World Without End
(World Without End)
Back from a Martian orbital exploration the RXM rocket undergoes an unscheduled disproportionate acceleration. At a speed of 100 miles per second, the rocket ends its race into a snow-covered mountain of a planet whose atmosphere is curiously identical to Earth's. The four crew men, the commander John Borden, Herbert Ellis, the Doctor Eldon Galbraithe and Henry Jaffe, have no other choice than to go into the exploration of this planet where they failed.
After having repelled giant spiders, our heroes must soon confront mutants directly coming from the stone age. They realise that the acceleration of the rocket provoked a time warp and that they have returned on Earth around the year 2200. The atomic threat had destroyed humanity and provoked insect and human mutations.
While they find refuge in a cave, they discover a passage made in an unknown material that drives them towards people living in an underground world. These peaceful and non-violent people avoid going out incase they meet the "beasts", blood thirsty prehistoric mutants.
Timmeck, their chief, confesses to the astronauts that they are in the year 2508. Mories, responsible for the security immediately confiscates their weapons.
After the stupefaction, comes the lack of understanding. Galbraithe attempts to make Timmeck and his people understand that with the disappearance of the radiation, it is time for them to live again on the surface of the planet, furthermore that their race is dying, generation being slightly renewed. But the former don't want to listen to them. They still fear the "beasts". If fear is custom to these feverish humans, it is not the case for our time explorers. The former have decided to go back in exploration so as to discover what has become to the Earth. However, on Mories's advice, Timmeck refuses to give them back their weapons fearing a mutiny of our holocaust's survivors, condamning them to live there forever.
In any case, if all this does not suit our explorers, all agree to say that the magnificent female beauty of these people is equal to the cowardice of their men. Mories, jealous of the relationship between the Doctor Galbraithe and Elda, steals the arms of the visitors, kills James, Timmeck's second, and manages to make them carry the can...
Spoiler ! the end of the story is revealed below…
But the truth surfaces when Mories attacks Deena, a young woman who witnessed the murder. Unmasked, the former escapes to the surface before he is killed by the "beasts". Confusing excuses for this injustice, the underground people finally agrees to help them. Together they construct the weapons that are going to help them to reconquer the surface of the planet. Galbraithe knows that if he defies the chief of the "beasts" and if he conquers him, they will be able to gain the cause. He provokes the chief of the mutant to a naked hand duel that leads to the favour of the astronaut.
Now that the surface of the planet is regained, the underground people can return to live there and reorganize themselves for rebirth to humanity.
(Correction by Keith)