"You, dudes, you look like crap," said Jim Stone, looking like he just got out of bed. His red hair was a messy wad, his chest bare, and Detroit Lions pajama pants covered the rest of him. He was lying back in his recliner, his big feet spread out for all to see. On the television Miguel Cabrerra was stepping up to the plate.
"Jim, you need to pack your bags. You're coming with us," Mike said, wheezing. He slammed the door, and rushed to the couch so he could lean over the back of it. He reached into his pocket for his inhaler.
"What? Why? You guys been smoking some doobies?" He made a cock-eyed smile, and made a circular motion with his pointer finger around his ear.
"We're being chased by aliens, Jim," Sarah said.
Mike tried to make a "shhhh" sound, but he couldn't get enough air out to make that sound. He reached into his other pocket.
"Aliens, right! You guys have been smoking weed. Just like our buddy Lance." He pretended to hold a joint to his lips, inhaling deep, holding his breath. "Ahhhhhhhhh!"
"Please, Jim, this is no joke. You've got to believe us," said Sarah.
"For crying out loud guys," Jim said, scratching his head. "I am trying to watch a ball game... YEAH! GO! GO! GO! GO!"
Mike could hear Mario Impemba giving the play by play of a Detroit Tiger's game, although he couldn't see the game from his viewpoint. "Can't find inhaler," he said, in one breath. He heaved in deep, as though through a narrow straw.
"Four to Zero!" Jim Chimed. He held his arms over his head, resting his palms behind it, revealing his armpits.
"I have your inhaler -- oh crap!" Sarah was searching herself for the inhaler. "I swear I grabbed it on the way out." She took off her backpack. Set it on the couch. Unzipped it.
"Mike, man, you better have a seat. You don't look so well. You're lips look blue."
Mike was on the floor behind the couch now. His arms were at his side, next to his knees, on the floor, holding his shoulders high. His chest burned. He heaved his shoulders up, trying to take in a full breath, yet only a partial breath came in. He tapped the ground with a fist. "Oh, I can't stand this."
"Oh, come on! Where is it!" Sarah was rummaging through her backpack, many of the contents now spilled onto the couch and floor.
Jim hopped off his recliner, got down on his knees, and crawled on the ground looking under things: the recliner, the coffee table, the couch.
A strange idea crossed Mikes mind, that Jim looked like a dog searching for water. He made a weak "Woof!" followed by a weak smile.
"You must be feeling better," mike said, crawling around now on the floor by the door. Then there was an audible CLICK! followed by an "OW!" followed by a "Oh, gosh, I'm sorry!"
A thin brunette slammed the door behind her, got down on her hands and knees, and put her cheek to mikes cheek," Oh, my little Jimmy, are you okay?" He took over rubbing his head for him.
"Oh, I'll survive." He said. "It's Mikey who's demanding attention now."
"Oh, Mikey, you look aweful," she crawled over to Mike, and proffered in her hand a little blue inhaler. "Is this what you guys are looking for."
Mike grabbed it from her, stuck the mouthpiece in his mouth. As he inhaled (a shallow breath, yet a breath indeed) he squirted the inhaler. He coughed, exhaling the white mist into the room. He puffed again, and gain, and again, and again. DEEP BREATH. "Ahhhhhhhh!"
"Better?" said the young lady hovering over Mike, patting his back.
"Oh, much," he said, inhaling deep. "I love you, Donna."
The tune of Hell's Bells made Mike jump. He hopped to his knees, reached into his pocket, pulled out his phone, and looked at it. "Shit!"
"What is it?" Sarah, Jim and Donna all chimed. They were all three hovering around Mike, on the ground, behind the couch.
Mike jumped up, and rushed to the door. ""It's a text from our buddy Lance," he said, just before slamming the door behind him.