Author : Todd Keisling, featured writer

Dr. Watson and Dr. Blair watched as the orderlies interned the patient in observation room three.

Dr. Blair scratched absently at the back of his hand.

“So,” Dr. Watson said, “what’s his story?”

He gestured to the nameless patient in the straightjacket. Both orderlies left him in one corner of the padded room and closed the door behind them. The doctors stared at the young man through the observation window.

Dr. Blair grimaced, cleared his throat and said, “Wandered into the clinic this morning. No name, no ID.”

“Nothing at all?”

“No,” Dr. Blair went on. “He sat in the ER for two and a half hours before we could squeeze anything out of him. Even then, it was nothing but inane babble. Something about aliens.”

Dr. Watson smirked.

“You should be used to that in your neck of the woods.”

Dr. Blair continued to scratch the back of his hand. The skin was red and puffy.

“Damn kids come in from college, drive up to Archuleta Mesa to get stoned and look for the ‘lost military base.’ All they find is a hangover.”

“Lost military base?”

“Yeah,” Dr. Blair said. He kept scratching. The skin turned a dark reddish-purple from his consistent agitation. “Local myth. Sort of like Area 51 up in Nevada, but this base is underground, just north of Dulce. They say it has seven levels. Level seven is where aliens supposedly perform genetic experiments on human beings. Or some shit like that.”

Dr. Watson turned back to the observation window. The nameless kid slowly rocked back and forth. Blood dribbled down from a large, bulbous boil on his forehead.

“That’s one hell of a zit.”

Dr. Blair gasped as he drew blood from the back of his hand. Dr. Watson turned and frowned.

“I’ve got a first aid kit in my office. Walk with me.”

The two doctors left the observation ward.

Dr. Blair continued his story.

“Funny thing is, the kid isn’t stoned. Not as far as I can tell. When we finally got him to speak, all we could get out of him was a bunch of babbling and crazy talk.”

“What did he say?”

“Typical Archuleta bullshit. Went up with a few friends, dropped some acid, got separated. He said he found his way into the underground base and was led down to the seventh level where, and I quote, ‘E.T. revealed the greatest secret of all.'”

They entered Dr. Watson’s office, who proceeded to dig out the first aid kit. He chewed his bottom lip as he bandaged Dr. Blair’s wounded hand.

“Are you okay, doctor?”

“Yeah,” Dr. Blair nodded. “Just a rash. Shouldn’t have scratched it like that.”

Both men sat.

“Anyway,” Dr. Watson said, “what’s this big secret?”

Dr. Blair tried to refrain from smiling, but not hard enough.

“The kid says an alien told him he was the messenger. That he would send a ‘great revelation’ back to his race. Whatever that may be, I have no idea. That boil on his forehead has swollen to twice its size since this morning. He kept picking at it, which caused it to bleed. When we tried to treat it, he grew violent and attacked one of my nurses.”



Dr. Blair rubbed his bandaged hand and rose from his seat.

“I’ve contacted the local police. Hopefully they can help track down his identity. I assume he’s in good hands here?”

“Of course,” Dr. Watson smiled. “I’ll be in touch.”

He saw his friend to the door. As he returned to his desk, Dr. Watson wiped sweat from his brow and felt a slight bump upon his forehead.

It itched and throbbed at his touch.

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