Robert Jackson sat down in his overstuffed chair to watch television on a nice and quiet Wednesday evening in Milwaukee Wisconsin on the twenty sixth day of March in the year two thousand and three. He was dead tired tonight after having worked out in the garage and in the attic all day, rummaging through everything that was going to the land fill and the big auction this weekend. He hated the idea of getting rid of things that he may actually have a need for in the future, but at the present these things from the past were taking up precious space for things from the present like his truck in the garage and his important paperwork in the attic. Not even half way through the show that he was watching, Robert Jackson drifted soundly off to sleep and the dreams came back again like they have night after night.
* Chapter One *
"You're telling me that you want me to be the captain of this star ship, from another world?" I said, taking a seat in front of an alien that reminded me of an Andorion on Star Trek.
"Yes Robert Jackson, that's exactly what I'm telling you." it answered, while I gazed about the room, scared out of my wits. I began tugging on an unseen object that had been placed in my left ear. I hated having anything in my ears at all, let alone without my consent.
"You're crazy and out of your mind, I'm no star ship captain!"
"Jackson, in order to save yourself, and your world, you will be the commander of this vessel, and please do not remove the translator from your ear!" he told me standing now and leaning over his desk.
"Just you wait a minute here, what do you mean, save myself and my world?" I asked gazing up at the alien while slowly lowering my left arm.
"Yours is not the only world destined for dominance or destruction, depending upon one of only two answers given, not only from yourself, but from your worlds highest leaders in command. There are others aboard this ship whose worlds have already been dominated or completely annihilated." he explained.
"Where's the original captain of this vessel that I'm on?" I asked pondering upon my question.
"She's dead, murdered by the aliens that destroyed her world and it's star ships, save the one that you are now aboard". he answered gazing upon me with one of his weird shaped eyebrows raised while retaking his seat.
"What about her second in command?' I asked as the oval door to the room zipped open and one of my best friends, Donald April was escorted in by two more strange looking aliens.
"Admiral, here's the other Earthling that you have requested to see." said one of them, while Donald walked over and stood by my chair.
"Thank you, and that will be all for now, Lieutenants Tholari and Lumada." replied the alien that they had called an admiral.
After they had left I gazed up at Donald and he back down at me.
"I know that I'm having a bad dream if you're in it, Jackson!" he said.
"Dream, I seriously doubt that we're dreaming, Donald." I replied before the two of us turned our gazes back to the alien admiral.
"Are you Donald Sherman April?" he asked as Donald gazed about the room as I had earlier.
Ah yes, I suppose that I still am." Donald answered as the alien extended it's arm out to shake hands with him, but he just stood there unresponsive.
"Jackson, and April, I must inform you, that your world will be invaded in one of your earthen years by a race from another part of our galaxy. They have laid claimed to at least thirteen solar systems thus far, and a small portion of the survivors are aboard this ship, while others are being held in cells aboard the attacking vessels." he explained to us.
"Still, where's this ships second in command." I asked once again.
"Dead, along with the captain. Although we do have a few commanders from other worlds here, none are qualified enough to be---
"And if you should just so happen to say that I am, you're further out there in deep space than---
"Qualified for what Jackson?" Donald asked, gazing over at me as I arose up and out of my chair.
"He or it wants me to command this star ship that we're supposedly on, believe it or not." I answered and watched as his eyes opened wide.
"I don't, good lord what a dream I'm . . . dream heck, a nightmare, I'm actually having a nightmare!" Donald thundered as he fell into the chair that I had just vacated.
"It will be if this admiral fruitcake makes me the captain of this ship." I replied while placing my right hand on the back of April's chair.
"How did we get here, and how is it that we are able to understand one another?" Donald asked as he gazed up at the alien.
"You were all transported here while you were still asleep by our molecular transporters, and as to your other question, we had language aid translators placed into your left ears." he explained to us as Donald reached up with his left hand to feel the device.
