Big and small.
(c) McWolf www.mcwolf.info (2002)

    Only one lamp was lighting up the alley behind a hotel. There wasn't any need for additional light - the alley was always deserted. Once a day, the automated machine comes to take the garbage from the hotel. As usual, at exactly 2 am, a giant elephant-like device squeezed into the alley, plugged a flexible hose to a connector of the hotel's wall and started to swallow bricks of already sorted garbage to take it to the recycling station. The machine's door opened, and a man stepped out. He was dressed in a uniform with big letters on the back "Utilization and recycling" and a smaller stripe at the front "Utilization and recycling. Thomas Nash."

    Thomas Nash jumped down on earth and deeply breathed the night's air. Now he has to wait while the loading is finished. It will take about ten minutes. He stretched and looked up. As usual, he saw a bright point moving in the sky - a night lunar flight, start at 1.58 am from spaceport Hameln-2. Sometimes Thomas tried to imagine that he wasn't a garbage collector but a pilot of the spaceship. Surely, its more interesting than to stay here and be a garbage collector, moving from hotel to hotel collecting unwanted waste. Suddenly, he heard a rustle in the high grass. He turned around but it was too dark to see. Maybe just his imagination, he thought. Or, maybe its one of the... tourists. Those creatures like to spend their time on the Earth. The minister of economics, a fat ass, was almost shining from happiness when presented the planet's budget a month ago on stereovision. Profits from tourism... Hameln was such a nice quiet town... Or it was a rustle from the street? Thomas looked around the corner. Here they are. A crawling company. 17 races were known and two of them are non-humanoids. Others knew nothing about the two. Some races were nice, some small and funny. But this once Thomas didn't like the most. They look like crawling sacks. Just look at them - tourists, important persons, fear nobody and he is only a garbage collector, a small being. He turned around and climbed back into the cabin.

    Grpruon-dr was walking in a good mood. What can be better than to spend time with friends? They were fueled by stimulators in a bar and now were walking, singing loud ancient songs. On their home planet, they would be stopped at once by Tutors for night singing. The aborigines have such poor senses so they can't hear singing. When they arrived, they knew locals call their way of communication "a mix of ultra-high-sound and magnetic". What a pity somebody has to divide harmony on pieces... Their company walked on to the main street and got quiet at once, after they noticed a police patrol. Two aborigines in armored suits with muscles' amplifiers were slowly moving down the street on two back limbs. "How the evolution came to such nonsense?" - thought Grpruon-dr, looking at them. Their suits have ultra-high sound translators, so they may fine their company for noise easily. Let them pass. Everything was so good... But no tourist visa can save one from such persons. Because tourists are only small beings and these fear nothing... Why is he raising his fore limb so strange?

    Norman Vincent looked at his watch. Two hours until the end of patrolling. Everything was calm. The only thing that might possibly be causing trouble would be a company of mrnbuons. According to measure devices, they were too noisy in their high diapason. Maybe already loaded with something. Doctor was telling something about they have no alcohol but some stimulators. Ok, let them entertain if they don't bother others. Infra-red radar in a helmet beeped. Norman looked back, then raised his head and saw two fire strokes between stars pattern. Two atmospheric fighters had left the military spaceport Hameln-3 in the direction of the Earth's capital, which was situated only 400 miles north-west from Hameln. Interesting, what was that for? Although the Earth's government does what they want, and who is he? Just a cop, a small being.

    "Here it is, mister president. Appeared in the Solar System not more than an hour ago." It looked like a lot of blurred shadows piled up without any order. Shadows were pulsating and flowing. "So so, digestion, working model." A young lieutenant at the control screen giggled because it was rather similar. "Any ideas what they want?" "No, mister president, that's one of the two races who don't want any contacts." "How I don't like those non-humanoids... I though they hung out in a center of the Galaxy. What do they want here?..." Councilor didn't answer. "What did you do?" "Just in case, we raised two fighters with plasma missiles. They will be here soon. If something bad happens, they will additionally cover the capital. Our cruiser follows this", - councilor stuttered because it was hard to call this pulsating something "a ship", - "this object, the picture comes from the cruiser." "Very well." - the president came to the screen and stared at strange waves of shadows. Something unknown is near. Somebody flies and fear nothing and small beings have to sit and wait what he will do.

    Emptiness. A touch of mind. Sun. Light. Question. If a human would see him now he would see a hemisphere 30 feet in diameter on the floor of the ship. Though it wasn't quite a ship, it was his body. He grew it when he went away to other stars. And it was a part of his mind. His body looked like his thoughts. Questions moved him forward. He didn't search for answers. Not answers but questions moved him and made him fly to another star. But these question couldn't be asked in any humanoid's language. He saw other creatures, but they weren't questioned so he avoided them. He wasn't indifferent to only one type of creatures. They weren't questions, the closest equivalent in Earth's language was "unrest". They were able to change his thoughts. They were able to change thoughts of other creatures. He didn't know the meaning of fear, but he knew that he doesn't want to meet any of them.

    A big creature was trampling in a spot of light. A scary view. Contours of a giant alien mechanism were slightly visible in a darkness. Under a cover of plants, Eoeu-io was observing the monster. What a creature. The only race that is immune to his biological mechanism of mind suppression. Even powerful star riders try to avoid a meet with him, and this monster doesn't care at all. The monster turned his scary muzzle with only two small eyes on it, and Eoeu-io felt fear. He saw ugly signs on the monster's body and signs easily transformed into words of alien language: "Utilization and recycling. Thomas Nash."

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