other "easy" food that the single dad typically purchased. It was a casual business and Mitt remembered saying in passing "Getting healthy eh?" as he passed them on his way to check out at front. This didn't cause suspicion at the time, but he thought about it again later when the second oddity was noticed. Mitt's neighbors had never before cared about whether all of the window blinds and curtains were shut at night, until now. Since he had known them, as he came home from a sporting practice, or gazed out his own bedroom window at night, he might catch movement in a window, and notice them eating, or playing, or washing dishes inside their home lit up with warm glowing lamps for night time life. But over the last few weeks or so, every single window blind was shut tight every night. Third, they always invited people in; gave a cookie, shared a story, spent time, whenever folks came by. But Mitt had watched them closely these last four days from his window where he had a good view of their kitchen door and side yard. They didn't invite anyone in, not anymore. So Mitt had decided they needed The Test.
Chapter 14 - Mitt's Story
Once Mitt suspected someone of hiding a creatchi, he had a game plan. He had at first trained his own nornchi, Suzy, to hide in his jacket merely so he could walk around town with her, always keeping her near. He loved Suzy, she was a gorgeous red little girl with adoring sparkling blue eyes and he felt all the Protector in him surge through his veins when he looked at her. He could fight a dragon for Suzy. Suzy would snuggle down and stay happily quiet in his jacket until he whistled, then she knew she could peek out to see the world. She had biked around with him, and he had shown her the lake, parts of the zoo, and a few hiking trails. After a few days of explorations of this kind, he had tested her around people. He could casually glance down into his jacket and see her staring up at him, wide eyed and hushed, her eyebrows twitching curiously as he spoke with friends and townspeople. At one point, at the butter lady's house, buying farm butter for mom, Suzy just shot up straight and fully looked right out of his jacket, her entire little head exposed, and at the same time another nornchi peeked right out from under the butter lady's straw flowered hat. Once Mitt knew Suzy could instantly sense other creatchi, Suzy became the official Creatchi Detector.
Due partly to their diligence, and other random and sometimes funny discoveries among other folks, 18 creatchi were now known to live in and around the town.
...tune in Monday for the next chapters
I am always never sometimes serious.
Oops had no time to write, check back another day
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/21/2016|| 1|
Chapter 15 - Introduction
Back to the moment Mitt was whisked into the house of the father and the little girl. Grabbed by the collar, he was, and roughly lurched inside, the door slamming after. Mitt stumbled a bit and righted himself, grabbing his jacket front, lest the two new fuzzy friends be dislodged and fall. Dad said "How..?!" Girl said "What do you?!" and nornchis began to giggle. They giggled for a minute straight, starting and stopping in little giggle sequences, each giggle ending and then a pause for a deep breath, and then a new giggle sequence, until the humans began to giggle as well. Pure delight.
"Sit down." Dad said, hand extended toward a chair, trying to be polite after having rough-handled the boy into the house. Mitt sat and opened his jacket. Two nornchis stood on each of his thighs. PRS was absolutely amazed and Suzy kept holding her own mouth as if she was too happy to speak. PRS began gently poking at her face and arms and asked "Purple Rain Sprinkles?" Dad and girl laughed, both saying, "No.." but Mitt said "Yes." Then, he looked up at the girl, "Purple Rain Sprinkles is his name, right?" The girl nodded, shyly. PRS looked at Mitt and touched his arm as a child would his mother as if he knew Mitt could help, and he so wanted Mitt to help.
Mitt, having experience with nornchi lines of thought said, "This is a Purple Rain Sprinkle. But a different one. She has the same head, see?" And PRS took Suzy's head in both hands and patted her wavy hair on either side, smiling and looking somehow worried. "She has the same arms and legs, see?" And PRS poked at her arms and legs, she giggling in response. "She even has the same fingers too. But you are a boy and she is a girl, and her name is Suzy. Suzy lives at my house." The girl unexpectedly said, "Suzy" aloud, for out of pure unbelief over seeing another nornchi, she must say the name to make this moment real.
Chapter 16 - Welcome Creatchi Station KBOB
Mitt pretty much knew what should be done next so, first, to help PRS understand that Suzy was the same kind of being, and not a reflection, but an actual sibling of sorts, of all places, he asked if he could take them to the bathroom. "It will help him understand what is happening, because at this point, he needs it to sink in that she is real and his same kind." "Oh, uhm, OK, in here," replied the dad.
They all went to the hall bathroom, and Mitt took both creatchi and placed them side by side on the counter, where their full reflections showed in the mirror. For the next ten or fifteen minutes, the nornchi spoke and repeated many phrases back and forth, touching hands, touching the mirror, touching their own reflection, touching each other's faces, and looking at their own reflection and the others' reflections over and over. The dad and girl did not even realize PRS knew some of these words, and also, Suzy seemed to be teaching him new words as well.
Once they had got in a repetitive groove, Mitt began telling the two humans all about the others, the discoveries, the town meetings, and asked if they had a radio. As dad went to get the radio, Mitt and the girl took the nornchi to the living room, so that now that PRS understood exactly who Suzy was, and had no more worry on his happy face, they could learn to play. For PRS had not learned to play with nornchi, and it was a very different kind of play, than human interaction. Mitt knew PRS and Suzy would be busy for at least an hour learning how to play the nornchi way. Dad came back with the radio from the basement.
Mitt explained some more about how various play dates and meetings went, who some of the members were, to which dad would interject, "Oh Mike, ok wow..", and "Oh Bonnie Smithers too you say?.." Finally, Mitt ended their evening with a key piece of information, "Remember Bob over on Alabama Street? Well he has a shortwave radio...and a nornchi like you. He broadcasts on a really low a.m. station every night at 9:45pm, so that we owners can know what the schedule is for activities. We call it KBOB.. That's sort of a joke. Here's the station.."
Mitt tuned the radio dial and static played. "To keep it a secret, Bob will say something like 'we are on at 8 on 10 and 5'. So, you get out your town phone book. The first part is the time - the meeting would be at 8pm the following night. Go to page 10 of the phone book, and look at line 5, see? If he said 'we are on at 8 on 10 and 5' you'd know we're all meeting at the Samson Street church at 8pm. It's always kept a secret and it's always in a basement or the back of a place or somewhere more hidden.
Park your car somewhere out of sight, if you have to drive to the location." Dad said, "OK.. wait...nornchi?" "Oh! that's what they're called! Suzy and Purple Rain Sprinkles are nornchi," Mitt paused, "You guys have so much you get to find out! I'm not even gonna spoil it!" and he chuckled, looked at Suzy, and said, "We did it Suzy, we got another one!" Suzy bounced over to him and hugged his leg. PRS began bouncing everywhere. Everyone began bouncing everywhere. It took an hour of play, and another half hour of gently helping PRS say goodnight to Suzy, before he could let her leave. To say later that PRS slept well, is the understatement of the century.
I am always never sometimes serious.
Chapter 17 Tempest
About an hour after Mitt left, dad and girl and PRS sat in the living room, in their pajamas, all circled around the radio which was perched on the coffee table, and listened intently. Promptly at 9:45pm, a voice crackled through the radio static, competing with the fuzzy background noise, sounding as if far off, saying, "Hello boys and girls! We have a new day to play! We are on tomorrow at 8 on 12 and 3, see you there, and guess what? We have a new member! Come say hello!" And then it was gone. Nothing more. Dead static resumed.
The phone book lay on the table, and the girl turned it to page 12. PRS sprawled out on it as if to help. But mainly, he laid on top of the page she needed to look at and she had to lift his arm to find line 3. She said, "I've got it! It's going to be at the Town History Museum on 9th street."
