(AN: AUUGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH I know. It's been forever since I posted this thing. Well I watched thunderbirds (the show) for the first time in a long time last night, and it got me back into the swing of things. You can expect the third (and final) part of this episode very soon. But without further ado)
There are two types of satellites in orbit around the planet earth… unmanned and manned. In geostationary orbit above earth, is the most well equipped manned satellite ever created by man: Thunderbird 5. Able to pick up a signal from millions of miles away, Thunderbird 5 is the communications hub for one of the most secret organizations on earth, International rescue.
International rescue is dedicated to helping those in need, when regular rescue equipment won't do the job. It is operated by Billionaire Former-Astronaut Jeff Tracy, and his five sons: Scott, Virgil, Gordon, John, and Alan. Each pilots a fantastic craft, used in a variety of rescues. Thunderbird 5 is run By John Tracy, whom, when the astronauts sent their message, was sitting down to some freeze dried rations.
"These rations taste like cardboard. And I still have another month before dad sends Alan to take over the shift here for a few months. 'Til then, I guess I'm in for another month of bland freeze dried mea-"
Before John could finish his little monologue, the radio on monitor crackled as the tape recorders turned on and began recording.
"Calling International Rescue, Calling International Rescue. Come in please."
John stood up from his bleak meal-time and walked to the console. Talking into his microphone, he asked "You have reached International Rescue. What is the state of your emergency?"
Back on the moon, Greymans eyes lit when he received a response, and all the rest of the crew seemed either shocked, gleeful with hope, or both. "This is Asteroid Cruiser 8 Sigma, and we-"
"Hold on a minute" John interrupted. "Cruiser 8 Sigma… you're that new research cruiser that is bringing back some important haul from the asteroid belt… you guys were supposed to land at Cape Canaveral half an hour ago."
"That's the thing… something on the ship malfunctioned, altering our trajectory, and locking our computers on course with the moon."
"And you're un-able to turn it around and get the proper bearings?"
"No… by the time we realized, it was too late… we had to make an emergency landing on the moon. We're all fine, just a bit shaken… but we have a few punctures, and that only gives us about 10 and a half hours of air."
"Well that is a sticky situation… International Rescue is on its way."
Poorly made lunch could wait… lives were at stake. John flipped a switch on his console and sent a message down to earth.
"International Rescue from Thunderbird 5, come in please."
Down in the Pacific Ocean, lies a privately owned tropical island. This island, owned Jeff Tracy is the headquarters for International rescue. Of course, anyone not privy to the Tracy family's secret activities would just see a luxurious island retreat.
This particular day, the Tracys didn't have much planned. Scott was down in the shooting range, Gordon was swimming some laps in the pool, and Alan was in the main room painting a picture of Virgil, whom was busy playing the beautiful grand piano the family owned. Of course, the head of the organization, Jeff, was sitting at his desk reading a book. On the wall of the main room were portraits of each of the brothers in their International Rescue outfits (which could be revolved at a moment's notice to depict them in civilian garb, for when they had visitors). All of a sudden, the eyes of Johns portrait began flashing. Jeff, Virgil and Alan all stopped what they were doing and turned to face the picture as Jeff pressed a button on his desk.
"Go ahead John." He spoke in his gruff voice.
Immediately, Johns portrait faded to show John on Thunderbird 5. "Dad, we have a situation on the moon. That research cruiser that was supposed to land today just called and reported they had a malfunction which drove them towards the moon."
"Are they okay?" Jeff asked his sons image.
"By the time they got to us, they had already crashed. The crews engineer gives them a little over 10 hours before they run out of air. They need help fast"
"Understood son. Keep in contact and keep us posted on their condition."
"FAB Dad" John said as his video cut off and his portrait re-appeared.
Alan immediately faced his dad. "Looks like we'll need Thunderbird 3."
"Right Alan, I'll get Scott up here. Virgil, you go get Gordon and fill him in."
"Right Dad" Virgil said as he stood up and left the room. Jeff then flipped a switch on his microphone switching his intercom to the Firing Range, where Scott had just finished up on some training.
"Scott, you better get up here, we have a situation."
"Kay Dad" Scott said as he put down the gun and left the manservant, Kyrano, to close up the range.
A minute later, Gordon and Virgil re-entered, followed by Scott.
"What's up dad?"
"We have a rescue on the moon. That research ship that was going to land here today experienced a malfunction, and their locked landing crashed them on the moon. The lives of three astronauts are at stake. Now I've been to the moon before, but we landed on a part of the moon that was nice and relatively flat. We might not be so lucky. Time is running out for them so we have to move. Scott. Alan. Get ready."
"Of course Dad" Alan and Scott said in unison. Both of them walked over to the double couch and took a seat, as Virgil got up from it. Jeff flipped a switch and wished the boys luck.
The couch began to lower into the floor. In seconds, the view of the peaceful Tracy household had disappeared, as the found themselves slowly descending into a highly equipped hangar. Once the couch touched the bottom, it detached and began to move down a tram rail. Immediately, another Couch moved up, and eventually replaced the one in the main room. As Scott and Alan looked upwards, they had entered another hanger, where a giant red rocket stood in silence. Thunderbird 3.
The couch rolled right under the main fuselage, and then rose up into the rocket. The two brothers saw themselves in a room, one they were very familiar with. It had the same flooring as the floor beneath the couch. Both stood up as their uniforms rose from the floor.
