Earplug Adventures:The Lines of Tah-Di-Tah (part 8)


I’m yet to grind to a halt, so let’s keep this ball rolling while we can. Onwards – ever onwards!

Two minutes later they were driving the buggies from their bay…

…and straight on to the snow…

“Ooh,” Hair-Trigger sighed appreciatively, “I think I’ve just figured the sighting mechanism on this atomic cannon. It’s really simple: I can’t miss. I wonder if I’ll get a chance to fire it.”

But as they drove away from the Tankerville Norris, Magnuss made a discovery of his own. Two in fact…

“Hairy,” he called above the whine of his vehicle’s magnetic lifting motor, “there’s nowhere in this cockpit for me to have a wee. And it’s started to snow!”

Hair-Trigger pulled alongside…

“Mine too.” Hair-Trigger commiserated, “We’d better get going: maybe the mysterious city – if there is one – will have a public toilet we can use.”

Fortunately for them both, the buggies included anti-weather force-fields…

So, as the snowfall thickened and the temperature dived towards the lower end of the scale, the earplugs remained warm and dry.

“I can barely see where I’m going.” Magnuss complained via the buggy’s com-link. “Stay close: I don’t want to lose you in a white-out.”

Hair-Trigger felt much the same way, so she stuck the nose of her vehicle as close as possible to the rear of Magnuss’…

 

But the further they drove from the landing site…

 …so the conditions worsened dramatically. They climbed from their buggies to sample it first-hand.

“Yuk,” Hair-Trigger spat. “Not only is this snow blinding; but it tastes nasty too!”

 Magnuss had greater concerns. “If we don’t set out now, we might never get back.”

Seconds later, and in ever-worsening snowfall…

…the buggies raced at breakneck speed along a homing beam.

And, following fifteen minutes of high-speed panic…

…the Tankerville Norris and its passengers were whipping away as quickly as the ship could fly.

Whilst the earplugs had been exploring, the ship had been studying the enigma that was the turquoise planet. It had made some disturbing conclusions…

“Time.” Magnuss said as the ship imparted the information to him.

“Yes.” Hair-Trigger replied. “It passes much quicker here than elsewhere.”

Magnuss added: “We are witnessing the final throws of this planet’s evolution.”

“The end truly is nigh.” Hair-Trigger said with gravity utmost.

“Time to scoot, methinks.” Magnuss spoke grimly.

“Oh, Magnuss look at the planet’s surface.” Hair-Trigger wailed…

“Yikes!” Magnuss responded. “Let’s hope we can achieve escape velocity before it all goes bang.”

For several heart-stopping moments it appeared that the opposite was true…

But as the planet began to crack open in its death throws…

…the ship pitched upwards and accelerated away…

…and fled the conflagration.

Still seated in his pilot’s chair, Magnuss felt disconnected from events…

It was almost as if he was in a pastel garden and seated upon Susan’s huge green head.

Hair-Trigger too was suffering a hallucination…

But for her it was the image of endless corridors in mauve!

Then, mercifully, they were back in the room…

…and the Tankerville Norris was back in open space.

© Paul Trevor Nolan 2021

Please return for episode nine; you know it makes sense!

2 thoughts on “Earplug Adventures:The Lines of Tah-Di-Tah (part 8)”

    1. Thank you. You would not believe how many hours I put into these space shots. Then half of them are discarded: there’s way too many for the story! I think they call it a labour of love.

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