The Day the Sky Exploded
(La morte viene dallo spazio)
For the first time in the world, the United States and the USSR are going to launch a man to the moon on board rocket XZ. Choosen at the last minutes among russian and english scientists, it is finally an american one, John McLaren, who will become the first man into space.
After a long countdown, the rocket takes off. This one has to undertake two revolutions around the Earth before leading cape toward the Moon for an orbital recognition mission. But after the success of the first phase, the panic takes place in Cap Shark space center when the contact is lost with John McLaren. Fortunatley, the astronaut ejects and returns on Earth to explain that the rocket suddenly left its path. The XZ rocket that becomes impossible to detect had turned into real atomic bomb launched into space.
Later, strange sounds coming from space are heard. On Earth, animals of all races are frightened and birds migrate in mass. Visual phenomenaes are appearing to the four corners of the globe and the terrestrial magnetism is disturbed. An imminent peril threatens the Earth. The explosion of the atomic engine of the XZ rocket deviated a group of asteroids in the Delta zone to planet Earth; these will strike the planet in five days.
The UNO is summoned in extraordinary session. The largest asteroid is composed of a ten kilometers diameter metallic nucleus that explains the magnetic perturbations met. A last communique learns that the Moon is going to cross the path of the meteorites. With the grace of the sky, the satellite of the Earth could perhaps deviate the rain of meteors that threatens. But catastrophes are nevertheless foreseeable; tide waves are awaited. Coastal regions are evacuated and state of extreme emergency is declared.
While is witnessed the exodus of populations, asteroids are now just few hours far from the Earth if the Moon does not deviate them. The moment of truth arrives but scientists can only deplore the result. The miracle has not taken place. In six hours it will be the end of the world...
Spoiler ! the end of the story is revealed below…
Thanks to Randowsky, John McLaren proposes a last minute action plan. Why not concentrating all countries nuclear forces to attempt to intercept and to destroy asteroids ? Why not using features manufactured for humanity's destruction to save it instead ? All put to work. Katy Dandridge and Peter Leduq, responsibles for the "calculator", launch calculations interception path for missiles of the whole world so as to coordinate their action against the threat coming from space.
But the space phenomenon provokes a heating of the atmosphere and dramatic fires are observed everywhere in the world that scorches threatening the "calculator" to disturb. After fires, hurricanes unleash and scientists are going to be in prey to a new problem : Randowsky becomes mad. He closes in the calculating chamber and stops the machine.
In a last attempt, the scientists stop the insane man and Stone and Katy provide in extremis the last interception coordinates to the world's nuclear missiles pointed toward the asteroid. All the countries make fire and the result is a total success. While last asteroids' fragments are dispersed in space and humanity is saved from a cataclysm that it has itself released.