Space Zoo
Looking through the thick glass wall, I can see them.
Curious looking things, not quite human, but close. They stare back at me, not afraid, to see what I will do next. The largest one puts a blue scaly arm around what might be his wife and chirps something to his offspring. A warning, perhaps, or maybe words of encouragement. Whatever he said, the younglings push themselves against the glass, pressing their large white tongues onto it. This is not unusual in the zoo full of aliens.
We are on board a huge space-ship, an interstellar Noah's Ark. There are cages and tanks filled with all manner of freakish aliens. There are so many, you'd never see them all in a day. Although saying that, a day is different for every race aboard, having been collected from many worlds with different orbital patterns.
The tanks, or cages, or homes; if you wish to call them that, are a breathtaking array of different atmospheres. On the other side of the glass, the level of oxygen would be too low for me to survive. If the aliens were on my side, they'd drown because of the high nitrogen content. In some tanks there is liquid, but mostly it is gas. All colours, all compositions, the logistics of it are beyond my comprehension. I couldn't care less anyway, all I care about is my tank, filled with plants and trees from Earth.
I will put on a little show for them, show them a few moves. Start with a moonwalk, that's what I always say. Heck, the whole thriller routine if I can be bothered, they won't be able to tell if I have done Jacko's dancing justice. Time for a little breakdancing, it is strangely liberating performing for aliens, almost as free as if you are alone. In fact it is better than that, I break into an epic air-guitar solo, giving it more enthusiasm that anyone in the history of the world. They look puzzled.
Time for the most ridiculous display of showmanship I can muster. An operatic rendition of 'Humpty Dumpty'. I belt out the word as if performing a piece of art, throwing myself into the song in a manner I could never do with another human present. The aliens have seen enough, they move on to the next tank. That boring slime-ball next door is not a crowd-pleaser like me, but it is their decision, I suppose.
So you're probably wondering how I, Harry Pitts, ended up flying through space as an exhibit in an alien zoo. I dunno, they must have liked my hair. It is great, but the dye will fade eventually and the gel is already beginning to fail. I'm gonna be left with a fuzzy brown mop soon, rather than my signature red spikes.
It's not so bad being on display, well after the trauma of the probes. I don't need to tell you where they stuck their devices, let's just say it was an experience. The aliens let me choose my own food, so I eat a lot of ice-cream and popcorn: not a vegetable in sight! I guess they chose me because I entertain, having been brought up in the circus. I wonder if anyone cares that I'm gone, on Earth I mean. I think I'm better off here, juggling and performing acrobatics for a bunch of squishy aliens.
The gravity on the ship is fairly low, so I can jump ridiculously high. I love it, running up the blue-metal walls and leaping from the curved surface into a triple back-flip or a soaring swan dive. Sometimes a small crowd gathers, different species of humanoid weirdos. They like different things.
One time all my fancy flips and tricks seemed to bore the slender white dudes who looked through the glass at me. When I started biting my nails they became enthralled, pointing and jumping with joy. I tested something, to see how they would react. Picking my nose sent them into raptures, there skinny hands flapped in what I imagine was approval, so I gave them an encore. I picked a small piece of snot and placed it on my tongue. It was a little salty, but not altogether unpleasant. I ate it and the aliens whooped with delight. Interesting guys, they probably loved it so much because they have no noses; or fingernails for that matter.
Most days there are no visitors, just me and my reflection. I don't mind too much, my refection likes me. Actually it is very boring, the strange alien that feeds me doesn't talk. I know he understands me, but he just stares with his three googly eyes and puts down food with his tentacles. I call him Pinky, because, um well, he is pink. He is small and wobbly, obviously one of the lower species here at the zoo. Not as low as humans, clearly we are on the bottom rung at the moment.