Buck Rogers in the 25th Century

"Somewhere Beyond the Heavens"

The young cadets of the Earth ship, Searcher, stood shoulder to shoulder in the ships launching bay, listening intently to the words of their commanding officer. Today, Admiral Asimov was speaking with a passion that he had never displayed before, at least not in front of his subordinates. Electricity was in the air. They could all feel it. This was the day they would all meet their destinies, the very day they had planned for when they left Earth over two years ago this month. The crew of the Searcher was about to make first contact with a group of humans that could be their long lost brothers, forgotten over the millennia.

"There are those who believe that life here began out there", Asimov said looking up from his notes on the podium. "Far across the universe with tribes of humans who may have been the forefathers of the Egyptians, or the Toltecs, or the Mayans. They may have been the architects of the Great Pyramids or the lost civilizations of Atlantis or Lemuria. Some believe that there may yet be brothers of man who even now fight to survive somewhere beyond the heavens."

As the Admirals last words still reverberated around the launch bay, he slammed his book shut quite dramatically and stood at attention. Captain Buck Rogers, standing just behind the Admiral, allowed a subtle grin towards Colonel Wilma Deering. She returned the smile but shook her head in a disapproving manner. Buck knew that he would catch hell later for his lack of discipline during this very serious debriefing, but he just couldn't help himself. He figured the bogies their advanced scouts had detected were probably just some outlaw traffic trying to escape persecution. They could also be remnants of the probe from the Draconian Empire that they had encountered a couple of months back. The possibilities were endless. Yet, the Admiral felt that this unknown convoy of ships approaching was the real deal, human beings from a distant world on a heading to return to their point of origin-Earth!

"The man who wrote this sacred passage-"

The Admiral stopped in mid sentence as alert claxons roared to life throughout the ship.

"Battle stations!" Asimov ordered. "All pilots man your fighters!"

"C'mon!" yelled Buck to Wilman and Hawk.

Hawk, the half man-half bird, was the last of his species and Buck Rogers closest comrade in this human trek through the stars. He had pledged to always follow Buck's lead and he now would once again follow him into combat against an unknown enemy.

"Right behind you Buck!" was Hawks' reply. "I'm with you too!" shouted Wilma.

Just minutes after the first alert, Asimov was on the bridge, racing from station to station to assess the forces of the approaching enemy.

"What do we have?" he asked no one in particular.

"Sir, an unbelievable number of alien craft is closing in on the Searcher", came a reply from a bridge officer.

"Alien craft? How can you be sure?" he demanded.

"The ships are 3 passenger craft with no signs of human life aboard. Magna scan detects the ships contain some form of androids, or robots!"

"My lord! A race of machines? Who are they? What could they want?" the admiral gasped.