A Circle of Champions collaboration story
The Circle of Champions, the winners of my monthly writing contests, bring forth another great Sci Fi story collaboration. This week, Glenn R. Frank continues the story begun by Jim Hamilton and jumps things into high gear.
Part 1 by Jim Hamilton
At 2:27 p.m., on an otherwise unremarkable Friday afternoon, The Pyramid shimmered into being only 17.2 miles northwest of downtown Las Vegas. Fully a mile on a side and rising 4,000 feet above the desert landscape, it was impossible to miss.
By 2:37 p.m., hundreds of videos of it were already trending on every social media platform and two local news stations were transmitting raw footage as their helicopters flew towards it. Already, millions of people around the globe were beginning to endlessly speculate—each wanting to be the first to successfully guess the whys and wherefores of The Pyramid.
Two thousand miles to the east–2,095 miles to be exact–the U.S. president was holding a meeting in the Oval Office when the head of her security detail opened the door and said, “Madame President, I need for you to come with me right now. Protocol seven.”
Surprised at the sudden interruption, she immediately arose while apologizing, “Gentlemen, I’m afraid that you’ll have to excuse me.” She quickly followed the Secret Service agent out of the room and down the hall to the elevator.
As the car made its descent deep underground, the agent handed her a tablet. “You need to see this, ma’am.”
“What am I looking at?” she asked, as she watched the news video.
The chyron was too small to make out.
“It’s a giant pyramid, ma’am. It appeared about fifteen minutes ago outside Las Vegas.”
The elevator bell dinged and the doors parted. The President strode into the Situation Room and stood for a moment, studying the displays before addressing the Officer of the Day. “Status report!”
“Yes, ma’am. As you can see from the various video feeds, a large pyramid has suddenly appeared outside of Las Vegas.”
“Yes, yes. I’ve already got that part.”
Unfazed, he continued. “It covers about a square mile and is of unknown origin. We’ve got an AWAC en route to the site and two F-35s from Groom Lake are already orbiting five miles out. All air traffic in and out of McCarran International has been halted or diverted elsewhere. Local police and Homeland Security are currently working to cordon off the area on the ground.” He pointed at one of the screens. “That feed is from one of our military satellites that was fortunate enough to be watching at the time.”
“Any hostile activity?”
“None yet, ma’am. The relevant personnel have all been contacted and are on their way. The Secretary of Defense should be here at any moment.”
“Very good, Leroy,” she said, as she took her seat at the head of the long oval table. As she waited for the others to arrive, she contemplated the scenes on the ever-changing screens, frustrated with the lack of information at her disposal. She had seen the UFO files and knew that Earth had been visited before. She knew that this could only be another visit, but for what purpose? She crossed her fingers and hoped that they had come in peace.
Part 2 by Glenn R. Frank
“Osiris Flight, be advised, telemetry and comms are on live-feed to the White House Sit-Room.”
Maj. Holder knew this was as much a jab at his frequent use of profanity as it was critical information. He could feel his wingman’s silent laughter, in spite of the radio silence that followed.
“Osiris One. Acknowledged,” Holder responded.
Holder looked down to his left toward the pyramid. His F-35’s helmet visor displayed the view as if he were looking through the side of his aircraft. It accented the huge object with infrared and data overlays.
“The structure has no radar return but is visible as solid material on all other wavelengths. Request permission for close approach.”
“Granted, Osiris One.”
“Osiris Two, maintain five-mile orbit,” Holder instructed his wingman.
“Acknowledged,” came Capt. Anderson’s reply.
Holder rolled his plane left and pointed it at the pyramid. He approached and engaged the hover ability of his aircraft, slowing to a standstill half a mile from the structure.
“Surface still appears solid . . . Zero radar reflection . . . No signs of electronic emissions . . . .”
A point of light blazed on the surface of the pyramid, from which a dark object zipped over Holder’s head and accelerated toward Las Vegas. His heart pounded. He hesitated for just an instant before he spun his plane and punched the throttle in pursuit.
“Shit! Bogie deployment from the structure. Osiris flight in pursuit!”
Anderson’s F-35 zipped past him, chasing the unknown object as Holder boosted up to maximum afterburner speed. The dark, winged object flew over the Las Vegas Strip at an altitude of 1,000 feet, made two abrupt ninety degree turns, and sped straight back toward the pyramid. Anderson and Holder banked hard but couldn’t hold the turn as tight as the alien craft.
“Holy Cra . . . ” Holder caught himself mid-phrase. “Object has doubled back to the pyramid – we’re in pursuit.”
Flight control cut in. “Weapons release is not authorized, NOT authorized, pursue only.”
The object accelerated away from them and re-entered the side of the pyramid at full speed in a flash of light.
“I’m going through,” shouted Anderson.
“Veer off,” Holder ordered.
Anderson’s plane flew right into the side of the pyramid with a flash, just as the UFO had. He vanished from sight and radar.
“Osiris Two entered the Pyramid. I’m following him.”
“Negative, Osiris One . . .”
But Holder had already plunged into the pyramid.
Complete darkness enveloped his view. A shrill sound attacked his ears and a metallic taste filled his mouth, making him sick.
“Osiris Two . . . respond,” he managed to choke out. There was no reply.
The darkness cleared with another flash of light. It was replaced by a dim, blue landscape of hills and an enormous white disk dominating the sky.
Alarms blared – engine flameout.
Holder attempted a restart. No good. The engine was O2 starved and dead.
Wherever I am, there‘s not enough oxygen in this atmosphere!
The ground came up fast. He yanked the ejection trigger and the seat shot him through the canopy. He blacked out.
Glenn sure kicked the action into high gear! Next week, Jim Hamilton will pick up the baton again and add Part 3 in 500 words or less.
Check in next Friday for what is sure to be another thrilling part of “The Pyramid.”
If you enjoyed the story so far, please leave a kind comment for Jim and Glenn below. Anyone want to guess what will happen next?