I open doors for a living.
Before you get on your high horse, and call my line of work demeaning, you need to understand that I love my work and it’s very rewarding.
My name is Jerod. I’ve been employed by the baron for forty years. The people, and things, that have come through this front door would blow your mind. Hopefully, I’ll still be doing this work for another 20 years. But one never knows.
Today, I’m going to share a story with you.
You say that you’re a writer and are interested in unusual true stories. That would neatly describe the offering I’m about to lay out for you. Make sure you’re recording this, because I’m only telling this story once.
People have always accused the baron of being eccentric. Even a little crazy. I say he is a man with a vast imagination with the wealth to pursue any pastime that strikes his fancy.
The baron likes to throw parties. He calls them gatherings. Even conventions. All I know is they involve liquor, drugs, and loud music. Chanting isn’t unusual. The main room is always bathed in colored lights. Sometimes blue. Sometimes red. There were colored lights at the last gathering.
As for the attendees. They often appear to be creatures of the night with pale faces and ruby-red lips. Upon closer examination you can see they’re young people into the Goth culture. Or punks.
Some nights the attendees are older. Much older. They come in wearing elaborate clothing; the women in fancy ball gowns, and the men in tuxedos. They come in pairs and always politely bow to the baron…unlike the young people.
I open the door for them all. Smiling and professional. I pretend to not notice if the women are half-naked, and the men don’t have shirts on. It doesn’t matter. The baron loves diversity.
But I digress.
One night when no event was scheduled, there came a knocking at the front door. When I opened it I was surprised to see a tall pale thin man with no white in his eyes. They were black saucers that absorbed the light from the entryway.
When he asked for the baron, I stopped staring and invited him inside. He was wearing a tight gold jumpsuit and a black cape that he pulled around himself as he stepped inside. His pale head was elongated and seemed too big for the frail neck supporting it.
“The baron is expecting me,” he said in a high shrill voice.
“Who shall I say is calling?” I asked.
“Mr. Smith,” he replied.
When I returned, Mr. Smith was sitting on a chair and paging through a Field and Stream magazine from the stack on the coffee table.
I told him the baron was ready to see him. He closed the magazine, smiled, and stood up awkwardly. After getting his balance, he silently followed me to the baron’s private office.
It was after this visit that things changed. The parties, aka conventions, ceased. Visitors came in small groups, toting personal bags and suitcases. Even odder…they never left. I’d let them in the house and then…nothing.
Mr. Smith showed up often. I no longer had to point the way to the baron’s office.
You ask if I was curious about all of the changes and the mysterious Mr. Smith. Yes, of course I was. I kept my eyes and ears open.
After being dismissed early one day, I was driving home and my car broke down. I’d only gone a couple of miles and decided to walk back to the baron’s mansion. There was no cities in any direction for 30 miles. I knew it would take time for the road service assistance I called to get there, and gave the baron’s address.
It was dark after walking for five minutes. When I got to the baron’s house I was shocked to see a flying saucer sitting in his front yard! The thing was bigger than a jumbo jet and was whirling around on a stationary axis.
A large ramp led up to an opening in the ship. People were slowly walking up the ramp. I was transfixed, watching the silent parade disappear inside the ship’s bowels. Two figures appeared at the front door (where I would normally be).
It was the baron and Mr. Smith. The two talked for a few minutes after the last person went inside the open hatch door. Mr. Smith, whose awkward gait reminded me of an Emperor penguin, finally went up the ramp, and the door closed.
In a blinding flash the ship was gone!
I waited for 20 minutes before approaching the front door. The baron was surprised to see me and quickly let me in. I told him what happened to my car. He wished me well and said he was retiring early and to remember to lock up.
“I wouldn’t want strangers to get in” he said, while slowly walking up the stairway to his bedroom.
So, there you have it!
How’s that for a true and unusual story? What? You don’t believe me? That’s too bad. It’s your loss, my friend. On your way out you may want to take a look at that big circle of burnt grass on the front yard.
As It Stands, life is full of unusual stories.