Re: Mad Jacks Showroom

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Mad Jack

Hmm, I considered to outsource the storytelling to the writers’ room, but I don’t know which sub-forum to choose there, since it’s a mix of super-hero-, fantasy- and science-fiction. So I’ll keep it here until I know what to do with it. Let’s continue…


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.”

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 …”