Something Was Very Wrong, Out There Among The Stars...The interstellar transport had touched down on six other colony worlds - and all six had been devoid of human life. Where was everybody? It was almost as if humankind, when separated by cosmic distances from Mother Earth, could not survive.
An alien soldier tries to get a guide to take him to his rescue point, but he has managed to pick a con-man. The guide repeatedly tries to steal the alien's pack of goodies, which he recognizes as the titular survival kit, in the hopes of selling it off as advanced tech.
Guy Burckhardt woke up screaming out of a dream. It was more real than any dream he had ever had in his life. He could still hear and feel the sharp, ripping-metal explosion, the violent heave that had tossed him furiously out of bed, the searing wave of heat. He sat up convulsively and stared, not believing what he saw, at the quiet room and the bright sunlight coming in the window. He croaked, "Mary?" Pinching yourself is no way to see if you are dreaming.
The Earth has forcibly been taken from its orbit. It began with an extra-terrestrial pyramid on top of Mt. Everest. And then a "runaway planet" took the Earth as its binary. And now harsh generations have passed since the inhabitants last saw the light of their sun, Sol. Society has grown rigid. The meek lambs have inherited the Earth, even it's a very poor Earth, indeed.