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Kiko, and Yelina, with Boom-Boom Kitty riding on her shoulder, came up the back stairs to the sun deck and entered the back door. Carly sat at the kitchen table, flipping through a magazine. Without looking up, she said, ‘Do I get one too?’

Yelina and Kiko stopped dead in their tracks. ‘One what?’ Yelina offered suspiciously.

‘I saw Boomers in his super-kitty outfit,’ Carly said, turning a page. ‘An’ I know what you guys are up to. You’re gonna make suits for yourselves, too.’

‘You been spying on us?’ Yelina asked her crossly.

‘Your room’s right next to mine,’ Carly told her. ‘I can hear pretty much everything.’

‘It’ll be too dangerous for you,’ Kiko told her.

Carly shrugged. ‘I’ll te-ll,’ she said in a sing-song voice.

‘You wouldn’t dare!’ Yelina blurted.

‘An’ I want mine to have a tail, and ears, like a Boom-Boom Kitty costume.’

‘This isn’t a game!’ Kiko told her.

‘I’ll te-ll,’ Carly reiterated.

Kiko and Yelina shared a helpless look. At last, Yelina shrugged.

‘Wow! These eye things are amazing!’ Carly blurted, trying on the makeshift headgear. ‘I can see everywhere . . . all at once!’

‘That’s what they do,’ Yelina said distractedly, working on the tail, the end of her tongue caught between her lips. She tried the controls again that worked the prehensile appendage. ‘Actually, this is a better idea that I thought. Humans are born with a vestigal tail, which is why we have a tail bone . . . so we already have all the nerves and muscles we need to make it move. It’ll take some practice to control it . . . but there! I think I got it.’

‘I wanna try it!’ Carly blurted excitedly. ‘After all, it was my idea.’

‘Okay, well . . . c’mere . . . let’s attach it to the back of your outfit . . .’

‘Rats! Nothing’s happening.’

‘It’s not plugged in and turned on, yet,’ Kiko told her, fiddling with the hookup. ‘Okay, how’s that?’

‘Oo, it’s tingling . . . hey, I can feel it! I’ve got a tail!’ She began flicking the appendage about, turning about to admire it. ‘Hey, I bet I can . . .’

Yelina gaped as the appendage flicked out and wrapped itself firmly around her wrist.

‘Co-ol,’ Kiko intoned, awed at the results of their efforts. She laughed, suddenly. ‘Look at Boomers!’

The feline in question watched Carly’s tail in rapt fascination.

‘Heh! You’re not the only one with a tail, now, Boomers,’ Carly told him.

‘No,’ Yelina said thoughtfully, ‘and I just got an idea.’

Kiko gave her a look. ‘You are not going to make it so the tail can shoot!’

‘No,’ Yelina told her, ‘I have a better idea.’

You are the alien.

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