. . . 2266. . .
. . . Three hours later . .
I felt a pair of hands grab me by the hand and drag me out of what could be defined as . . . unknown. I landed on the ground as my chest met the floor. I was turned over to face the one who had taken the time to rescue me out of my possible-death-ground. The pain in my legs had ceased. I heard a familiar voice. I saw the screen be wiped off thanks to a hand.
A young man with light blue eyes looked over me. '
I recognized that young man.
"Charlie?" I said. "Charlie Evans?"
Charlie sighed, relieved.
"You are still alive." Charlie said, gladly.
"How . . . How . . ." I said, stunned.
"How did I find you? The Thasians told me." Charlie said.
"The . . . what?" I said.
"They . . ." Charlie stopped. "I didn't want to tell you. . ." He tapped his fingers shyly. "Because. . . I escaped their grip ten years ago." He lowered his hands. "You were the first genuine man I came across who liked me and helped me get on my two feet in your reality."
"I owed you," Charlie said. "Because . . .after then, the Thasians were convinced I could take care of myself and integrate with humanity."
"So you never had parents in the first place?" I asked.
Charlie looked over to his right with a well drawn out "Well . . ." .
"I did . . . but they died. . . In a starship crash." Charlie said.
I stared at him.
So apparently a starship crash is equivalent to a car crash.
"What are you?" I asked.
"Part non-corporeal, part human," Charlie said. "I can't age. Ever. I stopped aging a long time ago." He shrugged. "Being part non-corporeal means you don't need anything . . . except. . . my human side has needs. I needed to be accepted. You were the first person who accepted me, you are a life saver, Chris."
I was struggling to get my head around this.
"So you are a kind of species that is made of coherent gas or energy," I said. "And absorb energy from your environment."
"Correct," Charlie said. "But. . . I can't as much help you out of this mess. I am leaving that to the inhabitants of this planet."
"What inhabitants?" I asked.
Charlie sat down to my side.
"Humans, Chris," Charlie said. "I only made you visible to their eye. I just saved your life. I no longer owe you."
Charlie vanished before my eyes in the blink of an eye.
"CHARLIEEEEE!" I shouted.
I don't know how long I was there.
Seconds, minutes, hours?
I wondered what the crew of the Enterprise were doing. Were they sending a rescue squad down for me? It made me feel giddy to have a search party out searching for me in what is apparently a doorstep that has murky terrible defense systems. I mean being a PI means you have dirty work and there are some house alarms that make the job a pain in the ass but I have my own counter measures for them. But the point is I wasn't the kind of guy who would get a search party for him.
In my reality?
You are considered dead if you have been missing for more than a day.
The families grieve faster that way and some families refuse to believe.
That's where I come in as a private investigator.
80% of the time I come back with good news.
20% I come back with bad news
I heard the sounds of boots meeting the ground and a bickering going on.
"I am here!" I shouted. "Over here!"
The bickering stopped.
I saw shadows be bounced off the wall as they came closer and closer. I suddenly had a instinct to run for my life. The shadows terrified me. I wondered what the hell is going on. Suddenly being afraid is not one of my strong suits. I then saw people with gills on the side of their neck with blue skin covered in darker spots, their eyes were glowing a unusual blue color, there was something off about them, and it seemed to appear that they had scales scattered all over their human appealing body.
They tilted their long neck at me.
"Hello," I said. "My name is Christopher Wallis."
The two leaned their heads together and they spoke in a raspiery barely audiable tone.
"Wallis." The second human-merman one said, leaning away from the other.
"Yeah, that's my last name." I said.
The second human-merman picked me up swinging me over his shoulder.
"Hey!" I said. "I am no rag doll!"