Category Archives: NON-slash fan fic

Greatest American Hero Fic – See You In Group

as BetsyM (AnitaLife)

Complete, March 3, 2006

No Spoilers. NON-slash, true to the spirit of the series.

RIP Bill Maxwell.


Bill Maxwell towered down a Whitney High School hallway on the way to meet his school teacher friend Ralph Hinkley. He draped his suit jacket over his shoulder at a jaunty angle and his dark aviator glasses wrapped his face despite the dimming corridor.

Most of the regular students had long departed the school and in their stead were gaggles of “adult ed” participants, chatting and disorderly as any of the teenagers who attended Whitney High during the day.

Bill padded his way toward Ralph’s office. Instead, he found himself stopped in his tracks by a large yellow poster positioned outside one of the class rooms.

Support Group

UFO Encounters

A safe place for abductees

Amidst “Basket Weaving”, “Intro to French for Travelers”, “Power of Positive Thinking”, “Think Your Way to Wealth” and “Yoga” this one class offering held Bill’s attention like a welded rivet.

A crudely drawn black and white UFO loomed at the top of the poster and waxy Xeroxed sketches of familiar-looking aliens graced the borders. Despite the rendition of the craft and creatures the shock of recognition shot through Bill’s blood like a slap of C-Oh-2.

Did Ralph know about this group? Bill knew that the “Green Guys”, as he like to call them, had not appeared exclusively to Ralph and himself. What if there were others, others with red suits? How had these people drawn such a close renditions of the beings and the ship that Bill and Ralph had actually encountered?

Something else propelled him toward the meeting. Bill would never admit to himself or to Ralph or Pam, but he had always been deeply uneasy about his relationship with “T.H.E.M”. Some part of him had a vain hope that perhaps this group could help, but that was a long shot.

Bill looked up and down the hall which was now empty as classes began. When he was satisfied that no eyes were upon him, he cleared his throat, pursed his lips and ducked into the room flaunting a failed attempt at being casual. Many emotions were rushing through his chest, but he felt anything but casual.

Ten or so adults sat in a broken circle of school desks, desks that didn’t suit their post-teenage bodies. One woman was weeping softly and a man was consoling her as others drew close, some patting her back in solidarity. Bill felt that he had intruded on their privacy and that walking in was a huge mistake. What the heck was he doing here anyway? He didn’t even believe in UFOs, did he?

“Welcome” said a friendly man, who handed Bill a paper with UFO encounter information on it and more drawings of aliens.

“Ah, yeah, ah…” Bill sighed, looking at the paper and thinking about the best way to escape.

“Please, sir. You are among friends. Have a seat and join us.”

“I’ll just…” he tried to extricate himself, but the friendly man had his elbow and corralled him into the circle.

“We all understand. You’ve come to the right place if you’ve had an encounter. We’ll help you come to terms with your experience. Please…”

Bill reluctantly plopped himself into a desk/chair combo as far away from the others as possible. His long legs banged painfully against the struts of the desk. He could not believe he was here, about to listen to this drivel.

Softly the friendly man began the meeting. Names were not necessary—anonymity was crucial for all concerned, to prevent the possibility of ridicule from family, friends and business associates.

“Everyone must feel safe here” he told them. “You’ve all had too many incidents where you were frightened or threatened, so let this place be your haven.”

For the next hour Bill listened intently to many remarkable accounts of encounters with alleged extraterrestrial life forms. The heart rending testimonies depicted midnight meetings, strange experiments, mysterious pregnancies, life time involvements with aliens and inexplicable abductions.

“…the lights from the ship blinded me…”

“…government conspiracy…”

“…the probe felt hot, like a poker…”

“…then I was floating above the yard…”

“…missing time…”

“…I was completely helpless. I couldn’t move…”

“…said they didn’t want to hurt me…”

Some of the stories sounded familiar, others sinister, others stood outside the realm of anything Bill could consider real. But, then, hadn’t his view of reality been shattered to bits over 3 years ago and then any time the Green Guys deigned to contact him and Ralph?

The soft voice of the moderator gently broke into Bill’s thoughts.

“Sir, if you’d like to share a story, feel at ease. This is the place for you to take care of you.” His fingers touched and formed an inverted ‘V’.

“Yeah, I, well, I never used to believe in any of this, this stuff.” He ran his hand over his mouth in a few sharp swipes and adjusted his neck.

“We’ve all had to re-evaluate our beliefs.”

“Well, I’ve had, um, encounters with, you know, little Green Guys.” he accompanied his statement with a little circle of his forefinger and a sort of whistle.

