Oh, you can call me Nicholas. I enjoy a good read. Do you read?
Yes, I do.
What have you read lately which piques your interest?
Um, actually “Sense and Sensibility”.
Ah yes, Ms. Austen speaks with a mellifluous voice, the truth of which channels straight through one's soul when reading her books aloud. Do you not agree? Though, I do prefer Henry James, “Portrait of a Lady”. And what may I call you?
Melinda is fine. Several of your teammates have hinted around this “Breaking” event. Can you tell me what it is? When it occurs?
I’m sorry dear, may I ask where you live?
On the coast, why?
Hmm, where does your original family live, Melinda?
Do you mean my parents? They live in Montana.
That’s in the middle of your continent, right?
Yes, but what does that have to--
You should move there.
What? I don’t think so, I--
—no, you should really re-locate there. It would be of a cornucopias benefit to your health. Do you have children?
—for their sake, the fresh air will do them good.
Are you trying to tell me, my family and I aren’t safe here? This has something to do with this “breaking”?
I didn’t say that, but it would be an insightful deduction.
You can’t tell me anything else about it?
None of us can interfere with the past; there could be unseen consequences that could affect the future in a disagreeable way for us.
You seem very easy to talk to, easier than some of your teammates. Some of them just shut down when I asked that question. They seemed a little...uncooperative.
Ah, you mean obstinate Ray. He may speak with a vitriolic deportment, but he’s usually harmless.
He has his moments. May I ask how many children you have Melinda?
Heavens! Four children, what a blessing. Tell me; is there one that needs a little more attention than the rest?
Sure, Zach has his moments.
So, you are the designated liaison with aliens for your team, what is that like?
Always intriguing. Although, if I may point out, a majority of the outside agencies in the Universe speak telepathically, and do not utilize an actual addendum, organic language. Not like us. They converse in complex transmissions, which requires we humans to become immersed in highly specialized training to interpret correctly. As a race, we mentally process through random thoughts most of the time, which can be interpreted as grossly erratic to an alien's mind. As a liaison, I am more than a translator - I act as a linguistic, mental buffer to avoid misinterpretation which can lead to misunderstanding and mistrust.
Interesting, and thank you for your time Mr. Crumb.
Of course, and Melinda, promise me you’ll take Zach and your family on an extended trip to your Montana, very, very soon.
I ah—ok. I’ll try.
Try very hard Melinda.