And yes, I know it’s weird. . .
Mum walked in on Hugh and I kissing. “Sex ed clearly isn’t enough,” she said, and gave each of us an egg with a drawn-on face to look after.
She said it was the latest technology, and it would teach us about parenthood. Hugh freaked out and went home. My egg began to cry.
Mum made me walk up and down with the egg cupped in my hand until it finally shut up. I named it Meg, and decided never to have kids.
Stupid Meg is stupid crying and it won’t shut up. From now on, I’m only kissing Hugh if we’re both wrapped in cling wrap. Just in case.
Hugh tweeted that he didn’t want kids. Perfect. I wonder if sixteen is too young for him to get a vasectomy.
Discussed vasectomy with Hugh. He says he’ll do it if my Mum takes the eggs back. Definitely worth it. Meg makes my hands itch.
Miss Bobbit asked us what we were holding under our desks, and when we explained she had a coughing fit and left the room. NOT FUNNY.
Meg is oddly compelling. I feel funny without her neat warmth in my hand. Her little marker-drawn face looks like it’s smiling.
My BFF Sasha said that if I have to face parenthood my Mum should let Hugh stay with me so we can experience the pitfalls of married life.
When I asked Mum why she disagreed with Sasha she sent me to my room. Meg was making little gurgling noises. Pretty cute for a robot.
Meg was doing so well, and then at 3am she spat out some kind of green goo. Mum sucks! I never woke HER at 3am when I was a baby.
Fell asleep and missed drama class. Why couldn’t I fall asleep in maths? What’s wrong with me? I LIKE drama. Uh-oh, Meg needs a walk again.
Hugh pulled me over at lunch to show me something cool. He threw his egg (Sven) up in the air. It made a squealing noise like it was happy.
I wasn’t sure I dared throw Meg anywhere, even if it helped develop her motor skills in later life. Hugh grabbed her and chucked.
Meg flipped over and – yes, she was laughing! Hugh stepped forward to catch her and slipped. I dived facedown and JUST got her. Never again!
Rough night. When I woke up, both my hands were dark purple with bruising. Hugh came over and his hands were the same – especially the left.
“It’s Sven,” he said, “because I hold him in my left hand so my right is free for the remote.” “Should infants be watching TV?”
“Not the point,” said Hugh. I said, “Fine. We’re – allergic, or something. Should we tell Mum?” “What if she makes us give them up?”
I walked into Mum’s room without thinking, and saw her getting dressed. Her skin was green and slimy, and she pulled on a human skin suit.
She turned slowly and looked at me with two bulbous eyes on stalks: “We need to talk.” I stood frozen: “You’re not Mum.” “No.”
The alien explained that my real Mum was in Barbados and would be back for Christmas: “Call me Xarla.” “Oh. . . sure. Er. Nice name.”
Hugh and Xarla and I sat down with the eggs. “We need human blood to feel our children,” she explained – “so, sorry about your hands.”
“Why don’t I remember Mum saying she was going away?” I asked. Xarla said, “Short-term memory wipe. Give it another day or two.”
I called Mum in Barbados. “Are you doing your homework?” she trilled. I said, “Um. Yes. So you’re fine?” “Time of my life!” “Okay then.”
Meg was crying again, so I walked around with her in my hand for over an hour. Now I knew she was doing it, I could feel tiny pinpricks.
I called Hugh. “Is Xarla implanting me with something? Because I’m finding it cute how Meg drinks my blood.” Hugh was silent a long time.
“No,” he said at last: “They’re not altering us to like the eggs. Humans are biologically programmed to like small messy helpless things.”
Hugh and I sat close together at the back of English and discussed whether or not we were aiding an alien invasion of Earth.
I decided, “I don’t THINK we’re betraying the human race. I think we’re just. . . babysitting.” Hugh nodded.
“If the aliens do take over, do you think they’ll abolish school?” said Hugh. I said, “Another excellent point.”
For the sake of the children, Hugh and I skipped maths. I know I’D wipe out humanity if that was what I saw of it.
Hugh and I had dinner with Xarla – she cooked a great lasagna. I said, “Er. . . would you mind putting your human skin suit back on?”
“No problem,” said Xarla. Hugh whispered, “Adults are sooo gross.” “I know.”
We took the eggs to a Lady Gaga concert. They moved around a lot, but I couldn’t tell if they were dancing or trying to escape.
Woke up to dead silence. Why isn’t Meg crying? I can’t tell if she’s sleeping peacefully or if someone snuck in and hard-boiled her.
It’s fine! Meg was just sick. Still is, a bit. Anyone know a good anti-ichor soap? Parenthood is so gross.
Hugh’s Dad asked us what our plans were for Christmas Day. I said, “Xarla said we should both stick around for. . . celebrations.”
Hugh rallied desperately: “Why don’t you and Mum come?” I cut in, “Um. . . I have two Mums.” Hugh’s Dad said, “We’ll be there.”
I glared at Hugh. His Dad said, “Don’t worry kids. We’re VERY tolerant.” I said, “Oh. . . good. See you on Christmas then.”
Hugh’s call woke me, and Meg began to cry. “What?” I mumbled. Hugh said, “It’s Sven! I dropped him! Quick, tell me what to do! Is he okay?”
Xarla and Hugh and I stayed up all night in case Sven woke up. “It’s touch and go,” she said. Hugh’s face was grey: “What have I done?”
I called Mum. “How did you cope when I was sick as a baby?” “I didn’t – not until you were well again. Love you, see you on Christmas Eve.”
The phone rang again. It was Hugh. My heart pounded. One way or another, this was the call that would tell me Sven’s fate.
Hugh was crying. “He’s all right! Just now he woke up hungry, screaming for blood as if nothing happened.” “Oh, thank goodness.”
Cops came to our door and invited themselves in. We hid the eggs in a rack of others in the fridge, and held our breath as they searched us.
One cop took Xarla aside. “We know you’re a good, upstanding citizen. If you see anything suspicious, you’ll let us know?” “Oh, of course.”
Mum swept in with a new pair of pink cowboy boots, plus intense sunburn to 75% of her body. “Hey kid, what’s been –” She stopped dead.
I said, “Mum, this is Xarla. She’s been cooking and. . . stuff. And she gave us her eggs to babysit. And feed. Until they hatch. Tomorrow.”
Mum carefully examined Xarla’s green skin and human suit. “Well, it’s certainly true that sex ed these days isn’t enough. Nice to meet you.”
Hugh’s parents sat facing my Mum and the identical Xarla. Hugh’s Dad said, “Would you mind passing the cranberry sauce?” Xarla just smiled.
Meg danced across the table, cracking against the gravy jug. One tentacle shot out and upended the roast. Bang! Sven and Meg both stood up.
Cops burst in to see three green humanoids and my tears of joy. Xarla said, “Thanks SO much kids. It’s teleport time. Merry Christmas.”
I woke up several times in the night, wondering where Meg was and if she was happy.
In my email, among dozens of Christmas wishes, I found a thank-you card from Meg herself. My little green girl was all grown up.
New story begins 1/1/11!