“The green ones are friendly.” said one of the participants, a disheveled man in his mid-20s who had said he had been abducted repeatedly.

“Please, let’s not interrupt each other” said the moderator. “Go ahead.” he prompted.

“Well, there…out there…in the desert…my car…I couldn’t steer and then…then it stopped.”

“The car stopped?”

“Yeah. Just stopped. Everything cut out. Zilch.”

Expectant eyes were upon Bill as he rubbed his eyes.

“You can feel safe here if you’d like to continue.”

He couldn’t tell them about the suit. That was right out. What was he doing here? He didn’t know. Could this bunch of touchy feely support groupers really help him at all? He didn’t think so. But, then who could he turn to?

He pointed to the flyer and burst out, “I’ve seen these guys!” There was a gasp from a couple of folks in the group.

“Excuse me,” said a familiar voice at the door of the classroom.

Ralph Hinkley shook his head and stared with disbelief seeing his friend amidst the UFOers.

“I’m sorry to interrupt.” he told the group and then beckoned to Bill as he might to Rhonda or Tony, “May I see you please?”

Bill catapulted from the room and followed Ralph into the hallway.

“Bill, what the heck were you doing in there?” Ralph demanded in hushed tones.

“Oh, I was just checking out the whack jobs, you know, they think they’ve seen a bunch of little green guys, that’s all.”

“Bill, you of all people should know…”

“C’mon Ralph! You can’t take any of that stuff seriously! Government conspiracy! Grey Guys. Green Guys. White rooms. Lights in the sky…”

“You were supposed to meet me at 7:00 so we could go over a few of your scenarios. Now, I was grading papers and I lost track of time…”

“Losing time is often reported by abductees.” said the friendly moderator, who had followed Bill to see if he could help.

“No, I… Look, I’m sorry I had to interrupt your session, but I had an appointment with this man, which he missed!”

“I’d like you to get in touch with me.” he handed his card to Bill. “I think I can help you.”

Bill took his card and hung his head with shame as Ralph seethed in his direction.

“Would you excuse us, please?” Ralph requested.

“Certainly.” he said and then added to Bill. “My office hours are on my card.” Concerned, he glanced at the partners and returned to the group.

– – – – – –

Bill continued the night with feinted scoffs against the “carrot crunching, anti-government, rubber-room candidates” that were members of the UFO Encounters support group.

Ralph and Pam ignored his rants and tried to concentrate on potential cases for the suit.

Underneath his jacket, tucked in a pocket in his vest, Bill kept the card given to him by the support group leader.

fin.

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Filed under Flights of Fancy, Greatest American Hero, Humor, My Fan Fic, NON-slash fan fic

Greatest American Hero Fic – The Time

February 2006 Revised March 2010

Written as AnitaLife

NON-Slash – In the spirit of the show and characters

Disclaimers: Greatest American Hero is the property of Stephen Cannell. Any resemblance to anything is strictly coincidental. Fan fic is merely a tribute.

No spoilers. It’s in response to “Don’t Mess Around with Jim” and “Divorce Venusian Style”.

Setting: 25 years after Ralph was given the suit. Bill’s cabin in an isolated valley.

Inspired by a man who lived this way in the 1960’s.

RIP Bill Maxwell. I hope you are flying around the Universe with the Little Green Guys.

Something was growing inside him as sure as his aging heart tapped its sometimes erratic rhythms. It began as a tiny tug, barely perceptible, but just enough for him to know it was there. It was a gentle call. It didn’t insist as much as persist. This tiny inside tug, however amiable, rattled him to his very soul.

From the get go, the whole thing bothered him. He did NOT believe in little green men from outer space. He did not accept any of the wild ravings of delusional, low IQ tractor jockeys, squatting in a remote field, who reported encounters with creeps from another galaxy. It was just not possible or credible, no way, no how, end of scenario!

But, there it was just like a hippo in a car wash, un-contestable, un-ignorable, unavoidable. There were aliens, people from outer space, intertwined with his life. The fact of it ran counter to everything that he was and spat in the face of everything that he believed.

He took a break from chopping wood and ran his hand through as shock of his long, wild, white hair. He regarded his small, hand-build cabin, thinking of what still needed to be done. Winter was coming and his stock of timber was low. Luckily, the fishing had been great, the hunting abundant and he did manage to stockpile a nice supply of smoked meats for the long winter.

