102 - Abteilung III greift ein
Action: Division 3
Kurt Mahr

The cargo ship Carolina, while in transit to Arkon, is inspected in full flight by an unknown vessel and destroyed.

On Earth, Nike Quinto, chief of Action Division III, sends one of his agents, Ron Landry, to investigate the disappearance of the Carolina. The heavy cruiser Royal Irish discovers, at the location of the Carolina's disappearance, a cloud of gas, proving that the Carolina has been destroyed by heavy thermobeamer fire. However, an analysis of the remnants determines that a lifeboat could have escaped.

The lifeboat in question (Carolina 2) is carrying Lieutenant Silligan, Corporal Laughlin and three passengers. It heads toward the nearby water planet Ghama, situated in the Toghma System. While arriving in the atmosphere, the Carolina 2 is shot down and plunges into the ocean. Larry Randall, an agent of Section III stationed on Ghama, recovers a piece of wreckage. The analysis shows some energy impact traces.

Ron Landry returns to Earth and leaves for Ghama shortly afterwards on the Empress Of Arkon. He makes contact with Randall. In addition to the Terran colony on Ghama there is a commercial base of the Springers.

The survivors of the Carolina are recovered by the Ghamese, the amphibious inhabitants of Ghama, and are taken into one of their underwater cities. They learn that the Ghamese are allied with the Springers. Lieutenant Silligan escapes and disappears into the heart of the city. He is soon followed by one of the passangers, Dynah Langmuir. In their bewildered race, they stumble over a secret room for the fabrication of Ghamese glass, a priceless item famous throughout the galaxy.

A lidiok, an imposing marine monster, threatens the island where the Terran colony is located. Randall and Landry intervene and kill the beast. In recognition of this achievement, Zatok, a Ghamean, tells them about the five Terrans captured by his people. The body of the lidiok is taken by Landry in order to be utilized in the upcoming rescue of the Carolina survivors. Zatok indicates that the survivors of the Carolina are in the underwater city of Guluch. The two agents rejoin the Empress Of Arkon.

Landry’s submarines, disguised as a lidiok, approaches the underwater city of Guluch and attacks it. The survivors of the Carolina are recovered and the responsible Springers apprehended. Their plan to get rid of the Terrans fails.

Michael Mahoney 2005-03-06

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