After putting "the kids" to bed directly afterwards, dad laid on his own pillow. But unlike PRS snoring away in the next room, dad could not sleep. So much information was rolling around in his head, "Nornchi, he called them... Bob, Mike...and Bonnie too. I just saw Mike, where was it.. over at the gas station, he was just gassing up the truck, I'd no idea. How many? 18 did he say, 18 little critters around town and everyone keeping a tight lid on it. And everyone meeting together and I'd no clue. 18 families, that could easily be 40 people who all know. How did they all find each other? How can it be kept secret?"
It would be different now, it would feel odd at first, bringing PRS somewhere TO BE SEEN. All the effort they had taken to keep PRS hidden, from everyone, was effectively over. Now he would be known, he would be befriended by humans and nornchis alike. It was going to be a different world for them. They had kept their cherished little secret safe, their 'private' joy, diligently, 24/7. Now they would have to share PRS with others. How would that go? Would it be all positive? How will this effect my daughter...And a hundred other thoughts flooded and bubbled and circled like rain, rivulets and swirls of water in a storm, until his worries all poured out and he finally dropped into oblivion.
Chapter 18 Calm Before a Storm
Mitt came over early the next day to make sure they had heard the schedule. He hadn't brought Suzy because he said the meetings were tiring on the nornchis and they should both rest up for the evening's event. PRS looked very sad when he realized Suzy was not with Mitt, but Mitt was ready. Mitt knelt down and said to PRS, "You will see Suzy later today, ok?" and handed PRS a photo of her.
PRS looked at the paper Mitt had placed in his hand and broke into a huge grin and RAN to the girl's bedroom. Curious, they followed and all three peeked around the doorway. PRS was just sitting on the bed, smiling ear to ear, looking at the photo, staring at it, not speaking, but wiggling his feet. Then flipped over on his belly and crammed the precious photo under the pillow and popped down off of the bed. He walked right past everyone into the kitchen saying, "eem miss Suzy." They chuckled.
The girl, considerably younger and awed by Mitt, finally got her courage up to speak to him directly. "Uhm... Mitt?" she said, a bit fidgety, "Could we ask some things?" "Oh yeah", said dad, "We've put together a list of questions this morning that we thought we should know before we go tonight." "Of course!" Mitt said. The girl looked at a paper in her hands, and asked, "Do others ever dress up their nornchis?" Mitt replied, "If the nornchis like it, some like it and some don't, but you don't have to."
Going down the list, they learned that nornchis ate a variety of foods, so they didn't have to worry about feeding PRS all fruits and vegetables, though they should never make him eat something he did not like the taste of, it actually damaged them mentally somehow to be forced.
PRS' favorite things to do on his own were to climb, and to close doors, but, they now learned that many nornchis preferred very different activities. Many, though, liked a common action: to sweep with brooms.
Some had to have brooms hidden from them, or they would sweep all day long. Not that they did it "well" and handheld whisk brooms were best liked. They would sweep the floor, the bed, the table and the walls. That plates, pictures and nicknacks would come crashing to the floor didn't matter to them, it just gave them something more to sweep up.
Most were afraid of vacuum cleaners. Most got along with cats and dogs, with an exception or two and all of them loved human babies. In fact, if you were around a baby, you had to be careful that your nornchi stay hidden, for it might be tempted to come out to look and fondly interact with any human baby.
The very last question on the list made the girl pause, almost too embarrassed to ask, as it had to do with potty training. The two newest members of the nornchi "parenting society" were afraid they may have missed the boat on what to do in that area with their nornchi. Mitt calmed their fears, as every nornchi seemed to be different in their preferences and ability to learn in this area, but that they generally, once together, tended to learn the best bathroom habits from the nornchis who had the best habits, so these things evened out in time.
Mitt bade goodbye, and now the two humans busied themselves with little tasks to bide the time, ever looking at the clock, though not all thoughts were pleasant.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/26/2016|| 1|
Chapter 19 Old Museum
At the appropriate time, dad and girl donned their coats and headed through the house to the kitchen door. PRS wore a very wee tie, as he was no longer "game" for dressing in the full clothing that the girl had subjected him to early on, when she had thought PRS a girl and had dressed him for tea parties and the like. The last time she had tried to dress him in a small flower-printed t-shirt made for one of her dolls, he had grunted and pulled at it, twirling around and clawing at his neck as if he were being strangled in a straightjacket. She had immediately taken it back off and sat stunned, hoping she had not hurt his feelings or made him angry or unduly stressed. He noticed her concerned expression and patted her leg sadly. Then he had picked up a stray ribbon and tied it very loosely, best he could, around his own neck, raised one arm high in the air in an unprofessional pose and smiled tentatively at her as if to cheer her up. She was amazed that rather than resenting her for doing something he obviously hadn't liked, he still cared about her feelings and had tried to please HER. He really was the best of friends.
So tonight, PRS wore a tie she had borrowed from a teddy bear. It was a smart blue tie with a happy shark right in the middle and swirly water waves all over the rest of it. Dad called it a "power tie" though she did not know what that meant. Looking down at PRS, who was excited and looking up at her, twittering in his own nonsensical private language and fidgeting with his hands and feet, she realized suddenly that PRS had gotten bigger, not a baby, not by a long shot, more of a child now. She wondered what age he really was, since he was certainly growing faster than a human would. At this rate, very soon he might in his mind at least, be older than she. It seemed a good time for PRS to meet more of his own kind. She felt very motherly, and knelt down and kissed his head. He put his arms up just as a human toddler might, wanting to be picked up, she gladly did and turned to the door.
The location of the "meeting" was not too far away, however it was not walking distance. Furthermore, clouds were moving in and heavy rain was predicted for later that evening, so the car was a must. For now, it was pleasantly warm and breezy and since heavy rains posed no threat to the area, as the thick carpet of trees, moss and forest greenery that surrounded the hilly town would simply soak it up and drink it in, the worst one could look forward to was getting wet.
Finding the Town History Museum was no difficulty, they had been there a few times in summers past to while away an afternoon, ice cream cones in-hand, as many town families did. It was one of an assortment of amusing interests in the small town, housed in a largish old school building built near the middle of town back in the town's heyday in the 1800's, when lumberjacks, millmen, gold miners, hunters, trappers, farmers, and their families moved in an inflated the population and creating a history rich in both heritage, fortune, and myth. The town had so exploded in size due to the relative convenience of through roads, water giving rivers, pleasant climate and rich soil, that within 20 years it had become a central dwelling place for the rich for workers and for every sort of supporting business required to feed, clothe and house them and tend to their livestock, a buzzing town of about four thousand.
As is common over eras, towns that boom often fizzle, and the gold mines dried up, the rich lost their wealth in the 1920's depression, and wars and larger cities drew people away. The town dwindled to a handful and then built gradually to its present population of 995. It was too far away from major highways to be considered by commuters who worked in the cities, and too far away from civilization to attract many who were used to all of the modern conveniences one expected these days. Now, it was home to a few telecommuters, artists and locals who liked to be away from the hustle of major society, a few goat and alpaca farms, a few berry and sundry vegetable farms, a summer camp, several Bed-and-Breakfasts and one still-working mine -for tourists who wanted a taste of the old mining life. The mine had a gold panning stream and one pretty cavern with stalactites and stalagmites. The town's historical charm brought regular tourists who participated by visiting the old grand houses, and who shopped for the products of its farming and home spun wares in several small gift shops and outdoor markets.
It was quaint, and woodsy and an attractive getaway for those who liked quaint and woodsy vacations where no breathtaking scenery drew thousands, but a hand made piece of art or a hike or woodland drive could smooth away the cares of everyday modern life. With a regular smallish tourist and summer camp revenue, the town brought in enough income each year to maintain its oldest most cherished historical buildings, including the site the three now drove themselves to. The large multi-roomed schoolhouse kept safe many old artifacts from those old glory days, many framed faded photos, old mementos and old lore, and into they assumed the basement of this old venerable storage place was to be the much anticipated meeting of new and strange friends.
