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Close Encounters with Mysterious 'Men in Black': Part 2

Albert K. Bender, Nexus Magazine, Volume 5, #2 (February - March 1998)

original source |  fair use notice

Summary: In 1953, American UFO research pioneer Al Bender was visited by three aliens, dressed in black, who transported him to their Antarctic base but warned him against making any of their revelations public. This article is an excerpt from his classic book: Flying Saucers and the Three Men, first published in 1963.

Part 2

Extracted from Nexus Magazine, Volume 5, #3 (April-May 1998).
PO Box 30, Mapleton Qld 4560 Australia. editor@nexusmagazine.com
Telephone: +61 (0)7 5442 9280; Fax: +61 (0)7 5442 9381
From our web page at: www.nexusmagazine.com

© by Albert K. Bender 1963
Extracted from his classic book:
Flying Saucers and the Three Men
First published in 1963 by
Neville Spearman Limited, London, UK
and more recently by Illuminet Press, USA as a limited edition


We informed state and foreign representatives not to accept any further memberships because changes were in the making. They were to wait for the October [1953] issue of Space Review which would give more details. Our biggest job would be a clerical one, that of going through membership records and determining the amount of money to be refunded after the next issue came out. We must determine if the treasurer had enough money in the bank to make all of the refunds. We wanted to be financially square with all subscriber-members since they had remitted the money in good faith. Thus, the wheels began to turn to stop all further investigations and to close the IFSB [International Flying Saucer Bureau].

In August 1953 I was to have the pleasure of again visiting the people from another world-an experience that would be even more revealing than the last one. I had no way of knowing exactly if and when I might receive another visit, but just for experimentation I often removed the metal from the strongbox, turned on the radio and repeated the word. Nothing happened, however, so I gathered it just wasn't time for a visitation.

On a hot evening in August I was in my room busily editing copy for the October issue of Space Review when I thought I heard a board squeak in the attic just outside my door. I got up and went to the door to see if my stepfather might be walking about in the attic, looking for something. No light came from under the door, so I figured I had imagined the noise-until once again the odour of sulphur reached my nostrils. The odour was faint until I sat; as I did so, it became stronger. Kneeling to the floor I discovered it was even stronger there, so I supposed it had the characteristic of creeping along the floor, then rising until it reached the nostrils. Because it had always accompanied a visit from these strange beings, I could expect them shortly. I puzzled myself with the question of the odour. I had never asked about it, but would make a point to do so the first opportunity I had.

I didn't know whether I should open the door and look out into the attic or wait and see if someone was already in the room with me. As the odour grew stronger, however, I finally opened the latch. As I did so, my heart almost stopped beating! When I opened the door, there stood the same figure who had sat next to me in the theatre, followed me on the street and had paid me a visit in my room. He motioned for me to go back into the room as his eyes focused upon mine with that same luminescence. I thought he was alone, but found I was mistaken when I saw two others directly behind him. All three came into the room and closed the door.

A chill came over me as these three figures occupied the very room in which I had experienced the almost unbelievable transport of my body from one spot to another. What could they want by actually appearing in this manner and taking a chance of being seen by some other person? I backed away from them toward my bed. One came forward while the others stood in the background, looking about the room. This was my first opportunity to see them at such close range.

Their clothing was made of a black material which reminded me of cloth used in the attire of clergymen. It was well-pressed and appeared almost new. All the other apparel such as ties, shirts, stockings and shoes was also black. They wore hats, of Homburg style, also black. Their faces were unpleasant to look at. Their eyes shone like tiny flashlight bulbs and the teeth were pearly white, set in a very dark complexion. I could not see their hands; they were covered by black gloves. A bluish radiance enveloped their entire bodies, and I wondered if this was giving off the sulphuric odour.

Again I was frightened. I waited for some move on their part, for I didn't know if I was to be treated kindly or with aggression. The figure closest to me soon settled the matter as he spoke to me in the usual manner, without moving his lips.

"We have come to take you to a most important meeting, and such is the distance that all of us must accompany you. You are to see our base of operations here on your planet. Please take your small metal disk with you."

