And today in America, we celebrate and thank our fathers. So, I included the holiday in my story. Happy Father’s Day to all the fathers. It’s a hard job at best. Thank you!
“Are we there yet?” Anyse asked her father. Their group had hiked two miles since leaving the car after a six plus hour drive from the Metro area. She loved hiking and camping but it was going to be dark soon. “Seriously, where does Grandfather Furst live?” She asked after yet another unmarked fork.
“Just five more minutes,” Dad said, “Everyone okay? We’ll catch up to your grandpa soon.”
Karan, Anyse’s twin sister, asked, “Dad, can you show me on a map where we are going?”
“As I explained to both of you at the trail head there is no written record of this trail. You must remember,” Dad replied.
“Why have we never been to Grandpa Furst’s campground before? I don’t understand his marketing plan.”
A break in the old growth forest appeared once they rounded a bend. It wasn’t what she had expected. It was some kind of landing pad, not long enough for any kind of plane. “What kind of plane was capable of a vertical take off?” Anyse asked under her breath.
“Good question, my granddaughter. Happy Birthday, sweethearts.” Grandpa Furst hugged and kissed them both. “You graduated last month and now you have turned into adults.”
The girls giggled not quite comfortable being adults.
The girls said together, “Happy Father’s Day, Grandpa.”
“Thank you, girls, unfortunately, we don’t have time to celebrate today. It’s time for you to be on your way.”
“I thought this campground was our destination,” Anyse said.
“Another time perhaps. Your transport is waiting on the pad ready to leave. We have excellent cover tonight with the Aurora Borealis on this south shore of Lake Superior.”
“Where are we going?” Anyse asked.
“Home, of couse.”
“Dad, we haven’t told them yet,” Dad said.
Grandpa gave a big belly laugh, “No wonder you two are looking at me with wide eyes.” Turning to dad, he added, “Sorry, we don’t have a long time. Erime will have to answer a lot of their questions on the transport.”
What? Erime was their best friend since preschool. How did she know things that they didn’t?
“Mom, dad, why is grandpa talking in riddles?” Karan asked.
Mom burst into tears. Erime put her arm around mom’s shoulder, whispering, “My mom will be here for you, Miss Sylvia.”
“Uh. . . girls, there is no easy way to say this. We are not from this planet. Your grandfather was the Commander and Chief of a twenty world alliance until a few hours ago. A rival alliance has been known to use any means including family members against the Commander.”
“Are we royalty?” Anyse asked. “What’s the rush?”
“No, your grandfather was elected and is still a powerful man on our home world. In a few hours the world learns about us. You go with Erime, learning all that you can,” Dad said, wiping at a tear hugging them. Mom joined in.
“You lied to us.” Karan accused.
“No, we protected you. Now you must protect yourselves.”