They parked a few streets away, as directed, noticing many cars dotted here and there within about a four block area around the schoolhouse. Walking down the streets toward the meeting, all was quiet, they seemed to be the last to arrive. It was easy for the girl to conceal PRS, as he was not yet too big to fit inside her rain jacket.
She couldn't remember ever having seen him in the dark with his eyes open, usually he slept solidly during these summer nights and she had never seen him awake at night within a dark room. When she looked down once into her jacket, in the pitch darkness, tucked away from the few street lamps and outside building lights, he looked up with her with trusting eyes that now glowed a soft pale blue. It was so beautiful it caught her breath. Blue was not even his eye color in daylight. Dad asked, "You ok?" She said, "Yep." and on they strode, seeing the object of their journey, dark and silent under the thickening clouds that now closed out the moonlight. "Is anyone really here?" she whispered. "Let's go to the back door." he whispered back. And around the side of the building they went, on a small paved pathway.
At the back, just as they rounded the corner, the lone back door simply opened, noiselessly and black, no light streamed out at all. They paused, but it was no use to be afraid, they knew who was here, they knew this was for them. They were being invited, silently, carefully. They had been watched, waited for, it was known they had arrived and they were being admitted in. It was only secrecy using darkness to provide safety for all. Their inclusion into the secret society was happening right now, and a chill of excitement bolted through the three as they quietly hurried up the steps and the dark enveloped them.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/26/2016|| 1|
Chapter 20 Orientation
Once inside, the old door closed without so much as a creak, the pitch black surrounded them and a faceless voice quietly said, "down this way." They sensed movement on their right as the unknown doorman passed by them and opened an inner door that offered some small amount of light, and a view of stairs going down. They silently obeyed and headed down the stairs which curved on a landing and brought them into a dimly lit area just at the bottom. To their right was the right-most outer wall of the building and two chairs along it. In front of them was a door that was closed and must lead to the basement proper, and just to the left of this door was a smiling man at a very small table with something like a guest book and pen. To the absolute left, another door to possibly to an office, considering it would be a room along the opposite long wall of the museum.
The smiling man immediately stood up and extended his arm, chuckling, and dad exclaimed, "Jim!" to which the men shook hands heartily and exchanged delighted greetings. Jim was a townie born and raised, got a college degree in Speech Pathology in the closest mid size city several hours drive away, and had made an office working within the realm of speech therapy there. He knew the dad well, they had attended the same small high school together though they were not close friends back then. He had not been back in town in a few years. How he was back in the small town and involved in this new secret society was anyone's guess.
Jim began giving a welcome speech of sorts that sounded more business-like than the dad was expecting, ending with, "So, what we have here is an agreement that everyone must sign before being granted admittance to the research team or the main room. You sign it just the once, never again. So, I'm gonna need your patience for just a few minutes as we have to have you read this contract through, sign it, then meet with research. Only then can you freely mingle with the rest of the membership." Dad looked doubtful, "What is this about Jim.." Jim, gestured with is hand in a calming gesture saying, "Here, you'll understand, just read it and it will make perfect sense, I promise," and handed the document toward dad, motioning toward the chairs by the wall.
"Dad, can we go in..?" the girl asked softly and shyly but obviously impatient. A lot of excitement had been built up this last 24 hours only to be halted right in front of the door that led to the answers of all their curious wonderings. The tone seemed cautious and the girl was afraid they were about to be gravely disappointed and turned away. What if dad didn't want to sign this "contract"? Oh how she wanted to just run to that door, rip it open, and see all the mysteries that must be on the other side of it! Jim replied to her, though she hadn't addressed him, "I completely understand, just hang on a sec." and he leaned over and tapped three times on the main door. A half minute later it opened revealing nothing behind it but some sort of curtain and yet Mitt and Suzy came out and greeted the them.
Jim said, "I tell you what, you can complete both the contract and the research interview in the office, while Mitt and Suzy sit and chat with your lovely daughter and....." he stopped, realizing he hadn't even seen the creature they must have brought with them. "PRS" the girl answered back, feeling instantly bolder with Mitt and Suzy near. She opened her jacket, letting PRS see Suzy. They twittered and hugged all grins and joy. Mitt and Suzy sat in the chairs and chatted away like old friends and giggled as their creatures lovingly poked and chittered and hugged over and over.
Dad leaned in to Jim, saying "What's with this 'meeting with research' team thing?" Jim motioned him closer so they they could quietly speak together while the kids were busy, "Look, I usually don't even let you near research until you sign, but I'm trying to trust you here. Look, Donna Kay is our primary researcher. You know her right? I'm not even supposed to tell you that yet, but I've known you a long time, and Mitt has told us all about you guys and we are expecting that everything here tonight is going to turn out ok.. speak with Donna, please, we must have you speak with her before you can meet the others, before you have any experience with the others, before you are 'tainted' by association, by the opinions, ideas, and conclusions drawn by the others. It's for all our good, it's for the record here of this amazing 'thing' that is happening, and it's for honest research, for our benefit, for 'their' benefit," he said motioning to either the kids or the creatures, or both, dad was not sure. Jim smiled, "OK?" and the dad dropped his eyes to the papers and began reading, opened the door to the office, and, keeping it open on purpose, looked one more long time at Jim as if to indicate he wanted the door to remain open, and entered the office.
In the office was a desk facing him, a chair behind it and a chair in front of it and another door to the right, and not much else. The other door must also open to the main room of the basement. The dad sat down in the closest chair and spread the four page document in front of him, reading quickly. It was a legal contract stating that he and the members of his household were joining a membership club legally incorporated as the "Critter Preservation Club of Boom Woods" whose sole purpose was the care and research of wildlife in and surrounding the town and that by signing and joining this club, they were legally bound to not only report any wounded or diseased creature they may be aware of, but work toward the preservation of all life of the creatures in and around the township, and that any club information or research gained by or through the club was to be kept strictly confidential with serious legal implications if the entirety of the terms of this membership were not met.
The dad could tell that by using generic terms such as "creatures" and "life" they were referring to the nornchis but no one outside of the town would know that. It looked legal, and it looked not only safe to sign, but the wording gave the dad such an impression that serious consideration had been given to this "meeting group" to help all understand the seriousness of the responsibility they had been imbued to not only care for the creatures, but keep their existence a safe secret.
He was surprised that whatever legal hoops one must have to jump through to create a legally chartered and registered "club" had already been done, legal papers of this caliber already drawn up... Who had organized this so thoroughly in the short time these creatures had appeared on the scene? They'd had to have completed several levels of submitting and presenting documentation and fees to get this 'preservation club' this far. It was impressive. It seemed a little bit of overkill, but in a way perhaps necessary to make sure everyone did their due diligence to not spoil this wonderful experience for everyone else. If legal documentation helped ensure that, he was all for it.
As he was signing the document, the side door opened, and Donna stepped in. She looked in his eyes in her assessing kind of way, shook his hand and reached out silently for the papers, looked at them and made sure they were properly signed and dated, "Good, good.." she said as a doctor might, looking over a patient's chart, which came naturally because she was a nurse. Unknowing of the silent agreement with Jim, she stepped to the door he'd entered and shut it, the dad catching a glimpse of his daughter and Mitt happily chatting away. He supposed after reading the documentation that it should be alright. He felt better about things now. Very soon he would feel a bit worse.
I am always never sometimes serious.
Chapter 21 Research
Donna went round the desk, grabbed the back of the chair, and dragged it around to the side where the dad sat, sitting down next to him, folded her hands in her lap, and smiled in her nurse-like manner she had honed from many hours of interaction with patients over her 10 years of nursing experience. "It has been my elected job within the "CP Club" to focus on, record, create and administrate research about this strange phenomenon we are all witnesses to. It is of utmost importance that we figure out all that we can both for now and the future."
