Alone 4: The Ride

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Standard Disclaimer: None of these characters or situations are meant to be any specific person alive or dead. I the author reserves all rights.

This is another installment of Alone and won't make much sense without reading the preceding chapters. I've been told it's rather rambling and that is on purpose. This is a survivor's story and I hope the disjointed style will help convey the hopelessness of the situation. Yes, this was inspired by "I am Legend" and other similar stories.



Alone 4: The Ride

    The bus ride was pure hell. No one spoke or made a sound. There was only that damnable radio signal my altered brains insisted had to be some kind of music. It was a monotonous melody that numbs your very soul. Only the pain of digging my own nails into my palms kept total capitulation at bay.

    It'd been surprisingly easy to get onboard the bus with the pregnant drones. I started calling it the bump and switch. All I had to do was get close to a drone that was going where I wanted to go and bump it in the direction I'd just come. Like a train on tracks it would take my place allowing me to replace it.

    In retrospective, deciding to follow the pregnant aliens had saved me. Although there were non-pregnant drones on the bus, it wasn't as nearly packed as the all normal drone buses. The ones with the baby bumps were far enough along that they took up extra seat space. That was good because that hypnotizing signal was bad just as it was. I'd been right about the more drones about, the stronger the greater the danger.

    Doc had tried to decipher it, but had no luck with the resources he had at hand. Others in more secure locations had better luck, but still no success. It was a completely unknown language after all. Jamming attempts hadn't worked out well, since as one military guy put it, the drones had a home on jam capability.

    Great for luring the transformed into traps, but not so good when you remember the population of Earth before all of this was seven billion and only a small fraction escaped the change into an alien. Being outnumbered thousands to one was never a good thing.

    Sure the world had suffered one hell of a disaster with crashing planes, ships and runaway nuclear reactors, but it wasn't nearly as bad as you would think. Like Doc said, it was an invasion and a lot of forethought went into it.

    While I couldn't rubberneck on our drive into the city, I did see that it'd greatly changed. There were little to no traffic and all the advertising were gone. It was like a bad SF movie with no bill boards, business signs or displays. My fuzzy memories from when I'd been asleep under the influence of the music suggested the big buildings were mostly giant hive like dormitories.

    The other thing that was nerve wracking about this trip was the Prince. But of course the alien had to get on this bus. The good news were he was just as he appeared, arrogant and a Prince of all he surveyed. He saw exactly what he wanted to see, a bus full of brainless obedient drones.

    Nope no wolves in sheep clothes anywhere on this bus, un huh! Okay maybe a frisky puppy instead of a lean mean fighting machine, but you had to make do with what you had to hand.

    Since the Prince was only a few seats away from me I got a real good close look at him. The only surprise was that he wasn't completely naked like I thought. There was these plain black heavy plastic looking bands on his wrists. With their total disdain for clothing and or jewelry I figured they had to be more than decorative.

    I admit I was afraid the music might be stronger near him or that he might even be an originator that the rest of the drones simply rebroadcast. So far those fears hadn't been realized.

    It was exhausting trying to keep an eye on the Prince and watch where we were going at the same time while pretending I was just another drone staring straight ahead.

    The buses in front and behind us, thank Gawd for mirrors being positioned where I could see, peeled off making for the towers. The thought of being packed in there with thousands of drones made me want to shiver but I didn't dare, not with a Prince sitting so near.

    I even wondered if there were others like me pretending to go along, but decided it was a waste of time. They couldn't reveal themselves no more than I could. Better to act as if I was an army of one. That was an improvement of being the last human on Earth all alone.

    However, my thoughts turned sharp as I recognized we were approaching one of the few buildings the aliens had actually constructed rather than remodel. It just didn't appear right to human eyes. The lines and curves weren't something even the most eccentric artist could dream up.

    It took a real act of will not react when I saw the machine. The aliens hadn't been shy at all at using man's artifacts. The fields were plowed by tractors built by mankind, and they used our buses to get the workers to the fields.

    This however was the first alien machine I'd seen. The first anyone had reported seeing. The thought here was lived to tell about it because it appeared to be heavier than air, but floated. Its rough general shape was generally oblong, but it had all those alien weird curves and angles too.  The color was off too, because it was kind of shades of gray, but I got the feeling like I was watching a black and white TV. Doc had thought maybe the aliens saw further into the UV and IR than humans because of the strange way they painted their buildings. For some reason that seem to apply to me because trust me, he tested me for it. I was seeing it, but my brains simply couldn’t interpret the information.

    When the door in the side of the thing opened, I got a sense of the scale. Say somewhere around a medium to large sedan. Thankfully, our bus stopped and everyone started getting off. That demanded my attention since there was a specific order the drones used and I had to keep in character.

    I was afraid I'd succeeded too well. Following the pregnant ones had lead to what looked to be an important building. There were Princes here, but the true reason was that I had found part of what I'd been looking for.

    There in front of me, getting out of the alien car, was a Queen. The bitch had the same kind of awareness of her surroundings that the Princes displayed. If that wasn't enough she had a sexually mature body, and she had hair! It was teased into a fan like shape that reminded me of the Centauri from Babylon Five.  

    Marching passed her with the other faceless drones, I let none of my excitement show. Maybe I was alone, but sometimes it only take one desperate soul to change the course of history. After all there was only me, just me. It would have to be enough.

The End



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Dear Grover,


Please please please please tell me that is NOT the end. We still don't know ANYTHING about this whole society. JUST when it begins to get interesting you post "The End?", No no no no, you are WAY WAY WAY too nice to do that to your friends here and at BC.


with love,



Into the Lions Den

Well the hard part has been getting in while keeping her own mind but she's done it. :-) Given how total the victory over the Earth has been the aliens might have their guard down enough that she can find an opportunity to strike back at the aliens.

Slow burning but a great story Grover.


There is more to come. I can't promise how much more, but more. :) Muses are worse than cats. They go where they will!



Plan? Ain't got no Plan!
"Beyond Thunder Dome"

Stopping the "Music"...

You've set up your hopeless situation well -- so well that I'll be interested in seeing where you can take this. (Assuming you didn't really mean "the end" of the whole concept. I see now there's a question mark on the next line.)

Seems to me that his one hope of turning a tide is to find a way of turning off the "music" that's controlling the drones -- and then hope that they'll find their old minds quickly enough to lead a larger slave revolt before other queens/princes become fully aware of the situation.

I wrote a lot more on this, including some variables that would make disruptions in other territories either easier or more difficult, but anticipating specifics could spoil the story. Anyway, if our hero succeeds in disrupting local directions and gets help (including what's left of that apparently international unconverted resistance movement, along with freed local captives and (especially?) other imperfectly converted drones), there seem to be several ways this story can go. I hope Grover continues.


I totally agree, this story

I totally agree, this story is too awesome to leave unfinished. The protagonist needs more information. S/he needs to seperate from the pregnant drones and spy on the princes. There has to be a way to save humanity, and if there is one the invaders have to know their own weakness - I hope.

Grover, thank you for writing this captivating story,