Rapid Response Team Memorandum
Top Secret/Do Not Photocopy
To: Strategic Defense Initiative Organization (SDIO)
From: U.S. Space Defense Operations Center, Colorado
Situation Report: Unmanned Soviet Kvant-3 space laboratory destroyed by defective U.S. Orbital Weapons Platform. Communications inoperative. Soviet retaliation imminent unless immediate action taken.
Target: U.S. Low-power Atmospheric Compensation Experiment (LACE)—the most powerful weapon in orbit. Equipped with SECRET hydrogen-fluoride, five megawatt chemical laser, LODE 4-meter firing mirror, and Teal Ruby AFP-888 aiming mechanism.
Current Status: 38 degree circular orbit at 130 nautical miles FULLY ARMED AND OUT OF CONTROL.
Operation: U.S. astronauts Colonel William Parker and Lt. Commander Jacob Enright to fly Space Shuttle Endeavor in mission to deactivate LACE.
Risk Factor: HIGH
Special Orders: In event of mission failure, U.S. shuttle crew to be terminated with EXTREME PREJUDICE.
Brief: Presidential briefing NOT RECOMMENDED.
Douglas Savage is a critically acclaimed author of many books, including A Mouthful of Dust: A Portrait of a Writer in Search of His Own Red Badge of Courage, The Sons of Grady Rourke, Cedar City Rendezvous, Highpockets, Incident in Mona Passage, and The Court Martial of Robert E. Lee, a main selection of the History Book Club and an alternate selection of the Book of the Month Club.