That seemed logical, someone had to examine these happenings and ask more scientific questions. She seemed like as good a candidate as any. She was well known as a matter-of-fact no nonsense woman who did her job well. She could be warm, but more often, she could be clinical, which actually was the ideal characteristic when you wanted to trust a medical person. Her profession had always been her main focus in life, even from high school, where both Jim and the dad had known her, though she graduated a few years ahead of them. She also had moved to the city, completed her degree, and worked there, though she came into town about once a month to be available to the townsfolk as needed. She had a designated "exam room" beside the barber shop, and everyone knew her number.
The scientific angle agreed with him so far, he simply didn't like being put on the spot, unexpectedly and with implication of exclusion if he disagreed to participate.
"What do you know so far"? the dad asked. "A lot, actually, and we'll share with you all we know, especially now," she held up the signed contract. "But first, you are extremely valuable to me for one reason. You're new. You and your daughter have the distinct significance of having raised a nornchi by yourselves thus far and I want all the observations I can get from you. I will not question HER like this, of course, I just hope she befriends me and I can get her honest observations as an innocent child shares her excitement when she sees new things, even that can help us too, but you, I want to really drill into what you know this first time. After this first meeting, you can come and go to the other meetings as you like and share with me whatever and whenever you want. If the research team finds out more information - solves more puzzles, I share our findings with everyone, you'll see that."
She paused, putting the paper down and sighed. The dad wondered how many times she had done this. Was "research" a new department in this "club" or was she one of the first members?
She continued, "You have been an isolated cell, as most of us were of course, for a period of time with our own creatures, and we have found that the first meeting with a new family is extremely helpful. So, I am going to ask you some questions, is that ok, are you ok with all of this?"
"Sure." He said, not really meaning it.
"OK" she said, gauging his answer and realizing he was playing along. She decided her course. She brought out a recorder and clicked the record button.
"Describe the setting you found this nornchi, you, yourself." she stated.
"Well," he sighed, anticipating a long interview, "Actually, I just opened my daughter's bedroom door, and there she was playing with him."
Donna paused, letting him revisit the memory, letting him picture the scene. She said very casually as if talking to an old friend over coffee, "Really, you say, in her bedroom. just...playing away, now that's quite a moment to remember, isn't it?" He looked up, his face affirming, nodding slightly, responding well to the warmth in her voice. Then she became a bit colder, "Tell me, how did you feel when you found your daughter playing with some strange 'animal' on the floor of your home? Were you... frightened for her safety? Were you afraid she might get bit? Did it cross your mind that she might be exposed to disease? Did you scoop her up and contain the animal so that you could find out what it was, be sure it was safe for your small, vulnerable child to be around?"
"Well, uh...let me think, uhm," and now a crumbling realization, a sinking feeling grew, a leaning toward identifying himself as a supremely foolish single dad, a father who should very well have thought of all of these things when he saw his daughter with some strange foreign animal-like creature, a creature he had no personal knowledge or experience with, on the floor of her bedroom of all places, her sanctuary, her safe place.
He could see the moment in slow motion. What had he done? Sat down on the carpet and played legos with them in some sort of rapturous amazement? He at once felt a pang of painful idiotic irresponsibility and growing dismay as he thought of all the different scenarios that could have led to his daughter becoming harmed by a creature neither one of them had any foreknowledge of..when his troubled thoughts were interrupted by a hand on his arm.
Looking up, Donna met his eyes, and with sincerity, "This is the point, none of us did. We don't know what these creatures are, we don't know where they came from, we didn't know anything about them the moment we met them, yet, every single person here, regardless of age or experience, regardless of whether they were the most crotchety person in town, the most cynical, even non-pet owners, when they met one of these creatures, were at once 'smitten'. That is what happened to all of us. I just want to ask the question no one has been asking, 'Why'."
Dad looked down and running through his mind were all of the peaceful wonderful home-life days that had represented his last few weeks with the creature he loved and knew so little about. He had asked no questions, he had had no concerns at all, except that his daughter be happy and 'his' creature kept safe and secret.
He looked back up and met her steady gaze, "How can I help?"
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/28/2016|| 1|
Chapter 22 Curtain Call
Twenty minutes later, dad and Donna came through the door to the "lobby" area. Dad looked practically disheveled. Donna handed the paperwork to Jim and immediately went to the kids and knelt down. "Well hello, precious little one." She spoke softly to PRS, her eyes then immediately went to the girl. "He's beautiful. You have obviously been a very good mom." Donna smiled warmly. The girl at once looked at her with gleaming eyes and instant gratitude. Little girls 'mother', this is why most have dolls, this is why they have tea parties and play 'house'. They long to CARE for others from day one. Donna, in her expert understanding of human nature had hit upon the one compliment that would endear her to the little girl immediately. "Hello, I'm Donna and I guess you could consider me the nornchi doctor here," she continued, still smiling. The little girl had never met Donna before, never having needed any casual medical help from the town office. "Hello." She replied, smiling and still giddy at having been called the nornchi's 'mom' by an older woman, a woman who probably knew what a real mom was. After all, the little girl had never had a mother, and never before had made the connection that she was a real bonafide 'little mother' until now. Her heart swelled at the realization.
"Can I ask you three little questions about your little fella here?" Donna continued, "You see, I write all their names down and like to keep a few details on them so that if he ever needs help some day, I already kind of know him."
"OK." the girl responded openly.
"Wonderful. Now, what do you call him?" Donna got out a little notebook from her pocket, and a pencil and poised her pencil as if waiting to write. PRS reached out and touched the pencil, holding it as well, perhaps he thought he was helping.
The little girl giggled, and answered "PRS." Then, in a whisper, "It stands for Purple Rain Sprinkles, but don't tell anyone that because at first I thought he was a girl." and she caught herself and glanced at Mitt quickly, hoping he would keep her secret. Mitt read her expression accurately, saying, "It's OK he's PRS to me from now on."
"Hello, handsome little PRS." and Donna took his little hand off of the pencil and shook it as you would at a business meeting. All of his fingers wrapped around one of hers. Suzy giggled, and chittered something unintelligible, and PRS looked over at Suzy, giggled as well, and the nornchis began shaking hands together and giggling in turn. That they shook the wrong hands and then their own hands made Mitt laughingly smile.
"Well, they are quite the giggle-bots tonight aren't they?" Donna spoke softly, smiling, and writing on her notepad. "Second question, did you find him, or did he find you?"
"Oh I found his egg in the grass, after a rain storm was over. I went out into the yard and I found it and picked it up." She responded, offering information she had never told anyone else, simply because no one had yet asked, though her story lacked the importance of having seen it fall from the sky in the rain. She had simply forgot that momentarily, eager to set forth her own part in the story, as children do - her young mind not recognizing it for the significant detail that it was. Her dad's color drained from his face, he thinking once again of unknown dangers, but she didn't notice, her eyes fixed on the friendly gaze of Donna, the nornchi doctor and her newest confidante.
"Ok that's amazing, you found it as an egg still, wow do you know that is actually rare." Donna said, sounding impressed, again complimenting the girl. She had a way of speaking to the young that at once made them feel special and at ease yet not condescended to. It worked all its charms on the young girl.
"OK, last question. What is the latest, newest, interesting thing you have noticed your nornchi do?" Donna asked, looking at the girl and poising her pencil as if ready to scratch to the paper whatever answer the girl may give.
It made the girl feel important, it made her feel that anything she now said would be interesting, would be amazing, would be the most desired thing in Donna's life. Donna was waiting with a pleased expression, so obviously eager to hear what the girl could offer. This delivery of the last question after such a positive response to the first two questions, set the girl up to really WANT to share with her any deepest secrets she might possess. So, to give her the best thing she had, she told her what she had kept from even her dad, just minutes ago. She said, leaning in with earnest effect, "Well, I didn't notice this until tonight, but when PRS is in the dark, the total dark, and his eyes are open, they GLOW BLUE." She emphasized these last words, her eyes widening, hoping to knock Donna's socks off.
