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presents this glimpse of another possible reality...
by Glenn Llewellyn
Note: This story originally ran in Adam magazine Vol. 2, No. 6, 1958.
To the scientists of Earth, even more than the public at large, the most amazing thing about the Martian was the fact that he seemed human. For decades, the most learned astronomers and astrobiologists of the world had determined that, if life existed at all on the Red Planet, it must differ vastly from the forms accepted by the people of Earth. Yet Zrakn (which was as close as philologists could come to a phonetic spelling of his name) looked like a man.
Furthermore, he walked like a man, he ate like a man, he drank like a man. He seemed even to fit comfortably into male human clothing and, thanks to the trained scientists who had made the first two way trip to Mars and brought him back with them, he even talked like a man --although with an accent unlike anything ever heard before.
When they tested him, he bled like a man, he eliminated like a man, he laughed and cried and reacted to innumerable complex tests like a man. On occasion, he even made a bad pun, which made him slightly sub-human in the eyes of certain of the more rigidly high-minded authorities engated on the project.
Zrakn endured the tests with good-humored resignation, although he more than once professed a desire to be allowed out of the Government laboratory to see some of the sights of the Third Planet. He was obviously bored stiff, but there was no help for it.
Finally, only one test remained to be given, most discreetly, a test that, it was felt, could be arranged to combine both scientific purpose with entertainment for the visitor from 40,000,000 miles away. Semantic difficulties had prevented the testing psychiatrists from determining whether (perish the word!) a Martian's sex-capabilities were similar to those of men on earth.
It was impossible to take him out publicly. The crowds of curious would have crushed and torn him to pieces in an effort to get close to and touch a real Martian, perhaps to acquire souvenirs of his portentous advent. But the younger scientists found a way around the difficulty. There were well- fitted out conference rooms and a dining room and kitchen on the third floor of the laboratory, and there were plenty of willing and attractive young women performing lesser chores for the big team.
The results of this climactic testing were sensationally, not to say scandalously, successful. Once Zrakn understood the purpose of the gathering, he made himself fascinating to the ladies and treated a half dozen of them in rapturous turns in a small chamber adjoining the dining room, in which a couch had been discreetly set up.
Their consensus of the alien's more intimate aspects were a trifle unexpected, however. The third of the young ladies to receive the Martian treatment pretty well summed up the group reaction as she spoke her opinion before the eagerly assembled scientists and her colleagues in the dining room -- and into a tape recorder for the ears of posterity.
"He is very ardent," she stated, "and very, very strong as a lover. His sexual powers, I would say, are beyond those of any Earthmen with whom I have cohabitated. Yet, only the fact that I have never engaged in prostitution prevents me from saying that he made me feel like a whore.
"He seems to laught at the higher aspects of sexual love, almost to make a game out of it. He worked vey hard, yet he laughed a great deal, as if it were some sort of joke.
"However," she concluded, her eyes lighting up, "these are afterthoughts. When I was with him, I was much, much too busy to have any real thoughts at all."
She had barely finished her report when the Martian and his sixth girl of the evening emerged from the chamber of sex. He looked quite normal, although his color was a trifle high. He smiled at the girls and said, "Thanks so very much for the exercise." Then, turning to the scientists, "I needed this workout greatly, gentlemen. But tell me -- what do you do on this planet for emotional excitement?"