His sleep was fitful at best, often leaving him too tired to keep up with what needed to be done for his survival. When he did pass out, for that is the only way he slept, he suffered from endless visions. Dead men walked toward him warning him of impending doom. Green hands reached at him. He would run forever in place, fall endlessly, sometimes falling up, always trapped in a corner alley like a rat. If he was lucky, he would wake with a start and gasp for air. If there was sun light left in the valley, he would try to do what chores he could manage, but he always fell behind. He had always been a lean man, but he had become gaunt with fear, showing the still strong sinew under his skin.

In his waking hours he planned every means of escape from the inevitable. A car was a sure method for “them” to get him. That’s how “they” always did it. He made sure he was as far away from cars as possible.

A cabin in the woods was dicey too, since “they” did like to isolate their abductees. However, he thought vainly that could line the cabin with something…something that could hide his lonely existence. That project fell by the wayside due to his lagging energy and a sense that no earthly substance would divert “their” attention. He was grasping at straws.

On his death, he feared that “they” would resurrect him as he had witnessed them doing to other people, including his old partner. He constantly fretted about how he could prevent this from happening to him. Many grim prospects entered his mind as he thought of how he could destroy his body in the event of his death.

Answers to his dilemma did not come readily. If they wanted him, they could have him.

He could elude any human threats but this was beyond even his expertise. “They” could manipulate objects and even take hold of his will. How can even the most seasoned veteran agent overcome those odds single-handedly?

The sound of the roaring stream was pierced by the shrill cry of a red-tailed hawk. Bill Maxwell, retired Federal agent, returned to his chore and lamented the futility of his efforts as the tiny tug grew.

Ralph Hinkley sat in his home office looking over fiscal reports from the last quarter. As Director of Special Education for the region, his work often spilled into Sundays but he didn’t mind; he loved every minute of it. He sipped at some rich cocoa brought to him by his teen-age daughter, who doted on her dad. She had her mom’s beauty and brains.

Ralph had “filled out” in that contented American way and his signature curly hair had been tamed. Small crow’s feet and laugh lines accentuated his handsome features. Life had been good to him.

His eldest son, Kevin had finished his Ph.D. in education and was making a name for himself. His wife was a highly respected person, active in the community and raising millions for worthy causes. He was contented.

Judge Davidson-Hinkley was across the hall in her den, catching up on some recreational reading but starting to doze in the embrace of a cushy couch. From his vantage point, Ralph could see his beautiful wife’s head slowly nod toward her chest. He smiled, thinking of joining her for an afternoon snuggle but found the corners of his mouth begin to sink.

A feeling which he had not experienced in many years rippled through his stomach. It was unmistakable and therefore he was not surprised when his sound system abruptly flipped on of its own accord.

“To…Ralph…we…must…speak…this…message…to…you…Please…bring…

Mister…Max…well.” The halting message blurted as the digital tuning bounced around.

Ralph heaved a sigh and rubbed his face.

“I wish could,” he stated quietly. How long had it been since Bill had gone AWOL? Had it been five, eight…? No! It had been ten years! Time presses forward and events fade together, even hurtful ones. He missed his offbeat companion. He pulled out the crumpled yellow note he had received so many years ago and laughed at himself for keeping it at his desk as a treasured souvenir.

Ralph had it memorized, but read it one more time: “I’m leaving. Don’t look for me. I got to do this, kid. Sorry for no good-bye. Kiss the warden for me. Be good.”

Melancholy sunk into his otherwise peaceful afternoon. Once he was told by a Tarot card reader that his life would end with a very long trip into the great unknown. A safe prediction. Doesn’t everyone’s life end that way? But for it him it had another meaning. Was this tug a foreshadowing of great ride he had anticipated? He hoped not, at least not yet, while he was in his prime. He did not want to leave his family or his work, especially when he was really having an impact on the lives of many wayward young people.

“I don’t know where he is and I don’t know how to find him.” Ralph said futility to the speakers. “No more suit, remember?”

Ralph’s flat-screen came out of sleep mode. His browser popped into Virtual Earth and he watched the rapid zooms into a sparsely populated area of mid-northern United States. The printer began to churn out the GPS coordinates and maps, pin-pointing exactly where Bill had sequestered himself.

“Would ja look at that? We really could have used this stuff in the old days,” Ralph commented thinking of using the suit to try to “vibe” the locations from possessions or bits of clothing. Time had brought many improvements.

Bill’s body galvanized as he heard someone approach. He knew every creak and crack of his surroundings, including the all-too-familiar clatter of his 70 plus year old bones. Bears rumbled and snuffed about in a certain way, raccoons were delicate; skunks broadcasted their presence with their signature scent. This was the unmistakable clumsy steps of a city slicker, a creature who stumbled awkwardly through this harsh setting with difficulty and inexperience.

