Thursday, December 17, 2015

Microstory 214: Xenautopsy

To the alien’s surprise, and Noah’s relief, Olivia somehow understood what he wanted her to do. She reached into the back of his pants, pulled out the gun, and shot the alien in the face several times. Noah grabbed the body before it could tip over the railing of the bridge. “I’m glad you realized that I stood between you and it because I wanted you to use my gun, not because I was trying to protect a damsel in distress.” He turned his phone on and started up the recording app before taking out his knife and hovering over the alien’s body. He sliced it open and began the examination. “It is unsettling how humanoid the subject is. Its skin is more grayish, and less translucent. It is more elastic, but tougher on the whole. Two arms, two legs, ten fingers, ten toes. The organs are extremely difficult to reach; each protected by its own shell. The shells are fibrous like ligaments, but harder like bones. I realize as I’m sitting here that, since this is our very first encounter with this species, I cannot be sure that it is extraterrestrial. It could be the result of genetic engineering on human subjects, which would explain how much biology it shares with us. Assuming the subject did not originate on Earth, I must assume some kind of panspermia by a common ancestor. My instinct is that this happened naturally, but I cannot rule out the possibility that an ancient ancestor seeded both of our species with intent. Due to the subject’s clear evolutionary advancement, along with likely technological superiority, I must also recognize the potentiality that the subject is our genetic forefather. Despite our progress historically being held back by religious intolerance and stubborn royalty, we are unlikely to have evolved first. Lastly, I entertain the idea that the subject was responsible for the plane crash that was survived only by me and one other. Since we were unable to communicate with the outside world, I am just glad that there happened to be an armed air marshal on board. We will make our way through the trees to civilization with the subject, hoping to share our knowledge with some kind of authority.”

“How would a shoe salesman know how to perform an autopsy on an alien?” Olivia asked.

“I read a lot,” Noah replied.

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