Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Sputnik Launched

We're going pink for October!

The state of TIAH

October 4th, 2006

in 1957, the Soviet Union launches a tiny satellite they call Sputnik into orbit around the earth. The American government, rather than panicking unnecessarily, simply put a few more resources into its own space program, and let the Soviets take the lead in space exploration. This proved to be a wrong strategy, as the sky soon filled with hundreds of satellites launched from the USSR, creating a communications network for the Communist superpower and its allies. Soon, even western Europe was buying satellite time from the Soviets, and the Americans were forced to play catch-up. In 1977, when the Soviets landed a small team on the moon, America finally took the space race seriously, and newly-elected President Robert Kennedy promised that “before the decade's end, we, too, shall place a man on the moon; and from there, we shall go on to explore the rest of the heavens.” With this spur to the American space program, an American landed a mere 100 miles from the Soviet lunar base in 1981, and beat the USSR to Mars in 1987. The Soviets were the first to reach the Jovian system, establishing a base on Europa in 2001, but the American mission to Titan should prove of more importance when it lands in 2008.

in 1972, holed up in the Montignac Police headquarters, Professor Karl Ainsworth and Officer Xavier Hely try to convince the two other officers on duty that there is great danger coming. The officers are finally convinced when the cultists from the Lascaux Cave burst in and try to take Hely and Ainsworth. After a brief, pitched battle, the cultists are driven off by the superior firepower of the police, but not before Professor Ainsworth and Officer Hely capture one of them. They throw the young woman in a cell, where she growls at them and speaks only in the strange, guttural language of the cave chant. Professor Ainsworth listens intently, trying to place the weird tongue, but it teases him; part of it seems familiar, but it remains just out of his grasp. As the morning dawns, the woman seems to fall out of a trance and asks them in French, “What am I doing here?” Under questioning, she cannot remember any of the events of the previous night. Her name is Sondrine Breton, and she is a cashier at a small shop in Montignac. Mid-morning, nearly dropping from exhaustion, Hely and Ainsworth both agree that the woman knows nothing of the cult. They barricade themselves in Ainsworth's hotel room and get some sleep.

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