Adrenaline propelled him into his home and with cat-like movements he retrieved his largest pump-action shot-gun and prepared to meet his unwanted guest.

It was late afternoon. The sun had rolled behind a large bank of clouds and an autumn chill was over the valley. He listened for the foot falls and soon found his quarry.

“Hold it right there, partner!” he commanded. The unmistakable shick-shick of the weapon punctuated his order. “This is private property!”

“Alright! Alright! Take it easy!” the man said in a familiar voice, his arms raised in surrender.

“Sheesh! Ralph!” Bill croaked as he pulled the gun into a safe position with exaggerated movements. “I coulda drilled a hundred holes in you! What’er you doin’ here!”

“Well, I would have called Bill, but your cell phone must be on the fritz!” Ralph cracked as he turned around to face Bill.

“Cell phone! I don’t have… ”

Ralph stood akimbo, his lips pressed together their corners pulled back forming a sardonic expression. “Yeah. Exactly. No cell…

“No…”

“No Cell Phone. No Boat, No Light, No…

“I’ve got a boat.” Bill stood dumbfounded in his tattered army surplus, taking in all that Ralph’s visit implied. He pulled his raggy green coat over his chest, suddenly aware of his appearance.

“No!” Bill recovered his old bluster. “I am SO glad you came all this way…just for the sarcasm! Huh! Typical!”

“Bill, you look terrible! Why have you done this to yourself?”

“No!”

“No, what?”

“No, I am NOT going with you!”

“I didn’t say anyth…”

“You don’t have to. I know what you want and the answer is NO! End of argument. Good bye! So long! Tally-ho-ho, Negativo! It ain’t even funny!” Bill stalked off toward his cabin to return his gun to its proper place.

“Bill, will you listen to me!” Ralph caught Bill’s elbow, feeling the bone under the thinning fabric.

“Yeah, right.” Bill spat under his breath, freeing himself from Ralph’s hold with quick turn of his arm. “I’m gonna listen to a lot of yammerin’ about taking a trip…whirrrr spin…into the Twilight Zone! ‘Our Time’ and that stuff. Well you can just forget it!”

“Bill!” Ralph stomped after his friend.

“Ralph, I ahwl-ready rode that E-ticket, a couple’a times. I just don’t wanna to do it again. I certainly ain’t gettin’ on a one way junket!”

It was Ralph’s time to look haggard, though certainly the years had been more kind to him than to Bill.

He had deeply missed this man. But if his friend chose to hole himself up like a crazed uni-bomber, living off the grid and out of the loop, what could he do?

“How did you find me anyway? I did everything I could to cover my tracks.”

“I was downwind.” Ralph winced as he caught a whiff of his au natural friend.

“Yeah, yeah. Nothin’s really changed, has it?” Bill’s demeanor shifted, Ralph’s crack brought back the old days when the two of them were what Bill sardonically referred to as “thick as thieves.”

“Well, well. Here you are. You want some Joe or have you had your venti, half-caf, de-caf, latte, matchiata for the day?”

“Macchiat-toh.” Ralph corrected automatically. “I’ve missed you, Bill.” Ralph stated, a lump beginning to form in his throat. Seeing his best friend in this state saddened him profoundly. Waves of guilt overcame him. He should have done something sooner.

Bill was caught up short by the emotion in Ralph’s voice.

“Get in the cabin, Ralph. It’s getting late and even with that Halloween costume from Yuppie Central Outfitters and your fancy lil’ ole walking stick, you don’t want to try to trek outta here in the dark. Bears and wolves like lost hikers, Ralph, for snicky-snacks. Heh heh.”

The two men spent a fine evening reminiscing about the old days, the highs and lows of saving the world. Bill used his pension to receive shipments of goods he could not produce, hunt or grow, so the scotch was top shelf. The smoked game was surprisingly good and the rosemary seasoned potatoes were a revelation, delighting the palette like no farm-grown vegetable could.

Ralph told Bill all the news about Pam and the kids. Ralph and Pam’s first son together had been named for Bill, an item that still touched Bill right in the old ticker. Young Bill was fronting a garage band and having some success in the local club scene. Ralph painted a picture of great contentment and Bill was at once happy for and envious of his friend.

The repast settled comfortably in their stomachs. Bill hadn’t eaten that well in a good long while. The fine liquor soothed and warmed them and the fire crackled and sputtered its hypnotic rhythms. Silence came between the pair but there was still a hippo dancing in a tutu right on the mantle.

