2203 - Die neuen Sonnen
The New Sun
Michael Nagula

Kantiran carefully observes the reactions of his father to the news of the newly emerged star cluster. Perry Rhodan does not let a sign show externally whether the appearance of a whole star cluster from nowhere impresses him. His face has frozen and shows no emotion. While everyone still puzzles over the phenomenon, a small spaceship of the USO announces itself. It is Atlan! The immortal Arkonide has appeared at just the right moment and has them dock his ship as soon as possible. Trim Marath, the Cosmotracker had forecast the event with the comment, " something dreadful will happen". Space quakes, like in the Hayok sector, were measured in several areas of the Milky Way. Nobody aboard the LEIF ERIKSSON can yet say whether new stars have appeared in these regions also. Nevertheless, one of the areas lies very close to the Sol system, near the so-called Whistle Nebula, only five hundred light years from Terra. When Atlan appears in the Main Bridge of the LEIF ERIKSSON, he is also clueless about the phenomenon. Atlan notes Kantiran and is briefly introduced by Perry Rhodan. Nobody in Perry Rhodan's closest circle of friends yet knows that Kantiran is the Resident's son. Before the conversation can be continued, a naval federation of ten thousand units requested by Perry Rhodan appears.

The Terran fleet has barely formed up, as the appearance of an Arkonide naval fleet is announced. About fifteen thousand units from the Crystal Empire have appeared on the edge of the new star cluster. Perry Rhodan makes contact with the Arkonides to avoid any possibility of conflict. A short time later Myles Kantor announces his first appraisal. He theorizes that the new star cluster has not been purposely materialized in the Hayok space, but that the new suns have materialized due to the change of the hypercontinuum. Oddly enough the same age is determined for the new suns as for the stars of the Hayok-star archipelago, about eight billion years. The Hayok stars and the stars of the new star cluster therefore originated at the same time. Myles Kantor speculates that the new suns, which could be measured at first only hyperphysically were always a component of this cosmic region and have only now returned to their original place. However, after this theory the question presents itself of what process had removed the stars from their original place? Because the star cluster stands out only on the sensor screens, and is not visible yet in the normal universe, Perry Rhodan gives it the name Camouflage.

Later Atlan arrives at Rhodan's cabin after Perry's request for a private conversation. Perry Rhodan asks his old friend for advice and tells him Kantiran's history. Atlan advises his friend to reveal the truth about his son to the other immortals and to other than that, address the subject very carefully. Atlan is also of the opinion that Mondra Diamond has a right to find out the truth about Kantiran. Perry Rhodan knows that his friend is right and follows the advice of the immortal Arkonide. In a conference call in which only the immortals and Perry Rhodan's closest confidants take part, Perry Rhodan reveals the whole truth. Many of his closest friends are dumbfounded, and Mondra Diamond is shocked. Still, Perry Rhodan's explanation is accepted and now for many of his friends, the sudden appearance Kantiran by Perry Rhodan's side becomes understandable.

During the following day a new event occurs. Strong space quakes again announce a forthcoming event, and then a planet falls into normal space not far from the LEIF ERIKSSON. The planet can be clearly measured and the sensors of the LEIF ERIKSSON give the following data: Diameter: 3,788.9 kilometers, day night cycle: 187 days, rotation duration: 54.89 days, gravitation: 0.34 Gravos. Strong differences in the temperature between the day and night side of minus 190 degrees and plus 480 degrees Centigrade make an infernal planet from the unknown world. Even if no central star is visible in normal space, the planet still behaves in such a way as if it is circling its sun. It is immediately checked, whether they already dispose of data on this glowing world, but it is in vain. The planet is completely unknown. Perry Rhodan spontaneously decides on a landing mission to explore the foreign world. Atlan, who is initially against a manned investigation, joins him. Kantiran also volunteers for this mission and christens the planet with the name Tantalus.

