If you asked the Melt family in public where they came from, then they’d always answer with: ‘Why, Churchill Avenue of course, next to the school.’
But in private, the Melt family knew that they were from another place - 52,000 light years away to be exact. At least that is what Grandpa Melt had told them before he got arrested.
The truth of the matter - one that I am sharing with you today - is that they actually came from a little county on the east coast of England. Grandpa Melt and his wife had had to leave that area extremely quickly on account of the money he and his wife had owed to a gangster family who went by the name of Legless. To stop his own children asking embarrassing questions, he had taken them one by one into his confidence and told them that if they ever told anyone the family secret then they’d be taken to an area in a desert in America and would be experimented upon.
This was enough to shut the family up, especially when they found out that they were actually aliens from a planet a long way away. Or at least that is what the old scoundrel had told them – the family name was actually Smith but to cover his traces, Grandpa had changed the family name to Melt (in that, they could melt into any society).
Grandpa had told them that it was a trait on their planet to be able to read minds – especially the variety of human who lived on planet Earth. So his children and their children all believed they had this power.
It never really struck any of them that they got into an abnormal amount of fights, arguments, break ups – because they wrongly accused friends of cheating at cards, or with their partners, or with the friends who appeared to be downright untrustworthy.
When some time had passed, it seemed too late to Grandpa to own up to their real history and decided the truth was best left hidden.
The plan worked for a while – as his young family never invited friends home, or took anyone into their confidence (apart from the family) – in case they ended up as experiments for humans. Grandpa had told them of the Society of Alien Hunters whose only role in the world was to hunt down and destroy those who came from other planets.
When his children grew and started to become interested in finding partners – Grandpa told them that it was alright as long as they remembered that if they ever told a close partner the truth, that partner would spontaneously explode.
Everyone seemed happy with things until one day Grandpa got arrested. He and his grandson had been playing cards for money and since his grandson was convinced that they could both read minds, Grandpa had taken to cheating to keep up the pretence. When he got caught, the local card shark didn’t take too kindly to being ripped off for 500 notes and had started a punch-up. They all got taken to the police station and lectured about cards/gambling/fighting when one officer noticed that Grandpa’s finger prints were the match of a man called Eugene Smith who was wanted for a bank robbery in some East coast town.
Grandpa told the family that he should have been more careful when he came to Earth with the identity he had chosen. It seemed that this persona was a rascal.
Grandpa said he would do the time on this Mister Smith’s behalf in order to protect the family and their secret.
Grandpa’s eldest son, Sammy took over the running of the family and things were back to alien normal for a good time, until one day Sammy’s daughter told the family that she was sorry, but she had told her boyfriend, that she was an alien. She hadn’t meant to, but she had and that was that.
“Did he explode there and then?” Asked her brother.
“That’s the strange thing,” said the girl, “he never did nothin’ and he says that Grandpa ain’t an alien but a looney tune and that people don’t explode for no good reason.”
Sammy had no idea what to do next. What if this friend of his daughter’s failed to combust and told others about the Melts? Sammy experimented by telling the neighbour’s dog that Sammy’s family were aliens and wondered if dogs could explode. The dog licked something on the ground and ran away.
“Maybe it didn’t understand,” he said to no one in particular. That was when he decided he’d have to go and see Grandpa as he’d know what to do.
bobby stevenson 2018