“I’m not going with you.” Bill finally stated, his voice cutting into the night.

“Do you have a choice? I mean, I know they want me. I just know it, don’t you?”

Bill squeezed his eyes shut. “I gotta have a choice! I jus…I just gotta.” he insisted, trying to convince himself.

He placed some more timber into the fire and poked around in it. The orange-red light of the flames daubed his face. He looked like an ancient alchemist with his ragged white beard and a blanket like a cape surrounding his shoulders.

“Bill I don’t want to see you live like this anymore. You don’t have to live in fear!”

“I’m fine.” Bill insisted.

“You could come and live with us.”

Bill laughed. “Heh, wouldn’t your old ball and chain love that! Heh, heh.

“Look, Ralph, I know you mean well, as always, but I don’t wanna be anywhere near where “they” can get me, I mean, Ralph, I gotta try to…”

“Do you remember the first thing the aliens ever said to us when we met them? They played FDR saying ‘The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.’ The very first message said, ‘You will not be harmed.’

“It doesn’t matter.” Bill didn’t want to argue. He was ready to pass out again, the fatigue flowing into his aching limbs.

“Yes, it matters! It makes all the difference. They helped us help our world and save people’s lives. What part of that don’t you get?”

“Ralph…”

“You don’t have to fear them, Bill. Whatever happens, whatever they do, it won’t be to hurt us, it’ll be to help us. I know that’s true! I believe it or I wouldn’t be…. Bill?

Bill was sawing zzz’s like he hadn’t done in years. A much-needed deep sleep had overcome him, taking him to a quiet place he had not been in for a long, lonely time.

“Awh, ya never did listen to me. Why would you start now?”

Ralph pulled a few blankets over his friend and then got himself squared away on the cot near the fire. The fatigue of the long walk to the cabin and the emotion of the last few days carried him instantly to the arms of Morpheus.

It was late morning when Ralph’s eyes fluttered open, the cool air a bracing alarm clock. Bill had been up since dawn, feeling better than he had in a long time. He was preparing his camp for his inevitable absence. During the night that small tug had become a full, urgent call. Ralph’s presence had sealed the deal. He knew he had to leave and he hated every second of it.

He vowed he would return to his home if he could. Now he knew that “they” could get to him, but at least he could feel he was living on his own terms–as close to the earth as he possibly could.

“Here, kid. Try this.” He handed Ralph some coffee that would revive King Tut.

“Wow!” Ralph exclaimed, as he felt the brew hit him.

“Huh? You won’t get that at your frou-frou Coffee-schmucks.”

“What time is it?”

“Late. You better get your little nap sack together. Where’s your car? If you’re down river, we can take the stream and maybe even catch a fresh lunch.”

Ralph was ecstatic and surprised. “What happened to all that stuff you said…?”

“I have a few things to stow, but other than that, we can leave. Ralph, would choo wipe that grin off your face?”

The river compliantly cradled the pair on their journey. Ralph was taken by the utter beauty of his surroundings. He watched Bill as he expertly guided the boat through a patch of dangerous water.

Their passage prompted a flock of great blue heron to rise to the sky, creating a tableau from Jurassic Park with their pterodactyl silhouettes. A group of beavers ignored the boat and worked at their twiggy home. An impressive Elk sipped from the stream and eyed the boat warily. Ralph thought he caught a glimpse of a wolverine that was also going about the business of survival.

“If this is to be my last hours on earth,” he thought, “then this is a good way to spend it. I just wish Pam were here.”

“This should do it! Where’s your map. Gimme.” demanded Bill.

When they arrived at the car, Bill froze. It took a few minutes before he allowed himself to get into the passenger seat. That tug was stronger now and he substituted its pull for courage.

“Seatbelts.” Ralph said.

“Wha? Huh?”

“Buckle your seatbelts.”

They often drove in silence, sometimes taking turns napping and driving. They stopped overnight at a motel for some serious bathing. Ralph ran to a store to get Bill some clean clothes. Bill shaved his long beard and tied back his silver-white tresses. Ralph was happy to see Bill’s face again, however aged.

They stopped only a few times along the way for fuel and food and all together, logged a good 20 hours of driving time.

Ralph called Pam and tried to allay her worry. She would meet him in Palmdale she told him. The unspoken part was “if ‘they’ would allow it”. If he had to go, he did not want to go before seeing her. Now he was empathizing with Bill’s misgivings.

