The cabin air was thick with a deep chill. Cormac, laying with her baby sister and mother, poked her head up from under the covers and breathed out. A heavy cloud of visible fog dissipated into the air.
The extinguishing flame flickered in red and white brick fireplace across the room. Then the silence was broken, a fragile shrieking filled the space. â€œIâ€™m tired,â€ Cormacâ€™s younger sister cried out.
â€œWell,â€ Cormac explained, â€œfall asleep Avion.â€
Laura, sliding into her slippers, creeped out of bed and went to sit by the fire. Cormac sat up as the fire started to grow. â€œMom be careful.â€
Lying next to her and looking up with big brown eyes Avion continued to whine, â€œcanâ€™t you tell me a story?â€
â€œTell her a story Cormac.â€
Cormac looked down at her baby sisterâ€™s cherub face. â€œShould I tell her about our history?â€
â€œHas your father been passing that down recently?â€
â€œYeah,â€ Cormac bragged, â€œhe told me everything.â€
â€œThat seems a little scary.â€
â€œItâ€™s okay Mom,â€ Avion announced. â€œIâ€™m a big girl.â€
Their mother smiled, â€œdo you want to know why we live out here in the middle of nowhere?â€
Avion nodded her head.
â€œI guess that one will do then.â€ Their mother advised while adding a few more logs to the fire.
Cormac crossed her arms, â€œfine I will tell you one story, but after that you are going to bed.â€
â€œOkay,â€ Avion agreed with a sly smile.
Cormac began with a *cough*. â€œSo, it all starts with Alfred.â€ She looked over at her mother for a second before continuing, â€œAs a part of the NASO space program Deep Space he was going to be the first astronaut to leave our galaxy. The NASO space program made it their mission to make interstellar travel accessible to more individuals. But before they could start signing everyone up for a cruises around the Milky Way, they needed to test their space crafts.
Theyâ€™re first trip would involve cryogenic freezing. The brightest minds that mankind offered had suggested a Star Wars thing.
Cormacâ€™s mother interrupted, â€œdonâ€™t forget that Alfred was from a Tysin farm.â€
â€œOh thatâ€™s right,â€ Cormac continued, â€œAlfred grew up on one of the Tysin farms.
The voyage had a 5% chance of success. Not particularly good odds. So, they recruited Alfred, and it wasnâ€™t long before he had become part of the team. They took great care of him. Alfred was treated like a king. He was given free range of everything and also given the opportunity to be the first chicken in space.â€
Their mother interrupted quietly while watching the fire, â€œeveryone in the NASO program loved Alfred.â€
â€œYeah, the mission would have taken around ten years to complete, but at the end of it, he wouldnâ€™t have aged a day. It was an expedition that wasnâ€™t only designed to explore the outer reaches of our solar system, but also test the cryogenic capabilities of their sleep pods.
On the day of the launch everything went perfectly. Some say that it was too perfect.
For years, the ground team at NASO monitored Alfred while he travelled through space. They recorded the shipâ€™s condition as well while it guided itself through the emptiness. When the ship reached the outside of the galaxy the NASO team cheered and began making deliberations to turn it around. Â
Thatâ€™s when a catastrophe took place. A meteor shower struck the ship out of nowhere and disrupted all communication. The engineers and scientists on the ground tried to get the spaceship back online, but nothing they tried really worked.
The mission had failed. Or at least that is what they thought until an Alien spaceship landed in the middle of New York City.
For the majority of the public no one suspected a connection between the NASO program and the aliens. For all we know they could have already been on their way to earth. But when the aliens arrived, all green and slimy without noses, they also had a guest with the-
Interrupting again, their mother commented, â€œThey were greeted by dignitaries from all over the world.â€
â€œMhm,â€ Cormac started again, â€œMany people around the world were prophesizing the end of the world, while other groups thought that the aliens were there to help us. Because the aliens had landed in New York city, humanity embraced them with open arms. The last president of the time decided that he would introduce himself. For the most part everyone was getting along quite well. We had no problem communicating with them, thanks to their advanced technology.
But more importantly Alfred was alive. They must have rescued him from space.
Everything seemed like it was going to be fine, at least until the aliens brought Alfred home.
The farm that Alfred was born at was a Tysin farm, and it was obvious that the aliens werenâ€™t happy. The conditions that Alfredâ€™s family were subjected to were disgusting, over-crowded, and inhumane.
For some reason their response was more brutal than anyone could have anticipated.â€
That is when they hear a knock knock knock against the door. The entire family was startled.
â€œWho the hell could that be?â€ Their mother asked herself.
Cormac, held tightly to Avion, â€œItâ€™s going to be okay. Just hide underneath the covers.â€
The mother looked out the window pulling the curtainâ€™s aside for a second. Only a tall lumbering shadow was standing there.
She couldnâ€™t be sure, but it might be her husband back early for the evening because of a lucky catch. Why would he be knocking though?
When she opened the door, the man was extremely round and wrapped completely in heavy sweaters and scarves.
â€œWho are you?â€ she asked barely holding the door open.
She didnâ€™t recognize the voice that responded. â€œIâ€™m sorry Iâ€™ve been traveling, and your home is the first Iâ€™ve seen for miles. It seems Iâ€™m completely unprepared for this weather. Do you think it would be okay for me to warm up in your home for a few hours?â€