Bubble trouble



It looks like a bubble of water in space, though if I squint I can just make out the shape of something inside it.

Sensors say it contains a life form; so I order it brought aboard and call for a squad of Royal Marines to meet me on the deck where it gets dumped.

How this object got into Royal Space remains one of the universe’s continuing mysteries.

But the bubble popped once I got the cargo hold, leaving a deep chill in the air that life support systems seemed unable to modify, and a larger red sleigh still dripping.

Two small creatures with red cloth caps and green pointed shoes grin at me as I approach. Each has silver glittering off his beard.

“Hello,” one says, then repeated by the other.

I ask what their purpose is in traveling through Royal Space.

They tell me they have appointments to keep and only halted to see what sort of beings we were and whether we deserved candy or coals in our stockings this year.

When I tell them to stop talking nonsense, they giggle and tell me they have to go.

I tell them to halt.

The bubble pops back up around their sleigh

When I tell the Marines to shoot, none of the blasters work.

I order com to hook a tractor beam on the craft.

This does not materialize either and the bubble lifts off the deck like a father and floats back into Royal Space.

Somewhere from deep in the bubble, I imagine I hear the jolly sound of a “ho, ho, ho.”


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