“This could be it,” he said without thinking. He was trying not to make these comments. Bill was having a rough time, fidgeting and fooling with the radio. They were close to the site, very close. Bill was visibly shaken, his nerves showing in his every movement.

“Ralph!” he gasped when they saw a Welcome to Palmdale sign.

“It’ll be OK. We’re gonna be OK…” But, for his part, Ralph was beginning to have serious doubts. If he could only see Pam and the kids one more time.

Ralph’s satellite radio fired up making Bill jump from his seat like a rider in a coaster getting air time. The Beach Boys’ “Don’t Worry Baby” came across, loud and clear. Ralph understood the message and tried to take it to heart but he didn’t think Bill got the significance, as his fists were white and clenched and every muscle in his body had tensed.

“Everything will turn out alright…”

Bill clasped his hand over his heart and Ralph was becoming agitated, not in response to the approaching light in the dark sky, but fearing for Bill’s life.

“Don’t worry baby

“Don’t worry baby

“Don’t worry ba-by”

Ralph hit the dash board in frustration. “Can’t you see what you’re doing to him?”

Suddenly he realized that the car had come to a complete halt. The radio ceased its appeal for calm and simply requested, “Please…come…on…board.”

Bill found himself on the other side of the passenger door and Ralph followed suit and exited the car. They were both staring at the ship. Pam was nowhere in sight and Ralph was beginning to adopt some of Bills sentiments.

But, feelings, fears and sentiments didn’t matter. They both felt themselves being propelled toward the ship like puppets. Bill was shaking and Ralph tried to steady him despite his own sense of helplessness.

“Ralph,” he gasped.

“Easy, Bill”

“Ralph, I want you to know, you were right. I’ve been a coward, trying to hide in the woods.”

“I didn’t say that, never even thought it.”

“The only way to deal with fear is to face it, head on, guns drawn, no holds barred. Same’s true with little green guys too.”

“That sounds like the old Bill Maxwell I know and love. No lead lined forts or tin foil hats.”

“Never used ’em myself. The tin foil only amplifies radio waves. Some egg heads did a study.”

Ralph felt Bill begin to calm as they stepped into the enveloping light.

Ralph awoke alone in the familiar holding area. He wondered at the time in his life when he thought traipsing off to a distant galaxy would be the ride of a lifetime. Now he could only think about his family and worry about Bill’s fate as well.

Reluctantly he got off the table and moved to the door, which whooshed open for him and then shut immediately after he walked through it. He took the translator hearing aid from the small creature in a blasé manner. Oh, how the awe and wonder had worn off for him.

“Come with me, Mr. Hinkley.” said a green man.

“What’s going on? Where’s Bill? Are we going to…”

“All will be made clear.”

“I’m sure.” he thought sarcastically to himself. The aliens had never been particularly forthcoming with ‘clear’. Ralph followed the alien to a part of the ship he had not seen before. He gasped a giant gulp of air when he saw the scene before him.

Bill was suspended in a giant contraption in the middle of the chamber. Tubes and wires draped and gripped his unconscious form like snakes. Balls of white light flickered around him as he slightly writhed from their energy. Several creatures worked around him, adjusting instruments and adding more hookups and further binding his helpless figure.

Was it true? Was this the horror that Bill had tried to escape all these years? Bill’s gut feelings were often dead on accurate.

Ralph reeled toward the creature. “What are you doing to him?” he demanded as anger and fear welled in his chest.

“Please, Mr. Hinkley, this is not like your planet’s science fiction movies. We have no intention of harming you or Mr. Maxwell.”

“What then, huh? Are you just going to experiment with us? Is that what we get in the end? You know, this is exactly the kind of thing that Bill was afraid of!”

One of the other aliens approached them. The creature held a crystalline object in his hand and referred to it as he spoke.

“His condition is precisely what we had suspected, sir. Mr. Maxwell had heart disease and a cancerous condition. If left untreated, he would have died within half an earth year.”

“Thank you. Please complete the treatment.” said the first alien.

Ralph felt like a heel. “Look, I’m…”

“Mr. Hinkley, we know that our contact with you has been unsettling to you both, especially for Mr. Maxwell. We also respected Mr. Maxwell’s wishes to be left alone on his world. We waited as long as we could before intervening.”

Ralph looked at his be-wired friend and then to the green man. He still assumed that this was the big ‘IT’, their one way ticket to the stars, as Bill might say. “Will I be able to say goodbye to my wife?” Ralph asked plaintively, feeling he deserved no favors from the aliens but longing for the closure.

“That will not be necessary.” the alien said compassionately. “It is not your time to come to us.”

