Ten years after leaving Earth, Captain Church and his lonely, weary crew found themselves in the middle of the Alpha-Centauri complex. They had slowed down to one-hundredth light-speed and had passed a number of stars, some many times larger than the Sun. They had seen planets, large and small, some were apparently inhabitable; but most, according to their instruments, were definitely not.

One small planet they had passed quickly by was about Earth size, and even bluey-green in colour, but they hadn’t seen any land masses on their side. The panic of avoiding its moon, which suddenly appeared out of nowhere, had caused them to reject it and explore further. They did, however, report its existence and coordinates in their Ship’s Log, beamed back to Earth, if there was anyone left to receive it.

Aurora suddenly stiffened in her seat. “There’s an incoming signal! Straight ahead!”

“Is it possible?” said a shocked Captain Church. “We had better investigate.”

The screen in front of them showed a small white dot. The superimposed false-colour radio signal emanating from it was definitely pulsing regularly. They sent their own signal back: “dot, dot, dot; dash, dash, dash; dot, dot, dot.”  The planet’s radio signal immediately repeated it, as if understanding and encouraging them.

Doctor McFly was analysing the planet’s size, motion, environment and other characteristics.

“This place looks perfect!” she gasped. “But there is obviously some intelligent life-form here already. Will they accept us?”

“Only one way to find out!” said Captain Church. “Shall we go down, Welchy?”

“Righto, bach!” the Engineer replied. “There we are then!”

They were met by the Aliens, far more superior beings, and were instantly wiped out.

The Aliens ridiculed the pathetic amount of information known to Humans – it could all be contained in just a few cells; they needed whole civilisations.


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