Mad Jacks Superhero/Fantasy/SciFi Mix

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  • #704
    Mad Jack
    Mad Jack
    Participant

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    PROLOGUE:

    March 21, 1927 – 05:30:00 (UTC-5)
    Caral, Peru (124 miles north of Lima in the valley of Rio Supe)

    Professor Lance Walker, an archaeologist with a penchant for adventures like so many other colleagues of him in this time, lived for several months alone in a camp on the edge of an excavation site, which he had accidentally discovered some time ago and whose age he carefully dated to about 5000 years after some finds dating back to early history – to a period known for some of the most famous centers of origin of human civilization such as Mesopotamia, Egypt and India.

    With the help of some locals he had exposed the last of the six shallow pyramidal elevations within an area of more than 60 hectares the day before, the largest of them covering nearly the size of four football fields and being 60 feet tall, and after another long evening of studying the artifacts that he had found he had gone to bed late.

    The sun had not yet risen when he was pulled out of the sleep, he had just recently fallen into, by a slight shaking of the earth which was extremely unusual for this area. When he stumbled drowsy out of his tent he saw amazed at how suddenly a huge pillar of light shot up from the largest of the six pyramids several miles into the sky and immediately went out again.

    Fascinated by the phenomenon the archaeologist followed it to its source and discovered, between the two 11.5 feet high monoliths of granite at the entrance of the pyramid, an opening in the ground which was not previously available and which also revealed a stone staircase that seemingly led deep below the earth underneath the pyramid.

    Armed only with an old Colt .45, which he had pocketed almost unwitting as usual, he curiously descended the stairs and found himself in a vast underground vault a short time later, where he detected Maya symbols on the walls in the dim light of his torch, which were to his amazement sided by more characters of Egyptian hieroglyphs and Norman runes.

    Surprised by the unexpected discovery it took him several minutes before he noticed the faint beeping, that seemed to come from the rear of the temple-like space in a steady rhythm. Just then, as he turned to this noise, the room suddenly brightened and gave a glimpse of his inner free, which dealt Walker with a further severe shock.

    At the other end of the vault he saw a huge technological apparatus that was – despite its apparent age of several thousand years – set into operation as if by an invisible hand and a bright red light started to flash in its middle in the same rhythm as the now very loud beeping noise.

    Although he could not see the purpose of the computer consoles, since such devices were completely unknown in this time, Walker approached them and noticed a glowing screen with symbols unfamiliar to him.

    At the very same moment he touched the monitor a loud mechanical voice sounded from hidden speakers in a strange language that seemed to repeat the same phrase over and over again.

    “Cor’Ryi Talho Sti Ut! Nii Yaro Sabe.”
    “Cor’Ryi Talho Sti Ut! Nii Yaro Sabe.”
    “Cor’Ryi Talho Sti Ut! Nii Yaro Sabe.”
    “Cor’Ryi Talho Sti Ut! Nii Yaro Sabe.”

    Startled by the voice the man let out a cry for the first time since he entered the catacombs:
    “What the hell is going on here?“

    The answer came promptly:
    “Language recognized as English. Translating…”
    “Stellar constellation consistent with calculation detected. Voice input expected…”

    “What does that mean? Who are you? And what the hell is this?!”

    “Answer to question 1: Question redundant, as answered itself by voice input.”
    “Answer to question 2: System designation is 5M4R7-455.”
    “Answer to question 3: Research facility Cor’Bei.”

    “I don’t understand a word. Which stellar constellation and what it’s all about?”

    “Answer to question 1: Stellar constellation NCC-1701-C marks the time of the original chronal origin of the creators of this unit.”
    “Answer to question 2: Stellar constellation NCC-1701-C allows measures to theoretical return the creators of this unit to their original physical origin.”

    “Chronal origin? I don’t know what that means. And who the heck are these creators?”

    “Answer to question 1: Chronal origin: The time from which the creators come.”
    “Answer to question 2: The native name of the creators is Mata’Nui.”

    “Somehow we have not made any progress here. Each of your answers raises new questions for me. Let’s try it a different way: What do you want from me?”

    “Subject meets the requirements for Harbinger protocol. Awaiting instructions on how to proceed…”

    “Harbinger protocol? What’s that supposed to be now? Explain it to me.”