Ralph was reunited with Bill in softly lit comfortable room. The color in Bill’s face had returned as he rested on a couch-like object, sipping a delicious but unidentifiable drink.

“How ya doin’, kid?” Bill asked cheerfully.

“I was gonna ask you the same.” Ralph said as he sat on the couch next to Bill.

“Ya see? Told ja. Nothin’ to it! Have you tried this stuff? Get some of this stuff, it’s delicious.”

Ralph chuckled. It felt like old times.

“Yeah!” Bill continued. “Just a bunch of friendly, down on the farm, little green guys, flyin’ around in their chandelier. Just a stroll with in the park. Nothing. Heh heh.”

“You amaze me, Bill. You always have. A stroll in the park?”

“Yeah. Yeah. Piece of cake.”

“Are you really OK?”

“Well, Ralph, ah…for a geezer who just got his insides put through a Cuisinart on high, yeah. I’m good.” He paused. “I’m OK with this, Ralph, now, I really am.”

“Let’s go home, Bill.” Ralph smiled.

“You know, ‘started together, finish together’… Huh? What did you say?”

“You heard me right. It’s not our time yet.”

“Go home, Ralph? As in terra firma, U S of A?” Bill’s spirits lifted to the heavens.

“Yeah!” Ralph grinned to both ears, his smile the size of California.

“Yeah?”

“Yeah!”

The two shook hands and patted each other on the back.

Bill spent the next week with the Hinkleys, getting under foot, getting on Pam’s last nerve—which she cheerfully endured—and catching up on the world. He would go back to the cabin, at least for now, but would no longer live in fear. Ralph intended to visit Bill on a regular basis and make sure he was OK.

– – – – – – – – –

Ralph saw Bill to the airport.

“You know, ah, Ralph,” Bill began pensively, “I’ve been thinking…”

“That can’t be good.”

“Now hear me out here. I was thinking that, well, I kinda…owe those green guys my life.”

“Now Bill…”

“Lemme finish. I owe ’em my life at least a couple times over, so if they want me to…ah…take a ride…a little magic carpet ride to, you know, to outer space…Well, maybe, ah, maybe that’s OK.”

The idea still made Bill squeamish, but the deep fear that had haunted him for so many years was completely gone. He could face his future, come what may.

“Bill, when our time comes, it’ll be right.”

They parted, reluctantly, knowing it was not the end.

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Filed under Greatest American Hero, My Fan Fic, Non-Boosh Stuff, NON-slash fan fic

Attack of the Pod People

Excerpt from Hieronymus Boosh…

My favorite chapter pays homage to Julian Barratt’s & Tim Hope’s “The Pod”

Attack of the Pod People

“Blueberry Cage” was one of Vince’s latest former obsessions. They were a rogue band so esoteric and avant-garde that they never actually made any sounds. Sound, they felt was beneath the mo-derne, cutting edge musician. Since Vince could neither sing nor play an instrument, he was ideal as their front man. His job was to pose for obtuse art shots, lounge around in various states of undress and stare blankly at the press until even the most flamboyantly pretentious art magazines, such as sugaRAPE, walked out on him.

Gigs consisted of the five members going to clubs, dressed according to Vince’s fashion directions. They always looked fabulous. They would never stand together, and they never played anything nor stood on the stage. They believed that if they conceptualized music, the people would begin to “hear” their concepts and fall in line. So far, they had no success. In fact no one in the clubs even knew they were actually at a “Blueberry Cage” performance. It was all a part of the carefully laid sneak attack plan, their entre into the subconscious minds of the audience. It was not going very well.

Collectively, “Blueberry Cage” was disappointed with their album sales—and the consistent returns of all units moved— but they knew as artists that people were not able to grasp the enormity of the work, which consisted of a CD that contained 55.04 minutes of silence in cuts which varied in length between 4.27 and 16.5 minutes.

They were incensed by their inability to get any airplay whatsoever, and raged against the system of corporate dictated playlists. When even the outré pirate station that broadcast from a tugboat off the shores of Bristoltwistenanni refused to play them, they raged against the snobbery of the elitist artier-than-thou set.

When their Wall of Lack of Sound was rejected, they merely pish-toshed the primitive public hive mentality which insisted on the out-dated paradigm that music, in order to be valid, must actually sound like something—anything. Their work, they assured themselves, was well beyond the ken of the average uninitiated plebian moron that formed the foundation of the mewling masses. “Blueberry Cage” believed that their eponymous CD would someday be hailed as the masterpiece that it was and that they would take their place alongside other forward thinking giants of art, music and culture. But not anywhere near John Cage; he was an idiot.

