THE EDGE OF BEYOND
First Published on 20th March 1958 - 192 pages
Three months have passed since the last adventure when our heroes are unexpectedly visited at Glensalich Castle by Vargo, Borron and Gator. The Tavona is needed for work on Mars and the Professor, Tiger, Toby and Rex arrange to return to space in a further seven days' time. Borron tells them that the big ships they had previously had problems with, have left Ando and never returned. The work on Mars has been progressing at a rapid rate, they even had their first cloud in the atmosphere. Rex meets with the mischievous Rolto and he suggests they go and visit Ardilla. The Council on Mino give the Professor permission to use the Tavona for as long as he wishes in recognition of his help in re-colonising Mars. The Professor wants to survey the more distant planets. When Rex suggests Ardilla, he is told that it is one of the most dangerous areas in the Universe. The party agrees to return to Arcadia, where they had previously rescued the crew of the Andoan ship. They find the planet scorched and smoky. Rex goes to view the wrecked Andoan ship but in the strange foggy atmosphere, Rex experiences weird phenomena. He sees reflections of himself and the others and is soon lost. Returning to Mino, Rex meets his girlfriend, Morino. Here our heroes prepare for their trip 'to the edge of beyond'. Vargo and the crew cover their skin with a varnish in order to protect themselves from rays in space. Visiting an unknown planet, the Professor decides to use some suits of protective armour he has designed. As there are only two suits, Rex goes out with the Professor. Walking down a chasm both the Professor and Rex find themselves trapped against the walls of the cliff. They are magnetic! Here they are approached by two strange creatures who pull them free and allow them to remove the armour and escape. These creatures have strange thick skins and Rex dubs them 'the elephant men'. The weather changes and the planet is suddenly subject to fierce winds and soon Rex and the Professor realise why the inhabitants need such thick skins. The Tavona leaves with a view to proceeding on to Ardilla and on the journey a tiny meteorite hits it. Rex finds the meteorite in the Tavona and it is found to be metal debris from another spaceship. Our heroes decide to land to let any other debris clear. The unknown planet they choose to land on is populated with strange creatures that can change their height in an almost telescopic way. Continuing the journey, Rex is affected by strange thoughts and it is soon realised that it is the effects of the rays from the planet Ardilla. Vargo and Gator are able to change course before they start feeling the same effects due to their protective varnish. The trip to Ardilla is terminated. They decide to go instead to Terromagna in the Third Region, which is remarkable for its age, size and knowledge. Vargo has a friend there called Multavo who is a Minoan. At Terromagna, our heroes see many wonders, including huge television like pictures of space. On this, the detail is such, that they are able to view Rolto leaving Mino by spaceship as well as the people on the nearby worlds of Colina and Lodna. They also visit a School of Correction that can remove feelings of avarice, conceit, jealousy, envy, untruthfulness and malice. People are not forced to undergo treatment, but volunteer if they experience such symptoms. Ardilla is discussed and Multavo warns them to beware of a red ship from that planet. On the return journey to Mino, our heroes again experience the effects of the rays and this time they see the red ship. Tiger shoots at the attacking ship from the air lock and shatters one of its windows, causing it to fall away from them. From Mino, our heroes return to Mars and then back to Earth. Their space friends agree to return every third month to see if our heroes wish to resume their space adventures.
The Edge of Beyond
Subtitle - A story of Interplanetary Exploration
Publication Details - published by Hodder and Stoughton
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