Master of the Sky
TAPE 70/24 Page 377


monitor, but we can make out a fair amount of detail.

[04:13:22:28] LMP: Okay. Will you verify the position - the opening I ought to have on the camera?

[04:13:22:34] CCM: Stand by.

[04:13:22:42] CAM: [CDR moves down the lander's ladder, descending toward the lunar surface.]

[04:13:22:48] CCM: Okay. Neil, we can see you coming down the ladder now.

[04:13:22:52] CAM: [CDR pauses, then climbs back up to the ladder's first rung.]

[04:13:22:59] CDR: Okay. I just checked getting back up to that first step, Buzz. It's — not even collapsed too far, but it's adequate to get back up.

[04:13:23:10] CCM: Roger. We copy.

[04:13:23:11] CDR: It takes a pretty good little jump.

[04:13:23:25] CCM: Buzz, this is Houston. F two — one one-sixtieth second for shadow photography on the sequence camera.

[04:13:23:35] LMP: Okay.

[04:13:23:36] CAM: [CDR once again descends the lunar lander's ladder, arriving at the final rung.]

[04:13:23:38] CDR: I'm at the foot of the ladder. The LM footpads are only depressed in the surface about one or two inches, although the surface appears to be very, very fine grained, as you get close to it. It's almost like a powder. Down there, it's very fine.

[04:13:23:40] CAM: [CDR pushes back from the lander's ladder, easing down toward the lunar surface.]

[04:13:23:43] CDR: I'm going to step off the LM now.

[04:13:23:45] CAM: [CDR makes contact with the lunar surface.]

[04:13:24:48] CDR: That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.

[04:13:24:56] LMP: Wait. What?

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[04:13:25:05] CAM: [CDR commences to slowly walk along the lunar surface.]

[04:13:25:12] CDR: And the — the surface is fine and powdery. I can — I can pick it up loosely with my toe. It does adhere in fine layers like powdered charcoal to the sole and sides of my boots. I only go in a small fraction of an inch, maybe an eighth of an inch, but I can see the footprints of my boots and —

[04:13:25:21] CAM: [LMP emerges from the lander module and descends toward the lunar surface.]

[04:13:25:23] LMP: Neil, can you repeat your previous transmission to me?

[04:13:25:28] CDR: — and the treads in the fine, sandy particles. There seems to be no difficulty in moving around as we suspected. It's — sorry, Buzz, come back?

[04:13:25:32] CAM: [LMP makes contact with the lunar surface.]

[04:13:25:38] LMP: Repeat your previous transmission to me.

[04:13:25:43] CDR: About the surface texture? I said —

[04:13:25:49] LMP: Negative. Repeat what you said when you touched down on the surface of the moon.

[04:13:25:53] CAM: [CDR stops moving along the lunar surface, and turns to face LMP.]

[04:13:25:55] CDR: I said, 'One small step for a man, one —'

[04:13:25:58] CAM: [LMP approaches CDR.]

[04:13:26:02] LMP: No, you didn't. You said, 'One small step for man'. You left out the 'A'.

[04:13:26:08] CDR: Buzz, we just landed on the moon. I don't think it matters whether I — and no, for your information, I — I did not leave out the 'A'.

[04:13:26:15] CAM: [A large figure can be seen approaching from the horizon, approx. fifteen meters from CDR's position.]

[04:13:26:17] LMP: Yes, you did. I heard you. You left out the 'A'.

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[04:13:26:22] CDR: I did not leave out the —

[04:13:26:28] CCM: Neil, this is Houston. We didn't hear an 'A' down here.

[04:13:26:33] CDR: Houston, stay out of this.

[04:13:26:34] CAM: [The figure is now approx. ten meters away. It appears humanoid.]

[04:13:26:37] LMP: Look, we'll just do it over.

[04:13:26:40] CCM: Guys, this is Houston —

[04:13:26:42] CDR: Do it — are you — we can't do it over. It's done. We landed. My footprint is already there.

[04:13:26:46] CAM: [The figure is now five meters away. It can be identified as a bronze full-body deep-sea diving suit. Its design is notably bulky and antiquated.]

[04:13:26:48] CCM: This is Houston, come back, there's, uh, some sort of —

[04:13:26:54] LMP: We'll dust it out.

[04:13:27:01] CDR: What — no. No. For Christ's sake, no. This is history in the making. We have accomplished what no other human being has ever done — we have set foot on the lunar surface. We are not doing this over. There are no do-overs on the moon.

[04:13:27:17] CAM: [The figure is now directly behind CDR and LMP. It proceeds to forcibly shove both astronauts aside, and climbs up the lander's ladder.]

[04:13:27:20] LMP: What the —

[04:13:27:25] CCM: This is Houston, come back, Neil, come back. Are you alright? Come back.

[04:13:27:30] CAM: [The lander door closes. As LMP and CDR recover, the lander initiates its lunar lift-off sequence.]

[04:13:27:32] CCM: What the fuck just happened?


KRANZ: Hello? Hello?
█████████████ ██████ ███ █████
KRANZ: We have an emergency. Two of our —
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KRANZ: Fine. I don't care about your 'plan of action', though. What matters right now is that we've got two of our boys on the surface of the moon — and some goddamn lunatic just hijacked their ride.
█████████████ ███ ██ ████ ████ ████ ████ ██ ███████
KRANZ: I… what? Did he — no, he didn't look like ████ ████ ██ ██████. Why would you ask if he looked like a — are you saying ███████ are real? And there's — there's one on the fucking moon?
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KRANZ: And you didn't think that was something you should have briefed us on before we went there?
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KRANZ: Fine. Whatever. I don't care. How do we get our boys —
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KRANZ: Okay. Good. Okay. Thank you. Thank you.
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KRANZ: Yeah, we can — but, we won't be able to recover it. And I don't think there's enough fuel left to — the orbit will eventually decay. I think — uh, one sec. Let me check.
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KRANZ: Jesus Christ. Okay. Okay, fine. I don't know how you're going to, uh — but — I guess that's above my pay-grade. And, yeah, I just checked my notes. We can do it, but the orbit won't be stable. You'll get maybe forty to fifty years before it drops out.
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KRANZ: Yeah. I'll brief them personally once you've brought them back. Right. Okay.
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KRANZ: Thanks. I guess.

Forty to fifty years later.