Old writing: A Normal Day

Definitely a piece from sometime between 1997 and 2002 – I think it was probably 1999, as Year 9 was round about when I was stretching my writing wings and trying to do short pieces. I even submitted something to the school magazine, which didn’t get in – gotta start with the rejection list early!

Just a normal day

The day an alien visited my kitchen.

As I said, it was a perfectly normal day. School had been normal – we’d gotten yelled at a few times, several people hadn’t done their homework, we’d had a wonderful talk in PSE on some totally irrelevant subject, we’d got piles of homework and a lecture on exams in however many weeks.

So I walked home, unlocked the door, dumped my bag. I’m the first one in because my parents are at work and my sister always takes ages to walk home – she talks rather than walks, if that makes sense. But anyway, I went through to the kitchen and went to get myself something to eat, then stopped. Because something wasn’t right.

Now, I know it always sounds really dramatic when you say “and I heard footsteps behind me” or “and I suddenly felt a chill”, but I could sense that something wasn’t right. It’s just a combination of a thousand tiny things that told me that there was someone else in the house. Or to be more precise, behind the pantry door.

I stood completely still for a moment, then turned slowly and walked over there. Yes, I know it sounds like a stupid thing to do. But I walked over there and pulled the door back. And this person stepped out.

To this day, I’m not sure which one of us was more terrified and surprised, me or him. Anyway, this person stepped out, and we both looked at each other for a minute in absolute shock. Then this person carefully spread his arms out and said in rather odd English; “I am no weepons.”

I simply stared at him. It’s not every day that you have an oddly dressed stranger step out of the pantry. And he was odd. Slightly taller than me, he was wearing one of those all-in-one suits with a long robe over the top of it, like you see the Arab people wearing. His hair was pure white, the whitest I’ve ever seen, and he had a small microphone tucked onto his collar. He was wearing a silver band on his wrist, like a watch, but it wasn’t. And his eyes were just pure black! It was like he was wearing sunglasses under his skin.

So, I bullied my brain into working and replied “I haven’t either – who are you?” I admit that it wasn’t the most original of comments but under the circumstances, I wasn’t going to say something that sounds like it’s out of a sci-fi movie.

He smiled carefully. “I am name…” and then something that sounded like it was off a fast-forwarded tape. I gave him a blank look. “Tset?” he said, nodding in apology.

So this guy Tset and I ended up sitting at the kitchen table drinking tea (he’d never seen it before and rather liked it) while I tried to explain various things to him, like how the tap worked and why the window was see-through but you couldn’t feel the air. In return, he was trying to explain his world to me.

When I think about it, what I remember is that his world is like ours, but it’s magic. They don’t have technology; they use some sort of forces in the earth to do what we do with dead metals and plants. It sounded really weird and I didn’t really understand it, partly because his English wasn’t too good. He sounded a bit foreign, sort of a mix of German and Italian. But apparently he’d got into out kitchen through a portal, because his world was linked with ours. And this was the bit that I didn’t really understand, but it was something to do with opposite forces and power cables. Or power lines.

But he was trying to tell me about links when I heard gravel scrunching. We’ve got a gravel path and I guessed that it was my sister. Tset must have heard it to, because he got up and retreated into the pantry again.

“I must tank you, for your heelp. It iss very intereestink? But I must goo. The gate iss opeen.”

“In our freezer?” I said as he got in.

He winked at me and as he shut the lid, there was a flash of light.

I opened it and there was nothing there.

Call me a liar if you like. I’m just waiting to see where they come out of next.

Author: kate

Kate Coe is an editor, book reviewer and writer of fiction & fantasy. She writes the sparkpunk GreenSky series and blogs at writingandcoe.co.uk. When she's not working, she fills her spare time in between writing with web design, gaming, geeky cross-stitch and DIY (which may or may not involve destroying things). She also reads far fewer books that she would like to, but possibly more than she really has time for.