As we climbed the pass between the hills, we would look back at the planes to see if there was any worthwhile view. Fortunately, nothing was following us as far as we could see. Maybe whoever was controlling the giant beasts knew that they would be visible even though they probably did not know we could never outrun them. Soon the pass seems to be leveling off into a small valley between the high hills, but still wide enough for us to walk next to each other. It seemed like one of the ancient highways that was spotted over the globe here and there, even though it didn’t stand the strain of time, as some areas had forests that had overgrown them. Up ahead was a curious structure, an entrance to a cave? But this structure was a formal entrance to the cave that also was common but rarely seen intact.
“I am sure the GG (Global Government) will want to see this,” Sarah stated. “This is a rare sight, hardly any structural damage that I can see.” “It seems to be one of those highway caves or tunnels,” Michael offered. We all looked at the wolves to see what they could tell us; since we were sure they had been here before. Everyone had stopped in front of the entrance, hesitating about going inside.
<This is one of the best preserved highway tunnels that we know of, but where it leads, no one knows or have explored it before,> Alpha said. <We have been inside,> Snow offered, <but they can be dangerous because of collapse.> <This is where the aliens live,> was all Alpha would say. <So let’s continue,> the Professor anxiously said, <since there is no other way, I’m guessing.> <This is the only way!> Alpha stated.
We started forward into the tunnel. It was well preserved and walking on it was a pleasure. I tried to imagine what it was like back then in their machines. Did their vehicles look like ours, and could they go as fast? But soon we saw why Alpha referred to it as a cave rather than a tunnel. There in the middle of the tunnel was a huge cave in, impossible to get through. I thought, where are the aliens? <They are inside,> Alpha stated simply. We went into a small opening on the left that seemed to be a side tunnel for people. <I think this is a service walk, for you humans, but it leads to another cave.>
Eventually we entered a real cave as we stepped through another large crevice in the wall and into a large cave system. How close had this highway been to breaking through into this cave system and not even have known? By now the lighting was getting pretty dim, but the wolves indicated clearly that we turn them off. A strange greenish-yellow glow, the color of our eyes, lit up the walls bright enough to lead our way through the cave system. I have seen this before and also seen pictures of it, but experiencing it for ourselves was another matter. It seemed almost unnatural.
<We are getting close now,> Alpha thought clearly in our minds. <This path will open up into a very large room. You must find seats in the middle and try not to look around or show any strong emotions. Just relax and wait for them to speak into your minds like we are doing now. We have prepared you for this moment, so do not be afraid. This is always the best way, so trust us like you have so far.>
I could tell Michael was getting excited for this meeting, and even the Professor was anxious to meet the aliens, any aliens. Sarah was a little doubtful. Myself? Well, seeing is believing. But I just did not know what to expect. We had seen too much on this trip and could write a story about each encounter. Imagine, our adventure had only begun! We moved into the center of the large cave hall where there were seats in the middle and arranged in a circle, stone seats, of course, with backs to them. There were about twenty of them. We quietly sat down and waited. If you have ever been in a cave before, your hearing can do strange things to your mind and imagination. I could almost hear breathing, not just one person, but many people! If one could account for the four of us and the wolves, I could swear there were more than fifty people in this cave hall.
Because it was chilly, the wolves’ breathing was very slow and quiet and I know that the rest of us were not breathing very deeply, because we were rested from the journey by now, besides the distance to this cave hall was not very far. By now my eyes were playing tricks on me. It seemed that I could almost make out a crowd of people standing around the perimeter of the cave wall. Either they were so well blended in, or it was a product of my imagination, like my hearing. All of a sudden the room lit up like someone had turned on a bright string of lights all around the room, that same greenish-yellow glow that matched our eyes. It was then that I realized there was a large crowd of people or aliens standing with their eyes opened now. How fascinating! The pairs of eye became more and more obvious, blinking every now and then. The sight was not only eerie but their bodies had an almost alien look to them, almost as if they were transparent, that one could see through them to the walls behind them. Was this some kind of advanced camouflage? It was then we heard the voice in our heads.
<Welcome! It is time we met. We sent out enough invitations, but they all went unanswered. As you can see, daylight would be disastrous for us, and at night your people would mistake us for ghosts, and we cannot change our shape anymore than this. That is why we need you humans to continue our projects, especially those against our enemies. I am sure they will be your enemies too, if we can convince you. But since the wolves trust you, we cannot help but put our trust in you also. Besides, time is running out, since the Forbidden Zone, as you call it, is now open to our enemies. This world has restricted us enough, at least now we can move around a little more through the portals, but we are still restricted to those planets that are more favorable to us and our conditions.>
<You will always have our services, for all that your people have done for us,> Alpha interjected. <Thank you. But it is your service that has helped us stay alive through all these ages,> continued the voice.
It was hard to determine whether it was male or female since it seem to come from a sexless (?) mind. One can always sense, eventually, the sex of the person by how they talk and choose words and put their meanings together. Even with the wolves, we can always sense the sex of the wolf, even though it does not make much difference now. For example, we just know that the females always lead the group of wolves, and they will also be the main speakers, especially the alpha female. The only exception is the male wolf with the most beautiful blue eyes, Midnight, Michael’s companion. For some reason they always show difference to him in important matters, but he never leads the group.
<We don’t quite understand a lot of things. Maybe you could at least explain them, if that is possible,> the Professor begged. <It is probably better if you ask the questions, since we do not know what you want us to explain,> continued the voice. At least it was friendly. <Why are you here? Why were you here? Where did you come from? Who are these enemies? What part do we play in all of this> and the Professor, I am sure, could have gone on.
<All in good time,> the voice answered. <We are constricted by the time portal. Unfortunately, they have a very narrow window of operation that work mainly on gravitational alignment with the other portals. We know you are tired and would like to refresh you with some food and rest. Then we will continue to answer your questions as best we can. Hopefully, you will then do us the favor of assisting us in recovering several things that we need to keep the portals working, since they use other sources of energy. The food we serve you will be quite familiar, so do not worry about it. But as you will find, when using the portal, you may not be able to find food to suit you on the other side. So we have made up some reserves for you until your bodies adjust.>
By now Alpha had walked over to the speaker and nuzzled her/him, while the speaker automatically stroked the fur of the alpha female. The familiar action put us all at rest. It was still hard to determine the shape of these aliens’ bodies, though, and our minds kept playing tricks on us in trying to define their shapes. But they were right, we were hungry and we felt the much needed rest starting to make us sleepy. Hopefully dinner would be ready soon, but our minds were also racing with their requests about a portal. It sounds like they want us to pass through a portal.