AN: This story is very loosely based on the Buzz Lightyear Star Command cartoon. It used to be shown here on telly years ago, I don't know if it's still on in America? I used to watch it when I was about, ooh, eight? (This idea's been around a long time!)
The only things I've taken from it are the Tangeans and Meera's name.
I've had Meera and Chris in my mind for a long time, I hope you like the (probably) final spin on it
The Thirteen Year Prologue
I remember the day I got lost in the woods.
We'd just got here, Mom was blathering on about how nice it was to have a proper house (although it wasn't much bigger than our old apartment), and Dad was taking our things out of the car.
That was when it hit me, I guess.
That we'd moved to the other side of the Atlantic, and I had to start a new school where kids would laugh at my accent and I'd never see Blake or Trace or Peyton or any of my friends again.
I ran out into the woods at the back of the house. I picked up one of the fir cones, kicked it with each step. I'd been pretty good at soccer back home. It would never be football. Never.
So, I had this fir cone, and I kept running with it and kicking it. I tried to get it further each time. I would have done amazing if I hadn't hit the car.
The car was a wreck. It was green, the body was all beat up and the paint was peeling. It looked like something, maybe a tree, had fell on it and the owner had tried to patch it up with whatever he could.
"Hey!" I shouted, my first words on British soil. "You ran over my fir cone!"
The car continued jerkily down the road. They didn't hear me.
How could they have heard?
Then – and this is the bit where I'm going to lose some of you – then, a blue arm reached through the car, grabbed me, and pulled me inside. I went straight through.
I found myself sitting in the footwell of this car, staring up at a girl. She had bright blue skin, so blue it almost sparkled, and orange hair. Not ginger – orange. A bit Hayley from Paramore – though of course I didn't think that then. I thought, this girl is an angel.
Even that young I knew she was beautiful.
"Hi," whispered the girl.
"Hi," I whispered back. "Why are we whispering?"
"My dad –" She pointed to the front seat "- I don't want him to notice you. He'll say I shouldn't be talking to you."
She had a strange accent. I expected everyone in England to talk like something out of Harry Potter.
"What's your name?" she asked. "I'm Meera."
"I'm Chris. Well, it's Christopher but nobody calls me that. Only my mom if she's really angry. I'm six. How old are you?"
"You don't know?!" I shouted.
"Shh! My dad!"
"I had to move here because of my dad's job," I said more quietly, "I had to move from a whole different country." I added proudly.
Meera looked at me, smiled sadly.
"I had to move from a whole different planet."
"No way!" That was too much for my six-year-old brain. It'd be too much for me today, if it hadn't happened before. I could take blue skin, I could just about take being pulled through a solid metal door, but being calmly told by Meera she came from another planet was just too much.
The car stopped.
I was flung out by a man. He was tall, he was blue to match Meera, and he had equally orange hair that stuck out at weird angles. He was wonderful.
He looked me right in the eyes.
"Never, ever tell anyone about what you saw today. Ever! Do you hear me?"
"Yes, sir!" I squeaked.
"Good. Don't you ever let me see you again! Go! Get away from here!"
I ran. I didn't look back. I ran out into the woods, and that was where they found me, lost, hours later.
The blue man's words rang in my ears. "You keep away from my daughter!" he'd said.
What if I had?
What if I'd told Mom? If she'd driven after that wrecked car, I doubt she'd have found it.
Most likely I'd have been told, Christopher, don't tell stories.
I'm telling one now alright.