"You don't say!" she breathed, smiling, scribbling on her notepad, and then immediately turning and standing up, looking long at the dad. As her back was now turned to the child, the girl did not notice the shared concern on the two adults' faces. She couldn't know that she was strengthening some information that Donna had shared with her dad moments before.
"Well, one more thing." Donna walked a few steps ahead, "How about we open this door!" And at once she opened the main door wide enough for them to enter, turned, and motioned them to come inside. Her smile was only out performed by the enthusiastic response from both kids. And they all entered in, even Jim, at the last.
The "curtain" glimpsed earlier on was simply a rod, actually part of a series of rods, hung from the ceiling itself, a few feet in front of the door, as well as along every wall of the place, with wide thick wool blankets of sorts hanging from them, effectively protecting any visual or audio substance inside from anyone who might be lurking outside: outside a window, outside a door, or outside a wall. Concealment, always concealment and secrecy.
Mitt, now being in front of the pack, walked six feet to his left, where one blanket ended and overlapped another, and stuck his arm out, moving it left, opening the secrecy curtain to help those behind him enter. He held his arm there, and turned, to allow them in. PRS, seeing the opening getting nearer, looked back at his 'mom', a smile of ecstatic anticipation on his face. Behind her, dad and Donna caught the unmistakable blue glow of his eyes in the relative darkness. It sent a slight chill down both of their spines.
I am always never sometimes serious.
Hang on, reworking a chapter.. will post tomorrow.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 6/30/2016|| 1|
Chapter 23 The Reveal
The room they now entered was one large cavernous room with a double row of column supports arranged all the way down to the other end. How long ago this room had been prepared for creatchi, they could not guess. One thing was for certain, it had been specifically tailored for this group. All of the old dusty artifacts it had previously stored, on old dusty bookcases and old dusty shelves, items too damaged or too fragile to display upstairs, had been taken out. The entire floor was covered with blankets, a colorful patchwork of carpet, to be sure. It must have taken at least a hundred. And movement everywhere on top of them. So much going on, so much action, it was hard to focus on one thing. The lights had been upgraded and bright white, which helped to make up for the dark gray wool blankets covering all of the walls.
Donna interrupted their first glance, "Shoes here." she motioned to the wall. Spread several feet down the wall to the left of them were tidy rows of shoes of all sizes. "We don't want to step on anyone, so please, watch where you go, walk slowly at all times. And...be very selective of your words." She admonished. And with that she walked away, seeing someone across the room motion to her. They both wondered what she meant by that last part.
The girl walked to the left wall, and facing it, set PRS down in front of her. He patiently watched her as she took off her shoes. As soon as they turned around they took in the whole scene once again. PRS stepped forward a few steps and reached up to hold the girl's hand.
The room was oddly hushed. You would think with probably all 18 creatchi present, along with their "families" that it would be noisier, but everyone was playing relatively "quietly" together, or speaking in lower tones to one another. And, after all, the wool blankets surrounding them absorbed more than just light. There was definitely "noise", chitterings, conversations, and some laughter, but everyone, even the creatchi, were aware that there could not be the loud clamor that might cause discovery.
The central area of the room had less people and creatchi, than the sides. It was around the loop of the columns, the sides and back of the place, where "stations" were positioned, and most of the playing and talking was going on. Here around these stations, there were pairs or sets of three creatchi and their "owners" playing or lounging. Pillows and pillow chairs of all size were strewn about and some sat on them, legs folded, or leaned back, chatting. There were a few folding chairs as well, and a couple of older adults, not wanting to brave the floor pillows, sat on them.
Each station throughout the sides of the room had "games" or "toys" - many looked more like intelligence tests: placing round blocks into round holes and square blocks into square holes, or identifying colors, or naming cards with drawings on them. However there were also "normal" toys such as erector sets, checkers, blocks, and miniature play sets such as dollhouses and the like.
The three stood there for a few moments and just absorbed the whole camp. Then, they began to wander toward their left to perhaps make a circuit around the room. The first station they came to, not ten feet away, was where a mostly gray nornchi was sitting on a pillow, with her "family" sitting by her, playing with an etch-a-sketch and chittering away with a gorgeous striking bright blue nornchi. As both nornchis turned one knob on either corner of the toy, working together, they created a series of perfect circles, squares, and triangles. That they could work together so precisely to make these smooth shapes was surprising to the humans sitting next to them. "How about that!" the man exclaimed. "Wow! at home Ashley only makes squares!" a boy added, turning his head toward the older man. Then he noticed PRS and the newcomers. "Hello!" he said, smiling and putting up a hand in a friendly gesture.
PRS stepped forward, still holding the girl's hand, and with the other, reached out toward the gray nornchi, Ashley, who was facing the other direction, laying his hand on her shoulder.
All activity of all creatchi suddenly stopped. All of the other creatchi stood up where they were, and turned toward the new arrivals.
Chapter 24 Welcomes
PRS took the "Ashley" nornchi by the hand, and with his hand still holding "his" human, walked toward the center of the room. Every creature in the room walked quietly toward the center. All of them smiling, except a few. The dad suddenly realized that they were not all the same. Not all of them looked like PRS. They were not all "nornchi" like PRS, Suzy and Ashley. Some looked downright surly. PRS stopped in the center of the room, let go of the girl and Ashley, and turned around slowly in place 360 degrees, looking at all of the gathering creatchi.
The approaching creatchi lifted their hands one after the other as they drew nearer and nearer, and raised them up palms out, and as they came within touching distance, placed them on the girl, and on PRS. Even Ashley nornchi turned and did the same. Once the entire room of creatchi were huddled together in one round lump, they began to chitter a little sort of song. At least it sort of sounded like a song. It had to be a song. It was soft and lovely, and it was the proper melody for them, and rightly done, and perfect. How else can it be described? It lasted just the right length, and then it ended.
The girl looked up, her cheeks glistening with tears, raising her closed hands up to her mouth as people often do when something precious is near, and looked up at her dad. Her dad and all of the humans in the room were frozen, watching the assembly. If you could have polled each person, and each had been completely honest, you would have found that all of the females had tears in their eyes, and all of the males were choked up ( and some might add, hiding it like "real men" ). But not one of them knew why.
"Wow." Someone said, and all of the humans breathed an agreement and actually clapped softly, because they didn't know what else to do at such a thing. It was actually awkward in a way, clapping, yet they felt like they could do no less, to this sudden and beautiful display.
The norns put their hands down and began hugging and kissing and chittering, and then slowly all made their way back to their respective families.
The little girl and PRS walked back over to her dad, who hugged her and asked, "So, what was that like?"
"It was really weird," she wiped her cheeks, "I could feel their song in my spine, like it was going through me and giving me shivers." she smiled through her teary breaths, still getting ahold of herself.
Dad suddenly noticed Donna was nearby, recorder in hand. He wondered if she had caught the whole "show" or was just getting his daughter's experience for the record. She moved away to see what others were saying. He now noticed two other people with recorders, "working" the room. So that's the "Research Department" he mused. He had half a mind to ask to join them.
"Uhm, Hello." Ashley nornchi's "owner" said once again, facing them. "Hello," said the dad, shaking the boy's hand and also the older man's. They made introductions, the boy was "Brian" and the other, his uncle "Owen", explaining that Ashley and they had joined the club early on, the fourth creatchi to be included, so they were more than happy to help the newbies with any information they might need. Brian's parents were out town, so his uncle who lived with them, had come tonight. "Anyway, we try and keep it to two "owners" per creatchi, to help keep human attendee numbers down at these meetings" the uncle explained.
The girl asked Brian with surprising boldness, "That," pointing to the center of the room, "Does that happen every time a new one is found?"
"No." Brian said, with a mystified look in his eyes. "They always all walk over to a newbie, and usually hug and poke and talk in their language, but that huddle and singing thing? That's a new one." Then his face as well as his voice warmed up, "That was soo cool! Good job cuz!" And he held up his hand to high-five. The girl high fived him, glowing with the delight of a new friend. Brian was slightly older, maybe a year, and naturally gregarious and socially easy. She certainly felt very at ease with him.
