“We are here!” Boopn waves expansively, “at the very first Spyhouse Coffee House…house of ALL the Spyhouses!”
“There are just three! We would do better to visit the first Starbucks.”
Boopn looks astonished at Neftarious.
“We will travel to Seattle!? BoopBeBooop! I am happier now than a few brief Earth seconds ago.”
“No! I mean… Never mind, fool!”
They enter. The interior is large, well lit, with the baristas stationed in an island coffee bar in the center of the room. Surrounding them, an ocean of hip youngsters chat away and work on laptops.
“Ahhh! The smell of the Mac laptops fills my senses with electric happiness…” Boopn breaths in deep, eyes wide with pleasure.
“Indeed.” Neftarious looks nervous at the ocean of humming life around him, “This coffee house seems to be owned by the late Steve Jobs’ Macintosh Company.”
Neftarious looks over at Boopn’s eyes, which have begun shaking; Boopn bursts into tears.
“What!? Stop your emotion! Stop! You are re-affirming my opinion of you!”
“I…” inhumanly-large and green tears bubble from Boopn’s hidden, alien eyes and he, looking at the laptops, whispers in a tiny voice, “I want to join their club… their club of happiness…”
Neftarious rubs his human-mask temple vigorously, and distracts himself with his surroundings. He takes out a notepad and talks as he writes. “Landing here would offer fabulous outlet accessibility…as long as we don’t sit at the bar…”
Boopn, no longer crying, is still gaping at the customers, and begins thinking of new ways to fit in and make friends. “We should have adorned ourselves with tattoos, maybe.” Boopn points at a girl. “The side of her head is shaved, and she is surrounded by friends…” Boopn sighs longingly, “FRIENDS, Neftarious!”
Neftarious is not paying attention.
“I will choose our disguises next time.” Boopn adjusts his top hat, then looks down at his attire with skepticism. They are both wearing horseback riding outfits from the 18th century. “I do not believe our clothing is even from the correct time period.” He says as he compares his riding cape with other customers’ attire.
Neftarious ignores him, and takes a step back to look at the menu hanging above. A slimy tentacle worms out of his human-disguise riding cloak and adds black-ops’ night vision goggles to his eyes.
They both take a second to read, Neftarious removes his goggles, and they approach the counter.
“What can I get for ya?” The barista taps the counter playfully and smiles.
Boopn’s eyes widen in response to the barista. “I am charmed by this barista’s charisma,” Boopn whispers, “Operation ‘make this man my friend’ begins now.”
Neftarious smacks his forehead—Boopn had whispered in a voice easily heard—and the barista was now giving them a look that questioned whether he was making a joke.
Neftarious quickly orders. “I will order your delicious Seasonal Cabin Fever, sir gentleman.”
There was a pause; the barista glances briefly at Boopn. “Ahh… is this together?”
“No, I wish to talk with you alone, human coffee man.” Boopn bleeps.
There is another awkward pause, to which Boopn adds “Because I want to make you my friend.”
This also does not seem to help; Neftarious intercedes.
“Forgive my Earthling companion, he is a not from your land, but from the distant land of… …” he thinks quickly. “Norway. They are different.”
Boopn follows along “Yes. I am from Norway. Hot… hot Norway… My home.”
Neftarious sighs, pays, and slinks off to find a booth.
The barista smiles and looks incredulous as Boopn approaches the counter.
“What can I get for yah?”
A minute later, Boopn sits at a two person table with Neftarious—a line of trendy art hangs above their humanly-disguised figures—and large, silent tears fall down Boopn’s face and into his steaming mug of hot coffee.
“That man did not want to be my friend.” He meeps under his breath to Neftarious.
“I would not want to be your friend either, you lack intelligence. Indeed, you seem to contain a bottomless cache of stupidity, deeper than the deepest caves in the galaxy; more obvious than the sun on a clear, very sunny day. I am often amazed.”
Boopn silently continues crying even harder then, and Neftarious continues talking about the coffee shop.
“Excellent space. Excellent! It is large and packed with humans—the perfect place for a massive invasion to blend in. Neftarious writes furiously in his pad.”
“But the barista’s—” Boopn chimes in.
“They would barely notice us! It is perfect! Do you not see?! You have unwittingly uncovered another valuable reason for us to invade here.”
Boopn’s human eyebrows raise.
“And the lighting…AMAZING! I have hardly seen better in this cursed city of Minneapolis” Neftarious spits out the name in disgust.
“I like these humans.” Boopn bleeps. “They are too cold to be mean.”
“And my Seasonal Cabin Fever is Excellent.” Neftarious pauses, making itsy bitsy smacks with his lips between drinks “…The drink has been made to the satisfaction of my taste…and my purse feels only slightly bereft of the extra coins to buy it.”
“But what of the lack of electricity at the counter…” Neftarious is talking with himself.
Boopn isn’t listening; talking to himself: “I should have worn some shade of grey, maybe” His eyes linger around the room’s art, longingly back at the barista counter, and then at the clientele.
“The music isn’t too loud.” Neftarious comments.
“My coffee is over-steeped…and it was TWO DOLLARS!! Theft!” Boopn comments, but Neftarious counters.
“You pay also for the atmosphere, the baristas, and MAGNIFICENT space!”
“But Starbucks’ black coffee is cheaper and better!”
“But…look around the room, Boopn… Do you not feel…cooler? There is something…” He adds at a bare whisper… “like a magic hip-ness,’ a ‘belongingy…ness.’ ” Neftarious frowns at his own poor grammar but continues looking at Boopn because his point is still being made.
Boopn’s eyes widen, and he, squinting, peers around the room at the hustling, bustling, attractive and happily conversing young humans.
Then, in a whisper, Boopn realizes “I am cooler.” His eyes erupt in a happy gleam.
“Yes…” Neftarious gazes at Boopn in cold appraisal and reluctant disbelief… “you ARE.”