    “Instructions accepted. Explanation will be made by demonstration. Starting procedure…”

    “Wait. What? No!”

    Before he was able to react to the unexpected response, a man-high glass cylinder lowered with great speed from the ceiling above him, locked him in, and was filled with vapors, letting Walker lose consciousness.

    Shortly thereafter, the air around the man began to shimmer, the air pressure in the room dropped rapidly and the lights began to flicker. At the same moment as a high-pitched indefinable screeching started the contours of the man began to blur and suddenly he vanished literally into thin air, leaving behind just a vacuum in the air that dissolved with a strong pressure wave, which in turn shattered the glass cylinder …

    (The prologue ends with a time-lapse setting that shows how the excavation site and the camp is covered by sand and soil, until all traces of Lance Walker’s presence were completely destroyed.)

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    Days-of-Annihilation-1.jpg
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    CHAPTER ONE:

    September 13, 1985 – 22:27:36 CDT (UTC-6)
    Houston, Texas (USA) – Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (Mission Control Center)

    There was a frenzy of activity in the Mission Control Center at NASA, as “Operation Dark Side” entered its second phase. It was the first manned mission to the moon in 13 years and the destination of the expedition was the South Pole-Aitken Basin, a crater with roughly 1,600 miles in dameter and 8.1 miles deep on the far side of the moon.

    The mission, in which for the first time in history a person should enter the “dark side of the moon”, was considered a daring venture as this area owed its name to the fact that there were considerable difficulties in signal transmission inside it – a fact known since the flight of the Soviet lunar probe Lunik 3 in 1959 – and therefore it was decided that the mission should be kept secret until its completion.

    Project manager Norris Wyman stared so intently at the radio intercom in front of him, that one could believe he could influence the outcome of this phase, in which the Space Shuttle Prometheus was landing on the lunar surface, by mere wishful thinking when suddenly in the middle of static noise a voice came through the speakers.

    “Prometheus calls Houston. Do you read me, Mission Control?”

    “Loud and clear Captain Sterling. What is your status?”

    “Phase 2 completed. Landing on the surface occured without incident. All values for phase 3 in the green. Ready to exit.”

    While a great sigh of relief went through the crowd around him, the facial expression of Commander Wyman relaxed just a little.

    “We received the reports of the board sensors only fragmented, but so far everything looks good. Phase 3 is approved …”

    A few minutes later, Captain Adam Sterling came back on.

    “Exit successful. I’ll proceed toward the target coordinates and call again when I arrived.”

    “Be careful. The area is completely unexplored and radio contact can abort at any time. If that happens, return immediately back to the module.”

    “Don’t worry, Commander. Friday the 13th has always been my personal lucky day.”

    After more than thirty minutes without any feedback from Captain Sterling Wyman’s nerves were tense as wire ropes. With sweaty face he turned to the man who monitored the radio traffic.

    “What’s going on? He should have reported some fifteen minutes ago.”

    “I’m sorry, sir, I still receive no signals from Captain Sterling and the contact to the lunar module is also canceled. We get absolutely nothing anymore.”

    “Mission Control to Captain Sterling. Do you read me?”

    No answer – only static noise and crackling …

    “Damn it. Can anyone tell me what’s going on up there?”

    The awkward silence of the ground crew spoke volumes …


    December 18, 2012 – 13:18:47 CDT (UTC-6)
    Houston, Texas (USA) – Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (Mission Control Center)

    27 years after the last (inofficial) lunar mission, of which no trace was found by later flights of several probes, a new classified mission called “Operation Torchlight” was started. This time, a team of four astronauts should undertake a new attempt to land on the far side of the moon and at the same time to try and bring light into the darkness of the circumstances sorrounding the disappearance of Captain Adam Sterling and the Space Shuttle Prometheus.

    “Altair lunar lander to Mission Control. Houston we have a problem!”

    The heartbeat of Project Doyle Hanson sat out for a fraction of a second and with a frightened look he looked at the now-retired Commander Wyman Norris who was present as a guest of honor.

    “Mission Control to Captain Brosnan. What happened?”

    “Nothing dramatic, I just couldn’t resist.”

    “Are you kidding me? You know that I have nothing left for your sense of humor!”

