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II. Planet Off Course



The cruiser Hydra, under the command of Lydia van Dyke, sends a distress light message. The ship is inside a magnetic storm, it's badly damaged, and incapable of maneuvering. And to think, aboard the Hydra it has just been discovered that within the area of Canes Venatici a planet has been thrown off its track, which is displaying the physical qualities of a sun. The high speeder is racing towards Earth.
 
McLane is taken by two officials of the Galactic Security Division into their headquarters to Colonel Villa. Already there is Tamara Jagellovsk. They are shown a recording of the distress call. It also contains a coincidentally intercepted transmission by the exoterrists, clarifying who's responsible for the high speeder.
 
The Command Staff of the Supreme Space Bureau has only two options: evacuation or offensive. Actually the Supreme Council has already withdrawn to the Martian moons and the Army Command to the Martian Outer Base, but of Earth's population at most 0.25 per mil could be rescued, as the disaster is expected to arrive within one week.
 
It is decided to send 200 ships to find and to destroy the exoterrists' control center guiding the high speeder. McLane's ORION being the fastest ship of the fleet, she is taking part in the search also.
 
Near the Vesta Group the ORION makes contact with Hydra, which had already been written off. With their help the command center can be located. Because there is big trouble aboard the Hydra, particularly with the air supply, McLane wants to come to the ship first, although being forbidden by General van Dyke. Eventually Tamara Jagellovsk has to threaten melting down the ORION's main control board before McLane gives in.
 
The control center is destroyed, but the high speeder does not change its course. At the ORB everyone is waiting for a miracle to happen, which according to General Wamsler can only be McLane.
 
The ORION then tries to annihilate the planet using antimatter bombs. The endeavor fails miserably.
 
McLane makes a last desperate attempt, which will, however, have the ORION VII destroyed, and the crew will have to see to it that they fight their way to the Hydra - whose fate is unclear - aboard the Lancets.
The ORION, supercharged with energy, is steered into the planet and both are destroyed in a giantic explosion.
 
The ORION crew aboard two Lancets soon find the Hydra. Hasso is the first to go on board the damaged cruiser to open the Lancet locks. After fixing the oxygen supply they find the Hydra crew in cryo chambers.
 
Back on earth, only ORB knows about the planet.
So Cliff gets problems to explain the ORION wreckage to the government officials who ask's "Supernova - what is that?"
 
German TV: 1. October 1966
 


Starlight Info:
Translated from "Planet außer Kurs"
by: Ulrich Schreglmann [12/97]
Completed by M.Höfler [2004]


           

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