Valiant: Knock Knock…The Sandman…The Gift…Part 11…

On the quietest night the moon was
Full and bright. The wind blew wildly
Faster and faster with clouds that rolled
High above between the tree tops and
A dark sky that seemed boundless full
Of stars…So many stars that it made
The night feel as alive as the day,
And life somehow felt so small.

There was such a heaviness in the
Air it was overwhelming, not just
Encouraging sleep but forcing it.
Jon lay in his bed lost fighting the
Urge to close his eyes as he stared
Out his window mesmerized by
The star glowing brighter and
Brighter. He blinked and squinted,
He could swear it was coming down
Closer and closer. But his mind
Fought the sense of it. No, it had to be
His imagination. A star coming
Down? He was dreaming, but he was
Awake. He felt the softness of his
Bed, his pillow, his blanket and kept
Forcing his mind to tell him that
What he was feeling was real.

And the star just kept growing
Brighter, so bright that it’s light
Began to shine outside around
The house filling the yard like
The sun in the morning…growing
More bright until it was like noon
Outside. He just could not
Understand what he was seeing.
It was so bright that it was
Literally impossible to ignore.
Then he sat up in his bed as it
Filled his room and touched
His bare feet to the floor. He
Began to feel anxious, not
Afraid…only fascinated how
This was happening.

Slowly he collected himself to
Stand, dressed only in his night
Shirt…then he walked out of
His room listening carefully for
The slightest sound. But there
Was nothing. Was anyone awake,
How could they not be? The light
Flooded into the house now through
Every window…He went to check
On his parents, grandparents and
Sister. They were all sound asleep,
All of them. He studied each of them
Carefully as they lay in their beds
As they breathed calmly and deeply,
None of them stirring in the
Slightest. The light hadn’t disturbed
Any of them. How could they not
Have been woken up by it?

Then he stood in the small family
Room that served as their kitchen
And dining area and just froze….
Thinking, feeling, taking it all in.
There was a sensation in the air
That was so peaceful and blank,
Like nothing mattered; as if the
Entire atmosphere had been
Sedated. It was almost blissful
Had it not been for his racing

Then he moved to their front
Door and slowly opened it,
Careful to be so quiet and not
Make sound; a habit he had grown
Accustomed to. And again the
Light poured into the house
Through the doorway so that
It blinded him and he had to
Hold his hand up to his face to
Cover his eyes until they could
Adjust to see. A few moments
And then he looked out and saw
The yard, the barn…

He stepped outside and again the
Feeling struck him…his eyes and
Ears, all of his senses seemed
Sharper than ever as if they were
Ignited. The sounds that he should
Have heard, the night sounds…the
Stray cry of the goats in the barn
Moving around, the shuffling of
The horses, the usual owl in the
Woods nearby…there was nothing,
Absolutely nothing, only the wind.
Then he took a step further out into
The yard and the feeling only grew
Stronger. It was so quiet, soundless…
Motionless. It felt as though the
Whole world was deeply asleep; or
Rather, knocked out.

But the light was so intense and
Blinding everywhere, brighter than
Even the daylight it seemed now.
It suddenly struck him that there
Was a pulse or a beat to it, like
The ripples in the surface of the
Water in the river he enjoyed on
Those sunny days eating his lunch
In the meadow. But this was more
Fantastic, the way it bounced and
Moved…he had never seen the
Daylight do anything like that,
He had never seen anything make
Light this way especially at night.

Instinct and the mind taking over,
He turned to the right to see it.
There, beside the house, it appeared
To be floating above the ground…
This huge shape, like two big bowls
Inverted over one another…not
Quite a ball, flatter. It was a very
Odd shape to see there, especially
Hovering like that. It lit up
Everything somehow, just glowing.
Again, he squinted studying it, he
Just could not understand what he
Was seeing. But it captivated and
Held him there so spellbound he
Could not look away.

He moved closer to see it more
Clearly. It was GOLD, it looked
Like it was made of pure gold! But
It glowed like it was on fire, or
Liquid…like the heated metal he
Had seen of the blacksmith’s irons.
And all along its sides in a well
Formed row were smaller round
Flashing lights in red and blue.
They were marvelous to see, such
Vivid colors, and the way they
Flashed and danced together. How
Bright they were, yet soft and
Warming like candlelight. It was
Just impossible not to stare at them!
The shape had no wings, no horses
Or ox to pull it…it just floated
There. He kept staring and studying
And blinking, but could not find
The words to understand the sight
Of it.