    “Sorry, Commander. But we have now arrived at the specified coordinates, and found no traces of the Prometheus. Although we have expected that, we didn’t expect to receive this weird signal here.”

    “Weird signal? What do you mean by weird?”

    “Our instruments register a weak indefinable radio signal that is displaced by a faint whistling sound, which clearly changes when we turn to the direction of the original mission target.”

    Hanson and Wyman exchanged surprised looks.

    “Well, it was intended to re-enact the original mission anyway which included a visit to the South Pole-Aitken basin at some point. So I’d say follow the signal …”

    “Roger Houston. Proceeding mission as planned.”

    The relief on the faces of the two Commanders was very visible when twenty minutes later a noisy radio message came in.

    “Brosnan to Mission Control. We have reached the target coordinates and are now in a smaller crater on the floor of the basin. The whistle has almost disappeared and the underlying signal has now become a bit little clearer in spite of the strong static noise. It almost sounds as if somebody is speaking and seems to come from a cave on the edge of the crater. I think we should look at this more closely.”

    „Copy that Captain Brosnan. Proceed at your own discretion.”


    December 18, 2012 – 13:42:16 CDT (UTC-6)
    The South Pole-Aitken basin on the Moon.

    Captain Henry “Hank” Brosnan and his team consisting of Captain Darrell Slater, Lieutenant Susan Richmond and Dr. James Cohen, stood 8 miles deep at the bottom of the basin in front of a towering wall in which they saw an approximately 10 feet high and 7 feet wide opening to a cave that seemed to lead deep under the surface.

    “Okay guys, you heard the Commander. Let’s go have a look.”

    The corridor was sometimes narrower, sometimes wider and led down steadily. When they were about 0.6 miles deep into the cave, the radio contact to earth was lost as expected and after a further 1.2 miles the corridor became so low that they had to stoop to keep moving forward.

    In the meantime the signal received from inside the cave had become increasingly stronger and was now clearly recognizable as the voice of a man who spoke in a strange foreign language that was occasionally interrupted by some English words, their context, however, were not recognizable.

    After what felt like an eternity they suddenly discovered a light that could by no means been of natural origin so deep under the moon’s surface.

    As the astronauts entered the room with the light, they thought they couldn’t believe their eyes. The head-high but very expansive vault which opened to them was covered with steel plates and crammed with machines that resembled no technology they had ever seen on earth.

    While they curiously looked at the devices, that obviously had to be of extraterrestrial origin, suddenly the damped and slightly electronically distorted voice of a man came from a remote corner of the room.

    “Was about time that you guys showed up here.”

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    Startled by the voice Captain Brosnan wheeled around and saw a man in a strange thin and bright space suit, standing between two glowing tubes and working on two screens that hovered in the air before him and seemed to consist of pure energy.

    “What the hell?”

    “This has little to do with hell, even if what lies ahead could be quite well described as hell on earth.”

    “Who are you? What are you talking about? And what the blazes is this? “

    Still paralyzed from shock Lieutenant Richmond began to speak.

    “But, sir, don’t you recognize him from the mission briefing? This is Captain Adam Sterling!”

    “Captain Sterling? But that can’t be. That was 27 years ago and he doesn’t seem to have aged a day.”

    “Thanks for the compliment, Captain Brosnan, but believe me, I surely did age. Just not the way it suits your habits. “

    Brosnan turned back toward the futuristic dressed man.

    “How is that possible? What happened to you back then and again: What the hell is going on here?”

    “I’m sorry if I can’t provide explanations to you at the moment, but there is simply no time for that here and now. The Harvesters are coming and there’s nothing anybody can do about it. No one can stop them and the following events, but we can still save the future of the mankind, if we find the Walker.”

    “The Harvesters? The Walker? The future of mankind? What are you talking about, man?”

    “Hmm. I guess I’m wasting my time with you. What was the saying again? Oh yes: Take me to your leader …”


    TO BE CONTINUED!

    #24697
    Mad Jack
    Mad Jack
    Participant

    I hope you enjoyed the trip so far. Comments and critiques (or better improvement suggestions) are always welcome… http://www.heromachine.com/wp-includes/images/smilies/icon_wink.gif



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    CHAPTER TWO:

    December 21, 2012 – 02:30:36 CDT (UTC-6)
    Houston, Texas (USA) – Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (Briefing Room)

    After they had left the cave with their new friend, Captain Brosnan and his crew had reported back to Mission Control and received the command to instantly return to Earth with Captain Sterling.

