Thromotep never saw the flying saucer that streaked past the window of the small attack ship he was piloting. And he didn’t notice the blip on his sensors because he was busy thinking about making squishy sounds with one of his many wives in the slime pits back on his home planet. You see, Borvags are only good at three things. Copulating in slime pits, smelling bad, and getting really angry which usually leads to someone or something being blown up. It’s why they make such good mercenaries, but paying attention wasn’t something they were especially good at given their natural proclivity to smash things. Any wanna-be galactic overlords seeking their assistance in world domination would be well advised to remember that Borvags require a certain level of oversight and direction. Most employers forget this important point right after forming their own private army and learn to regret the moments of improper oversight brought on by the naturally inebriating qualities of pure destructive power.
6547835222……6547836222….6547837222. The numbers scrolling across the display didn’t make any sense to Thromotep and he’d been watching them for three days now. Learning to fly a spaceship was pretty confusing but he was able to figure out that if he let the computer fly the ship all he had to do was touch the targeting screen when he wanted something blown up. That was probably for the best because there really wasn’t a lot of room to move around. These ships must have been built for a different species even shorter than the Earth men he’d seen recently. There was barely room to move his massive blue shoulders and they had given him a bulbous round helmet which clattered around annoyingly on the ceiling. He found it kind of comforting though, it reminded him of the endlessly pressing wall of bodies back home in the slime pits.
“Did you unplug the Gnar Hammer?” asked a dopey sounding lazy voice from somewhere inside his helmet.
He still didn’t understand where the voices came from and he couldn’t remember if he was supposed to push a button or not. Sometimes the voices got scratchy sounding when his helmet was dragging around on the ceiling. All of those blinky lights were confusing and there hadn’t been anything to blow up in days. Maybe he could try talking and see if the voices could hear him. He thought they might be able to but he couldn’t quite remember. It almost felt like this had all happened before but he couldn’t remember that either. “What is a…Gnar Hammer?” he asked the voices in his helmet.
“It’s the big thing the boss is keeping in the hanger, it has killed two of our men with big red lightning bolts. It’s what their last words sounded like so we called it that,” replied the sedated sounding voice.
“Oh. What….is…a…. hanger?”
“The thing your spaceship is going to land in,” responded the voice which was now sounding irritated.
“Oh yeah, that thing. I don’t know what a Gnar Hammer is so how could I unplug it?”
“We thought you unplugged it because you didn’t know what it was,” answered the lazy sounding voice which was starting to get louder and scratchier sounding.
“I don’t understand. Why would I do that? Maybe Bothorax unplugged it. He might know what it is and unplugged it because it was a good idea,” replied Thromotep who was even more confused than he was a few minutes ago. He didn’t unplug things unnecessarily and he surely wouldn’t have unplugged something if he didn’t know what it was. The last time he had done something like that it had caused a group of his spawn-mates to become electrified for some length of time before he figured out that all he had to do was pull the cable back out of the slime pit. Cables are confusing just like spaceships.
“Bothorax said it was plugged into the wall but the wall isn’t there anymore. That didn’t make sense to us so we called you. He’s right about the missing wall though,” stated the voice which was starting to sound confused as well.
“Maybe he is right about the plug on the wall. And maybe whoever unplugged it is with the wall right now and we just have to wait until they come back,” responded Thromotep who was feeling proud of himself for figuring out how to solve the problem.
After a lengthy pause, and what sounded like much discussion, the lazy sounding voice responded with a sigh, “We are going to get something to eat and wait for the wall and whoever unplugged the Gnar Hammer to return. We hadn’t thought of this possibility.”
Thromotep wondered for a minute how the wall would have gotten to wherever it was going but didn’t want to ruin a good plan by asking questions. You can get into all sorts of trouble asking questions. Nothing good can come from knowing where the wall went and why. Nope. He’s was going to stay right here and watch for the Earthman and not ask any questions. Just like the man in the hat said to do. He didn’t like it when the man looked directly at him with those eyes that almost seemed to look right through him. Every time the man in the hat looked at him he just wanted to go back home and forget about all of this. The sense of fear was overwhelming, and given his size and stature, fear wasn’t something Thromotep was used to experiencing. It made him feel like a panicked animal trying to escape a predator.
He would be saddened to find out later that it was already too late. That the man in the hat was going to come looking for him anyway. What Thromotep didn’t know was that the ship he was supposed to be watching for had flown right past his cockpit window and that someone had stolen the wall. A tall thin man, who looked a lot like the man in the hat and smelled curiously of baked goods, had appeared in the hanger and dematerialized the wall while the others were arguing about who had the best space takeout food. Nobody had seen the quick gestures he made with his hands right before he disappeared with the wall. The man in the hat had recorded the whole thing and would find about it later.
The man in the hat hadn’t been paying attention either. He was so busy planning for what he was going to do with the Earthman when he got him that he’d forgotten to plan for sabotage. So he was surprised, almost as surprised as those Borvags who were instantly electrocuted when he hit the big red button on the console to fire his doomsday weapon at Kremeth and nothing happened. His great statement to the people of Kremeth about being sure to pick the right side had evaporated just like those poor Borvags and that made him angry. The rage building in him wanted to be set free. He wanted to make someone pay for this and it would be Thromotep who suffered for these massive oversights.
Thromotep was blissfully unaware of this though. He had become fascinated by a change in the numbers on his display screen. They had started running in reverse in their own strange way and he wondered what it all meant. Why was he out here in this tiny little ship wearing this stupid helmet anyway? His skull was thick enough to absorb most impacts quite painlessly and he liked banging it on things. He could easily bash it right through that screen without a scratch if he wanted to but that would make the numbers stop and he was starting to like the numbers. 6363636222….6363635222… 6363634222.
He would never find out what it meant but he’d be happy to know that thanks to an extremely unusual skull thickness and a properly-sized safety-rated helmet that his head would float intact through space for a thousand years. His body wasn’t so fortunate though thanks to the missile that tore through his cockpit. The man in the hat had fired it the moment he realized what had happened. This happened much faster for him than it did for other species given his unique overview of the inner workings of all things. Thromotep’s destruction was a bookmark in the timeline for something snuck through reality right under the man in the hat’s watchful eye. The tables had been turned and he wasn’t happy about it. Nobody saw him vanish from the deck of his command cruiser or even remembered that he was there in the first place.