Halloween Trick-or-Treaters Disappear …
The excitement was busting out all over the neighborhood and kids started gathering at Norma Jean’s house early.
It did not take long though for Norma Jean to get the kids organized. All twelve kids on her street showed up and her nine-year-old twins, Tommy and Tina, were thrilled to host the party. They were dressed as Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy which they loved. All the kids had really good costumes so Norma Jean took a lot of pictures.
After a supper of hotdogs, macaroni and cheese, plus lime jello with monster candies trapped inside, the kids were ready to go. The four fathers who volunteered to chaperone showed up right on time and the Halloween trick-or-treaters were out the door in no time flat. Norma Jean went out on the front porch and lit the four jack-o-lanterns they had carved the night before. Then she cleaned up the kitchen and poured herself a cup of coffee.
A few minutes later George came in the back door with a bucket of KFC and all the side dishes. They settled down to a quiet supper.
“Oh! Did you listen to the four o’clock news?” George asked.
“No, I was too busy getting things ready for the kids. Why? Anything interesting?” Norma Jean grabbed another drumstick.
“Well,” George drank some coffee before continuing, “several people had called into the station to report they saw some bright blueish lights floating above the park. Apparently the lights would dip low and move around, like they were looking for something, then shoot back up really fast.”
“Oh, it must be a joke! People around here love to play jokes on Halloween night,” Norma Jean laughed. “Some adults are worse than teenagers when it comes to playing tricks.”
“That’s true, but Chad Morris said these were all reputable people who called. Several reporters went out there to scout around and interview those who called the station. There should be some updates on the nine-o’clock news.”
Nine O’Clock News
“The twins should be delivered back home soon,” Norma Jean looked out the kitchen window. “I don’t see the group yet.”
“Let’s go turn on the news and see what they found out about those strange lights,” George finished tidying up the kitchen and poured them each a glass of wine. “Come on and get comfy. The kids will be here soon.”
Chad Morris announced on the nine-o’clock news, “There are strange things happening this Halloween night. First, the spotting of blueish lights in the sky and now some teenagers out trick-or-treating found four men unconscious at the entrance to Jensen Park and the police were called. A patrol car and an ambulance arrived at the same time.”
“I didn’t hear any sirens. Did you? Jensen Park is just two blocks from here!” Norma Jean was very worried. “Do you think those men are the chaperones for the kids?”
“Shhh … let’s listen,” George turned up the volume.
Chad continued reporting. “The two officers thought the men must be drunk, but when they were revived by paramedics there was no indication of alcohol or drug symptoms and no injuries. All four men were very confused and agitated. They told police they had taken fourteen children out trick-or-treating and now the kids are gone! One officer called the Police Chief and three more patrol cars, including Chief Garfield, arrived a few minutes ago. A search for the children is in progress and the park has been closed off. One patrol car is cruising the nearby neighborhoods looking for the children.
The four fathers gave names of the children to Chief Garfield and said all the kids live on Baker street. Five of the Halloween trick-or-treaters are children of the four fathers. The other parents are being notified now of the situation. Chief Garfield said they want to assure parents that everything possible is being done to locate the children. How fourteen children can disappear all at once is beyond me, but we have the utmost confidence in our police department. We will interrupt regular programming for any breaking news about this situation.”
Norma Jean was crying and getting hysterical. “Tommy…Tina, our babies! What are we going to do? Ohhhh, George, where are they?” George was trying his best to comfort her when the doorbell rang.
It was Sargeant Kelsey who explained what happened. George said, “Yes, we know. We were watching the news. Please, come in, Sargeant. All the kids left from here at 6:00 to go out with the chaperones.” Norma Jean was blowing her nose then said she had several pictures of the kids in their Halloween costumes because they were all here for an early dinner party. She burst into more crying.
“It will help us a lot if we had those pictures, Mrs. Doran,” Sargeant Kelsey said.
George got the cell phone for the Sargeant. They all sat down while the Sargeant emailed the pictures to the Chief’s computer. He then called Chief Garfield to notify him about the photos and that the kids were at the Doran house prior to leaving at 6:00 for trick-or-treating with the four chaperones.
Captain Borox and the Halloween Trick-or-Treaters
Captain Borox of the Martian Spaceship Endeavor II introduced himself to the children from Baker Street. “We did not bring you up to the ship to harm you. We just want to ask you about your Halloween holiday, its history and traditions. This spaceship is our permanent home and we visit other planets in this solar system and others beyond. Our ancestors lived on Mars before the planet became uninhabitable, but we still call ourselves Martians.”
Most of what the Captain had said went beyond the level of intelligence for the age group he was addressing, but they all understood the word Martians and were in complete awe with very little fear because of the Captain’s manner and the fact that he spoke in their language.
Tina, the outspoken twin, felt as though she was the leader of the group and therefore more intelligent, so spoke up. “All us kids are ten and younger. All we know about Halloween is that we go out and trick-or-treat Halloween night. And we all dress up in costumes, so this is not how we really look. I like your costume Captain Borox. Did your mother make it?”