I am always never sometimes serious.
Chapter 25 The Report
Brian and Owen took it upon themselves to be tour guides and walk the newcomers around the room, introducing them to about half of the families before time ran out and "Research" finally called everyone together to end the meeting. A low humming kind of horn sound was used to cue everyone that it was time, and then all members immediately led their critters to the center of the room, sprawled on floor pillows, and waited for Donna's update.
Donna stood at one end of the group, near the back of the room, and addressed them with a quick introduction, "Thank you all for coming, I know it was a long night, and newcomers, welcome, we are SO happy that you are part of the fold. We don't want to hold you all up any longer than possible, the night becoming quite late this time, but we have a few verbals and a small test, and we'll also provide the write-ups NEXT week for all to take home, read, and burn."
She continued, her mind able to run through her announcements at the pace of a horse race, and everyone seemed to be all attentive, not wanting to miss a hoof beat. How she was able to say so much with so few breaths inbetween was amazing in itself. "For the newcomers' sake I'll backtrack a bit here, at the end of each meeting, we give an on-site verbal update on some of the items we have been following and testing with the intelligence games, also any new observations on what we have found out from activities tonight. The deeper research analysis that are ongoing we write up and provide at every other meeting so that ALL of the previous and ongoing discoveries and summaries are available to you ALL. We DO appreciate you ALL reading these every so often so that any theories that Research has now set forth as fact, can be corroborated or denied openly by your own interactions with your creatchis in your own homes, that's where real observations happen, and we thank you for ALL of your input. Please believe me when I say we take everything you tell us seriously, recording it all, nothing is wasted nor forgotten. If you have a disagreement with our findings, PLEASE do tell us so that we can solidify what is truth and what is fiction amongst us."
"OK, for tonight, on health, we have found all healthy, none sick, no injuries, as usual." There was a whispered cheer, "Yay!" by some smiling girls in their teens in the back who obviously loved this part of the meeting. They held their nornchis' hands and clapped them, their nornchis smiling up at them in delight.
"We have solidified last week's hypothesis, we believe these creatures are NOT telepathic, not with us, and not with one another. The write-ups will explain in detailed manner, but I will just quickly say that if any of you tonight used the Owen family's Etch-A-Sketch, or the Right Family's laptop drawing game, and you noticed an amazing display of teamwork, we believe this heightened team talent comes from an extremely acute ability to sense movement, even before it happens. They seem to sense even the impulse to move, and this allows them to coordinate their own movements together with extreme skill. We've also noticed that this 'skill' is even more heightened with three, and even more with four! - having recorded some of the group games last week, we replayed them in slow motion to detect reaction times and coordination within a group. They truly are Hyper Observative! It's amazing indeed and we are still studying this phenomenon to see how they may USE it to benefit themselves in the world. Meaning, of course, if they were predators, they might use such a skill to hunt prey together, but they are not, so...what do they use it FOR?" and she smiled, having made her point, and took a much needed breath.
"Speaking of coordinated effort, the SONG!" and with this she put her hands together rocking them as if praying, and looked rapturously up at the ceiling, "That beautiful song that we witnessed tonight. As you know, we believe that their chatter is a robust language, we feel we are getting very close to deciphering it, and so hope to possibly actually be able to TRANSLATE that wonderful song, soon! We're not quite there yet, but we hope to make good progress this week as we have another linguistics expert on our team." The humans murmured back and forth, enthusiastic about the prospect of understanding their creatures' actual words.
"Yes, I know, but listen," she held her hands out slightly to quiet the room, not wanting to lose momentum, "We ARE also still amazed and convinced that they seem to know their own language UPON HATCHING!.. This as well as other factors led us to the THEORY they they could be telepathic, but we have bust that theory now. We are not sure HOW they knew their language upon hatching, but we all know that they had to help one another to learn ours, and learn it fast they do! I bet every one of you can attest to that!"
"Lastly, for verbals, we want to remind everyone to keep EVERY THING we know, say, do and learn SECRET!" and she stopped, for effect. "Also please do check with KBOB tomorrow night for the next meeting location sometime next week."
"Now, for tonight's collective test, oh yes - for the newcomers -" and she addressed PRS and family, "We have one full group test that we conduct at each meeting. We have to take the opportunity to do it here because we do not want to have any kind of 'lab environment' involved..we're trying to keep everything with our creatures about family, and cooperation, and yet TRY and make some real scientific discoveries as well." and because a few people began whispering among themselves, she clapped her hands like a kindergarten teacher, addressing the whole group, "Please everyone do as I am about to say, do not ask questions, and tonight, humans please.... remain absolutely quiet." And with those last words, like a teacher again, she quieted her own voice, slowing it down, making all the smaller children begin to listen more carefully. "If you are very young," she spoke softly, "put your hands on your mouth, so that you do not gasp at all, no reaction please from you, ok.. You know who you are.... Melany I'm looking at you.." she pointed and chuckled, some private joke, and a girl of about 9 years old, over to the right a few people, grinned and placed both of her hands on her own mouth. Even a few of the teens in back put their forefinger lightly on their lips as well, grinning in wonder. PRS' 'mom' saw this and did as well, not knowing what would come next, she was afraid she may blurt out an "Ah!" or something, if it were too surprising.
Donna slowed her verbal pace way down, "OK, Suzy, where are you?" and a little voice said "Eem here." and Donna put her hand out as if to locate her, looking over her way, "Oh good you are up front." Suzy's ears were as perked up as they could be, very interested in why she had been called. Donna glanced around, taking stock of who was where, very quickly, and said, "OK, now, I'm going to ask two questions and the test will be over." She looked past everyone, toward the very front, by the door, presumably at one of her research team members and gave a quick nod. The lights went out. Pitch Black. No light able to slip in from any window.
Several nornchi's gasped. Then, it was completely eerily quiet.
Donna paused and asked, "Suzy, what do you see?" and a little voice replied, "Eem see dark!" She sounded spooked.
Donna asked, "PRS, what do you see, little one?" and PRS' wee and wiry voice came from the girls own lap, "Eem..." she felt him stand up, "..see" he turned slowly around, "..everybody." And the entire group saw plainly his steadily glowing light blue eyes.
A few things now happened very quickly, an explosive BOOM ripped through the silence, and almost every creature and human screamed, and then the lights went on.
Chapter 26 Scurry
The screaming of the creatures was high pitched, piercing, painful, and did not end right away. Every human attempted to hold, cuddle, or console their creatchis, but the creatchis resisted their humans, and DOVE, clawed, and crawled to the front center, toward PRS, all flat on their stomachs, and cried. PRS was in their midst, on his belly, screaming just as loud. His 'mom' looked up to her own dad, hugged him tight, and cried as well.
Twenty seconds of ear-searing screaming - so high-pitched that children, who's young ears can hear a wider range of sound, bared the worst of the pain. Then, they quieted down a bit, then stopped crying altogether, and allowed their humans to retrieve them.
Once human hands came off human ears, and the pain of the noise subsided, everyone shifted gears. Every human eye in the room was wide and full of care. 'Worried creatchis' were not a good thing. It was a thing to be avoided most. Worry, the newcomers would soon learn, somehow damaged them. What ABJECT FEAR could do, everyone was now wondering, with dreadful concern.
Now, a brickload of pouring rain hit the old museum's metal roof with such force, it was audibly and physically felt in the basement below. Once they realized the new assault was rain, some humans looked relieved, realizing the loud noise preceding it must have been thunder. Yet if one loud crack of thunder could so panic a creatchi, what would three our four do? Everyone hustled their creatchis into their coats and jackets, donned hats, grabbed umbrellas, grabbed games brought from home, threw on shoes, spoke hurried goodbyes and filed out in a long stream of huddled humans through the back door.
