Lunar Landing: The Hidden Files

The Moon Landing is an event so shrouded in mystery, not even the United States Government truly knows what occurred that night. These files, written by pilot Michael Collins, are the closest we have to first hand information.

The Moon Landing is an event so shrouded in mystery, not even the United States Government truly knows what occurred that night. These files, written by pilot Michael Collins, are the closest we have to first hand information.

Seth Anderson, Staff Writer

July 20th, 1969


They had been told that it was impossible, a fever dream, a fruitless endeavor. But now, after billions of dollars, countless hours, and a ton of luck, the United States had finally reached the moon. The space race was theirs. Neil Armstrong, the youngest of the three men chosen for the mission, was biting his lip. “Moments like this are what you see in the movies Buzz.” He explained while gazing at the barren rocky landscape.

Buzz Aldrin, the eldest of the crew, chuckled softly. “All this training and you’re still showing the green behind your ears.”

“Aw c’mon Buzz, you can’t deny the sheer impact this is having on you as well right? We’re going to be the first men on the moon! We’ll have made America proud, and shown those dirty commies in Russia what’s what!” Neil’s voice grew increasingly excited with each breath.

Buzz just focused his gaze on the rocky terrain slowly approaching them. “Yeah… I suppose that is pretty special.”

As the Apollo 11 slowly descended towards the giant rock, a sudden crackle of the radio snapped the two to attention. “Alright you two,” a harsh voice snapped “Your instructions are very clear. Since this is being broadcast all over the US, you need to be careful when leaving the shuttle. When bringing down the flag to plant into the soil, don’t end up accidentally hitting something or we risk losing not only the footage, but communication with you as well, and that’s the top priority! Got that?”

Neil nodded, as if the man on the other end could see him. “Y-yes sir!” He said with a tense tone “We won’t let you down!”

“Good. I expect nothing less from two of America’s finest. Now I’ll leave you guys alone so you can think up a good line when you step down.”

“Good line?” Buzz scoffed. “Isn’t the landing enough?”

“Yes, yes, but the people at home and the papers will want more. Even if it’s a simple “Humanity, and America, have transcended” or something cheesy like that, do it.”

Neil and Buzz looked at each other with a puzzled look. Neither of them had any idea of what to say. “We’ll think of something sir.” Buzz said after a noticeable lull in the conversation.

“Excellent. Then I will leave your care to Michael. Good luck men, and may God be with you.” The radio then switched to a softer sounding noise, one of the module piolet, Michael Collins. “You two are almost there, just 30 more seconds.” He muttered, concentrating on keeping his eye on their landing position.

Buzz turned when he heard a noticeable gulp from Neil. While Buzz had never been one for emotions, it was clear that Neil’s where getting to him. Buzz ignored the increasing rate of Neil’s breathing, instead staring off into the distance, as if mesmerized by the mere sight of the moon. As much as he teased Neil, he was nervous too, possibly more than Neil was. “But for the sake of the mission,” he looked down to his shaking palms, closing them tightly as if telling them to stop “I need to appear strong.”

As the module touched down, Neil and Buzz’s knees slightly buckled under all of the weight on them, despite the low gravity. Neil turned to Buzz, gesturing out the door. “You’re the oldest. You deserve this moment.”

Buzz merely raised his hand to Neil. “It’d be criminal to stop you from having this. Go and show the world what America is made of Neil.”

Neil hesitated, but decided against arguing with him. He then made his motion towards the hatch, the air in the module hissing as it was sucked into the vacuum of the Moon’s atmosphere. While the two couldn’t feel the air whizzing by them directly, it left goosebumps on them knowing that from here on out, the suits where the only thing between life and death.

Neil looked up to Buzz one last time before descending. Buzz just gave him thumbs up to reassure him, with neither of the two smiling.

Clang. Neil’s boot hits the first ladder step hard. He looks up to see Buzz has grabbed the flag designated to be planted in his hands, gripped with a firmness he was all to used to with Buzz.

Clang. The second out of the three steps, Neil realizes he is now one step away from being the first man on the moon. The corner of his eye revealed the camera that was filming their arrival, and his throat tightened at the thought of having to say something potentially world changing.

Clang. Without thinking, Neil inhaled, and started to speak. “That’s one small step for man.”

With his boot falling rather gracefully on the moon, a light poof sound echoed through Neil’s helmet on impact. “And one giant leap for mankind.”

Buzz laughed while landing behind Neil. “Nice one kid! You saved me the embarrassment of speaking something cheesy like that.”

Neil just laughed, rubbing the back of his head sheepishly. “Ha… I’m just glad I didn’t screw it up.”

Buzz was grinning ear to ear now, amazed at what had just transpired. “Now let’s plant this flag, and then we can go searching for specimen to bring back to NASA.”

Neil nodded in agreement, more ready than ever before. Buzz raised the flag in the air, like a sword, and then as quickly as it rose, it sank into the rough surface. The two stood back to admire their work, the Earth in the background providing a perspective the two had never thought they’d see before in their lifetimes. Buzz remained silent, but Neil couldn’t help to comment, although silently, as if to remind himself. “It’s so small…”

Buzz gave Neil a questioning look, before turning to face their instructed coordinates. “Well, are you up for adventuring to the unknown?”

