The Jacket Journal

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The Unidentifiable Summer

A short story dedicated to summer.

The Unidentifiable Visitor.

The Unidentifiable Visitor.

Artist: Rachel O'Rear

Artist: Rachel O'Rear

The Unidentifiable Visitor.

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“So what are your summer plans?” Kevin shouted, sounding an awful lot like an announcer from a wrestling championship.


“Kevin,” Maurice groaned, rubbing her forehead, “just stop it already, we’re not in the mood.”


“Let me guess wet blanket,” he said, rolling his pencil obnoxiously, “You’re not going anywhere, right?”


“Someone give the detective a medal,” she snapped, rising from her seat, “Isn’t it obvious?!”


Harrison rolled his eyes as he watched their banter. If they kept going like this someone was going to die before summer. Kevin had been bragging ever since he found out he was going to Japan for a week. He tapped his pen on his desk and read the desk graffiti like he actually cared what it said. Right now he was doing everything to not look at the ticking clock. It was Kevin and Maurice’s fault that they’d ended up in detention on the last day of school. The two polar opposites had gotten into a fight that made the teacher lose her mind. Then, of course, she yelled at Harrison because he looked so much like the legendary troublemaker Ty, who also happened to be his brother.


“I’ll pack you in my suitcase,” Kevin suggested, then clapped his hands together, “and bam, you’re in Japan.”


“Do you really think that I’d want to be stuck with you in Japan?” Maurice hissed, “Heck no.”


“Thing One and Thing Two shut up and we’ll be out of here faster,” Harrison said, tapping his pen quickly, “So shut up!”


“Before I shut up,” Kevin laughed nervously, “I’d like to bring to your attention that the teacher isn’t here.”


“Then why are we still here?”


Harrison grabbed his bag and stormed out of the room. Behind him, Kevin and Maurice were still bickering over the little things in life. He huffed to himself and stormed onward. At least their brother didn’t give them a bad reputation, they could create their own. What had Ty done to earn his infamous reputation? Put a roster in the principal’s office? Steal a printer from the library? Crash a car into the school’s greenhouse? Either way, Ty now sat in jail for a few other crimes he committed. So somehow his teachers found revenge for what he had done by punishing Harrison. Speaking of teachers…where did they all go? School had just released for summer, but they should still be here.


“The teachers are all gone,” Harrison said, peeking into an empty classroom, “Don’t some of them usually stay after for a while even when school releases for summer?”


“Maybe they went out for some food?” Kevin replied, tapping his chin, “Then again it’s not our problem, is it?”


“Finally goodie goodie is making some sense,” Maurice sighed, “Let’s just get out of here!”


Harrison nodded, shaking off the odd feeling developing in the pit of his stomach. They finally made it to the end of the hall and to the front exit of the school. He relaxed when he saw the office was empty and flung open the doors. But when he got outside, his heart sank to the ground faster than the speed of light. The air was incredibly empty, there were no cars and no people. The stillness in the air was so unnerving he was beginning to repel himself back to the school, something he would’ve never done before this moment. It was almost as if time itself had stopped to take a breather.


“Where is everyone?” Kevin whispered, appearing by Harrison’s side, “Am I dreaming?”


“Want me to pinch you so you can find out?” Maurice threatened, flexing her fingers like they were lobster claws.


“No, I’m good.”


“Do you hear that?” Harrison murmured, straining to hear a whirring sound.


They all listened as the sound got louder, and louder, and louder. Then the source of the sound came into view, and it was what they all expected it to be. A UFO, probably one of the most cliche disk-shaped ones, whisked its way over to them. Harrison ran back to the school while Kevin and Maurice just stood and watched. The disk hovered above the school parking lot before lowering a metal ramp onto the ground with a thud. Everyone held their breath as smoke descended from the ship’s hatch door. This was the beginning of something really bad according to any alien invasion movie.


“Kevin! Maurice!” Harrison yelled, flailing his arms about, “Get back here!”


“But I want to see an alien,” Kevin whined.


“Oh my gosh you idiot! Haven’t you seen any alien invasion movie? Ninety-nine percent of them are pure evil and one percent of them are like E.T! So get your butts over here!”


It was too late as both of them had become mesmerized with the alien walking down the ramp. The alien was strangely human-looking with a slightly larger head, green skin, and a purple jumpsuit on. Harrison rubbed his eyes and looked again, it looked too much like a cartoon character to be real to him. It smiled at all of them as it opened its mouth and began babbling in some kind of baby nonsense. Harrison cocked his head and tried to comprehend what he might be saying.


“Hey, Harrison!” Kevin yelled back, “They’re the ones who took the whole human race.”


“What the…?” Harrison gasped, “Kill it with something! Throw a brick at it.”


“It was an accident Harrison!” he said solemnly, “It was also an accident they killed them.”


“Kill it…wait,” he stopped mid-sentence, “How can you understand that thing?”


“He’s speaking Klingon from Star Trek, duh!” he sighed, “Anyway he says he’s very sorry for his mistake.”


Harrison looked at the alien and frowned, why would an alien know how to speak the language of the nerds? Something was fishy about the alien but he couldn’t quite figure it out at the moment. While he was busy thinking Kevin and Maurice were beginning to walk up to the ship’s ramp. He noticed them just as they put their feet down on the ramp. He heard it from where he was standing and looked over at them. His mind nearly exploded and he ran down over to them.


“What the heck are you guys thinking?!” Harrison shouted into their ears.


“Quiet down,” Maurice yelled back, rubbing her ears.


“Fine, but what are you guys doing? You don’t even know this…thing.”


“He’s cool with us,” Kevin laughed, patting him on the shoulder, “I told him we could give him a tour of Earth, and in exchange, we could go to Japan!”


Any argument was taken right out of his mouth, how stupid could they be?


“You can come if you want, or stay here all alone.”


He looked up at the ship, then back at the school. He could go onto the ship blindly and possibly be killed, or be the last man on Earth. It was a difficult choice to make since it might mean death or isolation. He looked down at his shoes and made his decision.
“Why not?” Harrison sighed, “What have I got left here anyway?”

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