"Prophet of Peace"
  Issue Number 39

Writer: Unknown
Artist: Unknown
Stardate: Not Given
Issue Date: August 1976
Cover Price: 25 cents


Cover Blurb:
   FROZEN SLEEP in the depths of space!

   Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, Scotty, and Doctor McCoy put on space suits and leave the Enterprise in order to recover the space capsule of Dr. Bleikoff, who has been in cryonic suspension due to an incurable disease for many years. As they work, Kirk tells them that Dr. Bleikoff had received the Nobel Prize for astrophysics for his theory of the origin of the universe. Bleikoff had been a peace activist, and had stood against the establishment, in order to bring his message of peace to the people. The Captain explains that Bleikoff had been responsible for ending the great war that Earth had been involved in. After he had fallen ill, he had agreed to be frozen in space, to await a cure. "And we've got that cure aboard the Enterprise!" Kirk says. "Quite an honor for me!".

   Once aboard the ship, the four men go to a sealed medical compartment to revive Dr. Bleikoff. First, they strip down to undergo a "steri-bath". The ray bath swiftly kills all external bacteria. (And has the men laughing hysterically, with the exception of Spock.) With the others assisting, Dr. McCoy begins the life restoration. A crackle of energy shoots forth as they open the coffin. Spock tells the others that it is probably just a burst of static electricity. The patient's blood is "recycled", and a jolt of revitalizing energy is delivered. Nothing happens! Just as McCoy is giving up hope, Dr. Bleikoff awakens. His first words are "Good day! I... I wonder if I might have a... cup of tea?".

   As soon as the quarantine is lifted, Enterprise crew members quickly begin to gather around the professor to ask his opinion about current political and social matters. Dr. Bleikoff asks Kirk if he can take an anonymous trip around the Earth before all of the receptions and interviews that await him. Kirk refuses, saying that he is much too important to be treated that way. Strangely, Lieutenant Sulu becomes angered at the Captain's response. He and the other crew members present demand that Kirk follow Dr. Bleikoff's wishes. "Well I'll be!" says Scotty. "This is almost a mutiny!". The Captain finally agrees to try to obtain permission from H.Q.

   Later, Kirk tells Dr. Bleikoff that he has gotten approval for five days of anonymity. He and the other officers will be Bleikoff's escorts in a secret trip around Earth. Just as the Captain finishes telling him this, a group of crewmembers at the door begin singing "For He's a Jolly Good Fellow" to Kirk. Spock is puzzled by their strange swings of emotion.

   On Earth, Kirk shows Bleikoff the Eiffel Tower, which now has a huge ball on the top. He explains that it is part of a world-wide system to protect from invasion from space called E.D.S., the Earth Defense Screen. Later they visit the Statue of Liberty, the Great Pyramids, and remote mountains, where the party observes more E.D.S. installations. "E.D.S. is fundamental to Earth security!" says Kirk. On the last day of the anonymous tour, Dr. Bleikoff is recognized by journalists, so a full-scale press reception is held. Bleikoff criticizes the modern world for being "loveless". The journalists are shocked, but then strangely begin to agree with Bleikoff. The story of how "love is dead" is quickly spread around the world.

   At a public reception in Rome, Dr. Bleikoff calls for the people of the world to abandon science, and "bring back love". The crowd begins chanting "Bring back love!". Spock tells Kirk that he is uneasy. "I have that feeling again, Captain!" he says. "The same feeling I had aboard the ship when the crew challenged you." Later, in the chambers of the supreme council, the Chancellor tells Kirk that the Council does not care for Dr. Bleikoff's proclamations. The Chancellor goes into a meeting with Bleikoff to tell him to stop. When he comes out, however, he is in complete agreement with everything Bleikoff stands for!

   Captain Kirk and his party continue to escort the Doctor. While visiting Mount Rushmore, Bleikoff tells them of his new plan to destroy the "spheres of hate" that make up the E.D.S. system. Later that night, at a rally in Mariana City, "30,000 feet beneath the Pacific," the Doctor tells a huge crowd to get rid of E.D.S. He does not advocate violence, but rather he tells them to convince the majority to destroy the defense system. The audience is whipped into a frenzy.

   Kirk, Spock, Scotty, and McCoy meet later in their room at an undersea hotel. Mr. Spock suggests that Bleikoff is transmitting mass hypnosis waves through radio. "But why?" McCoy asks. Kirk theorizes that Dr. Bleikoff's capsule was intercepted in space, by aliens who knew that he would eventually be returned to the planet. The aliens used him as a "time bomb", and performed some operation that planted thoughts in his brain, and gave him the ability to hypnotize others in the hopes that he would convince Earth to lower her defense screen. Scotty asks why they are the only four people not affected by the hypnosis. McCoy tells him that he believes the "shock" they felt when the coffin was opened was actually an "immunity ray", left by the aliens to safeguard themselves from being hypnotized when they checked on the space capsule. He goes on to suggest that the alien civilization was destroyed before they could make the final check. (Good theory!)

   In New Chicago, Dr. Bleikoff and the Enterprise crew prepare to board a rocket that will take them to New Jerusalem, where Bleikoff is to deliver a worldwide appeal to destroy E.D.S. McCoy bribes a security guard to set up an old x-ray machine as a "security measure" so that he can check for the presence of a computer brain in Bleikoff's skull as he passes through it. Bleikoff becomes frantic, and refuses to go through the machine. Kirk tells the guard to let him pass anyway. The Enterprise crew becomes convinced that their theory is correct, and that Dr. Bleikoff has some type of alien device in his head.

   When the group arrives in New Jerusalem, Bleikoff has the Enterprise crew taken into custody. He suspects they are plotting to stop him. At the studio, Bleikoff begins broadcasting to the world. He calls for the people to destroy the E.D.S. spheres. People all over the Earth form mobs, and get ready to wreck the structures.

   Kirk and the others are able to escape from their guards. They sneak back into the studio where the Doctor is delivering his disarmament speech. All over the world, people watch as Kirk confronts Bleikoff, and accuses him of being a "computerized corpse". Bleikoff attacks Kirk, but the Captain uses a large magnetic eraser on him. "Harmless to brains made of blood and tissue!" he says. "But deadly to an electronic brain!". Bleikoff collapses to the floor, his artificial brain destroyed, and the citizens of Earth come back to their senses and stop attacking the E.D.S. spheres. "Imagine!" Scotty says later on the Enterprise, "All that time we were the only independent minds on Earth!". "Actually, Mr. Scott," Spock says, "I've always found your mind to be completely independent of logic!"

(Summary by Mark Lookabaugh)

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