Chuck stared at the monitor, the attractive face of his new Skype-pal smiling back at him. She was absolutely stunning, just his type in almost every way. Come to think of it, she was exactly his type in every single way, down to the freckle beneath her left eye. She fit his idea of perfection to the T, even in the areas he felt were just a bit unlikely: blonde hair, blue eyes, thin face, massive chest, narrow waist, eye-patch with a skull-and-crossbones over it, parrot on her shoulder, and a slightly seafaring accent. He never thought he’d meet a girl who fit his pirate-sorority fantasy so well, yet here she was.
“I’m sorry?” Chuck said, wiping his eyes. He still couldn’t believe what he was looking at. Her pale skin shimmered under the orange light from behind her, which Chuck assumed was some sort of lamp or ball of light or something. Whatever the case, she was god damned beautiful.
“Who is your leader,” the woman repeated, her blonde hair bouncing slightly as she spoke. A shiver rippled down Chuck’s spine, his eyes stuck on her perfect, red lips.
“Like, my boss? Or the President?” Chuck said. He also momentarily considered listing his mother as one of the options, but he didn’t feel it was the right time to mention he still lived at home.
“Whomever has more power,” the woman said, shifting slightly. She slowly ran her tongue around the edges of her lips, then winked at Chuck, which was exactly how he pictured meeting his future-wife in every dream he’d had since he was twelve. He wasn’t sure if anyone had ever proposed to someone the first time they met over the Internet, but he was fairly confident it wouldn’t be that taboo. And so what if it was? He’d be the official husband to the pirate woman he’d always wanted, the rest of the world could fuck off for all he cared.
“That would be Obama,” Chuck said. While his boss, Howard, certainly had a lot of control over him, he was pretty sure Obama held the upper-hand in terms of power. Sure, Howard was able to force him to work late at the 7/11, or mop the bathrooms after a full-grown man suffered a severe “laxative mix-up,” but Obama simply had more power in general. Plus, if the President of the United States of America asked Howard to be the one clean up after a disgruntled customer, Chuck knew Howard would oblige. Now that was true power.
“Can I speak with Obama?” the woman said, the orange light over her head fading slightly. The backdrop behind her was now significantly more visible. It seemed to be some sort of empty, dust-filled landscape, like a desert or Mars or something. She was probably in Russia, Chuck was pretty confident that was how Russia looked.
“What?” Chuck said, his forehead unexpectedly tapping against the screen of his monitor. He had apparently been falling forward while talking to the woman, his mind drawn in by her sheer perfection. She’d probably seen nothing other than his forehead for the past few minutes. He hoped that wouldn’t hurt his chances as he thrust himself back upright.
“I want to speak with your leader,” the woman said. She cupped her hand around her breasts and squeezed slightly, just as the girl in his dreams did nearly every seventeen seconds. She was perfect, his ideal girl in every single way. He realized that was a little strange, that it wasn’t every day when a random person added him on Skype and happened to be his exact fantasy, but life was full of such little quirks. In fact, just the other week he’d found fifteen dollars on the floor.
“I can probably arrange that,” Chuck lied. He knew he couldn’t do that, but he wasn’t sure she’d stick around if he admitted that his chances of getting in touch with Obama were near zero. He didn’t exactly have the pull to talk to Obama himself, let alone convince him to converse with the beautiful creation on the screen in front of him.
“Great,” the woman said. She turned and glanced out at the vast expanse of dirt and craters behind her, the ground illuminated in a dark orange. Chuck never realized Russia looked so much like Mars before, or rather what he assumed Mars looked like. To be fair, he’d not only never been to Russia, but he’d also never been to Mars. Something about the lack of oxygen, as well as the sheer amount of money and intelligence it would take to get there, made it impossible. Whatever the case, he was pretty confident the love of his life lived in Russia.
“You’re very pretty,” Chuck stammered, staring at the back of her head as she motioned toward someone off camera. He hoped it wasn’t a boyfriend or husband. She twisted her face back toward him, again licking her lips.
“Please bring me to your leader,” she said.
“Right now?” Chuck said. He assumed she had understood it would take a bit of time to get the President of the United States to talk to a girl he met over Skype.
“Yes, your time is dwindling.”
“I can’t,” Chuck said, glancing around the room for an excuse. He could pull the fire alarm just outside his apartment door, but—no, that wouldn’t do much. She was on a Skype call, it wouldn’t affect her in anyway whatsoever. It would simply make it harder to hear her.
“Why not?” she said, adjusting her eye patch and winking with the other eye, just as the girls in his fantasies did.
“He’s,” Chuck paused. “He’s in the bathroom right now.”
“Then your time is up,” the woman said, her face flickering slightly as if her skin had lost signal. He’d never seen a face do that before, but he’d also never actually seen a real-life pirate sorority girl.
“What do you mean?” Chuck said. He grabbed a piece of paper and a pen beside his desk.
“We have given you ample time to take our negotiations seriously,” the woman said, grabbing her breasts like she’d done so many times before in his dreams. “This transmission has been over five minutes of nonsense. You and your planet’s time is through.”
“Wait,” Chuck said, scribbling down her Skype name: R3ALHUMAN1. “I love you.”
The woman’s skin again lost signal, a gray blob filling in the pale tone that once formed her flawless face. In fact, all of her features seemed to melt away, replaced instead by an emotionless blob of gray.
“What’s going on?” Chuck said, staring at what looked like a real-life Ditto from Pokémon.
“So long, human,” the figure said. “The invasion begins now.” A second blob of gray rolled into frame, followed by what appeared to be an entire battalion of blobs in the distance of the dusty, orange background.
“Wait,” Chuck shouted, lunging toward the screen as if he could grab the girl he’d just watched melt to gray. The screen flickered for a moment before fading to black, the Skype call now over. He stared at the empty screen, his hands wrapped around the edges of the monitor. He wasn’t sure what he’d just seen, wasn’t sure why Russia was invading America, wasn’t sure when Russians had gained the skill of melting into gray blobs. All he knew was he had the girl of his dream’s Skype name, but nothing else other than that she was from Russia. He hadn’t been able to get so much as her name or email address, nor was he even sure he could email a marriage certificate.
Chuck sighed heavily as he closed the screen to his laptop a little bit too hard. He’d have to buy a ticket to Russia in the morning and begin his search—she was out there, somewhere, and he would find her. He pushed himself up out of his chair and wandered over to the window beside his bed, just as the sky outside began to turn a familiar shade of gray.