He moved closer to it and reached
Out his hand towards it. There was
A sensation of heat, a push and a
Pull all at the same time. Then
Suddenly to his left…there was a
Sound, and what appeared to be
A hole opened up in the side of
The giant floating bowl…A
Doorway? But he saw no one there.

A voice entered his head. ‘Come…’

Then he followed it and went to
The door. But as he tried to study
What he saw he suddenly felt
Lifted up, and then he was there
Standing inside. He looked around,
But again what he saw made no
Sense. Somehow everything was
Much bigger than outside? And
Standing around him were these
Four very small strange looking
Grey men. They had large heads
And large dark eyes, very slim
Bodies and spindly arms and legs.
They were built in such a way that
They didn’t seem like they could
Be alive AND move. All four of
Them just kept staring at him with
Their great big eyes…and all he
Could sense from them was this…
Joy. They were definitely excited
About something, he sensed it, they
Knew it…and he could tell they
Knew. It was a very fast exchange
Of communication unlike he had
Ever experienced.

The one in the center greeted him
First, though they all looked so
Identical that it was impossible to
Tell them apart. ‘Hello,’ the little
Grey man said, ‘It is an honor to
Meet you.’

‘An honor?’ Jon squinted at this
Strange greeting. ‘Hello.’ He
Smiled awkwardly in return.

Then the little grey man and his
Companions waved and gestured
For him to move further inside.
They were so utterly excited
About everything happening that
Jon could feel it so clearly. ‘Come,
Come…’ They kept saying to him
Without ever moving their mouths.
He could not understand how they
Were speaking this way at all.

He followed their gestures and
Moved along as they wished
Taking in everything that his
Eyes could see. The interior of
This golden bowl glowed much like
The outside only silver, and with
Many more flashing lights on the
Walls, and strange moving pictures.
He saw symbols on some of them,
And what might have been words…
And many pictures of other things,
Of maps…views of the outside,
And what appeared to be the stars. It
Was amazing, his jaw just fell wide
Open in awe.

The little grey men kept moving
Quickly about but were very careful
Not to get too close to him, in fact
They seemed strictly careful not to
Touch him in any way…It was
Almost as if they were under orders
And not allowed to for some reason.
There was this fancy looking chair
That reclined in the center with an
Even brighter light above it and
They kept pointing for him to sit in
It…and he did.

‘What is this?’ He asked them.
‘Who are you?’ But they would not
Answer, they only nodded and
Rushed about every which way
Looking at him and the moving
Pictures on the walls.

Then the first little grey man
Stepped closer to him and said,
‘We came here to check on you,
To visit you, to see you. It is a
Great honor…You are very

‘What?’ Jon was confused,

The little grey men just continued
To race about along the walls
Studying the moving pictures
While the first one watched Jon
Closely. ‘We wanted to see how
You were coming along.’

Jon’s mouth hung wide open,
He had no idea what this meant.
But as the moments passed very
Quickly he heard more and more.
They were all talking silently
Constantly…discussing plans,
Observations. They kept talking
About the time, about timing?

Then the first little grey man
Became aware that Jon was
Listening. That he could hear
Them. He leaned very close to
Jon and said silently, ‘You can
Hear me?’

‘Yes.’ Jon simply answered.

The first little grey man’s eyes
Opened so wide it appeared
They might pop out. And he
Became even more excited,
Turned to his companions with
A nod. Then quickly the others
Paused from what they were
Doing and gathered around Jon
In the chair. ‘I knew it.’ He said
To the others silently. ‘You see,
I told you.’ All of them nodded
To each other quietly, again
Sharing a growing enthusiasm
That Jon could not understand.

As their minds raced, Jon’s mind
Raced. They were talking and
Thinking so fast, all linked somehow
As one…This is how they worked,
It was clear now. And Jon could
Hear them.

Fast words, but the manner of
Their ideas Jon could not grasp.
Something about the future…A
Plan, a BIG plan…a bloodline.
Gifts, pictures, plans, dates. It was
All so much so fast. The present
And the future, always the
Future. What were they talking
About, how did they know this?