I went to the strongbox where I kept the piece of metal, took it out and held it tightly in the palm of my hand. Then, turning to the figures, I waited further developments. They approached me and formed a circle about me, and for the first time these people from another world actually touched me. They placed their hands on my shoulders, and as they did so I felt as if I had been touched by a piece of dry ice. My whole body suddenly went numb as if I had received a giant dose of novocaine.

That was the last I remembered until I opened my eyes and found myself in a large cavern of some sort. The immense size astounded me, for I had never seen or heard of a cavern such as this one. I was not even certain I was still on Earth. After the fantastic events of the past months, I would not have been surprised had I found myself on the Moon!

My three companions were still beside me as I noticed we stood on a platform made of a bright shiny metal, reminding me of stainless steel, and a bright beam of light shone on us from an object in front of us but not far away. I wondered why so much light also came from above, and looking up discovered the reason. The entire ceiling was made of ice, and light from the surface was shining through it, illuminating the cavern. It appeared as if some superhuman being had carved this enormous cavern as a human would form a hollow spot in the snow with a hot iron. A tremendous amount of heat surely had been used to create such a hideout.

I had a remarkable feeling that I was still on Earth, but at a remote spot where man would likely never set foot for many years. My escorts noticed my keen interest in my surroundings and pointed to a metal path directly ahead of me, indicating I should take it. I walked on, and as I did the beam of light followed us. The path continued straight for some distance, then made a sharp turn to the right; and there, nestled in a larger portion of the cavern, loomed a huge cigar-shaped object resembling one of our rockets, though as big or bigger than one of our ocean liners. I couldn't see the other end of it from my vantage point, but noted it was constructed of similar shiny metal and contained porthole-type openings in its side.

The path led directly to a panel in the side of the enormous object. As I reached the panel, the beam of light which had accompanied us focused on a small bubble on the panel. At once it slid back, making a shrill, piercing noise. I entered, followed by the three escorts. As we did so, the panel closed behind us with the same noise. I could not hope to imagine what would happen to me, why I had been brought here and whom I was to meet.

We were in a long corridor with panels at various points along the walls. Above all the panels were small, glowing bubbles, some of the same colour, others varying in hue. My escorts halted at one panel and one of them removed a small cylindrical object, similar to a flashlight, from his clothing, and shone it on a small hole in the panel. The door slid open at once. They beckoned me to step inside, and I found myself in a room resembling a laboratory in a chemical plant.

The lab was equipped with complicated machinery, all of which seemed to be made from the same shiny metal. At many locations in the long lines of tubes and coils, globular glass containers interrupted the flow of a travelling liquid which was clear like water. It was evidently heated by some means, for it was bubbling away into vapour. My impression was that of witnessing some distilling operation of gargantuan scale. At one end of the lab stood a huge instrument complex of gauges, lights and meters. Someone sat at the panel, working levers and pushing buttons. As we approached, my three escorts stopped and the panel operator turned to them and spoke, still without lip movement. Although I had been able to understand all which had been said previously, I could not grasp their communication. I knew, however, they were conversing.

The operator retained his natural, monster-like appearance, as I had seen on the screen in the room with the glass dome. He was no taller than my escorts, but quite ugly. His outline was bulky and almost oblong. But his eyes conveyed that same glow, and when he looked at me I could feel them burning into my very soul. I then sensed he was speaking to me.

"Welcome to our base of operations here on your planet of Earth. You have travelled many miles to reach this spot, but the time has been only seconds, whereas you would require many days to reach this same area by your conventional means of transportation.

"You are at a spot on your planet known as Antarctica. We have chosen this area because it is uninhabited and there is no one here to disturb us in our task. We have made this base by tunnelling into your ice-covered surface and burying ourselves, with only a small opening through which our smaller craft may enter and depart. The intense cold here does not disturb us, for we are not affected by your range of temperature. Our bodies acclimate themselves readily to such ranges. The surface of our home planet is barren and the cold even more intense than here in your southern polar region.

"All our cities are constructed underground. We have crater-like openings on the surface, through which we are able to elevate spacecraft stations for take-offs and landings. When these stations are not in use they descend into the craters, and the landing fields serve as a cover for the openings, with only communications towers visible.