One could not blame them, perhaps, for not timing their getaways better. Their protocols for secrecy were stretched quite to the breaking point, no timed exits, no pre-exit scouts to see if the coast was clear. All former rules for disengaging a meeting properly, forgotten in the scramble.
With every business in town having been closed for hours this late at night, and the rain pouring down in buckets, it was unlikely anyone would be watching the 18 families scurrying out into the night and starting their cars, heading as quickly as possible for the relative safety and comfort of home. More than one prayer went up on that drive through the onslaught of pouring rain, hoping the night sky was finished with its fireworks.
I am always never sometimes serious.
| 7/5/2016|| 1|
Chapter 27 POV
PRS' family, having jogged to their own car, threw themselves into it, and took a few moments to breathe and buckle in. "Is he ok?" Dad asked, his concern obvious in his voice inside the darkened car. The girl looked into her own jacket, and then put her hand down into it to feel him in the darkness. PRS was clutching her side, one of his little arms reaching under her armpit round her, his other up toward her neck, "Wow daddy, I think he is already sleeping!"
"What a night," Dad said, breathing out one last sigh as he started the car and headed out of the town center toward home. So much had happened, so much to talk about, yet at the moment, he needed to focus on driving carefully in the storm. There would not be any dangers of rain water collecting on these roads, but soggy soil can make for a downed tree or two. Visibility in the downpour was a problem, but there was very little wind. Probably, the wind that had pulled this storm overhead was high in the treetops, and they were being insulated from any of it by the forest - another advantage to their woodsy setting.
It would only be a 20 minute ride to home, and as there were no highways connecting the town streets, the roads they traveled were relatively slow - a gentle ride with several turns. As he made his way through the labyrinth of connecting streets, the forest's trees now and then parted, offering a more open view of the sky. He did notice a few flashes of light in the clouds, lightning that arc'd from one side of the sky over to another, however, there was not a repeat of the bolt that must have hit the ground near to the museum, and only the rain on the car could be heard. It was very soothing after such an abrupt scare in the basement, and within ten minutes he glanced over and noticed his daughter was asleep as well. "Well, Mitt had said the meetings were 'tiring'. What a night." he repeated silently to himself.
Arriving soon to their home, he scooped up his daughter, with PRS enclosed in her protective care, and carried them both inside. He laid them on her bed, carefully peeling away her jacket, and taking off her wet shoes and socks. "Good enough," he decided, and covered them in a blanket and let them continue in their sleep.
He himself was too keyed up to sleep. So, he sat at his office desk, took a fresh notebook out of a drawer, and began scratching notes down. He wrote:
"Owen - uncle, Brian - nephew with Ashley - girl nornchi
Yawn is bright blue one, owned by Beth and Tamra Jennings
Ashley and Yawn were on etch-a sketch -
incredible dexterity for small hands
incredible cooperation - minute understanding of one another's movements, and immediate coordination and response
made perfect shapes together despite sometimes even looking away across room at other people, amazing
Kim and Jane owners of Loxy - a green nornchi
played with picture cards
nornchi could not guess picture until shown it, even if both humans and nornchis looked at hidden card
but then identified all images perfectly once she was shown it
so maybe that is an evidence of no telepathy, as research said, which makes sense in our known world
Jim owns 'Truck' - a creatchi called a 'grendelchi'
deep voiced grumbly words instead of higher pitched nornchis
heavier, stocky, almost muscley
gruff, grumpy, a bit pushy
still, Jim adores him, finds every naughty thing he does as cute!
but, so do I - somehow, it still seemed 'an innocent, vulnerable' being, though a gruff one, like a baby bird with a scowl, you couldn't help but smile at it
seems to mean no real harm to others, just a clumsy sort of macho like personality
was into building, making towers of blocks.. not sure if that was his only interest though
Grace and Lou - young newlyweds moved here 6 months ago
nornchi - forgot its name 'Yellow'? I think it was a color name..
multi colored though, gorgeous
super silky hair, longest hair of nornchis
all it wanted they said was to play with noise makers, like musical instruments, or buzzers, sound makers
they had to unwire their doorbell
never spoke english tonight, only nornchi-ease, so, not ALL of them learned our language?
Karen Loomis, owns card shop in town
ANOTHER form of creatchi, they are calling an ettinchi, named... Soul
smaller, very mechanical minded, played with gears and old computer parts all night.. trying to make something?
it rolls everywhere, do all of the ettinchis somersault constantly, or only this one?
were there more, or only this one? I only noticed this one. Are they all mechanical minded?
Old Mama Mack - farm lady sells flowers and butter at farmers market
Nornchi - 'Rose'
found her already hatched, in the garden, smelling flowers and playing in the garden soil.
never found her egg shell
Rose and PRS and Ashley held hands in a circle and spun round, then let go and spun individually. Some kind of dance? Not one fell. They don't seem to get dizzy.
* Who made all these names up? 'nornchi' etc. Where do these names come from?
* Are all of the characteristics we have seen...are they things our known animals have?
-speed of movement, yes
-playful, yes - monkeys and such - also intelligence - like gorillas identifying cards..
-extreme coordination, no? so very extreme..? do any animals coordinate together this perfectly?
-musical, yes - birds
-eyes glowing, cats sort of can see in relative darkness, & their eyes glow but only when a flashlight or some light source hits them
---certain sea creatures glow without a light source- deep water things & jellyfish, so yes animals do glow
-mechanical interest, no? I don't know of an animal having natural interest in making complex machines!
-language, no? only humans converse in organized speech, Donna thinks theirs is highly organized like ours, how does she think this? what have they done to test?
-bonding to humans, yes animals do bond to humans, and humans do develop an intuitive type of care for them, reading their moods and such
Do we have them all, did they all find a 'host family'? Are there some living in the woods by themselves?
They in some respects look and seem like children, but are they? Are they faking it?
How did PRS learn our language so fast?
They endear themselves to us. We are drawn to care for them, how does that work? Endorphins? are we being drugged by some chemical they give off?
what ARE they? animal? or...not?
why are they here?"
Tired now, he let out a big sigh and put down his pencil.
They had met too many people and creatures tonight to keep it all straight. He was afraid any more notes and he would muddle it all up. He could only list the few that "stuck" solidly in his memory.
As he put his notepad back into the drawer and locked it, he made a decision. Up to now he had been going with the flow. He had been enjoying and playing with PRS as a new toy, a delightful new amusement. Now, he had gotten a new point of view, a paradygm shift toward the responsibility and management of this situation. His family would be more purposely observant. Tomorrow, and any day right after a meeting, they would have a family sit-down that would give them an opportunity to have a "debriefing" of sorts. To share what each noticed, to take notes, to try and figure some things out on their own. And he would regularly notate any findings of his own concerning PRS, at the very least at the end of each day. Whether or not he joined the "research group", he was going to begin a careful examination of developments, and he was going to find some answers. For all their sakes.
I am always never sometimes serious.
Chapter 28 Crayon Date
The next morning, he purposely went into his daughter's bedroom to wake up the snoozing pair. "Breakfast is ready, you two!" he cheerily said, watching to see how PRS fared. The two sleepy heads groggily crawled out of bed, the girl heading to the bathroom to wash up as usual, she seemed to wake up more with each step, "oh! I smell bacon!" her voice trailed from the bathroom doorway. PRS walked calmly past him, toward the kitchen, "eem eat bacon."
At the kitchen table, the dad and girl talked about what they would do that day, the dad suggesting a nice coloring book kind of day, since outside was still very wet.
PRS responded as always, repeating the last words, or the subjects, as they spoke, "grass wet.... color books.... eem stay inside." PRS seemed perfectly normal, no ill effects from the drama the night before.