The first little grey man quickly
Became aware that Jon was
Listening and hearing too much.
Then he ordered silence among
Them, to be careful with their
Thinking…Jon heard this. Then
He turned to Jon very excited and
Said without moving his lips,
‘There are things to know now,
And things you can not…but
Will. All I can tell you is, that
You will do great things.’

A strange silence followed, the
Little grey men just seemed
To stand there staring at Jon
Observing and contemplating…
Something? They knew a lot
More than they were saying.
Jon fought to see it, but it was
Like trying to see through a wall.
But he managed to hear some
Of what they were thinking…
‘You will go…you must. It
Has already been decided, it
Has already happened.’

Jon winced, fighting to understand
What he felt and sensed from
Them. ‘What?’ He slipped to
Say out loud.

‘It’s just there in you. It will be.’
One of the other little grey men
Said to his mind. ‘The future, the
Future…The future. You see
Things, you know things. It
Is a part of you. A natural
Reaction, it just happens. It
Is very rare, but it happens…
With this Gift. A cosmic
Occurrence, only so rarely
Does it happen…in a precious
Few. It is much needed…for
The balance of cosmic
Construct…It comes very

What are these little grey men
Talking about?

Then before Jon could see further
They commented again together,
‘Do you see he is awake? I told
You it wouldn’t work. It doesn’t
Work on him.’

‘What doesn’t work?’ Jon asked

The first little grey man seemed
To almost smile. And Jon nodded
In return to them, ‘That’s right I
Can hear you.’ Then the little grey
Man resumed a more concentrated
Pose as he took a long pin-like
Instrument in his four-fingered
Hand…’Now let me check on you.
Do not worry, this has to be done.’
He told Jon as slowly, and very
Carefully, he held it to Jon’s
Neck and inserted something
Inside…and then did the same to
His ear. But it almost pained him
To do this…as if he was terrified
To touch Jon in the slightest
Wrong way.

Once this was done Jon felt a
Dizziness and became very
Tired. But somehow his mind
Still retained a consciousness
That saw and heard and remembered
Everything. Then everything
Became dim and blurry, there
Was a cascade of red and blue
Blinking lights…and the gleaming
Light of the golden floating bowl.

A man’s voice filled his head, but
In a manner that the little grey
Men could NOT hear or detect.
The voice was powerful and
Familiar. ‘Say nothing to them,
Jon, nothing. Just let it happen.
They’re watching you, and aware
Of you now. Say nothing.’
Without thinking Jon followed
The voice’s instructions and
Managed to focus his mind to
Block out the little grey men.

Dreams fell then…simple lazy
Dreams of sitting beneath the
Tree in the meadow with the
Goats…the water rushing in the
River with the sunlight on it.
Heinz and him laughing, in what
Seemed like ages ago…

Then dark dreams…of a life
Cold and grey, less green with
Less trees and lots and lots of
Buildings and so many people.
A world shaped of rocks and
Tall towers and lights and
Pictures that moved. Ages of
Faces…struggling, searching,
Lurking, waiting…A future
Of ghosts and challenges that
Made no sense at all.

Shadows and candlelight in
The dark room of the kitchen
With this man sitting in a huge
Chair by the table like a throne.
He was watching Jon, studying
Him…as if he had always been
There. He was tall with pale
Creamy hair, strongly built
With chiseled features and eyes
That burned like embers with
Wisdom and confidence of the
Ages. He seemed so casual as
He just looked at Jon. ‘You are
Very interesting. One day you
Will understand. One day.’

But Jon was so overwhelmed,
Too much so to react or speak.
He simply stood there, saw,
Felt…and remembered.

‘One day there will be an Event.’
The man said to him. ‘Nothing
Can stop it, nothing. It just will
Be, has to be. It can either be
Less or more…And it will happen
Again, know that.’ He nodded as
He looked down and around the
Room at the shadows with a
Sadness he did not understand.
‘Machines…They push too fast.
Then they will learn to walk slow.
7 went and 1 came back…And
One will go again. Remember
Those words…Think of it as…
They came to see if they were
Ready…7 went and 1 came back.’

