Caught in the blast-corridor of the Discomfiter's fortress, the Green Man and his lovely assistant, Ms. Madison find themselves looking at the base of the nuclear missile the Discomfiter has aimed at Washington DC. As they watch, they hear the rising hum of the engines. Ms. Madison screams at the prospect of being burned alive...
The Green Man handed Ms. Madison a jemmy and screwdriver.
'Go over to the rocket and start smashing things, Madison,' he instructed the blonde. 'I'll start work on the door.' He knelt, looking for the door controls, while Ms. Madison started hitting the engines and casing of the lower part of the rocket with all her might.
'It's no use!' she cried out, 'all I've done is dent the casing! Can't we run?'
'You can't outrun a rocket blast!' the Green Man shouted back, as he prised the cover from the access panel. 'Our only hope is to close this door!'
Ms. Madison felt the growing heat of the rocket engines. Dropping the jemmy, she ran for the door, kneeling by the figure of the Green Man. He didn't even look up. She didn't speak, despite the fear that gnawed at her innards.
'Start running, Madison,' the Green Man spoke at last.
'Why?' she demanded. 'You said...?'
'I know what I said.' The Green Man laughed. 'But things have changed. In a moment, I'll connect the two wires that control these doors. They'll close.'
'Then surely we're safe?' the blonde was confused.
'This tunnel,' the Green Man explained, is the only outlet for the blast of the rocket engines. Without it, all that heat will have no-where to go. With the casing weakened by your efforts with the jemmy, the liquid fuel in the rocket should ignite on the launch-pad. There'll be a terrific explosion. Now!'
He touched the two wires together, and the great doors slid shut once more. A second action caused the circuits to burn out, before the Green Man joined Ms. Madison in retreating down the tunnels. A great roar filled the air, followed by a series of dull thumps that threw Ms. Madison to the ground. Pulled to her feet, she resumed her flight. Yet the doors did not give. When the two intrepid crime-fighters spilled out into the fresh air, they could smell fire. looking up, the girl saw that the fortress was ablaze from end to end.
On the flight to Rome, the Green Man explained events to Ms. Madison.
'The missile exploded on the launch pad, as I'd predicted. In order to get to Washington, it had to have a tremendously powerful rocket engine. The explosion had to find a way out.' The Green Man shook his head. 'I assumed that would be the doors.'
'But there was a blast-proof glass screen in the control room...' Ms. Madison blanched.
'It must have given way,' the Green Man nodded. 'They couldn't identify the bodies, but all the people are accounted for. Including Raoul.'
'Which goes to show,' Ms. Madison smiled, 'that you can't play with fire without getting burned.'
'And no-one,' the Green Man chuckled, 'can escape the vengeance of the Green Man.'