"I have been instructed to show you just what we are doing with your sea water which we are taking from the surface of your planet. First we will show you how this water reaches us, so we must go to an adjoining room. Your escorts will take you on this tour and then will return you to this room, where I will explain the breakdown of the water."

With that he dismissed us. My escorts led me to another wall panel and, again using the 'flashlight', caused it to slide open. We stepped through into a long, narrow tunnel that looked like a New York subway, though on a much smaller scale. We approached a small mobile unit containing seats. It was supported by a single rail and evidently was used for transportation throughout the large enclosure which I believed to be a spacecraft. At their motion I climbed into one of the seats, and they also seated themselves. No sooner were we seated than the unit sped down the track with a humming noise. A light shone from its front and illuminated the passageway. I noted many lights along the route we were speedily traversing, and gathered these were stations along this monorail set-up.

We came to a sudden halt and stepped onto a platform facing another panel. The escort with his door-opening device again flashed it, and we entered a large circular room that was buzzing with activity. The wall was covered by instrument boards before which seated operators manipulated levers and buttons. Lights flashed here and there. Fenced off by metal railing was a large circular opening in the floor. We walked to the railing, and I estimated the opening to be about sixty feet across, if not more. Looking down I saw an elevator-like device ascending. It reached the floor level, and without halting moved toward the ceiling. As it rose, a panel in the ceiling opened. A large cylinder, evidently working from below, supported the platform, which halted when it had protruded through the ceiling.

A large screen then lighted on a nearly instrument board, and a bright dot appeared. The dot moved from one side of the screen to a point near the centre, reminding me of a radar screen. The dot then glowed red and died out. From above came a vibration, as if something had struck the roof lightly. The platform then descended, and I could hardly believe my eyes when I saw what it supported as it reached floor level.

Here was my first view of a real flying saucer, and I was only a few feet from it! What a beautiful machine to look at: completely round, with a section of portholes, and a single metal rod protruding from the top of the craft. It was constructed of the same shiny metal. I couldn't detect any door or panel from which occupants could emerge, but later would be enlightened on that point.

The saucer descended through the opening in the floor until it was out of sight. My three escorts then took me to a round pillar, about nine feet in diameter, in one section of the room. He opened a panel which closed after we stepped inside the pillar. I noted we were in an elevator, as one of the men pressed a wall button and the floor began to descend.

When we stopped, the panel again opened and we stepped out into a long tunnel of such size I could hardly believe I was still inside the large craft. The saucer which had just descended on the large elevator was now just in front of us. A long tube had emerged from under the craft and was discharging what appeared to be water into a funnel-like device that sucked the liquid inward with great rapidity. As the eyes of one of my escorts glowed into mine, he conveyed the message that this was sea water from the surface of the Earth.

After the saucer had discharged its load, it moved along a track to a siding similar to a railroad yard, for many such tracks traversed this tunnel, and I had rubbed my eyes when I caught sight of so many saucers, all sitting on sidings with platforms for the occupants to use when entering and departing. In Earth terminology, I suppose this would be called an enormous saucer garage. The smell of sulphur lingered all about, and I wondered if this odour had anything to do with the fuel being employed.

We retraced our route and again I found myself in the laboratory from which we had begun our tour. The 'monster' I had previously met in the lab confronted us, and for the first time since they brought me to this strange place, all three escorts departed. The 'monster' took me to the instrument panel and pointed to a small gauge containing figures of odd appearance. From beneath the gauge a pipe extended to the walls and into the system of coils and tubes.

This, I was told, was the point where the sea water entered the lab from large tanks below. It was sent through the tubes and coils where it was processed to obtain the product they needed. I learned not one single thing about how the process worked or the nature of the final product they extracted. I hoped I might see the finished product, and was delighted when I learned I would now have such an opportunity.

He took me to an adjoining room where a huge machine occupied its centre. It contained many meters, gauges, buttons, dials and the like. The machine emitted a strange noise as three operators, similar in appearance to my guide, adjusted knobs and operated switches. From the far end of this machine, a small conveyer in a glass tube carried tiny blocks of compressed material, which reminded me of bouillon cubes, through the wall. I was allowed little time in this room, and no offer was made to show me anything further about the processing. I assume that great secrecy surrounded the final disposition of the processed material, and sensed this was a forbidden area of discussion.

