The Giant Atom

The Giant Atom

Only Steve Bennion, inventive genius, and his lovely assistant, Kitty, stand between the earth and destruction when a flaming monster threatens to devour and destroy civilization!

Sur Amazon


Ace in the Hole


The House of Dread

The Fat Falls into the Fire

Atomic Fire?

The Net Tightens

Fresh Hazards


Thrown to the Wolves


The Army Tries — and Misses

A Changed World

A Weird Proposition

A Fresh Start

Sparring for Time


The Affair at the Farmhouse

Darkest Hour

Taken for a Ride

Star of Hope

Ace in the Hole

The old quarry was an almost circular hole, a pit fully one hundred feet deep and with hewn walls that rose perpendicularly from the floor of the man-made crater.

For a secret workshop the place had been ideally chosen. It lay high up in barren and sparsely wooded foothills in a section too poor to support so much as a rabbit.

People rarely came there any more, now that the quarry was closed. There was no inducement — not even for game.

Which made the purring presence of the sleek automobile all the more inexplicable. But Steve Bennion knew perfectly well what he was doing. This old quarry some fifty miles up in the hills from the Bennion Research Laboratory belonged to him.

He had spent a lot of solitary time up here, working privately on a project which he was exhibiting today for the first time.

Parking the car, Bennion assisted his lone companion out of the seat and led the way to the sheer edge of the cliff. He pointed downward toward the center of the abandoned quarry at what looked from here like a bronzed Easter egg resting on a giant ice-skate, within a stockade.

"There she is, Kitty," he said simply. "Inside that circle of dilapidated fencing. I screwed the last bolt home and made the final electrical connection yesterday. I wanted you to see her first."

Bennion's companion, a tall and unusually pretty girl, as deeply bronzed as he was; stared downward with widening brown eyes.

"Steve!" she exclaimed. "Not the completed space ship! You kept it secret while you worked on it?"

Steve Bennion smiled a trifle ruefully.

"That's right," he admitted. "Now if we can just keep Bennion Research going for the few months necessary to perfect an atomic fuel — we'll be rich and famous in spite of General Atomics, Incorporated. At long last we can let the wedding bells ring out."

A shadow crossed the girl's face. She quickly tried to hide it as she moved closer, letting her arm rest against him.

"It's — it's wonderful, Steve," she murmured. "But I'm really afraid. You shouldn't have taken the entire last week off from your research work for Magnesium Metals. The bank has been calling up every day about that finance note."

"Oh, that," responded Bennion in quick relief. "They'll renew again. And as soon as we finish this job for Magnesium Metals we'll pay it off. Let's go down into the pit, Kitty. I can't rest until you've seen the first practical use for Anrad."

"How do we get down? Fly?" the girl asked, indicating the sheer drop.

Bennion laughed and stepped over to the car. From the baggage locker he took a boatswain's chair and a heavy coil of line. He led the way along the quarry edge to an old but sturdy derrick.

In former days the derrick had been used to haul up the products of the quarry. Of late Bennion had used it to send down the plates and parts for the experimental space ship he had designed and built.

At the derrick he quickly rigged the bos'un's chair to the boom and rove his line through the end sheave.

"Ready," he cried. "Hop in, Kitty. Shut your eyes and have faith."

Aided by her employer and fiancé Katherine Pennell got into the seat for her descent into the quarry, but she didn't shut her eyes. She wasn't the eye-shutting kind. Instead, she was smiling like a gleeful and excited child, as Bennion swung her out over the abyss.

When she got out at the bottom, he made the upper end of the rope secure and then slid nimbly down it. A short brisk walk across the chip-strewn quarry floor brought them to the door of the fence. Bennion unlocked the padlock and took her inside the enclosure.

"She's a beauty," exclaimed Katherine, gazing up at the gleaming metallic vessel that had been erected within the frame of a launching cradle. The daylight was fading down here, but the fine, graceful lines of the ship were evident. The sheen on its special phosphor bronze hull plates glowed brightly.

"I've named her the Katherine, in honor of you," Bennion said, pleased with her delight over his handiwork, for he had spent all his spare time for three gruelling years in building the craft.

"Climb that ladder and I will show you what it is like inside."