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Monday, 7 August 2017

Rocket Red One!

    Something silver high in the night sky leaves a tail of fire in its wake, height 70 thousand feet and falling, exterior heat three thousand degrees, 50 thousand feet and falling, flame burnout, 30 thousand 20, 10, 5, 2, 1,000 feet and still falling.

    “What’s that noise…..something in the sky……..I can’t see it! Get down, get down!”
    Whoosh, the sound is deafening, the falling object just misses the village, its houses the local pub, church, the school before plunging to the ground!
    “What’s going on out there sergeant?”
    “Yes sergeant, you’ve got to investigate.”
    “Alright, alright, there’s no need to panic, just let me put my tunic on.”
    A silver shaft had embedded itself into the ground, on the outer hull a red 1 .
    “What is it Sid?”
    “It’s a rocket Dorothy, the heat, it’s incredible!”
    “I don’t like it Sid, I’m frightened.”
    “Now then, now then, what are you two doing?”
    “It’s a rocket Sergeant.”
    “The heat’s incinerated the haystack!”
    “I can see that for myself, I don’t need telling.”
    “Is it the Russians?”
    “I don’t think the Russians would send a rocket over here simply to destroy a haystack miss! Now look you two get back, and keep back, and that goes for all you others. Tom you keep these people in order, I’ve got to make a telephone call, and a report to make.”

    A black
Bedford van speeds on its way to the crash site. Inside are four men, the driver, a Government Minister, and two other men.
    Minister “What went wrong?”
    “We don’t know.”
    “The Home Office stresses that there is no immediate danger. This could turn out to be a complete disaster, in more ways than one.”
    “I am painfully aware of that.”
    “What went wrong?”
    “If I knew that I would tell you. We don’t know how far it went into space.”
    “Wasn’t there any radio contact?”
    “Did you launch it?”
    “No I didn’t!”
    “Did you authorise the launch?”
    “You know I didn’t, but they’ll blame me all the same. All I know is we lost contact with The Village. Sometime later this rocket was picked up on radar.”
    “The Village, is a place, we have to keep that dark. Can’t have information leaking out about it.”
    “That might be difficult now.”
    “The rocket should never have been launched.”
    “Do you think I don’t know that. Now we’ve got to find out why.”
    “What about the men inside?”
    “We don’t know.”
    “This is going to cause one hell of stink. What do you think happened, what went wrong?”
    “You had better send a team to The Village.”
    “Both the Russians and the Americans want to know what’s going on, the un-licensed launching of a rocket………….”
    “Well the sooner we find out what went wrong the better for all concerned.”

    The police were at the scene in force, as well as the fire brigade, and ambulances were already on the scene when the
Bedford van arrived. The four men alighted. There was a large crowd.
    “Alright Blake, set the radio equipment up over there, try to make contact with the crew. Inspector, keep all those people back.”
    “Yes sir. What about the hatch, can’t that be opened?”
    “Not unless you want to incinerate the men inside.”
    “Well we could dowse the rocket with gallons of water to cool it” suggested the fire chief.
    “That would prove disastrous.”
    “How so?”
    “It could explode!”
    “Then what do we do?”
    “Wait for the rocket to cool.”
    “How long will that take?”
    “Two, three, maybe four hours. Any contact Blake?”
    “Rocket red one can you hear me, this is control come in rocket red one…….no sir, there’s nothing coming through.”
    “Keep trying.”
    “Rocket red one can you hear me, this is control, come in rocket red one, red one can you hear me…….”

    The rocket was cooling off, the temperature about right.
    “Can’t we open that hatch?”
    “The temperature is about right. Blake…..”
    “Still no contact with the crew”
    “No sir.”
    “Set up the remote control, but don’t open the hatch until I give the word.”
   “Chief, we’ll cool it off a little more, back those fire tenders up to the rocket, and stand by.”
   “Get those tenders backed in, get the hoses ready” ordered the fire chief.
   “Okay, pour on the water.”
   “What is it Blake?”
   “A sound, from inside the rocket.”
   “Rocket red one this is control, can you hear me, red one rocket this is control, red one can you hear me……”
   “What is it Inspector?”
   “The hatch is opening!”
   “You did that Blake?”
   The hatch slides open, no-one moved towards the opening, everyone waited. Then a figure emerged, a figure wearing a white robe and cowl. The figure stumbled forward until it fell on the piled earth around the crater.
    “Quick, get the medics.”
    “Who is he?”
    “It’s Number One!”
    “Is he alive?”
    “What about the rest of the crew?”
    “Lets find out.”
    Once inside the rocket a search for the rest of the crew, the control room and the four life support orbit tubes were empty. The rocket was searched from the nose cone to the rocket motors, of the other three members of the crew there was no sign.
    “What happened to the rest of the crew?”
    “I don’t know.”
    “Did they leave the rocket?”
    “How do I know, we’ll ask Number One.”
    “How is he?”
    “He’s in a bad way” the medic announced.
    “I need to ask him questions.”
    “I doubt he can answer.”
    “One, Number One what happened? Tell us what happened.”
    The man lying on the stretcher opened his eyes, his mouth opened, and laughed inanely like a madman!

Be seeing you

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