Once again I was taken back to the lab, where my three original escorts waited for me. From their actions I gathered my tour was not over. Again we took a ride on the monorail system, this time stopping at a different station but again stepping into an elevator. We emerged into a brilliantly lighted, semicircular room containing a row of chairs. The floor intrigued me for it reminded me of tile, but each block was made of the shiny metal, with a hammered design-a masterpiece of workmanship like nothing I had ever seen.

A large panel faced the row of chairs, and over it a large bubble glowed a deep red as we seated ourselves directly before it. One escort arose, went to a panel of buttons at one side of the panel and pressed one of them. With a hum, the panel slid open. He motioned to us and we arose and followed him through the door, down a long hallway to yet another panel. We stopped for a few seconds, whereupon a red light glowed above the panel, and the same escort again pressed a button and the panel opened.

I found myself in another semicircular room, though larger than the first. The walls were covered with glass screens of milky-white appearance similar to television picture tubes. The screens were divided by metal frameworks. In the centre of the room stood a circular dais on which I noted a slanted instrument panel, containing many buttons and knobs, mounted on a metal pedestal. In front of the panel was a seat for an operator not yet present. We walked to the centre of the room, stepped up onto the dais, and sat in a half-circle of seats before the panel.

Immediately the room began to grow dark, and from a sliding panel facing us on the opposite wall stepped a figure glimmering in a blue haze. He was dressed in a uniform of golden colour. His silvery white hair contrasted with the skin of light brown colour. He appeared as if he might have a very heavy suntan. As he drew closer, my attention focused on his face of handsome features. It was almost Earthlike, contrasted to the ugliness I had observed in the others. He was of muscular build and about nine feet tall. I gathered this was the "exalted one" about which I had been informed, and that this bisexual entity was in charge of the base and probably the entire planetary operation.

The three men rose as he approached, and I did likewise. They bowed as he stepped upon the dais. Each of my escorts then took a piece of metal, like mine, which I then discovered they were holding tightly in their hands, and in turn walked to the exalted one and pressed it to his forehead. I presumed I should do the same, and followed suit. When I touched his forehead with the metal I felt a tingling shock go through my arm and into the temples of my head. The exalted one sat at the operator's position in front of the instrument panel and we also seated ourselves.

He turned and looked directly into my eyes, and I noticed that his eyes also glowed. Like those of the others, his eyes seemed to penetrate deep within me. Then he spoke to me without lip movement.

"I bid you a cordial welcome to our base of operations on your planet, and it is with deepest esteem that I permit you to be our honoured guest because you have given so much of your time to establishing friendly relationships with visitors from space. We knew of your activities long before you tried vainly to contact us with your experiment. Prior to our personal contact with you, we had you watched. We were merely testing your sincerity.

"Having proven to us that you were a trustworthy person who had much willpower, you, above anyone else, were chosen to visit with us and learn of our purpose here on your planet. You have already learned many things about us. You have listened courteously without troubling us with many questions, but I am certain you have many you would like to ask us, so we are now prepared to permit you to ask any questions you desire; but we must be free to decline to answer any we feel is out of order. May we now hear your questions?"

Here indeed was the moment I had awaited; an invitation to satisfy my curiosity upon so many points and to hear the answers direct from the 'head man' of the saucer people on Earth. Giving the matter quick but considerable thought, I decided I must ask questions of importance for I didn't know how much time would be allotted for the interrogation.

My first question came out without great hesitation.

"How long have you been on our planet?"

He answered unhesitantly, "Since the year 1945 in your length of time."

I continued. "What is your main purpose in coming to our planet?"

"To obtain water from your vast bodies of sea."

"For what purpose are you using this sea water?"

"We cannot answer that, but we have shown you what we do with it once we obtain it."

"Do you intend to stay on our planet long?"

"Perhaps a period of fifteen of your planet years."

"Do you make trips back and forth to your planet while you are here on Earth?"

He did not answer "Yes", but replied, "We have been changing our crews every two years."

