Sunday, September 13, 2009

"The Golden Girl of Munan" by Harl Vincent, part 13

This is the thirteenth and final installment of "The Golden Girl of Munan", the first published story by pioneering science fiction writer Harl Vincent; the first twelve installments can be found here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. The story first appeared in the June 1928 issue of Amazing Stories magazine, and was reprinted in 2001 in the anthology Rainbow Fantasia, edited by Forrest J. Ackerman and Anne Hardin.

As we join our story, 25th century artist Roy Hamilton and his friend (and the world's greatest living scientist), Professor Nilsson, have traveled in Nilsson's aero the Pioneer to the uncharted Pacific island of Munan. The Munanese, descendants of a group of outcasts exiled from civilized society in 1950, intend to launch a fleet of invisible aircraft armed with disintegration bombs to conquer the world. Hamilton and Nilsson, together with a small group of Munanese dissidents led by the beautiful Thelda Serano, obtain a sample of the Munanese superweapon and flee from their hideout in the Pioneer one step ahead of the Munanese authorities. Nilsson uses the Munanese weapon against the island, destroying it and wiping out the entire population . . .


The professor proceeded to the control room, where he found Roy anxiously awaiting him.

“Well, it is all over, my boy, and our dear old world is saved,” said the professor in a tired voice. “Let me have the controls and we will start for home at once. If all goes well, we will be there in time to get to our own familiar beds by midnight, Washington time. Do you realize that it is now only eight a.m. Munan time? That attack on our retreat was intended as a surprise at dawn. Fortunately none of our number had been able to sleep on account of the excitement and all could thus prepare quickly.”

“Yes, I noticed the time before we left,” replied Roy, who was still shaken up because of the destruction of Munan which he had witnessed in the periscope. “But, Professor, I do think that you should get some rest at once. You know you not only worked harder, but had considerably less sleep than poor old Landon or myself these past few days. You must be worn out.”

“I am pretty well exhausted, Roy,” he responded, “but another twelve hours will do no harm. Besides, I feel a personal responsibility for those dear people we are taking back with us. You may relieve me at the controls if you wish, but I want to be here all the time. I would not sleep now if I could.”

He took the controls from Roy and headed for home, bringing the speed of the Pioneer to nearly six hundred miles an hour. Softly Roy closed the door as he left.

Seeking out Thelda, he found her alone in the tiny galley, examining the cooking utensils with deep interest.

“I knew that you would come to me, Roy,” she whispered as he closed this door also and sprang to her side. “Oh, my dear, why have you been so blind, and why have I been so uncertain? Your mind spoke to mine long before you had even reached Munan, long before I had even seen you. I knew then that you were destined to love me. I think that I have loved you myself ever since I first heard your voice, which was over the videophone.”

“Thelda, dearest. My wonderful – golden girl,” was all that Roy could say, as he folded her yielding body to him and their lips met in the first kiss. No further words were necessary – their minds were now in close communion and to each was revealed the perfect sincerity and deep affection of the other.

The Pioneer sped swiftly toward what was now to be the home of both. There, high above the Pacific, as Roy and Thelda continued their embrace, the sturdy aero carried another happy pair.

Forward, in the control room, the professor had just turned his beaming face to gaze into Zora’s adoring eyes. They smiled in complete understanding, and two more pairs of lips met in a kiss of real love.


(continue to Taking a Shine to "The Golden Girl of Munan")

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