Then the morning came. And Jon
Saw the dawn break through his
Window as any other normal
Morning. He sat up in his bed
And felt his neck. There was a
Tiny bump there moving beneath
The skin when he touched it
That was not there before. He
Swallowed deep, nervous. His
Eyes opened wide awake very
Fast as he felt it move…and all
At once it crashed upon him
That he hadn’t been dreaming
At all.

He got up slowly, hesitant to
Start the day, but proceeded
With his normal routine to cope
With his feverishly racing mind.
Then Jon dressed and went to
The kitchen for the family’s
Morning meal. But all of them
Moved so slowly…struggling
Hard to wake up. It was as if
Everyone was recovering from
A drunken sleep with their
Groggy faces and constant
Yawning and little talking. The
Family ate quietly a breakfast
Of fresh baked bread, and sausage
And eggs…then set off for the
Daily farm work without a
Thought of anything unusual at
All. Jon knew better than to ask
Anyone anything…They
Frowned on his ideas always,
But he watched and noticed

The day proceeded normally,
Just a typical day. Jon worked
Alone as always then returned
Home with the goats from the
Meadow for supper. He spent
The entire day wondering about
The night vividly trying to
Understand what happened, the
Little bump in his neck a
Constant reminder. When he sat
Down at dinner with the family
Again, just normal discussion
Followed about work that needed
To be done that week. It was
Always talk about work or food,
The two most important things
On their minds.

And then, as if precisely timed…as
The family was finishing dinner, there
Was a sound at the door…Knock Knock.
Everyone paused to look at the door.
They never had visitors at this
Hour, not so early in the week.
‘Who could that be?’ His grandfather

His father answered the door, but
In a way that no one could see;
It was hinged to swing the other way.
He greeted someone in a low voice
Politely, then stepped back and
Eyed the family with a raised
Brow…’Just a moment.’ He said
Then to the stranger. He arched
His head and stared at his son.
‘Jon, there is someone here to see you.’

The family all looked at Jon
With a peculiar confused expression…
As if they were all silently
Doubting why anyone would take
An interest in Jon. Then Jon
Went stiff and nervous and nodded
To his father and went to the door.

His father just watched his son
With an inquisitive expression;
Inside though, he was irritated, Jon
Felt it. Jon stood beside his
Father at the door to see a
Small man there with almond
Shaped eyes and tannish skin
Dressed in a brown robe. ‘May
I speak with you?’ The man
Asked. ‘Outside, just for a moment.’

Jon nodded, but looked at his
Father for approval to go outside.
He agreed, then Jon stepped out
And shut the door…He could
Not believe it…again something so
Strange. A small man, shorter
Than him but with grayer hair,
Clearly a man of some foreign
Land…was here, to see him?
‘Yes sir, can I help you?’

‘Yes,’ the man said. ‘Forgive me for
Intruding on your dinner. But
I was told to bring you
Something. ‘Then he handed Jon
Some paper and this sharp stick.
‘It’s for drawing.’ The man briefly
Explained nodding at the stick.
‘Keep it sharp and it will make
Fine lines. Draw pictures now.’
Then the man smiled, nodded
Politely and turned to quickly
Walk away, almost run without
Another word.

Jon stared at the stick with fascination.
‘For drawing?’ He just scowled
Wondering what this was about.
‘Wait,’ He called to the man. ‘Who
Are you? I don’t understand…why
Did you bring this, what do you want
Me to draw?’ But the man hurried
Off so fast he disappeared down the
Dirt road away from his house before
He could get a response. Then Jon
Just stood there silently shaking
His head and wondering what
Was going on.

His father opened the door
Suddenly, impatient to see
Himself, what this visit was about.
‘What did he want to see you for?’

Jon simply turned to his father
And told him. ‘He gave me this.’
He showed him the sharp stick
And the paper. ‘He said it’s for
Drawing…He said draw pictures

His father’s eyes opened wide with
Shock and doubt. ‘That is the
Most ridiculous thing I have ever heard.
Why would he come to ask you
That, a total stranger?’ But as
His father began to turn to go
Back into the house he froze
And turned back to Jon with a
Puzzled face. ‘How did he know
That you can draw?’

Jon froze stiffly then at his
Fathers words as he looked at
Him. ‘I don’t know.’




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