    Immediately after their landing two days later the Altair crew and Captain Sterling were taken to a strictly secured and sealed off meeting room deep in the bowels of the Johnson Space Center, where they already been expected by Commander Doyle Hanson, Norris Wyman and NASA head Charles Bolden, as well as his Deputy Lori Garver.

    Wyman Norris took the floor first.

    “Nice to have you back, Captain Sterling. I did not expect to ever see you again. And then just as you have looked like back then. How is all this possible?”

    “Well, Commander, that’s a very long story, but I can at least try to summarize it.”

    “We will listen curiously, Captain. I suppose the whole thing has something to do with the alien technology that my people saw in this cave on the moon?” said Charles Bolden.

    “That is correct, sir. As you probably know, my mission in 1985 was to explore the South Pole-Aitken basin on the far side of the moon, from which we then assumed by earlier recordings of American and Soviet lunar probes that a very large impact body had pierced the lunar crust at this place – we suspected a big meteorite.”

    “That is known to me.”

    “Well, what you don’t know is that this impact body was actually the debris of an alien spacecraft, which broke apart over Earth about 65 million years ago due to damage, it had just suffered in a fight. The other part crashed in Central America – more precisely on the northern Yucatán Peninsula.”

    “Yucatán? Do you talk about the Chicxulub crater in Mexico, which is associated with the extinction of the dinosaurs?” Lori Garver asked.

    “That’s right, ma’am.”

    “Pretty strong stuff, if you ask me.”

    “Then you will be certainly be blown away by the rest of my story.”

    „Go on, Captain.“ Bolden said.

    “I can’t tell you, what became of the aliens, who survived the crash, but I assume that they are still somewhere on Earth, since they were stranded here after the crash.”

    “And how do you know all this?”

    „I was about to talk about that. When I entered the South Pole-Aitken Basin in 1985 to collect rock samples I discovered, just like your people did, a weak signal that seemed to come out of a cave. At this point I had already lost radio contact with Earth, but we had anticipated that possibility so I didtn’t really worry about that.

    Intrigued, I entered the cave and followed the signal to that very room where Captain Brosnan and his crew found me two days ago. Shortly after I had entered it, the devices in the room switched on by itself and a computer voice started to talk to me – in English to my even greater surprise.

    The computer told me that the facility was a kind of monitoring station for the already mentioned aliens – called the »Mata’Nui« – and that it’s purpose was to look out for this other aliens with which the castaways were fighting back then.

    When I asked the computer to explain all this to me, all of a sudden cables emerged from the console in front of me and connected themselves to my head. Shortly thereafter, the complete saved history of the Mata’Nui until their arrival on Earth was transferred directly into my brain.

    I learned that the Mata’Nui were an extremely advanced humanoid race from the planet Matu’Ran of the Ca’Luan solar system in the Antlia Dwarf Galaxy, and traveled the entire universe with the help of artificial wormholes – you might know them as Einstein-Rosen bridges- with which they could bend space and time at the universal level. The latter I only mention because I will come back to it soon.

    Anyway, the home planet of the Mata’Nui was completely unprepared when it was someday attacked and conquered by a group of homeless extraterrestrial races who describe themselves as »Harvester« and move from planet to planet to pounce like a swarm of locusts over its resources, until only a dead world is left.

    After decades of bitter struggle against the invaders, the people of the Mata’Nui were almost completely wiped out – except for a few hundred survivors who eventually managed to escape aboard one of their last remaining functional space cruiser and to open a wormhole through which they wanted to escape.

    But before that could happen, they were attacked by a Harvester battleship and involved in a fight, during which both the Mata’Nui ship and the wormhole were hit hard. The latter thus started to destabilize and just as it collapsed it sucked the Mata’Nui ship in and flung it into our solar system, where it crashed on Earth as mentioned before.

    To my relief the transmission broke off at this point. Unfortunately, the machine wasn’t quite done with me, since it had chosen me as part of a so-called »Harbinger protocol«.

    After the data transfer was completed, a glass cylinder lowered from the ceiling above me, closed around me and was filled with a strange gas that made me lose consciousness. When I woke up, I found myself with strange new abilities in an other dimension.

