The "real" story of The Man From Taured
The world of urban legend is one of the areas of the internet and the world prefer to live in. I love watching videos about UFOs and weird, mysterious things. I collect strange, mysterious stories like the Mad Gasser of Mattoon and other stories. One of my favorites, of course, is the supposedly true tale of The Man From Taured.
Of course, I say "true" but the fact remains this story is just urban legend. Although people who like the idea of alternate dimensions love to cite this story as proof, the fact remains there is no actual proof this ever happened. It's a great story, but still just that - a story. Of course, this means it's perfect as a starting point for a guy who writes horror fiction.
The urban legend says this took place sometime in the 1950s when security and air travel was nothing like it is today. In fact, security itself might have been more than a little lax. It also supposedly took place in the city of Tokyo.
Of course, Tokyo in the 50s would be post-war and probably still recovering. In the 50s, there would be a general lack of jet airliners and overseas flying to places like Japan would be vastly different and more unique than today.
The urban legend says a man entered the customs area of Tokyo's airport and immediately presented a passport and I.D. He also stated he was visiting Tokyo on business, stated the company he worked for, but then stated he was visiting from the far away land of - Taured.
Of course, this baffled the customs guys. No one had heard of this country. The man was baffled, sure someone was playing a joke. His passport was legit and said Taured. His driver's license was issued by the country of Taured. The problem is, the country did not exist.
They ushered the man into a room. The man was freaking out by now. He claimed Taured had been around for more than 1,000 years. It was a large, productive, world power of a country. He stated he had made the trip from Taured to Tokyo many times before on business and this had never happened before. He was scared.
The security team did a check. They called the company he said he was from. Sure enough, they had an office in Tokyo, but no office in a place called Taured and no one by the man's name working for him.
These guys produced a map of the world and asked the man to point out where Taured was. The man was dismayed when he couldn't find the country on the map and pointed to a spot which was, in this dimension, part of Spain.
Unable to figure out a solution, the security guys got the man a hotel room and said they would figure this out in the morning. However, by morning, the man was gone. His luggage was gone. His room did not look lived in. His bed did not looked slept in and the bathroom did not look as if anyone had used it.
He had vanished as mysteriously as he came.
For me, a guy interested in exploring the idea of alternate realities, this was too good of a story not to write about. However, I didn't want it to just be about some hapless business man who ended up in Tokyo. I live in Chicago and thought having this happen at O'Hare was much more interesting.
Additionally, I wanted to tell the story in modern times. What would happen today? Well, Homeland Security would get involved. There would be a bigger deal made about this. Also, the setting the man up in a hotel room would need an explanation because, I have my doubts this is standard operating procedure at airports these days.
This is where it sounded interesting to me. The man himself was just some guy caught in the middle. What interested me was the investigator assigned to figure out who the hell this guy was and how the hell he ended up at O'Hare.
Before long, I had a truly epic tale on my hands. A tale which went backward and forward in time. A tale with a vast, ancient, evil at the center with a madman at the center in our dimension. To me, the poor man was just an accident. It was the tale of how he ended up here through the machinations of a man blinded by ambition and not thinking clearly.
Bryan Alaspa's new novel, The Revisionists, is available for pre-order now at Amazon. It's a techno-thriller that also deals with alternate realities and using them to change history - with horrific effect on our current timeline.