The Frog That Walked Like A Man
The Frog That Walked Like A Man
He walked down the street, garnering little attention. That was the whole plan. Not garnering. This emissary from a non-human race sought to fit right in and so far it was working. Working like a bracelet, as these people were wont to say.
Lamber Prawt, as he called himself, promenaded into the grocery store just like a person. He had trained well. They’d been watching humans since the beginning and he was proud to be one of the first to venture among them and pave the way for invasion.
Lamber purchased items for a gathering known as the “occasional gethertoget” later that evening. He made a point to buy no food items a frog would like. Fortunately there were few insect-based snacks.
He pulled into his lovely suburban driveway, hopped out of the car, then caught himself. That was exactly the kind of slipup they couldn’t afford.
His human wife greeted him with the usual “Hi, honey,” which he returned. Penty Prawt was the perfect suburban housewife for a duplicitous sea invader. She asked no questions, did as she was told, and left him on his own. In other words, like every other 1950s housewife. As always, she arranged snacks in a pleasing manner, which Lamber considered very “lily pad.”
The guests arrived, the usual three couples, and the gethertoget went as usual until the following curious exchange…
“Hey, you hear the news? Torrince Welchecker croaked,” stated public-relations man Don Pander.
“Oh, he was due to croak any time,” replied Morst Penley.
As he often did, Lamber Prawt excused himself and went to the bathroom. But it wasn’t for the usual Earth reasons. Carefully locking the door, he pushed his toothbrush in its holder like a lever, and the medicine cabinet mirror quietly turned, revealing a futuristic viewing screen. Lamber worked the faucet handles like knobs, and waves appeared on screen with a high-pitched squeal. An image formed; a terrifying froglike being, Ribbidus Maximus.
“Who calls on Ribbidus Maximus, leader of the anuradons? Oh, it’s you, Barump Phumf. What news of the surface world?”
“I have just heard something of alarm. One of our operatives has been exposed, Great Leader.”
“What? What is his name?”
“I know not, except he goes by the Earth name Torrince Welchecker.”
“Hmm, I will have to check and see who that is. Meantime, find out all you can. He may have to be… eliminated for the good of the invasion.”
“I shall, My Leader. Barump Phumf, over and out.”
Lamber returned to the gethertoget, finally leading the conversation back to Torrince. “So…. This Torrince…. You were surprised when he croaked?”
“I wasn’t,” said Morst. “Hey, we all have to croak sometime.”
Lamber tried not to look taken aback. As conversations resumed, he scanned the room, wondering who to trust. In his anxiety, he shot his tongue out at a fly, whipping it into his mouth. He looked about in panic, but no one had seen…. Except Don, who stared at him.
Lamber was quickly back in the bathroom, talking with Maximus.
“You fool. The human must be eliminated.”
“But the others, I now believe most of them are our people.”
“I will check on that,” spat Maximus. “Meantime, take care of that flywitness.”
When Lamber returned, he found Don Pander still looking at him strangely. Before the frog-being could think up a subterfuge, Pander asked to speak with him alone.
The privacy of the garage was perfect for Lamber. Once there, Don confided.
“Lamber… I’ve been a little worried about you lately. Maybe you’re working too hard.”
“Nonsense,” croaked Lamber. “I work no harder than any of you — I mean, us.”
“You need to relax more. Look, when a guy starts eating flies with a really long tongue—”
“I do relax, Don. Take this interesting hobby for instance.” Lamber led Don to his workbench, upon which rested an odd contraption.
“What the heck is that thing?” blurted the PR man. “What’s it do?”
“This,” said Lamber, pushing a button that zapped Don, who disappeared with a snap.
Back at the gethertoget, Lamber explained that Don had to go suddenly, which confused his wife who noted their car was still there. Soon, it was time for the guests to leave, which gave the stressed anuradon some relief.
As Penty cleaned up, her frog-husband finally got around to asking her the key question.
“Say, were you… shocked to hear that Torrince Welchecker could croak?”
“Oh no,” stated Penty casually. “I’d seen that coming for quite some time.” She chuckled, “In fact, with his lifestyle, if anyone was going to croak it’d have to be him.”
Waves of relief passed through the disguised frog-being that he had not felt since leaving the bottom of the ocean. “You have no idea how pleased I am to learn this, Penty. No idea.”
“Learn what, Lamber?” asked Penty, focused on washing dishes.
Lamber laughed a froggish laugh, no longer afraid.
“Not Lamber. Not anymore. Call me Barump.”
“By the way, now that it’s out, what can I call you?”
“Lamber, what on Earth are you talking about?”
“This, my dearest.”
And with that, Lamber crouched and hopped a good 20 feet to the hallway. Penty dropped a dish and it shattered. Believing her not convinced, he came close to her and allowed his features to go froglike, particularly the wide mouth, inflating throat and eyes, which spread wide apart and bulged. Naturally, Penty screamed and ran.
Confused, Lamber chased after her into the garage, where she backed away from him.
“Stay back! Stay back, you — you horror!”
“Perhaps I was mistaken,” realized her ghastly husband who moved slowly toward her, forcing her to keep backing away.
“I’m sorry it’s come to this, my dear. You know too much.” Lamber kept coming, now in full-on hideous frog-thing mode.
His terrified wife backed into his workbench, hand feeling behind her for a weapon.
“I — I wouldn’t touch that—”
Zap, went Lamber with a snap.
Behold! TEN DAYS REMAIN in this campaign, and soon we will begin our final week countdown. We are getting ever closer to attaining another Stretch Goal, which would be our 8th and quite remarkable! The final week is usually pretty exciting, so invite everyone you can think of to get on board and let's build toward a climactic finish!!