Whose Names I Don’t Know …

It’s a two-for-one day!  Yes, two stories for the price of one.  An old one and its new concluding sequel.

On May 28, 2014, I wrote a story called Second Star On The Right with some explanation below.

Before we begin …

EDITOR’S NOTE: The following is a message intercepted one night by a HAM radio operator named Kevin who originally hailed from Flanders. The language spoken, he told me, sounded something like a sort of “High Flemish,” if there were such a thing. “I felt very sorry for the woman transmitting,” he later told me. “She sounded so sad.” He copied it down in English, went to the library and borrowed a first edition Caldecott book.

The message was as follows.


My explanation of what happened to us afterward will solve the mystery our home world has wondered about.

After we arrived, we escaped detection by our language being similar to that of a tribe called Flemings and clearing our pallor by eating a vegetable called the green bean.  We had a benefactor and lived happy lives on Earth, not unhappy as some feared.

I’ve been alone since my brother’s untimely death and been chronicled many times in Earth legends. I’ve decided to die here on planet Earth.

A doleful story? No. I lived a life richer than I ever dreamed.


Janet Webb French Still Life.jpg

Thanks, Janet Webb, for a really great picture that inspired the sequel.

Now, the conclusion.


He heard the signal from star “Ni-Etrell’s” third planet, “Gna-Jala.”

Gna-Jala —- where his lovely Koo-Brindii and her brother were lost forever, centuries ago.

The message, barely readable, sounded almost like a lower version of his own language.

“… Kevin.  Our planet … called Earth.  I intercepted her signal … seems … toward Alpha Centauri … If by … you’re reading this …  how sorry I am for … loss.  She … on Earth, immortalized in …  book.  I … read it to you … her memory.


‘My dear, do you know,

How a long time ago,

Two poor little children,

Whose names I don’t know,

Were stolen away … ‘ “


The legend of The Green Children of Woolpit served as the inspiration for this story.





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47 Responses to Whose Names I Don’t Know …

  1. neilmacdon says:

    I’m a big fan of weaving old myths into modern stories

  2. Dear Cuzzin Kent,

    And so the story goes…nice conclusion. Five out of five green beans.


    Cuzzin Shelley

  3. wmqcolby says:

    Who was it, one of the authors said her little boy just loves green beans? It was sweet.
    Yeah, the picture of those mysterious objects in the jar caused me to think it was some alien’s study. He’s looking out the window through a deep-thrust telescope at our solar system from Alpha Centauri, noticing how much “traffic” from the third planet is heading toward its nearest neighbors or just simply hovering around.

  4. Iain Kelly says:

    Fascinating little insight to the historical legend – not one I had heard of before. Enjoyed your take on it – I felt sympathy for those stranded aliens, even though they say they enjoyed life on Earth.

    • wmqcolby says:

      The emotion actually was inspired from My Favorite Martian. Uncle Martin tried go home to Mars again, but he never did. Since he felt so close to his benefactor, Tim, it would have been disastrous for him to leave the earth … and for us because the story line would end.

      The Green Children were probably green because of a vitamin deficiency called hyper chromic anemia or “green sickness.”

  5. yarnspinnerr says:

    That is a great little tale. I am enlightened about this legend.

  6. Oh I do remember the first story… I wonder if there will be another conclusion with the aliens coming in to get those lost members of their tribe.

    • wmqcolby says:

      I doubt it, Bjorn. That’s all I had for the story. Of course, someone else with far better vision (you, maybe ..? 😉 ) could bring it to life. This happens a lot. You think a door is closed, but someone else has a key. But, I don’t have anything else to write.

      I was aiming for something poetic and universal using the alien/sci-fi concept for it. I might re-work it into a larger work. Why not? Thanks for the comments.

    • wmqcolby says:

      Thanks, Keith. A pleasure as always.

      Since blogspot doesn’t allow me to put comments on your blog (the ingrates!) you have a terrific little gem of a story there. So neat to see something like this.

      If you’re getting my responses here, please reply so I’ll know you’re getting comments from me. Your writing is wonderful and I don’t want you to lose out on feedback. That way I’ll know my comments are getting to you.

  7. Sandra says:

    I remember the story. And such a fitting follow-up.

  8. wmqcolby says:

    Oh thank-you SO much, Sandra! I’m wanting to try this story again under a different approach, like a short story. The fun part about this was the message — I took out enough words in Kevin’s transmission to make it understandable and, therefore, it could stay true to the word count! 😀

  9. Very intriguing! You mean Earthlings stole those two alien kids? Hmmm …. We are quite capable of that. Good to know they were not unhappy here 🙂

    • wmqcolby says:

      Well, actually, Joyfulness, no, they didn’t steal the alien kids, that’s just the legend built around them. However, I never knew where the Babes In The Wood tale originated. It’s such a heartbreaking tale. Thanks for reading!

