This is the story of the night when I first noticed that the ones who insist on saying, "We're not alone in the universe," may actually be on to something. I don't know for sure what it was that I saw that night. Not knowing for sure was undoubtedly way more frightening than one would think.
The year was 1997. I had just finished my freshman year in high school and was now enjoying some downtime. I wasn't really one to make big plans or go on adventures back then. Heck, the farthest I had traveled was to my grandmother's house in a city an hour and a half away from mine. It wasn't like I didn't have anything to do, though. Since I was an avid gamer, my brother Luke said one night that a good old friend was having a gaming session at his place and that we should come along. Naturally, I was excited to go. David was a friend of ours for as long as I could remember, and he would always let us game at his place. He was one of the only guys around with a Playstation console and a wide assortment of games.
On weekends, David's house was basically an arcade. To get to his house, we had to take a twenty-minute ride on the bus and about another five-minute walk into his neighborhood. I was bummed out when he moved because he used to live in the building in front of ours. Come to think of it, David could've made good money asking all the kids in the neighborhood to pay as they went to game at his place. I guess that it never crossed his mind since he enjoyed everyone's company and loved sharing the joy of gaming with all of us.
That night didn't seem different from any other night. After my brother and I got off the bus, we walked in the street that led to David's house. It was almost 7:00 PM. People were still on the street. Some were getting home from work, others were still running errands for their families, and some others were kids coming and going, doing stuff that kids do around their neighborhoods with their friends.
David was waiting for us with the Playstation on already. His mom offered us refreshments, which I always enjoyed. We played my brother's favorite game at the time: King of Fighters 94. Most of the time he'd choose either the Italian team or the Mexican team to fight. I was average at best at this game, but my brother was good. It made sense since he did spend most of his free time at the arcade playing this very game.
We played a couple of other games after I sort of rage-quit for getting obliterated so often. By the time it was 10:45 PM, we decided it was a bit late and time to get back home. David walked us out to the bus stop and waited with us for the bus that would take us home.
It was already 11:00 PM. The night was windy, and the refreshing breeze was nice and cozy. It was a bit cloudy, but not more than the usual. The streets were quite empty at that time, and the only sound we could hear other than our voices was that of the occasional car passing by. As we talked about video games and the mysteries of life while waiting for the bus (which sure seemed to be taking long), all three of us were watching the beautiful night sky. That was when we saw it. At first, I thought that my mind was playing tricks on me. Like when you're looking at something in the distance, but your mind isn't focused, and you see a blur you don't understand. The natural response is to look again, with utmost focus.
"You guys saw that, right? Don't tell me I was the only one who saw that..." David said as he chuckled nervously, wondering if his mind was playing tricks on him. That would have been a somewhat satisfying explanation if it had been only one of us. But all three of us saw the same blur in the sky, and the odds of all three of us "seeing things that weren't there" at the same time were quite low.
"So you saw it too?" I replied while I kept focusing my sight on the clouds amongst where we saw that... thing...
It didn't just end there. After we acknowledged that we had all seen that strange blur in the clouds, we saw it again. This time, we were ready for it. But we weren't... How could anyone be ready for something like that?
This second time, the blur we saw earlier was clearly a sort of greenish oval-shaped shiny thing in the clouds. It appeared for about two seconds, swiveled quickly among the clouds, and promptly disappeared.
My palms were suddenly sweaty. I was putting on a brave face, but the truth is that I was terrified. Not a strange reaction to the unknown. And even though we all assumed that thing was a UFO, we had no idea what it was exactly. Was it an actual visitor from another world? A time traveler breaking the barrier of space and time? An individual belonging to a different universe or alternate reality of sorts? We never got an answer. And not knowing would always be the most frightening part of it.
About the Creator
Yes, I drew the pigeon in my profile pic. He's a beloved character from my first written work. I discovered I loved writing during the lockdowns in 2020. If you like what you read here, consider following me elsewhere too!