After breakfast, they all helped clean the kitchen, the girl loading the dishwasher, PRS dutifully crawling onto the table and collecting all of the silverware, placing it all on one plate, nearest the dishwasher. The dad took notice this time of the dexterity PRS used to do his "job". He didn't just pick up the pieces of silverware, and drop them on the plate, he flipped one into his hands by springing it into the air with his toe. A fork or spoon or butter knife made two revolutions in the air and landed perfectly onto the stack in his arms. Every time. Then he collected the juice cups, stacking them also at the end of the table, then the napkins.
The girl and PRS went off to her bedroom, time to get ready for the day. PRS had his own tooth brush, a baby sized toothbrush of sky blue with little clouds on it. The little girl stood on a stool to reach the pedestal sink and got ready to brush. PRS climbed onto the side of the bathtub, sprang up to the side of the sink, sat down and picked up his own tooth brush, sticking it out, ready for toothpaste. His little smile always showing that he loved every part of life, he loved every thing he was able to do, he loved everything they had taught him, he was just so positive and happy. As she giggled and gave him a little dab of toothpaste, watching him brush away, the bubbly foam dripping from his mouth to his legs, she wondered what it must be like to own one of those "other" creatchis - the ones that seemed so gruff and grumpy. Would they grump when they woke up and grumble at breakfast, and resist cleaning themselves up? Somehow, that still sounded fun.
PRS went to find the dad as she got dressed in fresh clothes. Dad was collecting all the crayons and coloring books he could find about the house and in the bookcase and toy trunk for their "coloring date". He spread them out on the coffee table and threw a picnic blanket and pillows on the floor.
PRS grabbed a pillow almost too big for him to move and grunted and pushed it as well as he could, trying to put it on the coffee table. The dad reached out to help him and then stopped himself, deciding instead to allow PRS to solve the problem himself and see what he would try. But PRS didn't come up with any grand solutions, he just began to look frustrated and as he continued pushing and grunting, looked up at the dad as if asking for help. The dad couldn't bear it and quickly helped him, which caused a bright smile to come back to PRS' face. PRS popped up in his little skip-jump way onto the coffee table, plopped down onto his pillow, and waited for the girl.
"Hmm," the dad looked thoughtful, sat on the couch, and brought round his notepad he had ready for the day. He scribbeld on it.
"Not the best problem solver, but kicked me into helpful action with one pitiful look, despite myself."
He put his notepad down, and welcomed his daughter in as she squealed in delight that the coloring date had been all set up already.
As the two began coloring in earnest, PRS coloring a farm pig purple, the girl coloring a rainbow, the dad began with, "So, I was wondering.. you know, we met a lot of people and critters last night. I want to take notes to try and remember all we see and learn at the meetings. I can only remember a few of the names. Maybe the day after a meeting we can have a time, like this, where we can chat about everything to help us both remember it all. We may have even noticed different things that we can share with each other."
"Ooh! like science notes? We take science notes at school when we watch a video." she offered.
PRS echoed, "Science noootes!"
"Yes! Just like that." he said, relieved she seemed "in" to it.
He started with his own list, "Remember nornchi Ashley? What do you remember about meeting her or her owners?"
"PRS really liked her, he held her hand almost half the night."
PRS echoed, "Eem like Ashley."
Dad now recalled PRS first having put his hand on Ashley's shoulder. Taking her by the hand, along with his daughter, to the center. That was quite a "familiar" thing to do with a nornchi he just met.. He scribbled some notes.
Did he already "know" her somehow?
Was he "choosing" her for something?
How had he behaved with Suzy? Was anything noticeably different?
Do they pick "mates"?
Is he "old enough" to care about such things?
"Did you already know Brian, Ashley's owner?" he asked her, still writing.
"I've seen him at school in the halls, but he is a little older, so I had never talked to him before." She shrugged, still head down, coloring her rainbow. PRS now colored the pig's head orange.
"He's a nice kid, I like him." Dad said, looking up, and then scribbling on his notepad something about the non-artistic ability of his nornchi.
"Yeah, you know, we should invite him and Ashley over. We already know PRS likes her.." she answered, looking up at no one in particular.
"Good idea!" He answered, head down, still writing
- why was PRS in the center of the circle during The Song?
-was PRS a "leader"?
-was PRS the "last" one that needed to be found?
What exactly were they "celebrating"?
PRS echoed, "Good idea!" imitating the way the dad had said it, and they both looked at him in amusement. You never knew how much he actually understood and how much he was parroting.
Dad continued, "I didn't hear much about 'Yawn' that blue norchi that was playing with Ashley, I was busy talking with Owen. Did you find anything out about that one?"
"Oh! Beth is one of the teen-age girls. She came and got Yawn and took her over to another game for awhile. She told me she had found Yawn sleeping on their compost pile!" She giggled, "Beth went out to throw out some banana peels and things, and there was Yawn just snoring away on top of the stinky compost pile!" She giggled again, and PRS said, "stinky" and giggled also.
PRS now colored the grass blue, the pig now a lovely purple and orange with a green drawn-on elephant's extra long snout. The dad noticed, thinking to himself, "I wonder if PRS is actually coloring some alien animal from another planet.." but then dismissed this since, he came to them as an egg, so he wouldn't have knowledge of alien creatures, if he WAS from an alien planet. But then, if he knew his own language from his egg, maybe his planet's history as well? He scribbled more notes.
"Beth says her nornchi only likes the color red, but I think Beth likes the color red. Everything she had was red, her jacket, her purse, her skirt.." the girl added, "and she said that Yawn does NOT like the television. If she comes into a room with a tv on, she turns it off. Even if she has to bite the cord in the wall."
"Oh, that's interesting.." the dad trailed off, ever scribbling on his notepad. PRS never minded the TV. Dad wondered why this other nornchi did.
PRS echoed, "Eem like red." He picked up a red crayon and began coloring the sky on his coloring page.
The girl added, "I really liked Cindy too, she was the one with the ettinchi named 'Moon Star'. Moon Star was the first ettinchi that came to the club! She said her ettinchi egg was golden colored, and hummed! At least that's what Cindy said. She said the sound of it made her find it."
"I don't remember Cindy or Moon Star." he responded, looking up.
"I think you were talking with Kim and Jane, and PRS took me and Brian and Ashley over to see Moon Star. PRS pet Moon Star's head like he was a pet cat or something!" she met her dad's eyes and giggled. Then, looking at PRS, "PRS, you are such a sweetie!"
PRS, coloring his red sky furiously and not looking up, "Eem sweetie."
"A golden humming egg." Dad murmured as he wrote. "So there IS more than one ettinchi."
He had seen the remains of PRS' shell the day he discovered his daughter playing in her room with him. "How does an egg 'hum'?", he thought.
He scribbled more notes,
He scratched that last part out.
- are all nornchi eggs purple,
- are all ettinchi eggs golden?
- What color are grendelchi eggs?
-Assuming they all came from eggs?
He thought to himself, "Of course they all came from eggs, otherwise, the parents would have already been discovered.. But if they are all three different 'species' why did we find them all around this same time? Where are the parents that laid the eggs..?"
Note taking, focusing on all of these facts, was making everything harder. Every note seemed to spawn three new questions. He certainly wasn't solving anything TODAY. This was the beginning of a larger process. Maybe the research notes he would have access to next week would help resolve some of these questions..
The girl looked back down, and began coloring a unicorn who was flying over the rainbow. It reminded her of another unicorn, horn all sparkly with glitter, that was on a large poster just inside the school's entryway door.
Suddenly she stopped coloring, frozen.
"Dad?" her eyes slowly found their way up to him. Her pause caused him to look up from his note taking. Seeing concern on her young face, "What is it?" he asked, tenderly. As she spoke, her face crumpled into pain, "What are we gonna do when school starts. I can't leave him!" and she ran over to her dad and tucked herself into his side, crying pitifully "I can't leave him, I can't leave him!" The little mother sobbed.
"It's ok. It's ok.. We'll think of something." Was all he could offer for comfort. He had no idea.
I am always never sometimes serious.