We were sitting in a bus stop in a flat ugly nowhere in the middle of America. There was nothing there but a bus stop and a six-way intersection.
"Is that so? What's it like there?"
He shrugged, and I knew why. How do you ask someone what their home town is like? It's like asking someone what it's like to look at their nose all the time.
I offered him a sip of my Corona, and he nodded thanks. He took the bottle, and, without asking, pulled a lime out of his jacket, cut off a wedge and dropped it in.
I nodded in approval. We were waiting for the same bus, back to somewhere.
"What if I told you there's someone very important buried under this very intersection?" I asked him. I was bluffing; I just didn't want to seem boring to a guy from space.
He looked at the ground for a while, took a swig of the beer and handed it back to me. Then he looked back at the ground - at the unused paved middle of the six-way intersection.
"You've been on this planet a long time. I'm guessing there's someone buried everywhere, and as far as that someone being important..."
"Everyone's important," I volunteered, completing his thought.
A car drove by and slowed down. "You guys want a lift?"
I preferred the tardy bus and the dry afternoon to a shady stranger, but not him. He was from space. He stood up, said, "Hey, keep the luggage," and got in the car, happy to hitch hike.
I waved goodbye and toasted him. He smiled and told the driver he was from space as he got into the car.
I don't look inside the bag until the car had left the horizon. It was filled with diamonds and meteoric iron.
Heavy as bricks.