Several Martian officers laughed. The Captain turned and looked sharply at them. “Uhmm, no. My mother did not make it … well, in a way she did, I guess. No, this is not a costume my friends. This is really the way I look, all the time.”
The kids were staring at him with a mixture of curiosity and amazement. The Captain was a huge Martian dressed in a silver uniform shirt with black pants tucked into knee-high boots. Tina said, “Well, I am sorry your mother could not have done a better job, but I do think you are quite … uhm … what’s the word …?”
“Awesomely scary!” said one of the kids.
“No, that’s not what I wanted to say. You are quite different than us.”
“Yes, well we all are, for we are Martians and you are Earthlings. That makes us all unique in our own ways, does it not?” Captain Borox smiled which created a lot of creases and bumps on his face and the kids laughed.
“There! You see how different we are, yet the same in many ways for we are all beings with the same feelings and emotions. We are different, yet we are all one in spirit within this Universe.”
That information also went above the children’s level, except for ten-year-old Joseph. “Whoa! That is what my Dad has told me many times when I have to learn a lesson in something.”
“Remarkable, my friend. Your dad is very intelligent.”
“Now then,” the Captain continued. “We want to discuss the Halloween holiday and explain our purpose as soon as possible so we can get you back down to your home.” He admired Tina because she was not afraid and had the courage to speak up with honesty, so he directed the discussion to her while most of the kids were gazing out windows at stars, planets and many colors swirling around.
“Please, my friends, sit down and relax while we talk.” As soon as the Captain said that, a comfy chair appeared behind each child and a little table with a glass of something red appeared before each child. “Your beverage is Kool-Ade. We have known about that for a long time.”
“Now, then,” The Captain sat down in front of Tina. “You see, we know your scientists are working on building environmentally protective modules for Earthlings to colonize on Mars and be able to live in that world and we want to help them, for it means that we may be able to return to our ancestral home and be neighbors with you. We think that having a separate module for each Earthling holiday would be something Earthlings will enjoy. With that in mind, will you tell us what we should create in the Halloween module to show history and traditions?”
Tina stared at him for several seconds. “I don’t think we can answer that, Captain. We are just kids and haven’t learned about all that stuff. You should ask the four fathers who were with us. By the way, where are they?”
“We put them to sleep for a few hours so they would not stop us from interviewing you.”
“Well, that was rather dumb, Captain, was it not?” She picked up the “was it not?” phrase from the Captain. “They could help you more than we can.”
Again the Martian officers standing around laughed. If a Martian can look embarrassed that is how Captain Borox looked at the moment. “Ahem, uh hmmm… yes, well … Now that amazes me, Tina. You see, we chose to speak with young children who do not yet have preconceived ideas about Martians, so would be more open with us. Adult Earthlings would be more guarded and hesitant to trust us. Martian children do not have to learn about our own history and traditions, for they are born with that knowledge. Do you think we should return you to your home and request an interview with adults?”
“I think that would be wise before they call Chief Garfield to find us. The Chief doesn’t pussy-foot around and would be more than honest with you.”
“Yes. That means he says right out what he means without hesitation. He would be totally honest.”
“He would be more like pissed! And he has a lot of big guns and officers,” Tommy said. The Martian Officers were having a diffucult time holding their laughter back. One did not succeed and doubled over with loud guffaws.
The Captain turned quickly to his Officers and shouted in Martian language, “You are all dismissed! Return to your duties. I will handle this myself. Lieutenant, you will send four women chaperones to me immediately.”
Turning back to the children, Captain Borox addressed Tommy, “Well, I will do my best to approach Chief Garfield with respect, sincere apologies, kindness, and ask for his help,” he tried to hide his laughter by coughing several times.
Tina spoke up, “Before you return us, Captain, can you show us around your spaceship? It is a beautiful ship and so big.”
Captain Borox was very pleased with Tina’s request and compliment. “Yes, it is quite big and would take many days to show you everything. However, I will show you the most interesting places if that’s okay with you.”
“Perfect! And can we trick-or-treat while we are here?”
“Yes. That means to ask for candies.”
“Is that a Halloween tradition?”
“Yes. See, that’s why we each have a bag for candies.”
“Then by all means, please trick-or-treat. What would you like?”
Each child yelled out their favorite candies and said, “Trick-or-treat!”
Captain Borox tapped a button on his shoulder. “Computer, make it so.”
“Yes, Captain.” Immediately each child saw their favorite candies floating down from above and landing in their bags.
Phone Call From Endeavor II
Prior to a breaking news flash, Chief Garfield received a phone call. “Garfield,” he answered in his deep, steady voice.
“Yes, respectful greetings, Chief Garfield. This is First Mate Ladier of the Martian Spaceship Endeavor II. Let me assure you that your children are safe. We have the fourteen children on board and will be returning them to you after Captain Borox speaks with you from the ship. You will hear him clearly through the ship’s outbound audio system beamed directly to your location. Captain Borox will be able to hear you if you just speak in your normal tone. We are 6.7 miles directly above you and will appear within full site within 3.7 minutes at which time Captain Borox will address you. Ladier signing off. Oh! Tina asked me to tell you Happy Halloween. Signing off.”