Neil smirked “We’ve gotten this far. Let’s do this.”

4 hours later

It was becoming blatantly clear that nothing of interest was on this rock. While the low gravity and footprints that never disappeared provided fleeting enjoyment at first, the moon seemed to be a barren wasteland, devoid of anything worth salvaging. Neil was clearly disenchanted. “Buzz.” He sighed, trying to hide his discontent. “Is this really it? This is all we can do? Collect rocks?”

Buzz didn’t miss a beat, continuing to examine the soil around him. “They told us it might turn out like this Neil, you can’t blame them.”

“But” Neil raised his finger, as if Buzz saw or cared “You can’t deny this isn’t at least disappointing.”

Buzz grunted. “Disappointing? Maybe. I call it the expected result.”

Neil just sighed. As he turned away to start in a new area, he noticed a pair of footprints in the soil that didn’t match the boot prints they were wearing. A new vigor took over Neil; excited, he called for Buzz. “Buzz! Buzz! I think I stumbled onto something huge!”

“Oh yeah, well check this ou-” Buzz’s discovery would be put on hold the second he noticed the footprints. Neil was gesturing to them like some sort of circus act, beyond proud he found them.

Buzz got down examining closer. The boots weren’t theirs obviously, but they couldn’t be anyone they knew either. No one, and literally no one else could be up there with them. Unless…

“Aliens.” The two both muttered.

“I think we need to follow these prints.” Buzz said with a slightly wavering voice, something that caught Neil off guard. Buzz always seemed so calm and collected. The discovery must be exciting him, Neil thought.

“Why?” Neil tried to see if there was an ending to the prints from his vantage point, squinting his eyes to focus.

“Because it might explain this.” Buzz held up a glowing green gem, brilliantly shining in the sunlight.

Neil’s jaw tightened. Now things were going from strange, to questionable. It seemed like there wasn’t just one person up there with them, and that they might be in far more they had ever wanted.

Unspecified time later

The two had been walking for what felt like an eternity. Buzz’s grip on the green rock was tight to keep it from falling, but he was also wary. He felt a sinking pit in his stomach growing at the very real possibility that someone, or worse, something could be up there without their knowledge. He couldn’t help but wonder if the US had lied to them, that everything they had worked for was some sort of elaborate ruse. He glanced at Neil who was showing no signs of nervousness, rather, he was looking rather stoic. “Probably in some vain attempt to appear brave.”

As the two started to reach a rather steep slope, Neil turned to Buzz. “I’ll climb up, you stay down here and keep an eye on our way back.” Buzz nodded, making a point of eying their footprints in the dust below.

Neil slowly, but surely, made his way up the harsh hill. Despite the clunky spacesuit, he was making good progress. He started to notice though, the top of the hill. It seemed to have a piece of metal jutting out from the edge. Neil wasn’t sure what it could be, and he needed confirmation before he made his way back to Buzz. “It’s only right to make sure I examine everything.” He grunted to himself while pulling himself up and over the edge.

What Buzz Aldrin heard next can only be described as an animalistic wail. The source of the noise? “NEIL!” He jerked his head around, desperately trying to find his young partner. Of course, he couldn’t see him over the edge of the sheer wall. “Neil! Come in! Neil, do you hear me?!?!”

Nothing. The normally talkative and excitable Neil Armstrong, the man who Buzz considered not only a friend, but an ally, was silent. He didn’t know what was more disturbing to him, the wail, or the silence that followed.

Despite the shock, Buzz, as if on instinct had scaled the wall, rock in hand. “Neil, I swear to God you’d better be-”

Buzz gasped. The sight in front of him was something he didn’t want to see. Neil Armstrong, lying in a pool of his own blood. “How…?” Buzz could barely muster the power to speak. He furiously looked around for a culprit, praying that maybe if God was listening to his silent prayer, it would all be a cruel joke.

Just as quickly as he had arrived, he felt a sharp intense pain in his back. However, instead of crying out in pain, he jerked away from the assailant, in an attempt to fight back. He overestimated his strength though, as the knife that had been planted into him made moving near impossible without intense pain.

He was however, able to finally see his assailant. What appeared to be a man, in an all-black spacesuit, was standing perfectly straight and narrow. It looked like he had never made a move to begin with. But as Buzz analyzed the alien man, his eyes widened in terror when he noticed one defining feature. A yellow sickle and star, emblazoned perfectly across his right pectoral muscle on the suit.

“I must thank you American. We had no idea of your ship even coming to the moon. In fact, had it not been for one mistake, you could’ve successfully infiltrated us and possibly stolen vital info.”

Buzz, delirious from the wound and shock of the moment, could only ask “What mistake?”

The man walked slowly toward him in a tight, but aloof walk. “Your transmission. The one you broadcast as a celebration of your ‘achievement.’” he spat in an almost mocking tone. “News flash: We beat you.”

As soon as it was uttered, he then grabbed the knife lodged in Buzz’s back and ripped it thought the rest of him. “And now, we destroy you.” He leaned over to grab the glowing rock from Buzz’s limp hand, bringing it up to his visor to admire it. “This will be a fine addition…” he muttered to himself.