Aliens Abound

Book 3 of the Other Worldly Series

Print ISBN: 978-1-64719-216-7
Publisher :, Inc.
Publication date : March 20, 2021
Print length : 310 pages

Aliens Abound cover

Aliens Abound Chapter 1

Aliens Abound cover

“Do you have someplace where we can jitterbug?” Mom asked O.W., also known as Octavius Wynne and proprietor of Planet Wynne, the Las Vegas casino hotel where my family dined Christmas Eve.

My name is Rowan Layne, writer and associate of aliens, which is what Red Orbiters like Mr. Wynne are. Not to be confused with otherworldly, or OW—what I and pretty much everyone on our planet was due to hybrid alien-human DNA. I promote progressive planetary politics, so those who reject their partial alien identities, like the soon-to-be-ex-president, don’t like me much.

Most might not realize Mom was as old as she was, or that she and Dad met when she was dancing with a now-famous journalist in college in Texas. She inquired about Dad and expressed interest in dating him. A good thing or my sister Gwynne, who I call G, and I would not exist.

G was currently in consult with her husband, Phil, about a town car to transport my folks and me back to my North Las Vegas neighborhood. I was fifty-seven years old, and G was sixty-one, and we weren’t up to dancing the night away until Christmas morning on the Las Vegas Strip.

“In my next life, I want showgirl legs,” I muttered as we made our way through hordes of people to reach the front of the casino hotel with Mom, fortified by champagne, greeting every employee in sight.

“I’m more matooer than I look,” she said, grasping their hands and pronouncing mature like manure, “but I have to stay with it, especially here in Vegas!”

Mom spoke those words one last time to a parking valet before she and I were snatched by armed henchman and shoved into an unmarked van that peeled away from the curb with a piercingly loud screech. We were flanked in the back seat by two male thugs, not speaking but doing some heavy mouth-breathing.

Plenty of additional screeching came from Mom and me, but I could still hear Raucous Wilde’s voice directly in my ear, because hearing Red Orbiters from a distance is my special power, and many of them can hear me.

“Damn it, Copper! You should have let me fly everyone in my orb and this would not have happened!”

I was gasping for breath but managed to reply, “You know Mom would insist you take her to Italy for shoe shopping if we ever let her in your orb, and what the hell do we do now?”

“Roger should be in the air soon. Just keep talking and we’ll track you.”

Mom was already on it, addressing the two ham-handed Neanderthals decked out in military camouflage with no identifying symbols as the van careened through downtown Las Vegas. “Those are the tackiest outfits I’ve ever seen! You have no manners or sense of style! And had you been in my kindergarten class, you would have learned bullying is bad! And my Doodles and I have arboretum friends who will teach you a lesson!”

Mom meant Orbiters, not a botanical garden devoted to trees, but she was correct about what would happen, as Red Orbiters were particularly devoted to me. In fact the two slated to rescue us, Rauc and Roger, were also intimate acquaintances, and I was supposed to write a book about them and what they do for our planet. Oh and Roger is sort of Superman, as he was the alien impetus for the comic book character. He even has an S shield tattoo on his chest.

As for Doodles, that’s my childhood nickname, which Mom persisted in using publicly with embarrassing regularity.

I weighed in, twisting around to thump one of the paramilitary buffoons on the shoulder. “You realize you just nabbed an octogenarian—which means she’s in her eighties, because I’m pretty sure you’re an idiot—who has a weak bladder? What’s next for you fascist lackwits? Babies and puppies? Oh wait, you’ve done that too!”

My octave was hurting my own ears, so it was nice to have the helmeted henchman wince. I reached around Mom to poke the other guy right about where a nameplate or information should be, other than the generic word POLICE.

Fourth Amendment! Say it with me, fellas. As in the government shall not engage in unreasonable seizure. You’re the pathetic equivalent of the outgoing president’s personal G.I. Joe! Except he is not a dictator and you are not identifiable as any particular police and are therefore unconstitutional criminals engaging in assault, battery, kidnapping, and absolute, irrevocable stupidity!”

Rauc spoke, out of the ether but nonetheless right into my ear, “Keep at it, Copper. I’m explaining to your dad what happened, assuring him Roger will be there soon and we’ll bring you back safely. We think you’re headed to the air base out in Indian Springs.”

“What the hell is taking so long?” I muttered.

“Roger was not in Vegas, as you might recall,” replied Rauc. “If you want, I can hop in my orb and start dive-bombing the van, but we’re concerned about heavy traffic on the freeway. I don’t want to cause an accident.” I could tell he was keeping his ire in check so as not to worry my family.

Mom was yelling, “You better not try to hurt my grandanimals!”

I felt a momentary pang of panic for my dog, Bodie, and cat, Morris, but realized they were surely safe in my home with a protective Red Orbiter magnetic force put in place months ago.

“You punks are more like Ken dolls playing at being big bad warrior wannabes. Please! I’m surprised the word police is even spelled correctly, but it is after all the only word on this desert camouflage meant for battle, not urban thuggery of innocent American citizens!” I yelled. “And on Christmas Eve! Have you no modicum of shame, no human decency?”

I kept at it for what seemed like a half hour, and finally I elbowed the still-silent guy next to me as hard as I could, and Mom, bless her heart, followed suit and did the same to the thug next to her.

“And what’s with all the tattoos? Did you get those in prison? Because that’s where you belong! Are they spelled correctly?” I sniped. “I know it might be hard to ink fathead on arms so scrawny they need big scary automatic weapons to perpetrate your terrorist tactics. Because that’s what you are, domestic terrorists, and as a lawyer, I took an oath to defend against all enemies, foreign and domestic—”

The van came to a screeching halt and was immediately slammed by something on the outside, making it rock back and forth.

“What is it, Doodles?” Mom clutched my thigh, fingernails digging in. I winced but managed to whisper, “It’s okay. They’re here to help,” just as clouds seemed to fill my cerebral cortex with the words, “Don’t. Worry. Rowan,” and the henchmen were inevitably idiotic enough to slide open the door and haul us to the curb.

Whereupon we were once again snatched with alarming alacrity and lifted in the air by Greens, otherwise known as little green men. Because I have lots of protective friends these days, don’t you know?

As we ascended into the chilly night sky and entered an actual flying saucer, Mom looked at the entities rescuing us and, wide-eyed, over at me.

“They’re not wearing shoes,” she said in a stage whisper.

That’s what she noticed about the small green creatures who had no mouths or other clothing of any kind?