2318 - Der Dunkle Obelisk
The Dark Obelisk
Uwe Anton

On September 26, 1344 NGE a Traitank appears on the edge of the Sol system. The ship stays there for a while, then departs again without seeming to have done anything. Nevertheless, its emergence makes clear the awkward position of the LFT. The Chaos powers can strike at any time. A hyper-radio message reaches the Solar Residence on September 27, 1344 NGE. IN it, Atlan reports on the events in the Charon Cloud and announces that the AUBERG and the TABASCO are on their way with two and a half kilograms in each case of Salkrit and will arrive at the earliest on October 6. Also aboard are Gucky and Marc London. As a result Rhodan puts pressure on Malcolm S. Daellian. The Salkrit that arrives is to be inserted immediately in the LORETTA tenders, so that the new crystal screen can be reestablished as soon as possible.

On October 2, Fawn Suzuke appears in Perry Rhodanís residence. The projection of the envoy of the Nucleus is weakened and desperately in search of Marc London. To support and protect the Sol system, she was irrevocably separated from the Nucleus, and now she runs the danger of simply fading away, from the lack of energy. Without aid from the Psi-Corresponder, only two days remain for her. Before Rhodan can say anything, the projection informs him of the coming of a dark obelisk and then disappears again.

Some time later, there is an accident the University of Terrania. During a health check of an employee of the Whistler Company, Radek Beibel, who was forced off the job by a fake medical report, the energy field of the medical scanner intermixes with that of Fawn Suzuke, and traps her in Beibelís body. But he is too weak and psionically untalented, so that it threatens to tear him into death along with the envoy. Rhodan finally thinks to have Beibel brought to the Schohaake village. The oldest of the Schohaakes, who are also matter projections, like the envoy, finally manage to free the mental substance of Suzuke from Beibelís body with support from Trim Marath and Startac Schroeder, who Perry had called in from Mars, and take her into themselves. But the Schohaaken are also too weak to keep her alive for long and a race against time begins.

Beibel reports to Rhodan on the dark obelisk, which the envoy had shown him in his thoughts, and Rhodan becomes still more nervous. Time is trickling away. Then Marc London finally arrives on the morning of October 6, as does as Gucky and the Salkrit. Daellian immediately gets to work with the Salkrit, and the Psi-Corresponder proceeds immediately to Fawn Suzuke. He succeeds in stabilizing her and the Schohaakes. As a result, Fawn separates from the bodies of the Schohaakes and begins to regain strength.

But then the next terrible news already hits in: an object has left the Hayok system on its way to the Sol system. It is a dark obelisk. The LORRETTA tenders are brought back into position, and the screen is brought up, destroying the obelisk upon impact. But most of the Salkrit was burned to do it; the operation cost almost two full kilograms, but the danger is temporarily warded off. The screen is taken back down to avoid the loss of any more Salkrit or damage to the tenders.

Later, Homer G. Adams sets up a fleet with goods for the Charon Cloud races. But the arrival of the next load of Salkrit is to be counted on arriving only between the 24th of November and the 24th of December. By then, Daellian needs to figure out a better way to process and use the hypercrystal, to guarantee a regulated manner of consumption and no wild burning off of it.

Meanwhile, on order of Rhodan, Gucky investigates the Whistler Company employees following the tip from its security expert Beibel. He does in fact find irregularities in the Whistler offices. It finally comes to a mysterious explosion in a toilet where afterwards, no sign is left of the suspect, who had been inside itÖ

jerry schneiderman 2006-04-26

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