"I was told that you return some of the waste material from the sea water to the sea from which it came, but watching your process I did not see how this was done."

"The waste is returned in the small craft that bring in the fresh supply. It is actually strewn while the craft is in flight."

"Do you intend to cause any harm to our people while you are here?"

"We have found it necessary to frighten many, but we also have had to resort to graver action in some cases which involved deaths among your fellow Earthmen. We have carried off many of your people to our own planet for means of experimentation and also to place some of them on exhibit for our own people to see. We have specimens of peoples from many planets, but some of them do not live. These we preserve. Such has been the case of your Earth people; they have not survived."

"Do you intend to take me to your planet at any time?"

"We would not take you to our planet unless you became an obstacle in our path; then we might find such action necessary."

"Have I been an obstacle to you so far?"

"You have not done anything to harm us, but you have delved deep into the minds of our people by your determined initiative."

"Why have you chosen me above some of our most brilliant men on our Earth?"

"Any person of high intellect or position in your society would not be satisfied with what we had shown or explained to him at this point. He would be inclined to keep the secret only until he was out of sight and then would have everyone out searching for us."

"May I ask you some questions that have been puzzling me for many years, to which there is, of course, no true answer here on Earth as yet? Our scientists only surmise and guess as to these things and do not know for sure."

"You may ask any questions you like, but, I repeat, I will not answer if I feel I should not do so. Let us have some of these questions."

"The big question I wish to ask first of all: How far does space extend? This is our biggest mystery."

"You have chosen a very important question, and I feel you are clever for doing so. Space or the great void has no end as far as we have been able to explore. As we explained previously, there is a large main body from which all the planets and their suns are formed by means of being cast off into this vast void we call space. This main body seems to grow in size and never diminishes, despite the fact that it discards new bodies constantly. It is so hot a mass you could not go near it, even in terms of billions of your light years. All the bodies cast off are hot, burning balls of fire, and as they reach the cooler parts of space they explode and form smaller bodies that circle them. These smaller bodies become planets as they cool off, but the cooling-off period consumes many, many years. We have sent out spacecraft to explore the regions beyond the circling bodies where there is an area that is deep black and in which you are unable to see anything. This vast black area is waiting for bodies to fill it. We have lost many of our exploring craft that went too far into the deep black and never returned. I think it would be clearer if we showed a picture to you on one of our screens. If you will look upon this frame of light you will receive a better idea of what we have tried to explain."

The dais revolved until we faced a lighted screen. On it appeared a three-dimensional sky map, showing the large central body glowing a fiery red, twirling about and sending off balls of fire which seemed to take paths around it. Many small solar systems revolved around the central body-so many that it was impossible to determine some of them from others. Each body was a small speck of dust, and I suspected that many of them were thousands of times larger than Earth.

Circling the edge of the screen was a deep, inky black from which not a speck of light shone. This was the outer void which had no end, the region from which their people had not returned. This magnificent view vanished and I resumed my questions.

"Since you have explored so much of space and the bodies that are now about us, I would like to know if there is life on any of our other planets in our own solar system."

"It was mentioned to you previously that at one time people existed on the planet you call the Red Planet, or Mars. They were destroyed by people from a passing planet similar to ours. They were exploited and ravaged by these visitors. The other planet nearest you, called Venus, is covered in shroud because it is going through a prehistoric stage similar to the one your planet experienced so many years ago. Life is just developing there. Whether it will be like that of your Earth we do not know, but it has similar characteristics to life in your early evolution."

"Are there any signs on Mars that life did exist there?"

"Yes, there are ruined cities which were masterpieces of architecture, and the remains of a vast system of waterways that were used mainly for travel. When destroyed, the people there did not employ air travel; neither had they developed a technology to equal your present state of progress."

"Many of these things you have told me are similar to what some of our astronomers and scientists have surmised. Are they correct in most of their assumptions?"

"You have many wise men and women on your planet, and they could go to great lengths with their intelligence if they would make use of it in a peaceful way, without trying to destroy each other with horrible weapons."

"Are there any other inhabited planets in our system?"

"You are the sole planet with human life in your solar system."

"Could a person from Earth survive on any of the other planets in our solar system?"

