A/N: I had the idea for this story when I was finishing up my math final. It took me a while to write it up and get a beta to read over it, but now it's done. This story is dedicated to my sister in law who's a huge Twilight Zone fan. I would also like to thank Blindseer0 for reading over the story for me.
Disclaimer: I do not own The Twilight Zone.
*Re-posted from FF.Net. Originally posted in 2012.*
There is a fifth dimension, beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man's fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call TheTwilight Zone. –Rod Serling
The Twilight Zone: The Very Odd day of Mr. Rodman Edward Serling
"These are the invaders, the tiny beings from the tiny place called Earth, who would take the giant step across the sky to the question marks that sparkle and beckon from the vastness of the universe only to be imagined. The invaders, who found out that a one-way ticket to the stars beyond has the ultimate price tag. And we have just seen it entered in a ledger that covers all the transactions of the universe, a bill stamped 'paid in full,' and to be found… in The Twilight Zone."
"And cut!" yelled the director, Douglas Heyes. Rodman "Rod" Serling, let out a sigh, glad that it was finally over. It had been a long day of filming, and he was glad to be able to take a break. There would still need to be editing done before the episode could be aired, but he didn't need to do anything beyond give his approval during that stage. His coworker and friend George Clemens walked up to him, smiling.
"Good job on the ending narration."
"Thanks. How did the picture look behind the camera?" he asked the cinematographer.
"Pretty good," he replied. "This should be a popular episode. Pretty ingenious making people think that Earth was being invaded by miniature aliens only for it to turn out that it was Earthlings invading a planet of giant aliens."
"I'll make sure to tell Richard you enjoyed his work."
The two men walked together out of the studio into the cool autumn air. George looked to Rod and bid goodbye.
"See you later; I need to go this way." He walked away, leaving Rod alone.
Rod walked slowly to his car, enjoying the feel of the cool air on his face. He pulled out his keys and stuck them into the lock of the black car. He turned the keys and suddenly felt a lurching sensation. His vision spun and he lost his balance, toppling down onto the ground.
Rod managed to sit up on the cool ground, his eyes still closed. His vision spun even through his eyelids and he was assaulted by a loud cacophony of noise unlike anything he was used to. After a few minutes, his vision stopped spinning and he opened his eyes.
Rod stared in shock at what he was witnessing. The studio parking lot he had been standing in had changed completely. It was filled to the brim with unfamiliar models of cars like none he had seen before. The colors were all over the spectrum. He looked over his shoulder at the car he had been leaning against and saw a weird black car had replaced his. In his hand was a car key, also unfamiliar.
Rod stood up, and looked around. Everything had changed from what he had just been viewing, large buildings covered the skyline and overhead something resembling a plane flew, though he couldn't be sure if it was large or small.
Don't panic, there has to be a logical explanation to this. He thought, trying to calm himself down. I should try to find someone and question them. With this thought he walked away from the black car. The parking lot seemed to stretch on forever, but he finally made it to a building that resembled a TV studio, but was larger than any he was familiar with.
He saw a short figure in the distance and walked towards it. The figure turned and Rod saw that it looked similar to the spacemen from the Twilight Zone episode he had just come from filming. The person walked over to him, and spoke.
"Hey, how's it going?" said the voice, male by the sound of things. "Guessing you're here for The Twilight Zone 55th anniversary costume party?" The man looked the confused Rod up and down. "Great Rod Serling costume by the way, you look just like him." A woman appeared in the doorway of the building and waved to the spaceman. He walked away, biding goodbye. "See ya inside, bet you'll win the contest with that look."
The creator of The Twilight Zone just stood there in the lot, dumbfounded. He tried to keep his calm but inside he felt he was about to snap. 55th anniversary? This must be a joke. One very elaborate joke… He took several calming breaths. This situation was weird, but he had tested parachutes by jumping out of planes before, compared to that this situation was nothing.
Rod clenched his hand and felt a metal object biting into his skin. He opened his fist and saw the strange key from before. Suddenly an idea occurred to him. This had all started when he went to unlock his car; maybe doing the same to the black car he had woken up next to would reverse things.
Rod went running through the large parking lot, trying to find the car in a sea of the unfamiliar. He searched for what felt like an hour but might not have been more than ten minutes. Gasping for air and feeling his old knee injury acting up, he leaned against a strangely shaped powder blue car that read, "Prius" on its back hatch. The writer could feel despair sinking in as he thought about never finding the car or returning home. As he was about to give up and collapse, he saw a familiar black outline in the distance. Summoning the last of his strength, he hurried over and saw the very same black car as before. Gripping the key tightly in his hand, Rod limped over to the door and inserted the key into it, and turned.
The world started to spin again, and a sensation like being in freefall hit him. He fell to his knees again. After a minute, the world seemed to stabilize, and he opened his eyes. Everything was as he remembered it. Same familiar buildings, same familiar lot and same familiar car.
Rod collapsed backwards onto his rear, and let out a sigh of relief. Suddenly, he started laughing.
"No one will believe this even if I write it for TV!" he exclaimed. Rod stood up and opened up his car door and sat down in the seat. He started up the engine and pulled out of the parking lot.
As Rod Serlings car is seen pulling out of the parking lot from a birds eye view, a man walks into the image you currently hold in your head. Rod Serling, standing in front of the image in your mind as if it is a painting covering a wall, looks directly at you, the reader, and starts to speak.
"Rodman Edward Serling, age 36, creator and executive producer of the popular TV show The Twilight Zone. Mr. Serling has written many of the episodes himself and will in the end contribute more that half of the scripts for this long running sensation. But none will be more interesting than his own personal and unrecorded trip into the very world he created. In a world beyond sight and sound, in the world of the mind, Rod Serling is a creator of his own tales. This might sound impossible, but nothing is impossible—In The Twilight Zone."