    Captain-Adam-Sterling-1.jpg

    Just a few days ago I managed to return to the moon base where your people found me shortly thereafter.”

    The people at the conference table stared at him in amazement and bandied confused looks. Charles Bolden spoke first:

    “I have many questions, but the most important first: Are these the same Harvesters, of which you have spoken towards Captain Brosnan and which are allegedly on their way to Earth?”

    “Exactly, sir.”

    “But that was 65 million years ago, how is that possible?”

    “Excuse me, I probably didn’t made it clear enough that the Mata’Nui were transported not only across space but also through time itself into the past of our earth.

    The events of which I spoke earlier actually occured only about almost 86 years ago – or more precisely in 1927. So enough time for the Harvester to track down the Mata’Nui and follow them here using their warp drives. At least that’s what I conclude from the calculations by the computer in the lunar base, according to which the harvester reach Earth in less than 10 hours. “

    “10 hours? If this is true, we have to put all armed forces on alert immediately.” Lori Garver cried out scared.

    “What you should do of course, but it will unfortunately not do much. Even your entire nuclear arsenal can’t do nothing against these bastards, as you will soon see.”

    “You already said something like that on the moon to Captain Brosnan. I quote:

    » The Harvesters are coming and there’s nothing anybody can do about it. No one can stop them and the following events, but we can still save the future of the mankind, if we find the Walker. «

    What exactly you mean by that and who or what is this »Walker«?“

    Captain Sterling had made himself comfortable in his chair and exuded a calm that had the opposite effect on all the others present.

    “Do you remember the strange abilities that I mentioned? Well, I don’t know exactly what the Mata’Nui have done to me, but besides the fact that I hop uncontrolled through parallel universes and dimensions and don’t age like expected since, I have the gift to perceive alternative time lines, which lead to different versions of the future.

    In none of these time lines, we can fend off the attack of the harvester and each time it ends up with humanity either exterminated or enslaved – sometimes both. However, there is also one possible future in which we can defeat the invaders after numerous struggles within a few years and send them fleeing.

    But for that to happen we need the help of that very man whom I only know by the name of Walker. According to the alien database in my head, this man has been changed just like me a long time ago by the Mata’Nui and is ever since traveling seemingly uncontrolled back and forth in time. “

    “Jesus! Travel to other dimensions and through time – what next?” Wyman Norris groaned, while massaging the temples of his aching head with his fingers.

    “If I hadn’t seen the alien devices with my own eyes, I would personally cause your immediate admission into a nuthouse.” added Dr. James Cohen of the Altair crew.

    “Oh – believe me Doctor, it will still get a lot crazier. You don’t even know what the help of Mr. Walker looks like.”

    “What is that supposed to mean now?” Charles Bolden looked at the man, who appeared as if he were risen from a science fiction film, with uplifted eyebrows.

    Like me Mr. Walker received a special gift, of which he is probably only vaguely aware. He is able to instinctively locate people with specific genetic characteristics and to influence these genes so that their owners develop supernatural abilities – super powers if you want to say so.

    If we manage to bring these mutated people together and to organize a resistance, we may succeed to realize the time line, of which I have spoken, and possibly even create a better future for the surviving humans.”

    The silence following this statement was becoming very oppressive, when Charles Bolden abruptly turned to a screen that was located on the wall the behind conference table and had yet remained dark.

    “Did you get all that, Mr. President?”

    The display lit up and the face of Barack Obama, who had apparently been switched in via live connection all the time, became visible.

    “I did. The most urging question to Captain Sterling that vies for my attention at this moment is: what can we do to prepare for the attack in only a few hours and to save as many lives as possible. I hope you have a suggestion for that also?”

    “Well, sir, since it might be too late to evacuate the major cities, which are certainly the primary target of the invaders, and panic just puts the people even more in danger, I would suggest that you at least inform the governments of other countries and then to get yourself, your government staff and as many military units as possible to safety as quickly as you can. And I think I also know where you should be heading – does the term »Area Zero« mean anything to you?”


    TO BE CONTINUED!

    #25563
    Mad Jack
    Mad Jack
    Participant

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    COMING SOON (but not in theaters near you) … ;)

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