Several months ago, in the near future, strange signals
were being emitted from the Moon by an unusual transmitter.
But what did they mean and who was behind such an act?
The International Commission for Universal Problem Solving
(or ICUPS for those of you who prefer acronyms) were
interested, so much so that they enlisted the help of
the Rt Hon Charlemagne Fotheringham ('but you can call
me Grunes Charlie'). Charlie unwittingly took on the
daring deed and took off immediately on an epic journey
to explore the Nodes of Yesod and locate the
source of the signals. After a great deal of torment
from the maze-like cave structure of the Moon and the
hostility of its inhabitants, he did so. And although
what Charlie found wasn't quite expected, it didn't
come as any great surprise . . . A large black slab
of unknown origin and composition, the Monolith, was
transmitting vital data pertaining to the vulnerability
of Earth's defences, to someone, somewhere deep in outer
space. But who, and more importantly where . . . ? Charlie
promptly returned to his home planet and a hero's welcome,
and the incident was soon forgotten by all . . . all
but ICUPS, whose duty it is to worry about such things.
worry they did, since it transpired that the 'lith (that's
trendy spaceman's terminology for Monolith) was an extremely
sophisticated tactical warfare computer and was planted
on the Moon by a race of galactic megalomaniacs from
the planet Ariat (Ariatans if you hadn't guessed), to
which the 'lith was transported when Charlie attempted
to destroy it. Should the Atarians, sorry Ariatans,
get their sweaty little appendages on the necessary
information, it means only one thing . . . The end of
the Earth as we know it! Only one man can prevent such
a travesty, a man who is familiar with the ways of the
'lith and those who guard it -- The Rt Hon Charlemagne
after much persuasion and deliberation, Charlie found
himself on a spacecraft to Ariat. And when he landed
on the outskirts of the capital city, he found his surroundings
uncomfortably familiar -- the planet Ariat looked remarkably
like . . . the Moon! Although there wasn't a mole to
be seen, rockets were occasionally launched from the
craters -- but why? He wasn't sure. Despite certain
scenic differences, Charlie felt a certain deja vu .
. . This feeling was strengthened when he began to explore
the darker depths of the planet, for beneath the placid
exterior there were all manner of alien life forms,
behaving like those previously discovered in the Moon.
Although they didn't look the same, Charlie knew they
would present as much of a problem as before, especially
since one strange beast disorientated him on contact.
He was in deep trouble (literally) and it seemed that
finding the 'lith was going to be even more of a taxing
task than he initially though. And of course, once found
it must be destroyed . . . But how?
his search our aspiring hero discovered several crystals.
Their composition was as familiar as their surroundings
. . . Could this be the breakthrough he was looking
for? Charlie pondered upon the idea and decided it would
be wise to collect them -- it worked before, so why
the aid of a small spherical device of similar qualities
to the moles found on the Moon's surface, and by effectively
using the transporters placed throughout the multitudinous
subterranean passages, Charlie managed to collect eight
crystals of the same structure. Now all he had to do
was locate the 'lith -- its destruction was imminent
. . . But then so was the Earth's if, by some quirk
of fate, he should fail . . .