Route 917: The Disappearance of Sally Vaults - Part One.

By Jack Amos

In order for this tale to truly make sense, one must understand simple fact that is, much to the

dismay of many, an absolute truth:

There are currently and always have been, aliens, on planet earth.

Why, is not important, neither is the how. But for the enjoyment of this warped story to be

digested properly, it must be accepted that aliens reside here amongst us, primarily in the

basements of every “Times Colonist” Office around the world.

There we go, glad that is out of the way.


This is a story, odd in nature, that chronicles the fateful correlation between a serial exhibitionist,

an alien Thaumetric splicing mishap, and a Yale Russian Literature Professor.

It is a tale of murder, and grief.

But also bad decisions, rampant insanity, and apt technical failures. Those are strife throughout.

Those are the bread and butter.


The aforementioned professor of Russian literature, is a clean, well put together man by the name

of Samuel T. Vaults.

His wife is named Sally Vaults. That too, is important.

They both reside in the rural suburbs of Boston, which is a dubiously ironic fact that is

unfortunately, not correlated in anyway with the vile plot of this event.

The name of the Serial Exhibitionist is Thomas Jones, and he has superpowers. What they are is

vaguely confusing and amorphous, however it should never be doubted that they are there and he is indeed, in possession of them.

He uses the powers he has to combat the evil threats to liberty that copulate out in the great red

expanse of the Arizona desert.

Which also happens to be the exact same location where Sally Vaults went on vacation, in the

summer of 1971.

It was a destination fluoridation, whatever that means.

Probably something to do with the mental and spiritual cleaning of the internal child, or

something like that.

Her husband, “Sammy” as she called him, neglected to join her on this endeavour as he was

swamped with the book that he was writing at the time, “Russian Existentialism And The Human

Sex Drive”.

It would never come to be published.

So, at the beginning of July, Sally Vaults made her way out west in a wood panelled station

wagon and had an absolute blast of a time, driving though the night and day, smoking marijuana

and dancing with desert shamans. All of this was perfectly fine with Samuel Vaults as he was a

progressive man and knew just how wild a heart his wonderful wife possessed.

Well, it was perfectly fine with him that is, until the summer’s lustful grasp had loosened and the

sweater clad presence of fall had been made undeniable, and his wife had still not returned home.

He had even made time to make a romantic dinner and everything, to await her arrival back to

their three bedroom suburban house.

He was a Russian Literature professor, remember.

After that mournful night, when the plate of hot chicken and steamed vegetables cooled and the

candles burnt themselves out, sitting at the table in darkness Sam thought that for sure that his

wife had left him.

It broke his heart.

It wasn’t until two bedridden weeks later, when he called his wife’s best friend Janie Sampson

from his cotton sheets, and she told him that she had thought Sally had come home two weeks

earlier, that another possibility occurred to Sam.

Maybe she hadn't left him.

Janie Sampson was a short, plump, brown haired murder mystery writer, who was too Christian to

lie. She would have told Sam if Sally had left him.

So, after leaping up from his mattress and donning a loose fitting dress shirt, he packed up his

typewriter and his .21colt revolver into his old VW bug from high school, Sam Vaults tore out

west down the barren highway, in order to search for his wife.

He was wearing a bucket hat.


It was at this time that a naked, middle aged man, dressed in nothing but a filthy American flag

wrapped around him like a hairball toga, began hunting down Soviet Spies along route 917.

Route 917 was the highway that ran through the middle of the Arizona desert. It was the route that Sally Vaults had gone missing on.

People died out there.

Well, the naked man thought he was hunting down soviet spies, but really he was just locating

and slaughtering aliens. It seemed that wherever he turned there was one, plotting and scheming,

trying to crack the fragile egg that was the United State’s freedom.

He found everywhere out there, on route 917! In diners, in public washrooms, by roadside

attractions, in parked Rv’s, and in desert communes. He had no idea how they had made it out

there from the basement’s in “Times Colonist” offices everywhere throughout the world.

He just knew that they had.

The naked man’s name was Mr. America, and he stood for everything that was right and equal

about the constitution, save for the public indecency offenses that he racked up when his

American flag slipped off whilst he was battling aliens at well known and popular roadside



Sam Vaults arrived at a diner in Plosmorning, AZ, a small gathering of buildings that was more

gas station than actual town. He parked his VW bug out in the lot, pocketed his revolver and

walked inside through the singular, glass door. In his pocket he had a picture of his wife, Sally

Vaults. It was a simple photograph that he had snapped of her on the family polaroid, and it

displayed her in petit fashion; wearing a summer dress, smiling innocently at the lens, and

wearing the same bucket hat that Sam had on.

Sam marched up to the nearest waiter in the diner, a desert roughened young man who was

wearing jean overalls and a torn, limp cowboy hat, and asked very nicely if he, yes the waiter, had

seen this woman in the picture.

The roughened youth waved him off and shoved a grease stained, laminated menu in his face.

Sam pushed the menu away, and tried to explain that the woman in the picture was his wife, and

that she was missing and that he was really very concerned for her safety.

The desert scarred youth just looked down at the rejected menu, then up to the distressed face of

Sam Vaults. He did this a few more times.

Sam held up the picture.

The youth saw it this time. Expression drained from the young waiters face. He stared at the


Then, ever so slightly, he nodded.


Far, far away from route 917, far away from the exploding aliens and the worlds largest Bovine,

from the lonely and broken heart of Sam Vaults and his bucket hat, in the basement of the New

York Office of “The Times Colonist” a duo of alien ambassadors were setting up the latest

shipment from their home planet.

It was a Thaumetric Splicing Machine, or TSM for short.

Their names were 857 and 328, and they were having a great deal of trouble with the assembly



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