The Hand – Chapter 2

The phone rings again. To Alice, it is background noise, and she doesn’t notice it. But her husband says, “Aren’t you going to answer the phone?”

She goes to the house, feeling dazed. Before she goes inside the house, she turns and asks, “What are you going to do with it?”

“You just go inside and chat with those women friends,” he says, “I’ll take care of it.”

“We should call the police.”

He looks at her straight in the eyes. “We aren’t going to call anyone! I don’t want any trouble. And don’t you go talking about it with your little friends.”

The phone call is from Jane. Jane’s voice is excited and she talks and talks. A space ship crashed. – I tried calling you 6 times. – How awful. – Nobody is safe. – Why didn’t you notice? – It crashed nearby. – Police are everywhere. – There is so much smoke.

“It’s just south from where you live, Alice,” Jane continues. “There are lots of people there, looking at the ship. We should go look, too.”

Next, Alice gets a call from Margie. Margie is also excited and she talks and talks. A space ship crashed. – I went down to see it. – Isn’t this crazy? – I tried calling you twice. – The ship had funny windows. – There was so much smoke. – It’s stuck in the ground.

“The police won’t let anybody go near it,” Margie continues, “They say that the army should look at it first. You should go down and see it, Alice.”

Alice decides to tell Mac about it. He is back in the barn, working on they hay in the loft. As she walks to the barn, she doesn’t see the hand.

“So that’s where it came from,” he says, after hearing Alice’s news. “It’s a good thing that the space ship didn’t crash on my property.”

He spits and wipes his mouth with his sleeve. Alice frowns. Mac always gets his clothes dirty and Alice has trouble washing them.

“If a space ship comes here, I’ll blow it up.”

“Should we go down and see it?” Alice asks. She realizes she asked a bad question. Mac always thinks that she gossips too much.

“Curiosity killed the cat,” he says. He smiles wickedly and Alice looks down in embarrassment.

Mac picks up his farm tool again and says, “Let everybody else go down and see the stupid space ship. I’ll be doing real work. They will be standing around with their mouth’s hanging open. I have a farm, and I have work to do.”

“I think I’ll go down.” Alice tries to sound confident, but her voice is weak.

He looks at her harshly, and spits on the floor again. “Then go,” he said. He throws some hay off the loft. Alice has to jump out of the way to avoid the falling hay.

After lunch, she goes.

At the scene, she sees a silver space ship. It’s shape is like a missile, but it is much bigger. The front of the ship is stuck in the ground. The tail of the ship is sticking up into the air. The sides of the ship are damaged.

Alice guesses that the ship is about 150 feet long and 25 feet across.

There are many people around. She knows many of them, but it’s the first time to see them in a long time. Usually, Mac doesn’t like when she visits friends. Alice is happy to be here so she can chat with old friends.

She talks to her old coworkers, her old high school friends, and her neighbors. It’s wonderful to talk to them again. They ask her about Mac, and Alice says, “He wanted to come, but he is busy today.”

She sees an army car driving toward them. She watches the men get out of the army car. They set up a long rope around the space ship. Now, nobody can get close to the ship. The army men knock on the ship. They pick up small pieces and put them in plastic bags. They take photos. They look at the space ship and shake their heads. They seem confused.


Published by Judy Shinohara

Hello! I’m Judy, living in Osaka! I love teaching English to my students. In my free time, I enjoy simple gardening, reading and writing, art, and watching Netflix.

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