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From the files of Dr. Jason Grant.

* * * * *

It was one of the weirdest dreams I have ever had. And, as a parapsychologist, I've had some doozies!

I dreamt that I was in a big meeting hall, with everyone in attendance sitting around a large, round table of ivory-white. Seated in the matching-colored chairs around that table were beings who looked like those cantina musicians, the Biths, from the original STAR WARS movie.

That is; if you can imagine male and female Biths sporting goatee beards.

In any event, they were all watching this holographic image floating overhead. An image of dubious sound quality. Yet, one that clearly showed a young woman with fair skin and long, black hair wearing a one piece, sea-blue swimsuit with white high heels!

"Miss Connecticut. If you had one wish to make, what would it be?"

"I would wish for the baton I twirled earlier to become a magic wand. That way, I could wave it in the air, and feed all the starving people in the world. Because, starvation can lead to desperation. And, desperation can lead to violence. And, of course, violence always leads to war. So, if you can eliminate world hunger, you can bring about...world peace!"

"And, the winner is...MISS CONNECTICUT!!!!!"

It was at this point that the hologram vanished, and one of the pseudo-Biths stood up.

"That female Earthling subsequently became the international spokesbeing for peace, on her homeworld, for one solar-orbit. Truly, a most enlightened culture!"

"Enlightened?!" echoed another pseudo-Bith in obvious derision: "A culture still primitive enough to believe in magic? Why, we have known for _thousands_ of solar-orbits that the powers of the mind are as natural as respiration!"

"I would remind my distinguished colleague," replied the first one: ". . .that when we were at a similar level of development, we also all but deified those who had learned to harness their psionic abilities."

"At least we were still advanced enough to know," the second one retorted: "...that _nothing_ justifies the military use of nuclear weapons. Nothing!"

"In all fairness," countered the first one: "...the Earth people have used nuclear weapons, in open warfare, only twice in their recorded history."

"That is still two times too many, for my peace of mind," the second one continued: "I would remind the Council that our archeologists have psychometrically proven that the asteroid belt, in Earth's star system, was the result of a planet that destroyed itself, in a world-wide nuclear conflict, _millions_ of solar-orbits ago! And, if the people of Earth are allowed to bring their own militaristic madness any further into space, history may very well end up repeating itself."

"In that, I must concur with my distinguished colleague," admitted the first one: "But, I think such a calamity can be prevented if the Earthlings are controlled rather than exterminated. And, I have a plan that I have every confidence will achieve just that. May I outline it, Great Chair-being?"

The pseudo-Bith seated on the chair with the highest back rest nodded. Whereupon, the scene shifted.

Now, I found myself looking up at the two master debators from earlier. Literally, looking up. As if they had become giant-sized! Or, had I shrunk?

In any event, the one to my left looked at the one to my right.

"Do you have a link-up, yet, Dudar?"

"Yes, Zudar. And, I think we have found the ideal candidate. She has been the leader, or 'captain,' of her team for almost two solar-orbits."

"She?" I echoed, half-aloud, to myself.

"She has also been the foremost winner of her division for three solar-orbits," added the one called Dudar.

"Excellent!" cackled the one called Zudar: "Let the psychotronic indoctrination begin."

That was when I woke up...to the sound of my cellphone ringing on the nightstand to the left of my bed.

It was far from easy. But, I managed to sit up, plant my feet on the floor, and reach over to pick the frigging thing up.

"Hello?" I said (rubbing my eyes and forehead with my right hand).

"Is this Doctor Jason Grant?" inquired a voice with a bit of a Southern drawl.

"Yes! Who's this? And, do you happen to know what time it is?"

"Yes, sir. And, I apologize for calling you at what the East Coast deems an ungodly hour. But, I just got a special delivery by express mail. One that I think was meant for you. Only, somehow, it got delivered to me, by mistake!"

"And, you are...?" I asked (rephrasing my first question).

"Kenny. Kenny Gambol."

That blew away all the remaining cobwebs in my mind.

"The country-western star?"

"Yes, sir. And, the name on the return address label makes me think the express company might've thought they were returning it to sender."

"That name being...Prof. Kenneth Gambol?"

"Yes, sir. You must be a mind reader!"

I refrained from stating the obvious. If only because I was too busy trying to determine what America's foremost UFOlogist could possibly have sent a semi-retired country singer.

To be continued?
Chapter End Notes:
See? I told you so. :P
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