“So, you won’t come back for Blueberry Cage, then. Well what about that other one, what was it…?”

“Morte de Bergamote,” Vince finished. “Don’t want them anymore either.”

I Love Rocks N Roll

Ringing Rocks Park

Ringing Rocks Park

“Morte de Bergamote” was an emerging talent on the bleeding edge of the horizon (that is, in their own minds). They were impressed with Vince’s work with “Blueberry Cage”, largely because he continually bombarded them with shots of himself lounging about in various states of undress, either looking like a helpless rabbit, a sick walrus or like an angry super model. In any case, the images were unsettling enough to grab the attention of “ModeBe’s” leader, and Vince had joined them and performed at a few gigs right before this whole ugly Toy Maker incident began.

“Morte de Bergamote” actually did believe in creating sounds. Their raisen d’etre was in Rocks (sic) Music. Their sound was not the ubiquitous raging guitars, wailing singers, thrumping bass and driving drums of traditional rock music, but rather music which issues forth from iron-filled stones strewn about in fields of boulders. Evidently what appears to be a large garden variety stone will “ring” when percussion is applied using a ball peen hammer or other heavy blunt object. The greater the content of iron in the rock, the better the tone emitted. This is true.

Again, Vince did not actually have to do anything remotely musical, but he did have to wear a costume dipped in hardening cement and pull shapes representing the various boulders being played and occasionally he would throw his back and shoulders out of place due to the odd poses and weight of the costume.

Their whole problem was in getting roadies or anyone at all to transport their “instruments” to their gigs since their selected travel boulders were many and weighed in at quite a few stone.

The group had another issue. They were facing charges of defiling several public parks as they removed sections of the natural attractions. Their defense was that the earth belonged to everyone and that they were merely borrowing parts of her for the benefit of mankind. Somehow the Judge was not impressed and they were forced to release their “instruments” back into the wild or face prison for their art, a sacrifice none of them cared to make.

In lieu of actual rocks, the keyboardists used samples recorded in the fields to re-create the sound. Tempers flared and the group polarized over the issue of purity vs. feasibility of the whole Rocks Music concept. Three members insisted that without the actual boulders at the gigs, the sound was compromised beyond redemption. Vince joined the keyboard sampling side as he was suffering from his own orthopedic ills. The remaining two band members, one of whom was sporting a severely herniated disk and the other one a broken foot, a pulled ligament and a crushed hand, were adamant about the sampled sounds model. The resulting schism smashed the group apart, but the samplers were going to reform as “Dirty Lil’ Ringing Roxy and the Hyphenated Rowsdowers” as soon as their injuries were healed.

“Fine, then come back to be in a band with me,” Howard pleaded, his desperation apparent.

“Look, Howard, I’m done will all of that,” Vince told him plainly. “I’m Vince Noir, beautiful Harlequin doll…forever.”

“What is wrong with you? Has your brain turned to plastic already?” Howard asked, exasperated.

Howard had nothing left to lose so he pleaded, “What about you and me, the team? Exordium and Terminus? Thing One and Thing Two? Bert and Ernie?”

Vince looked a bit upset for a split second but his sunshine face returned. “We could still be a team, Howard. Why not stay here? Be one of us.”

Naboo and Bollo walked over to Vince and Howard.

“Join you? And, then what?” Howard asked.

“Well, we could have tea parties, and,” Vince looked over at the table of girls and waved. They all giggled. “I know a lot of cute dolls. I could fix you up, Howard. Find you the one with the perfect figure. You could play house.”

“Really?” Howard said, his interest peaked.

“Oh, don’t you start, Howard,” Naboo broke in. “Look, Vince, we have to leave now, and besides…”

“What?” Howard asked.

“If you stay, you won’t even be anatomically correct, if you catch my drift,” Naboo said with a wry look on his face. Bollo chuckled.

“Same’s true for you, Bollo,” Naboo scolded, shutting up the ape. “What d’ya say, Vince?”

“I don’t care about any of that,” Vince said. “You can join me if you want to or leave. I’m staying!” Vince turned and went to the girls and resumed the party, trying to pretend that Howard, Naboo and Bollo were not standing right there.

Howard felt like a trapped rat. Why would Vince not listen to reason? He was about to be enlightened.

tbc…

Bristol Twistin’ Annie

“She’s got a shape like Rin Tin Tin and a face like my Uncle Ben…”

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Filed under Heironymus Boosh, Humor, Music, My Fan Fic, NON-slash fan fic, Nonsense