"No, not without special equipment."

"Do you think we will ever reach our Moon or Mars or Venus?"

"Yes, you will reach your Moon, but it holds great disappointments for members of your races."

"Is the Moon rich in minerals that we might use here on Earth?"

"Yes, it is very rich, and I might add that, unknown to many of your people, there is moisture in many of the craters of the Moon."

"What caused these craters?"

"Most of them were caused by a cooling-down process when the Moon was thrown from the Earth itself; but some of them were caused by large meteors which hit the face of the Moon when another solar system was thrown from the central body at about the same time your system was born."

"Do you believe in God?"

"That is a creation of your people on Earth. You have strange races and colours in your people, and many languages are spoken, but it seems that all your peoples have had the desire to worship something during their evolution. They, growing like small children, wanted to have an anthropomorphised idea to cling to. Their belief was so great that in some cases miracles seem to have been created. These were written down for others to read, but these stories were told over and over until they are now considered to be true."

"What about Jesus Christ here on Earth?"

"A great believer in the God, with miraculous attributes of great exaggeration. He could not save himself from death, and even his own race did not believe in him, yet they worshipped the same God."

"Do you not have a god on your own planet, and do you worship anything?"

"We do not worship anything, but we all know that the great central body created all of us and cast us off into space to form a life or to remain a barren piece of matter floating about."

"What about Jesus Christ ascending into heaven, since they could not find his body?"

"We have studied all these things of your planet and have often thought how primitive your people appear to be. They are easily convinced of anything. They can be led by anyone who can turn their loves or hatreds in directions so desired by leaders. Yours are a vulnerable people: as long as somebody leads them, they feel safe. On our planet, every person is independent and his own leader. Some may be superior in intellect, but they are merely respected and do not become leaders. In the case of your religious leader, Jesus Christ, the wisest man of all was not the religious leader himself, but the person who devised the idea to hide away or destroy his body so that for centuries afterward people would benefit from the celebration of the birth and death of this prophet. It is best to leave many things unsaid in the area of your religions, for it is a topic which causes great upheaval on your planet."

"Is there a life after death?"

"On our planet there is no life once the body is destroyed, but we are fortunate in having a life-span five times your own. Some live even longer, but they are the gifted ones. We have no disease on our planet, but the thing which causes many to die is the great blackness that covers our planet when we pass a certain cluster of celestial bodies on our trip around the great central body. This has been our reason for living underground and sealing all surface openings against penetration of a strong gas which troubles us at such times."

"How do you account for the apparitions and ghosts that people claim to see?"

"It will surprise you to learn that beneath the surface of your planet, far down in cavernous cities, live creatures that are able to make themselves invisible when they come to the surface. They roam the surface of your planet quite frequently and like to cause fright to cover their stealing of certain things which they take back with them."

"What would you say is the cause of the dreaded disease of cancer we have on Earth?"

"The advent of your gasoline-propelled vehicles is a main factor."

"Will there ever be a cure?"

"Yes, your learned men will develop a cure."

"Could you show me some scenes of life on your planet?"

"I had hoped you would express curiosity about this, but I first wanted you to feel free to ask about your own."

At this point the lights dimmed and the dais revolved, as screens about the walls lighted with scenes of life on the planet of these strange visitors. The exalted one pressed buttons and pulled levers on the instrument panel as he explained the scenes, or "frames" as he termed them.

"In the first frame you will see a view of the surface of our planet, in one particular area. If you watch closely, you will see how the elevated landing fields come up from below with the massive towers and elevator shafts. Many of our cities are not connected by underground passageways, and therefore major travel is carried out on the surface by the small craft."

As he explained each frame, he kept his eyes focused upon me. My head continued to throb and my eyes burned, though I was so fascinated by the experience I almost forgot the discomfort. Soon a second frame appeared. This showed an underground city. It was magnificent, lighted like daylight by some unknown source. Buildings were connected by transparent tubular roadways, supported only by the buildings they connected. Small vehicles moved in both directions in the centre portions of these tubes and people walked on both sides.