  10. draliman says:

    Nice follow-up. I like the corrupted message, yet leaving enough intact to get a sense of it.

    • wmqcolby says:

      I kind of laughed, Ali, at my own device of doing that message. The approach to writing it made it conform to the word count so, it didn’t have to be a “right” sentence, in a way.

  11. An interesting intro to some old mysteries/myths. Thank God the internet with its plague of conspiratists wasn’t around at the time.

  12. Adam Ickes says:

    A fitting conclusion, I’d say, even if it is a bit sad. Well done.

  13. wmqcolby says:

    Thanks, Adam. Yeah, it’s a bit sad, but a better fate than their legendary counterparts. The poem I included here is one of the Babes In The Wood tales. There’s the Caldecott version (which, according to my intro, really isn’t the poem I included) that is in much greater detail and with illustrations. Caldecott was very innovative, it seems, with the pioneering of the children’s storybook.

  14. gahlearner says:

    I, too, remember the story. The follow-up is great, especially the broken transmission efficiently creates this atmosphere of sadness.

    • wmqcolby says:

      Thanks, Gabriele! It was hard, though, to get the emotion without getting trapped in the “wonder of it all” concerning the subject matter. Thanks again! 🙂

  15. L.E.R.T says:

    Very well written tale. And thanks for the backstory. Cheers, Varad

  16. wmqcolby says:

    A big thank-you, Varad! It was fun to do.

  17. Moon says:

    wow! i got a little more sense of the worlds around them through your beautifully written story . Thanks so much for sharing the links .
    Participating in the FF challenge is such an enriching experience. Look forward to more learning with more weeks. 🙂
    Best wishes,

  18. wmqcolby says:

    Thank-you, Moon! We have some wonderful people here who can help if you need it with your stories or English (if it’s not your first language) and provide feedback on your story in order to help make it a better read if you ask. Rochelle is my cousin and we live only twenty minutes from each other. Our writing has become very good because of the limitations. Enjoy the process!


    (wmqcolby is just the name of the blog)

  19. Life Lessons of a Dog Lover says:

    Nicely done. a mystery, wrapped in a mystery, inside another.

  20. wmqcolby says:

    Thanks! I never thought of it in that way.

  21. granonine says:

    What a delightful story!

  22. Is this a new genre, historical science fiction?
    Great idea!

  23. Weaves within weaves create a fascinating tapestry of legend and character. Fascinating.

  24. rgayer55 says:

    We’ve been picking and canning green beans all week. Should have around 35 quarts when Connie’s done. Send the kid over. We can spare a few.

  25. wmqcolby says:

    😀 Hey, if you can spare a few, send ME some! Home canned are really good! Five quarts, huh? That’s not bad.

  26. You made me cry by the pathos of it all!

  27. wmqcolby says:

    Thanks, Sabina! That was the purpose, all right. I could feel the character of Koo-Brindii when I first wrote her message as — feelings only, no science fiction other than the surroundings. Let the character’s longings be universal.

  28. subroto says:

    I remember the first story. Good sequel. Maybe the space time continuum will allow a rescue mission in another dimension?

    • wmqcolby says:

      Thanks, Sub. BTW, I can’t leave comments on blogspot blogs … it won’t let me! I want you to have my feedback. So, is it OK to answer here?

      • subroto says:

        Kent the blogger in me is just happy to receive comments no matter where they are.

        The techie in me is intrigued as to why this is happening. So I experimented with the various settings that blogger allows me. I turned off the various settings and attempted posting comments. So basically if you comment using one of the permitted accounts (google, wordpress, etc) it lets you do so. Unfortunately, people who are publishing anonymously will still need to solve the reCAPTCHA. To increase the confusion, people using a computer where “third party” cookies are filtered will be treated as if they are publishing anonymously, and will have to solve the reCAPTCHA. Continuing to cause confusion, in some cases, comments entered may simply vanish, if the CAPTCHA can’t be displayed when necessary. This, is another consequence of cookie filtering. In the end it is just an “aargh” moment for the user 😦

  29. Good conclusion, Kent. I remember the first story and had looked it up at the time. Good writing, 🙂 — Suzanne

  30. Jelli says:

    Very well written and enjoyed immensely – both times! 🙂 ❤

  31. wmqcolby says:

    Thank-you SO much, Jell! I was hoping that would be the response. 😉

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