Back in the main room, Jeff stood with Virgil and Gordon, as another man looked over some maps and blueprints on the coffee table. He had a very wide fore-head, and wore wide rimmed blue glasses. Known primarily as Brains (in public, he uses the alias Hiram Hackenbacker), this man was responsible for all the technology International Rescue uses in their operations.
"Well Mr. Tracy… G-ge-getting into the rocket should be simple enough. First I need to do some t-time analyses on their location and Thunderbrd 3's speed to determine the op-optimal point of entry. But already I estimate an 8 hour trip to the moon as long as Alan and Scott go full throttle."
"Well get cracking brains. I'm sure John can get us some useful information about the astronauts conditions."
Below the surface of Tracy Island, Scott and Alan prepared for launch.
"Scott, prepare pre-launch settings."
"Right Alan." Scott said punching away at the keyboard. Though Scott was the senior brother, Alan knew more about space travel, and always followed Alan's careful instructions, so as to prevent them from accidentally blowing Thunderbird 3 up.
Alan took a small elevator up to his pilots deck, and picked up a microphone, connecting him to Scotts console.
"All ready Scott?"
"All set Alan."
"Good. Setting Chemical Pre-Burners to high." He said flipping a switch. Immediately, smoke poured from each of the three engines.
Immediately, each of the engines roared to life, creating quite the sound. It could easily be heard from the main room. Both of the remaining brothers looked out towards the family roundhouse, A doughnut shaped complex that the Tracys let guests stay in if their excursion to the island were to last more than a day. Beneath it, a giant set of metal doors opened.
From its hangar, Thunderbird 3 rose up, leaving from the hole beneath the roundhouse. Up and up the rocket rose, leaving a trail of white smoke in its wake.
"Well they're off." Jeff said, looking at his sons and Brains. Just as he said this, the eyes on Alans portrait flashed.
"Go ahead Alan."
Immediately, the portrait was replaced by Alan in the rocket.
"We're on our way dad, but we need to know more information about the situation of the rescue."
"Alright son, we'll have John send you their location, and Brains will tell you the information he's put together about the Sigma 8."
Alan looked over at Brains whom had just adjusted his glasses.
"W-well Alan… I have some good news and bad news. T-the good news is t-that entering the craft should be easy as long as the group is conscious. The bad news is that they've landed in a spot of the moon, that, as far as I can see, would be impossible to land Thunderbird 3 in. It's a w-wonder they managed to stick the landing at all!"
"Well that's it son" Jeff said turning to the video feed. "You have to somehow rescue these men without landing. I'd suggest deploying Scott on the safety harness, and have him send up the astronauts one by one. It's the only real way to get them out."
"FAB dad, leaving earth atmosphere now."
As Alan said this, Thunderbird 3 touched the endlessness of space. Their course, the moon. The rescue made much harder by lunar-geological ramifications.
Back on the lunar surface, Greyman was almost done looking through some of their equipment. The man who had responded to their call had told him to inventory their equipment, as it may prove useful in the rescue.
"Well, I see 5 air canisters… that should buy us about an hour of air each if I equalize them." He said into his microphone. He had patched it through his radio so that thunderbird 5 could listen in on them.
It had been about 3 hours since Thunderbird 3 had launched, and with the extra hour on the clock, they had 8 hours. Alan had set the course, and was talking with Scott about the rescue.
"You think you can keep her steady while I winch them up?" Scott asked, obvious concern in his voice.
"Well…" Alan replied "It will be hard to keep in one location, but I should be able to keep you centered in an area of about 50 square feet. It'll have to do."
"Well let's hope it's enough. As long as none of them pull an O'Shea, we I should be winch them up." Scott said, remembering the difficult time Alan had getting a man to leave the danger zone on a rescue.
Inside the Sigma 8, things were getting tenser by the hour. With five hours left on the clock it was looking like it could be a close call. Greyman continued to monitor the damage, giving feedback to Thunderbird 5. However, he didn't find anything game changing like extra oxygen or tools. Jendal was sitting by twiddling his thumbs, and Javich was trying to rest. He hoped that resting would cut their oxygen usage, and help get through the ordeal. Greyman looked up for the first time in 10 minutes, and one realization hit him.
"Where's Morris?" He asked. Javich, who hadn't been able to get to sleep completely, sat up, before yawning out "I don't know. I've been trying to catch some shut eye remember."
Jendal then looked around as a look of shock crossed his face. "Hey Greyman! We're missing an oxygen canister."
"You don't think-" Greyman began before looking towards the door, and running for it. Jendal followed. They ran through the corridors before finding Morris in the machine shop hitting the canister wildly with a wrench.
"Air! We need air!" He cried, obviously out of his mind. Jendal ran at him, yelling for him to stop. It was too late. A rip appeared in the canister, letting the air inside rush out.
Greyman shook him. "You idiot! The chemicals in that breathing canister make it unusable as a breathing agent when exposed to regular air." He yelled, before trying to calm himself, realizing they had just lost precious time, and couldn't afford to be yelling. Used up too much air. He told Jendal to keep an eye on Morris, who was at this point curled up on the floor.
He went back to the bridge, and explained to Javich what had happened. He looked distressed.
"Well how long do we have now?" He asked. It appeared that Greyman was ahead of him, scribbling some figures on his paper.
"We probably lost about almost an hour and a half on that canister. I didn't get a chance to equalize it yet."
He placed the paper down.
"But from what I'm getting, by the time international rescue gets here… we'll only have half an hour."