"So, we've been abducted aboard a u.f.o. and you want me to play its captain and save the earth from destruction---
"Not play the part of a captain, you will be the captain of this vessel and April shall be its second in command!" the alien stormed.
"Why don't you just send us all back home and you can get your head examined!" I thundered back as I stared him straight in the eyes.
"Because Jackson, according to Delindrian prophecy, you're the One." he replied calmly as Donald's and my very own eyebrows shot upwards.
"According to what, I'm a what?" I asked as Donald placed his right hand on my left arm.
"Don't worry Jackson, this is just a dream, and I know what caused it." he said.
"For your information Mister April, you're not dreaming, nor are any of the other inhabitants, that we've selected from your world, in a dream state." the alien said as he sat back down in his chair behind his desk.
According to the prophesies of a Delindrian prophet and scholar, long since dead, this is the world from which all of our worlds would find their savior from the Zaleens that want to subdue and rule our galaxy." the alien with the antennas for ears explained to us in a serious tone of voice.
"You're a little late in arriving here if you want the savior in the flesh." I replied. "He was hung upon a wooden cross almost two thousand years ago."
"I'm not referring to or talking about the Son of the Supreme Presence." he told me.
"You know about the Son of God?" Donald asked as he leaned forward in his chair.
The Son of the Supreme Presence in the universe is known by all the inhabitants in our galaxy, April, Jackson." he informed us as we sat there momentarily stunned.
"Well, I'm not him if that's---
"No, you're not the Creator, you're the one that is to save the worlds here, in our galaxy, from the Zaleens." he further informed me.
"Sure I am." I replied. "Now, if you'll just send us home maybe we can find you a physician that you can talk---
"Jackson, April, whether or not you are apt to believe us, we are at war, and shortly your world will be included in our galactic war of survival!" the admiral said, having raised his voice.
"According to our prophets, and since you are familiar with the Son of God, or the Supreme Presence, our world is to be destroyed and renewed by the Creator himself, not these Zaleens that you're---
"Jackson, think with your mind and not with your mouth!" the irate alien admiral thundered as he stood up from his chair.
"Oh but I am!" I thundered back. "I'm thinking about how far gone your mind is and how so unbelievable this all sounds coming from your mouth!"
The expression on the alien's face looked sadly as if it had changed to one of utter worry and dismay.
"Perhaps I should begin anew." he told us. "I am Admiral Kondulon Mazanurra from the planet Uorexua, a member world of the United Galactic Consortium of Inhabited Worlds and the last defensive unit against the Zaleens." the admiral explained as we halfway listened.
"Huh, the United Federations kind of thing." I said as I gazed at the picture of an alien world above the couch that sat by the oval entry door.
"The United Federation of Planets, Jackson." Donald replied.
"There is much that must be done to prepare yourselves aboard this ship and your world below it, and we must not waste the time."Admiral Mazanurra told us.
"And should we decline or refuse to play along and or go along with this---
"You would forfeit your world and all who dwell upon it, Mister April, Jackson?" the admiral asked angrily as he glared at the both of us.
"Just how do we know that all this isn't---
"You will be provided with all the information necessary for you to either complete successfully or fail miserably in your mission, gentlemen." he explained as he stood once more.
"I suppose that you've made first . . . second contact with our world leaders and they're all hunky-dory with the fact that you've taken a handful of our world's inhabitants to go and fight in this star wars of yours?" Donald April asked as he too stood upon his feet.
"More than a handful, Commander April." Mazanurra answered.
"Yeah right, Commander!" Donald said as the Uorexuan stepped out from behind his desk and motioned for us to follow him into a corridor.
"Our family and friends back home on the planet's surface, do they know where we are at the moment or are---
"No, not at this present time, but soon, everyone on your planet will know of the importance of your mission, Captain Jackson." the Admiral replied as we walked the corridor, that at this moment was void of anyone else but the three of us as we neared an elevator and boarded it.
"Jackson, want to know what's causing my nightmare?" Donald asked as the elevator or lift began moving.
"We aren't dreaming Donald, things seem to real for us to be dreaming." I told him.