Publisher's summary Edit
The human race is about to become extinct.
There is nothing to fear...
After receiving a phone call in the early morning, containing only the word “Scorpius”, Paul Hunt leaves his girlfriend Samantha Thorn, not expecting to see her again. Something has been found off the coast off the Isle of Wight, something that can aid the escalating conflict in Orion…
After winning a victory over the Androids in Orion after years of defeats, Admiral Karen Brett is recalled to Earth to be promoted to Earth’s Commander-in-Chief. President Duncan Levinson is unhappy with the decision (she tortured an android sympathiser to obtain the information), but she is popular and the promotion will boost morale. On route back to Earth, Brett receives a private message diverting them to an uninhabited planet, with her friend Captain Liam Barnaby providing discrete security. She is met by a holographic projection of Hunt, who strongly implies that President Levinson is unable or unwilling to do what is necessary to achieve victory, but perhaps she does and should Project Scorpius become more favourably viewed by a new administration, the war might be over much quicker. He disappears, leaving schematics of what appears to be a man in cybernetic battle armour.
Upon returning to Earth, Brett is given a victory parade to the White House. Moments after Levinson informs her of his decision to appoint her Commander-in-Chief, a shuttle crashes into the grounds of the White House and armed figures in spacesuits storm the building. Overwhelming security, they break into the Oval Office and kill Levinson before informing Brett that she will now become the President of Earth. It then escapes by transmat. Following the assassination, the Senate invokes emergency powers and appoints Brett as Levinson’s replacement. She promotes Barnaby as her new Commander-in-Chief. However, the war is not going well, and Bretts Presidential popularity is also failing was the war worsens. Brett begins to consider what the mysterious Project Scorpius could offer, especially since the Androids are now targeting human civilians as well as soldiers. As they consider Scorpius, one of Levinson’s assassin’s transmats into the White House and heads for Brett’s living quarters. It reveals itself to Brett as one of the cybernetic warriors she saw in Hunts schematics. It gives Brett a holographic projector then transmits away.
The war continues. Brett refuses to consider negotiating with the Androids and protests about the death toll of the war are increasing. One day, Barnaby delivers tragic news: the Androids launched an unprovoked assault on the undefended Vaslovian system, killing millions of civilians, including Brett’s parents. Brett is now single-minded in her desire to destroy the Androids forever... including turning to Project Scorpius. Unfortunately, all files relating to Scorpius have been deleted on Levinson’s orders. Brett uses the holographic projector to contact Hunt, who tells her to imagine what an army of cybernetic enhanced super-soldiers could do for the war effort. There is a transmat command in the projector; all she has to do is activate it to see what Scorpius has to offer. After another Android attack on the civilian colony on Dracian VIII, Brett asks again about Scorpius. Barnaby has found very little, other than one communication to Levinson from Hunt. Although he had been all for the project, despite Levinson’s opposition since its inception, one day Hunt called to tell Levinson that Scorpius needed to be shut down and all mention of it deleted. Looking for answers, Brett activates the transmat and disappears.
- Karen Brett - Sarah Mowat
- Liam Barnaby / Nash - Mark McDonnell
- Samantha Thorn / Computer - Hannah Smith
- Duncan Levinson / Pilot / Public Address / Security / Captain - Toby Longworth
- Paul Hunt / Comms / Security - Barnaby Edwards
- Heliton / Hendry / Glaust / Karen's Father / Protester - Ian Brooker
- SSC Control / Comp / Helm / Operations Officer - Samantha Sanns
- The Cybermen / The Cyber-Planner / Control / Guard / Reporter - Nicholas Briggs
- Although more than 50,000 Earth troops were killed on Orius Beta VIII, it is considered a tactical victory as Admiral Karen Brett destroyed the Android 8th Fleet near Orius Beta V. She detonated a nuclear weapon on Orius Beta VIII, wiping out the Android Horde's remaining forces. She is promoted to the commander-in-chief of the Earth Empire's forces. Although the public see Brett as a hero, President Duncan Levinson regards her as dangerous.
- The Orion War has been going on for more than 20 years.
- The Isle of Wight is a penal colony.
- David Tennant makes an uncredited cameo appearance as a pilot in the Orion War. He recorded it on Nick Briggs' answering machine.
- The White House is the official residence of the President of Earth. It would remain so until as late as 4041. (COMIC: Return of the Klytode)
- According to Paul Hunt, the secret government organisation Scorpius was formed in the aftermath of the Sword of Orion incident in the Garazone system in 2503. (AUDIO: Sword of Orion)
- Hunt left a message for President Levinson telling him that he was right and that he must cancel Scorpius. (AUDIO: Conversion)