1980 - Shabazzas Todesspur
Shabazza's Deadly Trail
H.G. Francis

Shabazza emerges from the transmitter on a spaceship called the Creation, owned by a movie star who was cruising on the Waveshape. He possesses the unsuspecting crew of the Creation and kills them. Then he heads for the closest planet where he is likely to find a spaceship fitted for intergalactic travel : the planet Cross in the Cokk system. Meanwhile, Rhodan keeps attacking him and the forces of the Creator slowly decay. Afraid that he might have to explain why the crew is missing, Shabazza sabotages the Creation, which crashes on Cross. Unfortunately, the spaceship destroys a big part of a major city on the planet, killing thousands of people.

Alerted by the news coverage of what happened on Cross, Blo Rakane, Bré Tsinga and Lotho Keraete quickly make the connection with Shabazza and head for the Cokk system.

As the only survivor of the crash, Shabazza is received with a lot of suspicion by the inhabitants of Cross and arrested for further interrogation. Angry to see mortals get in the way of his plans, he retalliates by igniting an atomic fire on the planet, sealing its fate. Then he boards another ship, the Puritan, and heads for another planet where he located an intergalactic ship : Lepso.

Lepso has a particularity : it is a primitive world covered by a living forest that is in communication with all the animals. When Shabazza lands on Lepso, Rhodan strikes again and this time, the Creator is helpless. He is forced to leave Rhodan's body and to posess that of a scientist who is studying the forest.

Rhodan chases the Creator in the forest. He finds the scientist, who has regained his consciousnesss. He suggests to Rhodan to burn the whole forest, arguing that it will not destroy it but that it might kill Shabazza. The two men are aggressively attacked by different animals, leading them to think that Shabazza has taken control of the forest. They head for the "brain" of the forest and set it on fire. Shabazza dies in the flames. Then Rhodan is picked up by the Zhauritter.

Cedric Beust

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