#172 An Occurrence at Prescott Public Library
On the afternoon of Sunday, April 1, the cloud-filled sky emptied onto the desert, and as usual, the gloomy weather brought on my blues, changing my world, from a happy place to a dreary and god awful. As I drove to a meeting with my critique group in downtown Prescott, Arizona, I went past the regional airport off the 89-A. The silver streak in the sky didn’t strike me as unusual at all. In retrospect, it should have when it climbed 10,000 feet in two seconds and dropped the same distance in a blink of my eye.
I figured it was some trick the desert played, something like seeing an oasis that isn’t there. Even though the craft followed me all the way downtown to the library, I paid it no heed. Six dedicated writers met to learn the craft of creative writing. We sat at a long conference table overlooking a large window facing the street in the library’s Elsea conference room.
Pat, Sue, Linda and Mark sat with their backs to the window. Carol and I sat facing the street. We began to discuss H.G. Wells’ Valley of the Spiders.
Pat commented on the amount of times Wells used colors in his writing and the conversation moved around the table. When Linda opened her mouth, I became mesmerized. Her voice titillated all my senses. As I watched her lips enunciate words, my heart rate rose and my entire being became aroused. I leaned forward as far as I could to be closer to this woman who affected me so strangely.
I looked into her eyes, and what I thought were blue irises spun in a hypnotic fashion. She spoke about Ambrose Bierce’s An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge. As I listened, I could see past her teeth into her mouth and down her ruby red throat where her uvula danced with her words. Thoughts of rolling spiders and a hanging somehow mixed with this image in my frenzied mind,
So when I saw the bright light coming through the window, I believed I imagined it.
The light surrounded Linda. Her hair rose like it floated on water, and then her body began to rise from the chair. I wanted to shout, but not a word would come. I looked at the others. They carried on as though nothing strange was happening. I looked back to Linda. Now she floated above her chair and started moving toward the window as though the beam of light drew her in. I reached out and grabbed her ankle to stop her from floating away, but as soon as I touched her, I became weightless and rose off my chair like gravity was nonexistent.
I tried to let go, but my hand stuck to her ankle as if dipped in superglue. Scared by this weird development, I rationalized that if we couldn’t float through the window, once we were pulled up against it, whatever force held us would break.
When I saw Linda’s head reach the window glass and pass through as though it wasn’t there, her body continued to pass through solid glass without a crack appearing anywhere. Dragging along behind her, I too passed through the glass and followed her on up the light beam that I could see came from that same craft I had observed before. It now hovered above the library. We passed through the craft’s metal-skin like light through glass and once inside, the beam of light disappeared. We dropped to the floor. Linda wrapped her arms around me and hugged me like a frightened kitten. I became aroused again and returned her hug with passion. Surprised to find passion at a time like this, I pulled away. I needed a clear head to try to understand our situation, but when I looked at her, a cloud full of erotic images surrounded her, and her erotic thoughts flowed through my brain like a movie. Her thoughts enticed me to respond and I couldn’t stop my
thoughts from flashing through my mind no matter how hard I tried. But I stopped trying and started enjoying them as she slowly disrobed. I felt compelled to do the same. She reached for me; I took her hand in mine and became overwhelmed with a desire so strong I couldn’t resist it.
Wait, I told myself. This is some kind of alien trick. I have to keep my senses. I ripped my hand from hers and erotic images disappeared. I put my pants on before it walked in.
“You’re not cooperating, ” said a tall spider. “I need to finish my research by .0000.7000, so I guess I’ll need another like this one.”
It pointed at me, and a light surrounded and lifted me. “Wait, wait, I’ll cooperate,” I yelled.
The light shut off, and I fell to the floor. Linda held out her hand. I tenuously took it in mine, and at the touch, lecherous feelings overcame me. I put my face to hers, touched her lips to mine, stuck my tongue between hers,
and tried to massage her dancing uvula. She in turn gyrated against me in such a satisfying manner, I lost control.
Though entranced with our love making, a part of my mind wondered if this creature was studying us or making a porn movie. Maybe if I perform well, the spider will make me a star, and use me in lots of scenes like this one. I pictured myself shaking the tall spider’s leg, sealing the deal, when I heard Mark’s voice.
“Joe, Joe, are you letting your imagination run away with you again?” It was then I realized I had an experience like the protagonist in An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge, but unlike the hung man in that story, I lived to realize it, didn’t I?