How the Irish Saved the World


Michael McLaughlin

A fleet of 3000 silver space ships hovered in high orbit above the blue marble planet called Earth. The Crylon invasion plans were set and within hours they would descend to Earth in their war machines and destroy everything and everybody.

Leading his armed forces was Commander Op. He was tall, white and stick-like with a head the size of a watermelon, eyes the shape of black avocados, hands with three fingers and two thumbs.

Commander Op was in a good mood when he fired his space craft out of Earth’s orbit and descended like a lighting bolt toward the planet below. It was his ritual to visit every planet for a final look before his forces crushed all life forms. It had been some time since he had seen such a primitive planet as Earth and it fascinated him.

His destination was an insignificant, defenseless island called Ireland. The joke among the advance scouting party was, to make Ireland surrender in mass, destroy all the pubs, or promise the Irish unlimited beer.

The helpless Irish were much different from the armed fortress nation that lay across the vast ocean to the west. This country was protected by missiles, ships and armies, and a population that had more weapons than all the rest of Earth combined. But Commander Op knew his superior technology would defeat anything this fortress country or the entire planet could develop for another 10,000 years.

Commander Op let the advanced guidance system maneuver his space craft to a desolated area just outside the city of Cork. His objective was on his forward screen now; it was a stone cottage with a thatched roof and a white picket fence. His sensors told him that the Irish life form was, of course, away at the pub.

The space craft landed smartly in a narrow hollow not visible from the road. His sensors told him the space craft would be completely hidden by ground fog in twelve minutes and thirty-seven seconds, exactly.

The hardest part of the journey for him was getting to the house. Machines and technology had long since aided everything the Crylons did, include walking. Earth’s oxygen levels were similar to his planet and the gravity was a little stronger, but he made it to the cottage, out of breath and overjoyed. He glanced down at his hand held scanner to make sure there were no humans around. He noticed the door had no lock, and again he thought how defenseless the Irish people were. Nothing protected them from the outside world. One of the early reports from the invading force stated that, "Any sober man with a garden hose as a weapon could conquer Ireland."

He slowly pushed the door open and ducked to enter the cottage. Even though his large eyes could see in the dark, he turned on the electric lights; he had never done that, and was curious how the earthlings made light. He looked around and noticed a computer on a desk. He smiled to himself and thought how ancient that machine was. A computer was a little better than knots on a string to count with, or cut marks on a stick. His attention turned to the small fireplace and he slowly walked toward it.

On the mantel of the fireplace was a row of books and it took him a moment to figure out what they were---This was the way Earth kept their knowledge. With his boney hand he pulled down a book and struggled to open it. He was amused that the pages of the book were made of thin pieces of wood fiber.

Then he noticed a small peculiar sign on the wall. He got out his hand held translator and scanned it. The device hummed, buzzed and scrolled back: This house protected by…leprechauns, faeries, elves, pixies, brownies and banshees. When he tried to decipher any of the words, there was no definition. That seemed odd to Commander Op. His translator had never been unable to come up with a definition. He selected the scanner to find the unknown words in any of the other books. The scanner directed him to a small book that translated to: Creatures of Ireland. He opened it, quickly scanned the pages and was surprised he didn’t know any of these beings from this planet. He read: Leprechaun…you must never take your eyes off of them, for they can vanish in an instant… Fairies… Pointed ears, mischievous and can disappear at will. Pixies…enjoy playing tricks on people and deliberately leading people astray. They use pixie dust to fly and confuse… Brownies…three feet tall and if offended will create malicious mischief.

The Earth creatures really concerned him, especially their ability to disappear. On his planet, one could become invisible with the aid of a large, complicated machine, but only for a short time. And what exactly was pixie dust?

Then, Commander Op had a strange sensation that he and his entire invading force were in grave danger. Had he underestimate this Earth? Were the Irish the keepers of treacherous creatures? Immediately he called up to his command center and gave the order to do a search for other life forces, especially in the fortress country across the ocean. In a nano second a report came back with a "Superman." Reading through the description, he was somewhat relieved in the meager powers of Superman. Superman was faster than a speeding bullet…the Crylons had space ships that were 1000 times faster. Superman was able to leap tall buildings in a single bound…they had machines that could jump higher than that. Superman was more powerful than a locomotive… Children on his planet played with more powerful toys at birth.

Commander Op breathed a sigh of relief, but still feared these Irish creatures. Their powers were insidious. They could be mischievous, and if anything the Crylons hated, it was mischief. These Irish creatures created doubt, and that was the worse thing a Crylon could experience. Again he worried about pixie dust and what that might do to his war machines.

There was a little creak from inside the house and Commander Op reached for his weapon and gazed around. Nothing appeared. He relaxed and read the description of an Irish creature called a Banshee…A female spirit, when death approaches, cries.

Just then, the bedroom curtain slowly blew open, and carried on a gentle breeze, magnified by the ground fog, was the screaming orgasm sound of Mrs. Catherine O’Hare. She lived not too far away and always kept her window open during sex.

Commander Op raised his weapon, and knew that was the sound of a banshee. Again Catherine cried out and he quickly put his weapon away and hurried toward the door to get back to his space ship before it was too late. In his rush, he bumped his big head on the way out. He suddenly thought the Irish creatures were toying with him and they were going to kill him. He drew his weapon again and raced toward his space craft. Half way there he suddenly stopped, out of breath, and a little confused. The ground fog was heavy now and he couldn’t see where his ship was. Had he been sprinkled with pixie dust to act confused? Again Mrs. O’Hare cried out in ecstasy.

When he did reach his space craft the hatch door was slightly open. Did he leave it open or…was that another sign they knew? He got in and quickly took manual control of the craft fearful a mad Brownie had fooled with the guidance system and the space craft would explode on take off.

He fired up his space craft and shot into the sky as fast as he could go. It left a visible vapor trail but it didn’t matter. They already knew he was there. He called ahead and had his lieutenants meet him in the war room. In minutes he docked and was out of his space craft and striding toward the war room.

He suddenly stopped, turned around and yelled, "Check for any pixie dust!" The attendant saluted with both hands and looked confused.

As soon as Commander Op entered the war room, he ordered that all malicious mischief be reported to him immediately. He then announced the invasion was going to be called off. His Lieutenants looked bewildered. Never had an invasion been called off at the last moment. Commander Op knew that his behavior was surprising, but he would rather make a mistake then lead his forces into certain death. He was also worried, but he didn’t say anything, that maybe a Leprechaun had stolen his battle plans and was diabolically altering his war machines. The sound of the screaming orgasm still echoed in his ears.

Commander Op announced the invasion force would bypass Earth. There was another planet in the Gamma Nebula galaxy they would invade.


© 2007 by Michael McLaughlin

Bio: "In 2005, Michael sold most of his worldly belongings in California, moved to Lake Chapala, Mexico and never looked back. His days are now filled with perfect weather, time to write and Spanish language lessons. OK, maybe a Margarita or two. While a captive in the United States he founded, directed and performed with a small comedy theater, appeared in television commercials and worked in many lackluster jobs to pay the bills. His short stories have appeared or will appear (the wily editors promised) in the Orlando Sentinel newspaper, Barfing Frog Press, Piker Press, The Harrow, Write Side Up and Sun Dog. Presently he performs with an improvisational comedy troupe Spanglish Imposition---The only English speaking troupe between Tijuana and Terra del Fuego. He can be reached at the e-mail address below ... but not promptly."

E-mail: Michael McLaughlin

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