BotP Close-up 054

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Bobkat
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BotP Close-up 054

Post: # 541Post Bobkat »

This week we have zoological issues. :D It's the Raid of the Red Scorpion but it's really a horseshoe crab! Anyway, we see a different (and darker) side to Mark. We also get a hint as to what happened to Colonel Cronus after the X3 Plan. All sorts of goodies in this ep to sow the seeds for fanfic! :) Enjoy! :)

The Other Jason's write-up is here: https://www.battleoftheplanets.info/ep54.html

E54: Raid of the Red Scorpion

Act One

7-Zark-7 is on constant guard at Center Neptune for any alerts of alien invaders from outer space. Zark is currently in his Ready Room reading a book, which takes no time at all. He's programmed to read a set of encyclopedias in five seconds. The book he just read was an "exciting mystery" but he guessed the ending immediately. Susan calls and hopes she's not disturbing him but Zark doesn't mind – he actually likes it. Susan reports they have been able to intercept a communication between Zoltar and the Great Spiritual ruler of planet Spectra. Zark has her transfer it to his monitor.

The Great Spirit is tired of all the excuses and is done hearing any from Zoltar. The Luminous One wants all of Earth's energy capabilities destroyed – from the laboratory to the factory at Dacca. The Luminous One is not happy speaking at a higher pitch with every sentence and it tells Zoltar his position as ruler of Spectra is "extremely shaky." Zoltar tries to explain the scorpion mech is on the way to the laboratory now but Dacca will take time. The Luminous One tells Zoltar not to return until both missions are complete.

Zark alerts Security at the laboratory due to the incoming ship from Spectra. The scorpion mech is shaped like a horsehoe crab. Zoltar contacts the mech and its captain, Gartz who is in disguise. Zoltar is pleased with his choice to bomb the laboratory into extinction. Gartz replies, "I will do my worst, as always." Spectra attacks with ground forces unable to even slow Spectra down. The mech shoots an energy beam taking out the ground defenses.

Chief Anderson shows film of the scorpion (horseshoe crab) mech destroying the energy laboratory. He tells the team that the Federation is meeting in an emergency session and wants the team to snoop around in their civilian clothes to see if they can come up with anything. Chief Anderson suspects that Spectra is out to destroy Earth's entire energy complex. Jason and Tiny both comment about the mech and wonder if it's got a weak spot. The chief also has information on the mech's captain: Brigadier Gartz who is Spectra's all-around troubleshooter. Princess and Keyop have both heard of him with Keyop calling him, "a big nothin'." He asks Mark if he agrees and Mark becomes sullen and hostile. Mark walks to a window where a shark swims by. Mark does become hostile saying Gartz can't be taken lightly with Princess telling him that he knows they'll all back him all the way. Chief Anderson sends them on their way and the team does their salute and "G-Force" yell without Mark. The commander silently walks out the door. Chief Anderson then remembers about the Battle of Riga. Mark's father was unbeatable in the air so Spectra had a small group discover where he was quartered and murdered him in his sleep. The leader of the group was Gartz. Meanwhile, Mark visits his father's grave as the sun sets.

The Intergalactic Federation meets once a month, but in times of need, they meet and the next day they do. The team hangs out in the lobby where Princess says she wishes Mark could shake whatever has him down. Jason retorts, "Why should he? That Gartz pig deserves an apple in his mouth." Keyop agrees with Jason saying, "Improve his looks." Tiny backs Princess believing Mark is "too far down."

Outside, Mark is sitting by a fountain when a man from the fountain pleads for help. Mark gets him out of the water noticing his insignia – his planet's flag. Mark figures Spectra is "slipping in" an imposter and knows he needs to find the insignia.

Inside the meeting, a man tells the delegates that their foremost laboratory has been leveled by Spectra. Their best scientists are devoid of technical help. He goes on that there are plans in place, both offense and defense, that Security Chief Anderson will go over. As Chief Anderson is about to brief the delegates, Mark in his G-Force uniform, interrupts. A delegate asks who he is with another answering that he's "G-Force, Galaxy Security." Mark explains that a plan is being run right under their noses. Chief Anderson isn't happy telling Mark his mission was to look and listen, not interfere.

As he enters the room, Mark says that a delegate is in the hospital and someone here is responsible. Chief Anderson is shocked asking Mark if he's certain. Mark is and begins looking for the insignia. He finds it and throws his sonic boomerang to the man. The man tosses his cigar at Mark's feet and jumps onto the chandelier. He tells them his name is Gartz and that Mark is out of his league. Mark retorts they know about Gartz's cruelty. The cigar is actually an explosive about to go off. Mark leaps out of the way in time but Gartz jumps out a window. Mark gives chase as Gartz runs past the team before they see Mark after him. It's too late for the team to do anything before a car chase ensues. Mark red-lines his car to keep up, eventually cutting off Gartz. Mark is able to apprehend the man and take him back to Center Neptune.

Mark interrogates Gartz with a colored strobe light. He taunts Gartz about not being man enough to go one-on-one with anyone, or better yet, killing someone in their sleep! The team interrupts with Princess asking if he's coming down a bit hard and Keyop saying, "Macho." Tiny tells his teammates to back off with Mark going off about Gartz being uncooperative. All Mark wants to know is where the launching pad for the scorpion is. Jason tells him they don't need a lot of words and throws a feather at some roses in a vase with one falling on Gartz who jumps. Jason says the method doesn't have to be violent or leave a mark. Jason points out if he flinches at a rose petal, he's ready to talk. All that's needed is some gentle persuasion. Mark says he'll tickle it out of him and Jason adds, "I'll lend you my feather." Mark asks one last time.

