2392 - Die Vergessene Stadt
The Forgotten City
Michael Marcus Thurner

On January 31, 1346 NGE the Combi-Trans squadron continues its flight to Hangay. The next station is supposed to be the Jiapho Duo Sun Transmitter. But something goes wrong. The Haluter spaceship AHUR under the command of Domo Sokrat rematerializes somewhere in empty space and is slightly damaged – nothing is to be seen anywhere of a Sun Transmitter - the rest of the squadron has been shifted into a hypercocoon, although the crew of the AHUR do not know it yet.

However, the Haluters of the AHUR note nothing of this at first. After the damage aboard is repaired, a strange object is located which floats through space: a dead Lemurer that sits in a chair equipped with control nozzles. It is only one of a whole row of corpses who evidently all come from a kind of city in space: Here, in the middle of empty space, float more than a thousand Lemurer spherical ships, which have been coupled into a single enormous station.

The city in space carries the name Inkar-Durn and consists of a Lemurian fleet that was exiled because of an offence that had fallen into oblivion long ago. Approximately eight hundred fifty thousand Lemurers live there, which have pretty well forgotten their own past. The conditions are almost disastrous there not only because of lack of space, but also because of the perpetual lack of resources. So that the Lemurers can work off their tensions, a "bacchanal" is celebrated annually with which almost the whole population pumps itself up with the drug Petrogisch and dedicates itself to all kinds of excesses in order to escape from their reality. Another kind of escape consists of a suicide ritual, euphemistically described as " going to find Lemur “. Whoever carries out this ritual is strapped into a chair and catapulted into space…

The Haluters try to make contact with the Lemurers of Inkar-Durn. But their arrival releases panic among the Lemurers. It is not so much because the Haluter are the spitting image of Beasts from their old days, but because most inhabitants of Inkar-Durn deny the existence of a world beyond the city and cannot deal with the thought that there could be something else.

Some inhabitants of the city, the Current Catchers, have developed a special Para-ability. They can collect hyperenergy and convert it into Psi-matter. In this way some Current Catchers that are standing under the influence of the Petrogisch decide to steal the hyperenergy from the foreign ship and turn it back against it. But they cannot control the Psi-matter, thereby endangering not only the Haluter ship, but also their own city to the point of destruction. Filicut Cartomyst, who also belongs to the Current Catchers, but has remained sober, asks Domo Sokrat for help. A Haluter task force succeeds in helping the Current-Catchers remove the Psi-matter from the space city in time and ejecting it into space at a safe distance, where it explodes.

As a side effect of the explosion the hypercocoon, in which the Combi-Trans squadron is assumed to now be, becomes measurable in the detectors. A kind of tunnel also remains stable just long enough that the AHUR can venture a flight through it. Before the Haluters fly into the hypercocoon, they return the Current-Catchers to the city in space and leave the Lemurers some supplies, machines and data on their past.

jerry schneiderman 2007-12-05

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