2408 - Krieg der Prozessoren
War of the Processors
Christian Montillon

The RICHARD BURTON is on its way with the Hangay squadron on the three hundred thousand light year long flight to Cala Impex, the base of the Peace Drivers in the empty space before the galaxy Hangay. All the crewmembers understand the fact that no military victory over the Terminal Column is possible with this squadron. The Galactics are only on a reconnaissance mission.

Aboard the RICHARD BURTON is the Parapositronic ESCHER, which is required, according to its own statement, if the squadron wants to penetrate into the originating Negasphere. Because Atlan believes this assertion, he rejects the petition signed by half the crew to shut down the Parapositronic. The Arkonide is somewhat horrified to find out in this manner that there are large parts of the crew that are scared of ESCHER. Together with the Nexialist Dr. Indica, who makes a large impression on Atlan with her dry sense of humor, her intelligence and her pleasant appearance, the Arkonide speaks with Dr. Savoire, the "First Positronicer" of ESCHER, about this problem. However, a solution is not reached with this conversation.

A danger really does threaten from ESCHER, which nobody anticipates anything yet – not even the Parapositronic itself. Among the Processors of the Parapositronic there is a renegade, Rutmer Vitkineff. He was a latent Suggestor and has managed to create, unnoticed by the other Processors, his own Avatar. His goal consists of taking control of the spaceship and ESCHER, to become immortal in this manner and bringing himself to safety from TRAITOR in another galaxy. Only twenty of the consciousnesses networked, including Rodin Kowa, have any suspicion that something is going on and are investigating.

Vitkineff tests his ability to take over crewmembers. He succeeds with the ninety-six percent of the crew that is not mental–stabilized. His activities do not remain completely unnoticed, but nevertheless, the symptoms remain vague: The naval doctors register headaches, inexplicable work mistakes and health problems with numerous crewmembers. On May 15, 1346 NGE he makes his real attack – except for the mental-stabilized people, to whom Dr. Indica also belongs, all crewmembers of the RICHARD BURTON obey his suggestive given orders from this moment on, and at the same time Vitkineff expands his influence within ESCHER.

As those of Vitkineff’s people make an attempt at taking the life of Dr. Savoire, who is the only one able to deactivate ESCHER, Atlan intervenes. He saves the man and provides for the fact that as many other mental-stabilized people are teleported by Startac Schroeder to safety as possible.

The twenty Processors who had become suspicious find Vitkineff’s hiding place and transmit this information to Atlan. Startac Schroeder teleports Atlan and Trim Marath there, and in the fire of her hand emitters Vitkineff’s Avatar body is destroyed. Vitkineff’s shattered consciousness returns into the Hyperdim matrix, where it can perform no opposition in its weakened state when the other Processors isolate and "fragment" it, so that it goes out. ESCHER apologizes to Atlan for the trouble and the flight to Hangay continues.

jerry schneiderman 2008-04-30

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