The investigation mission consists of the cruiser PHOENIX and a Space Jet with which Perry Rhodan, Atlan and Kantiran approach the planet Tantalus. The cruiser follows at a distance to be able to intervene if necessary if the investigation team needs help. When the small vehicle of the investigation team approaches the planet, it disappears from the sensors of the cruiser. The investigation team can also no longer measure the cruiser and obviously became a part of the strange continuum in which Tantalus is at least partly still embedded. Atlan and Perry Rhodan agree that they have committed a mistake and gone too recklessly on the investigation of the foreign planet. For a short time the PHOENIX appears on the sensors and Perry Rhodan even manages to contact it, but then the sensor picture grows pale again. Obviously, the PHOENIX temporarily began to phase into the continuum in which the Space Jet is now, but then returned to normal space.

The three realize that Tantalus holds still more dangers, as Atlan flies to the surface and lands in a magma lake. Kantiran saves the Arkonide from burning up with his with his SERUN. A short time later Perry Rhodan is wrapped by a suddenly appearing energy swirl and torn through an artificial tunnel system into the depth of the planet. No other choice remains to Atlan and Kantiran than to follow the tunnel. Several hundred meters under the surface the two find the Resident uninjured and discover a subterranean city!

Perry Rhodan, Atlan and Kantiran come upon androids, which call themselves Samadhi. The androids are obviously in need and inform them that there are many subterranean cities on Tantalus, which are threatened with immediate end. The androids speak of their goddess who was once the sun. But this sun appears no more above the planet. The androids may perish due to a lack of energy. Before the androids withdraw again, Perry Rhodan asks them to let the three men return to PHOENIX, so they can help the androids. Perry Rhodan, Atlan and Kantiran are transported into free space where they are picked up shortly after by the PHOENIX.

While the people are still analyzing the newly won knowledge, a new visitor announces himself. It is Lotho Keraete who would urgently like to speak with Perry Rhodan. Kantiran knows about the envoy of ES from his earlier studies. He knows that he handed over one of ES' cell activator chips to Bostich and was once earlier a Terran. Lotho Keraete had brought a small, silver ball aboard with him and explains which concerns it around one of the silver balls of the Queriones. The silver balls, as Atlan and Perry Rhodan already know, serve as transport spheres and are suitable for flying in space, as well as into foreign continuums.

As usual, Lotho Keraete is sparing with answers to questions, which he simply does not want or is able to answer. He does admit to not be here on a mission on behalf of ES, but on his own decision. The envoy of ES explains that he must go together with Perry Rhodan and a third person to the star ocean of Jamondi and that time is pressing. Kantiran immediately announces himself prepared to volunteer to accompany Perry Rhodan, butteh envoy of ES decides differently. It will be Perry Rhodan and Atlan that go aboard the sphere. When Kantiran receives no further support from Perry Rhodan, his Arkonide temperament flares up and he leaves the headquarters furiously. While Perry Rhodan and Atlan prepare for their mission, Kantiran makes preparations to leave the LEIF ERIKSSON with his own ship the DIRICI. Not even his friend Mal Detair can keep him from holding to his decision. Only one person shows up in the hangar when they are leaving. It is Mondra Diamond! The Terran asks Kantiran to wait and give his father a chance, but she cannot persuade the young man to remain. With the latest news that all hyperradio connections with the galaxies of the local group have collapsed, the DIRICI leaves the hangar of the LEIF ERIKSSON.

Lotho Keraete, Perry Rhodan and Atlan fly with the silver ball of the Queriones into the mysterious star cluster, which apparently carries the name Star Ocean of Jamondi. When the silver ball flies into the star ocean, unexpected phenomena occur. Perry Rhodan's and Atlan's SERUNS start to glow and the heat becomes intolerable. Perry Rhodan groans as he sees that the metal body of Lotho Keraete also starts to glow. The envoy of ES is no longer touchable and does not stir. On Perry Rhodan's urgent attempts to get further information the envoy of ES whispers only: " The Bulwark of Parrakh may never ", but then the voice of the envoy breaks off. When the silver ball leaves hyperspace, the SERUNS of both immortals melt into slag. The sphere falls towards an unfamiliar planet and crashes on the night side of the world. Atlan just manages to drag Perry Rhodan from the sphere, before the silver ball explodes in a violent explosion. The two immortals look at each other dazed, because Lotho Keraete still was aboard. It turns out that his body is still intact, but now trapped deep within the refreezing ice.

Cedric Beust 2005-10-28

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