EPISODE 008: Alien Therapy
They started to come around at approximately 5:00 p.m. on a Sunday evening.
Agent Adams felt himself jerk, slightly, involuntarily, at the sight of his captor. He had seen a face like that before, but he couldn’t remember when.
“Well,” he said, “either you’re the boss we’ve heard so much about or you’re about to give me a rectal exam. Which is it?"
“You are perfectly safe,” said the alien in the business suit. “You have taken part in a controlled experiment conducted by Dr. Atlantis of the Atlantis Corporation. He was called away on a mission out to sea, so … I’m going to be helping you guys out with the recovery period.”
Adams almost laughed. He sounds like Charlton Heston. That’s so crazy.
“The experiment Yuki spoke of, the thing with the mushrooms?”
MJ-13 nodded. “That’s right,” he said. “I apologize in advance for any discomfort the psilocybin fungus may have caused …”
“Pretty scary stuff,” said Adams, “like we were transported into another world, but I gotta tell you, I experimented with those damned things years ago and never had a trip like that.”
“Well that is because of the creature’s present influence on that plane, the very reason we needed to test drive the experience.”
“Creature, right, the Mushroom Man. He’s real, isn’t he?”
“In a manner of speaking …”
“Hey,” said Agent Kowalski, “what the hell is goin on here? Did you guys bail me out of that island?”
Lucy made a catlike sound as she came awake. “Hmm, a whole ‘nother reality,” she said.
In turn, after Lucy got used to the sight of MJ-13, everyone spoke of their “experience”: Agents Adams, Hell, Crossbones, and Kowalski.
“So,” said Eddie, “you two (Kid Telepathy and Agent Yoshimoto) weren’t under the spell, so to speak?”
“No,” said Yoshimoto. “We were here to monitor your activity and vitals."
MJ motioned for us to quiet while he explained the admixture of psychology and possibly psychic influence of our “journey.”
“Interesting,” he said, when Adams and Hell both claimed to have taken part in each other’s dream-like vision. “And no clothes?” he asked.
Adams thought if that slit-like mouth could smile, the ol’ alien would be wearing a grin.
“No,” she said, “no clothes, but Alex, I mean Agent Adams did give me his coat.”
“Hmm,” said MJ, “you feel a need to be protected by Agent Adams.”
“I do not.”
“Well,” he said, “in addition to that you see yourself as more than one person. On the one hand you’re a normal, level-headed, accessible woman, and on the other a mischievous sort of 'Devilgirl.'”
“What,” she asked, “does any of this have to do with the mushroom guy?”
“If we’re going to deal with this alternate reality it is vitally important that you’re aware of certain exploitable aspects of your own mind.”
“What about me?” said Pig-Man. “I was a sitting duck out there. If you hadn’t brought us out of it, I’d be roasting on an island spit right about now.”
Adams laughed. "Since when do ducks grunt and play in the mud?"
Kowalski gave Adams a dangerous look, but remained silent as MJ spoke again.
“Agent Kowalski, as one of our most experienced agents you harbor a lot of responsibility. You also carry on your shoulders the shame and hardship of your transformation. You’re torn between liking and accepting who you are on the surface and hating the part of yourself below the surface.”
“Swell,” he said.
“Yeah,” said Eddie, “but spiders? Come on, everyone knows me and the spiders go together like rats and cheese.”
“That’s just the problem,” said MJ. “You feel boxed in by your own macabreness, overwhelmed by your own …”
“Creepiness? Oh, sorry,” said Lucy.
MJ continued: “In your moment, Edward, of actually being frightened by your arachnid amigos … your spirit was crying out for humanity, for humanness.”
MJ turned to Adams. “I hadn’t finished with you. You said you tried one of your alcohol powers, but it didn’t work, backfired on you. You’re going to have to be careful of that aspect lurking within yourself. Drinking for you is a double-edged sword. You have been given a gift, but getting that gift from drinking makes you feel …”
“Yeah,” said Adams, “I get it. All the drinking makes me feel like a bum.”
“Or,” said MJ, “as if you were betraying your mother …”
“That’s enough,” said Adams.
“Well,” said MJ, “I know I don’t need to remind any of you of your oath and the confidentiality pertaining to the privilege of having shared a part of your inner selves with your friends.
“Yeah, all right,” said Kowalski, “but how the hell do we get a hold of this Mushroom Man?”
“Oh,” said MJ-13, “I have no idea.”
American Strip continues …
EPISODE 009: Extra Hot
SECRET SOCIETY: MONSTER ZIPPER by Bradley Mason Hamlin.
Episode 008: "Alien Therapy" published July 13, 2008 by Mystery Island.
Copyright © 2008 by Mystery Island Publications. All rights reserved.
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