The team gathers in Chief Anderson's office. The chief asks angrily if "third degree" was justified for the information they received. Mark says yes without hesitation because they know the scorpion's (horseshoe crab) base is under the Arctic ice and Gartz is going to lead them there. Chief Anderson tells Mark the information is important but they cannot stoop to Spectra's level to get it. Mark realizes he was a little rough but feels he had a right to be – Gartz's team killed his father. Mark is about to walk out but asks Chief Anderson if he ever wanted to take the gloves off. Mark runs out after answering himself. "I guess not, it's against the rules!" The team follows a few seconds later leaving the chief in stunned silence.

The team launches out of Center Neptune heading for the Arctic. Zark knows they've departed on missions before with lighter hearts than this one but he's sure they have the resiliency to bounce back.

Act Two

Zark is at his monitors trying to get a fix on G-Force who is being led by Gartz far into the Arctic. He cleans a monitor and discovers it has frozen over because the team is so far north. Zark has a solution: "bring them in on the hotline."

The team land in a barren region and they walk from one ice floe to another. Keyop becomes unsteady but Tiny helps him out. As the sun sets, the aurora borealis dance above them with Princess, Keyop and Tiny admiring the natural phenomenon. However, Mark is unimpressed. "Come on, you see one northern light, you've seen them all." Keyop calls Mark a "party pooper" with Princess backing Keyop. They keep going among icebergs and a frozen wasteland. They approach one that looks like a small iceberg but is actually the way in. Gartz uncovers and presses a button opening a doorway.

Inside the base, Zoltar briefs his men they're about to embark on part two of their mission – to take out the energy facility at Dacca. The monitor turns on showing Gartz leading G-Force in. Zoltar tells his men that the team must be permanently taken out before they can proceed. He tells them they can start on that task right away and the goons deploy.

Elsewhere in the base, Gartz continues leading the team and Jason stops asking how can they be certain Gartz isn't leading them into a trap. Gartz is shocked, "After I gave my word?" Mark retorts, "Yeah, we know all about your word." They stand by a doorway and jump in quickly when it opens. Jason has a hold of Gartz. The room seems fine as they take the time to look around. They run to the middle of the room with Jason still holding Gartz. Suddenly the room is closed off trapping the team! They close in on each other while Zoltar emerges from a doorway one level up thanking Gartz. Gartz turns to the team saying the last laugh is indeed the best. Mark says, "We'll find out when we get to it." Zoltar is pleased they have the team and order the trapdoor released. The team falls several floors down into a room made of ice. Zoltar and Gartz stand above them with Zotar telling them that while G-Force is "cooling your heels" they will be destroying the facility at Dacca thus crippling Earth's energy complex. Zoltar and Gartz close the door leaving G-Force to die and they turn on bright lights that will eventually melt the ice an drown the team.

Zoltar orders his goons on board the scorpion (horseshoe crab) mech. They launch for their target and Zark admires the design of this particular mech: "part submarine, part jet plane, part tail wagger – brilliant!" Meanwhile, Keyop and Tiny look for any weaknesses in their ice dungeon. Princess nearly screams when a breaks happens with freezing water rushing in. Mark thought Zoltar was being "corny" but he was telling the truth. The team is in ankle deep water with Mark open to suggestions. Jason says the best thing was not to follow Gartz in the first place but since they're stuck, they need to plug the hole. Mark says they don’t' give up and they'll think of something. Princess tries her yo-yo but only makes the hole bigger. Princess says that didn't help. Jason snarks, "Right you are."

The scorpion (horseshoe crab) surfaces with Gartz giving G-Force only five minutes. Zoltar tells Gartz he's the kind of man he wants around as the scorpion (horseshoe crab) hones in on its target. Meantime in the ice dungeon, Tiny tries to break out but it only lets in more water. Princess says they can't quit and Mark asks his team to believe in him again even though he made some big mistakes. Mark has an idea if they're willing, which they are. They form the Whirlwind Pyramid and "blast" their way out. They succeed with everyone crashes except Mark and Jason. Mark tells Tiny he'll have to work on his landing when they get home. Keyop says, "Practice perfect." Mark tells him enough with the corny jokes and they head to the Phoenix. On the way out, Jason leaves a bomb inside the base.

The scorpion (horseshoe crab) is having a field day at the energy facility destroying everything in sight. Zoltar is pleased with the progress and can't wait to tell the Great Spirit about their success. Zoltar is knocked to the floor as the mech is hit. It's the Phoenix shooting bird missiles! The ones that hit the top do nothing except rattle stuff. Zoltar goes to the bridge calling Gartz "incompetent." When the mech raises its shield, Mark realizes it's weak underneath and tells Tiny to dive. They have to avoid the beam and square missiles fired at them. However, some bird missiles find their target disabling the scorpion (horseshoe crab) from underneath. Zoltar orders the ship abandoned and to the escape hatch. Mark tells them to keep firing destroying the mech. Tiny can't fly completely out of the debris field as it hits the view screen and shears off the pod holding Keyop's buggy. The Phoenix ditches in the water as Zoltar laughs at the fact that G-Force is unable to pursue him. The team stands on the Phoenix watching Zoltar fly away.

Zark says he was finally able to obtain contact with G-Force and a rescue team dispatched before one could say, "Electrosyncho Server." Zark knows the team is frustrated at not capturing Zoltar but they succeeded in stopping Gartz and his "evil plan." There will be another day to stop Zoltar for good. Zark stands at his monitors saying the team is only as strong as their craft and he must work to devise a stronger Phoenix at once. 1-Rover-1 has his feet over his face until Zark tells him not to worry, G-Force will be back anytime and Rover can go meet them. Rover then helicopters over to Zark and yips. Zark says Rover is so proud of G-Force and Zark is honored to serve them. The robots give the G-Force salute.

This plot summary Copyright Bobbi Baker ©2021. No reproduction of any kind without permission.
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