THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 87

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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 87

…“And you found out that I am a sucker for a beautiful girl with a gun pointed at her head!”…

Big Red Lollipop by Donna Pomponio

“You are bluffing.”

“Am I?” Roy Crippen retorts.

Perhaps because his ears were burning from the flush of embarrassment, or out of shear frustration, he rips off his elastic face/mask, revealing the fire in his eyes. He is also nobody’s’s fool.

Rather than reacting irrationally, he decides to act on a more limited target, while outwardly staying cool.

Enough time has ticked off the countdown clock that Roy can sense the reversing of fortunes.

His assumption is premature, upon seeing Gherkin Dogman turn calmly, raise his weapon and aim it at Francine’s head. Without hesitating he dives headlong into the man, a tackle with the greatest execution, causing the furious spray of bullets to go straight up.

With the noose of reinforcements closing in around them and Gherkin/whomever intentions clear to his men, they are firing in an instant… not at Francine but in the direction of Gantry #2, with the Russian-made jetcopter rising off the ground, pivoting to fire its lethal boom-001payload.

By the time the copter has turned, a good-guys Image result for good guysshoulder-fired missile takes it down in a fiery heap and not a single hostile bullet finds its mark, while the foreign boots-on-the-ground are mowed down like so many weeds.

Roy Crippen has the lone survivor of the raid pinned beneath him, pretty much alongside where Francine spent those terrifying few seconds. Both she and he are very fortunate survivors, given the fact that they were the only participants without a gun.

Francine is lucky in another sense: 100 out of 100 journalists would have given their right arm to be at the scene of the 21st Century’s most compelling stories. But that wasn’t on her mind right now, “That was the bravest thing I have ever seen Roy, live or on video.”

“Had to save that “space-plane”, right Gherkin?” he says while looking down. And you found out that I am a sucker for a beautiful girl with a gun pointed at her head. In the fog of conflict, Roy reacted the only way he knew how. (Never give a sucker an even break)

He actually was thinking of her first, even before his precious Space Colony.t-minus-to-launch-001

They are soon surrounded by Mission Control Marines.

Braden King declares, “T-minus 00:10.00 and counting all systems go in the launch of the deep-space New Mayflower. The sky is high and we have two important people waiting for us.”


THE RETURN TRIP

im-a-sucker-001

Episode 87


page 82

THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 68

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THE RETURN TRIP – Episode 68

…Suddenly, like a husband forgetting to tell his wife that his boss and wife are coming to dinner at 6:00 {it’s 5:30}, Roy Crippen’s ears go flush with an influx of warm blood...

Clarity by Natalie Rye

****What if this whole nightmare was a deliberate and calculated plot that is still playing out? Just how far will jealous enemies, like the unified Korea or Talibanistan, go to prevent such an ambitious venture as Space Colony 1 from achieving success.****

SOCIAL MEDIA NIGHTMARE

And then there is the matter of the informant who breached security to leak this embarrassing story to Houston and the World. Were it not for Francine Bouchette’s conscience and cooperation, it would have turned into a social media nightmare, with rumors turning into lies turning into panic.

And just how many details of the New Mayflower’s coming launch are out there, to be used for nefarious intent?

Suddenly, like a husband forgetting to tell his wife that his boss and wife are coming to ah-ha-momentdinner at 6:00 {it’s 5:30}, Roy Crippen’s ears go flush with an influx of warm blood. Reporter Bouchette had mentioned that the informant had an accent peculiar to the Himalaya region. Most everything the informer told her was accurate, as if an insider were involved.

THE SPATIAL DEBRIS MONITOR! That supposed Nepalese technician replaced his friend Phil Jansky, who died from a sudden brain hemorrhage. Some guy named Shah Gherkin is all he can recall from the heat of the mission run-out.

He takes a quick look at the countdown clock; t-minus 3:00.00 with still time to act on a hunch.

“I need to speak with Francine Bouchette from KHST Houston,” he demands of the Braden King.

Francine was in the midst of preparing for the Ten O’clock, but responds tout de suite, upon hearing who was calling her. Coincidentally she had been trying to contact him, ever since her afternoon exclusive but was unable to get through.

columncolumn2“I am so glad you called Mr. Crippen; I’ve been trying………”

“I am sorry for interrupting, but I would like to meet you at the Galveston Launch Facility in 15 minutes. This is concerning our, I mean your informant.”

“Can I possibly get there in 15 minutes?” she ponders how she can go 50 miles in that short time.

“I’ll have an F-77A scrambled for you at Hobby Airport; you’ll be cleared at the gate.”

KHST is located on Houston’s far southwest side. “I have a better idea, I can get to you quicker if I drive, and you clear I-45 for me, meet me at the GLF gate.”

He relents to her plan, while she only has time to grab her purse and streak to the parking lot, “I won’t be able to do the 10 o’clock,” is the only explanation she gives to the producer on the way out of the newsroom.

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THE RETURN TRIP

Episode 68


page 63