2100 - Das Sternenfenster
The Star Window
Robert Feldhoff

In the years following the end of the SOURCE Of SOULS, the situation in the Milky Way seems calm. But Bostich I continues his quest to make his Crystal Imperium the premier power of the Galaxy. However, he gives up open confrontations with the L.F.T.(League of Free Terrans). Only the stellar archipelago of Hayok, still occupied by the Arkonides, remains a point of political contention. The young and beautiful Arkonide noble Ascari da Vivo is in charge this sector. Perry Rhodan makes her acquaintance in 1306 NGZ, during a reception for the emperor, where she is promoted to the rank of "Three Sun Bearer". From the time of this fateful meeting, Ascari will constitute a political and military adversary for Perry Rhodan.

At the end of December 1306, five cruisers of the SOL reach the Earth and deliver a message from Mondra Diamond to Rhodan.

In 1307, an unknown type of spaceship is observed by the Leif Eriksson as it appears in the stellar archipelago of Hayok. It only measures a hundred ten meters long and sixty-six meters wide, but possesses incredible acceleration. By reason of its shape, it is named the Katamar. Rhodan follows the vessel. An Arkonide fleet under the command of Ascari da Vivo also makes its appearance. It opens fire but by an effect of reflection, the transformer cannon bombs come back on the Arkonide ships and destroys them. Before reinforcements arrive, the Katamar disappears.

On January 22, 1309, Imperator Bostich I invites Rhodan again to festivities: Ascari da Vivo becomes Mascant, a position in the Arkonide military hierarchy where she is not indebted before her "Begam" (the Imperator). Her and Kraschyn, the ancient conqueror of the Earth and Étrus, are the only two Arkonides ever to reach this rank. She tries to seduce Rhodan but he only sees the face of Mondra Diamond.

In October 1311, four gigantic disks nineteen kilometers in diameter appear in the galaxy. Their technology is similar to that of the Katamar previously observed. Ascari da Vivo attacks them and, again, her own vessels are destroyed by the reflective screens of the strangers. An incredible phenomenon produces itself then: the four vessels maneuver themselves into position and disappear with a strong shaking of the space-time structure, leaving in their place a window which opens a way to another galaxy. This galaxy is identified as the galaxy HCG 87, located around four hundred million light years from the Earth. The consignment of probes proves that this window is impassable.

On October 24, another Katamar appears, crossing this window, and heads for the Earth. Rhodan immediately directs the Leif Eriksson toward it and declares a state of alert. A small ship comes out of the vessel, three thousand five hundred forty meters in length and sends out a message: Trah Rogue, the Conqueror of Tradom, comes on a diplomatic mission and asks for permission to land.

Rhodan accepts. Ascari da Vivo, who followed the Katamar with her fleet, also takes part in the reception. On October 27, 1311, Trah Rogue lands on the spaceport of Terrania, plants a flag in the soil and declares that he is taking possession of the Earth, the Solar System and the League of Free Terrans in the name of the Empire of Tradom.

Michael P. Mahoney 2005-02-26

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