The next frame depicted a building resembling a vault or tomb. An inside view showed walls containing drawers or trays. In opened trays appeared objects which looked like ostrich eggs. These, I was told, were the future generations of the planet, hatched by controlled system whenever the blackness approached and caused many deaths. I learned, too, they were also hatched to replace any persons dying of accident.

Another frame exhibited a large underground firing range where several people practised the use of a peculiar firearm. It was a silver, tubelike device with several buttons on the handle. As the men pressed the buttons, large fireballs shot out the end and burned through huge sheets of metal placed some distance away. I was told this was one of their weapons. But of the firing, this impressed me most: after the fireball pierced the thick metal, it would make a loop and slowly return through the air until it once again entered the 'gun' from which it had been fired! The ball returned in a kind of slo w motion. This evidently recharged the tubes, for, once the ball had returned, it was fired again.

I asked further questions.

"Is this your most powerful weapon?"

"No, it is not. We have a weapon that is even too horrible to show to you."

"Could you tell me a little of its nature?"

"It is a ray with a long range which burns up everything in its path."

"Have you ever used this weapon in a warlike manner?"

"Only to ward off invaders that try to do us harm."

"What is the food on your planet? Do you have plants and animals?"

"We live mainly on a fungus kind of growth similar to your mushrooms. We grow many varieties, of different food values. We also consume many types of shell-covered water creatures. Large plants which grow near our bodies of water bear delicious fruit. From this we make many of our food products."

"If you have water on your planet, why is it necessary for you to take water from our seas?"

"The water of our planet contains no impurities. We have no water similar to your sea water which is so rich in many things."

"Would it be possible for me to write about my experiences so that others on Earth can learn of your existence?"

"We do not want you to tell anything to anybody about what has happened to you. You must keep all of this a complete secret. To date you have done well, though your reasons for secrecy have been motivated by factors other than fear of consequences from us. As long as you possess the small piece of metal, you will be under our power."

"Why does my head hurt so severely when I am in the presence of you or those who have visited me at home?"

"We are able to penetrate your skull and gain complete control of your body."

"Is there any possible way by which you can convince me that this is not just a dream? Can you, let us say, perform some kind of manoeuvre or make an appearance near my home which not only will make me realise that you actually exist, but will also demonstrate your reality to others who are sceptical about the existence of the flying saucers?"

"We can create an event that will prove this to you, but we do not wish you to tell others of its actual genesis. In a few days we will send one of our small craft into your area, where it will eject a fireball which will penetrate something of little value. We will not harm anyone, although it could cause a great deal of excitement in your community."

"Will this occur near my home?"

"It will be near enough for you to hear about it and see the results."

Suddenly the exalted one rose, and I knew that the interview had ended. He bade me farewell, and then each of the three escorts approached him and pressed their metal discs to his forehead. They said I should do likewise. The exalted one then left the room in the same manner as he had entered.

The three men guided me back to the monorail car and we retraced our route back to the small metal ramp where we had first entered the spaceship. Although I am certain the temperature must have been extremely low, I did not feel any change of temperature. I did find myself clutching the piece of metal more tightly, and as I released the pressure lightly I immediately felt cold. The metal may have been a factor in keeping me immune to the low temperature-I never did think to ask questions about this.

As I descended a flight of metal steps onto the floor of the cavern, my three escorts suddenly halted me and again formed a circle around me. They held the pieces of metal to my head and I again lost consciousness.

When I regained my senses I was standing alone in the centre of my den. The headache remained and my eyes burned and felt swollen. I sat down on the bed and rubbed my eyes and head. Again I wondered if I were going out of my mind. Had I suffered some kind of fit? Had I dreamed this and the other realistic experiences? I began to think it might be logical and wise to see a doctor.

Suddenly I realised I no longer held the piece of metal, and my fears grew. Acting on impulse, I ran to the strongbox and opened it. There, at the bottom of the box, shining as before, lay the metal disc! I picked it up, and as I did so the pain over my eyes grew intense. As I replaced it in the box, the pain went away. I locked the box again and went to my bed to lie down. As I did so I looked at the clock and noted it was 4.00 am. I had been gone about six hours! Only a few hours remained before I must go to work, so I lay down and fell almost instantly asleep.

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Men in Black (MIB)