Being the calm professional Police Chief he is, Garfield demanded, “Who the hell is this?” But Ladier had already signed off.
Garfield played the recorded call to the reporters and his officers. “Can you believe that?” he asked.
“Well, we will know for sure in 3.7 minutes, or less now,” his Captain replied.
Eleven O’Clock Breaking News
Norma Jean and George sat bolt upright when some breaking news came on and Chad Morris announced that all fourteen missing children will be safely returned to the park entrance as soon as Chief Garfield is addressed by a Captain Borox … of the … Martian Spaceship Endeavor II. In all my years in the media, nothing like this has ever happened and it just blows my mind! Our reporters are out there with the update and we now turn you over to Christine Parker for the latest.”
“Thank you, Chad. I am quite nervous and excited about what is happening right now but will do my best to hang in here for what is about to occur. This is being filmed live and in a minute or so we will hear the voice of Captain Borox of the Martian Spaceship Endeavor II. Chief Garfield is a few feet behind me. He is waiting for the ship to appear and for Captain Borox to speak.”
The camera switched to Chief Garfield who looks as calm and in control as he always is. He was leaning against his truck with his arms across his chest and watching the sky. He is a big man, 6’4″, well-built, with coal-black hair, graying sideburns, a small stomach paunch, and looking quite impressive in his uniform and black Stetson hat.
Christine walked over and asked, “Chief Garfield, do you believe what that caller told you about a spaceship coming down?” She held the microphone up to his mouth and he pushed it back a little.
“We have been all over this park and the surrounding neighborhoods. There is no sign of the children anywhere. At this point, I am hoping that friendly caller was right and the kids are coming down now.”
Christine looked up and eyes scoured the sky, but she leaned back too far, lost her balance, and fell in a mud puddle. The Chief looked down at her, looked at his boots to make sure no mud splashed on them, then moved away from the puddle. “Someone help her up, please. I gotta watch for the spaceship.”
As soon as he said that, bright blueish lights were approaching from the sky. A huge spaceship came into view and hovered above the park. Pandemonium broke out with reporters and photographers yelling back and forth to each other and a lot of laughing at Christine’s mishap, plus her yelling and cussing at those laughing.
“Quiet!”, Chief Garfield shouted and all was immediately silent except for the soft humming sound coming from the spaceship. Then a beam of light shown straight down and a voice began speaking.
“Greetings to our Earthling friends and Happy Halloween to all. I am Captin Borox and wish to speak with Chief Garfield.”
With his hands on his hips, the Chief spoke, “I am Chief Garfield and would like an explanation as to why you kidnapped our children.” The beam of light moved over to spotlight the Chief. It was bright but soft and did not irritate anyone’s eyes.
“That’s him! That’s the Chief. I told you he is big, not as big as you, Captain Borox, but bigger than anyone down there.”
“Yes, Tommy. I see he is quite big. You see, Chief Garfield, the children are right here gathered around me and in a few moments I will escort them to the transporter and come down with them. Now, let me explain why the children are here with me and that we meant no harm.”
“And no one harmed us, Chief Garfield. And don’t be afraid when you see Captain Borox. He is VERY big and very scary looking, but he is very, very nice and friendly. They were all very nice and even let us trick-or-treat up here in the spaceship. I will let you speak with Captain Borox now,” Tina said.
Captain Borox gave a full explanation as to why they wanted to interview the children and the Chief listened carefully. When the Captain finished, Chief Garfield said, “We have a large Town Hall here and I invite you, your officers and all people in our town to gather there to discuss the holiday and I am sure there will be a lot of questions from both sides on history and traditions. If that suits you, then we can set a day for our convention. It will be a good thing for us to meet and become acquainted with you, your people and your world since we may very likely be colonizing there in the not too distant future.”
Chief Garfield met Halloween trick-or-treaters and Captain Borox at the transporter when it came down. Captain Borox said when things calm down he will contact the Chief to set a day and time for their convention. They both agreed there would have to be many conventions to learn many things about each other and the Chief will confer with the Mayor to get a schedule set up.
All the kids hugged Captain Borox before they were escorted to police cars to be returned to their parents. “We will meet again my little friends,” the Captain promised.
Everyone at the park, reporters, photographers, police officers and everyone watching the live broadcast were stunned at what they just witnessed and agreed that Chief Garfield handled the situation extremely well as if he was used to doing this all the time. They were amazed that the Chief was such an excellent diplomat.
Being the calm professional Police Chief he is, Garfield said, “It was a pleasure to be a spokesman for us Earthlings.”
Yet when he was alone he said to himself, “If I drank I would go get smashed right now. Geeze! That Martian is huge! Scariest Halloween I have ever experienced!”
© 2019 Phyllis Doyle Burns
Sustainable life beyond Earth. Is it possible? To find out, read Journey to Mars by NASA.
You might find this interesting: Scientists draw up a plan to colonize Mars