“Sir, this could get out of hand fast. We don’t know anything about these creatures. Do you really think it’s wise to separate them?”

“We’ve kept them together for two months now, Clemens. You know the drill. We now need to observe them individually to determine their genders, if any.”

“But Colonel—without a mate, they’ll have no way to reaffirm themselves. And without a means with which to confirm what they perceive…”

“Oh, come off it, Clemens! Are you still going on about this ‘symbiotic relationship’ hogwash?”

“There may be something to my theory, sir. Every word they teach themselves has to be mutually agreed upon by two or more in a clan. They need each other. Can’t you see that? Otherwise, I fear you won’t be getting much cooperation out of them.”

“Well, hopefully they won’t be talking at all for a while without that book of theirs. I could use a little peace and quiet around here for a change…”

“Good God, man! Tell me you didn’t take the book!”

“Oh, here we go. See? This is why we all agreed not to tell you.”

“Tell me what, Colonel? That this facility is in no way outfitted or staffed to teach English to these beings? That you’re interested in more than just learning to communicate with Earth’s new visitors?”

“What are you trying to say, Clemens? That we’re only interested in their technology?”

“Oh no. That’d be too easy. I’ve seen the reports, Colonel. You have a very specific agenda laid out.”

“…And what might that be, Clemens? Indulge me.”

“Don’t play coy with me, sir. From day one, it’s all been about their teleportation abilities. It doesn’t take an expert in etymology and theoretical linguistics to see that you’re looking for a military application!”

“Yes, Clemens… Just think of it: Task forces and black ops will be a thing of the past. Whole battalions of troops will be deployed to hot zones in the blink of an eye. Demolitions will be planted in the heart of strategic targets on a whim. Enemies of this great nation will be teleported to prison before they even have a chance to strike against us. Congratulations, Clemens. The last horse has finally crossed the finish line.”

“You really think they’ll just hand over their secret?”

“That all depends on what we learn from their little field manual. If that fails, I think a good old-fashioned autopsy will give me the answers I’m looking for.”

“You heartless bastard! I won’t let you!”

“And as for you, Clemens, I think a trip to solitary confinement is in order.”

“No! You can’t do this!”

“Guards! Take him away!”

“You really think you’ll get away with this, Colonel?”

“Let me think… Uh… Yup yup yup. Uh huh. Uh huh.”

Yip Yips at 80sTees