25 - Der Overhead
The Overlord (Ace Title: Menace of the Mutant Master)
Kurt Mahr

(July 1981) Upon his return, Rhodan finds the New Power's military, technical and financial systems under attack through a mysterious campaign of sabotage, kidnapping and aggression. It is clear that a mutant of considerable power is perpetrating these acts. Unbeknownst to Rhodan, the mastermind is Clifford Monterny, a telepath with powerful abilities to impose hypnotic control on his victims. Monterny has gathered a mutant corps of his own, forcing them into his service through hypnotic control, and is set on deposing Rhodan and using the Third Power's resources to rule the world himself.

Scientists are kidnapped and destroyer spacecraft stolen from Terrania. A nuclear explosion destroys an assembly plant, even though no nuclear material is stored there. One of Monterny's mutants, Elmer Bradley, is able to manipulate Homer Adams to cause General Cosmic Company to lose $4 billion in a fake investment. Another, teleports into Terrania. Tako Kakuta follows him, and is barely able to resist powerful, pyscho-suggestion before escaping back to Terrania.

Monterny's second in command, Ted McMurray is able to teleport into Terrania and kidnaps Crest. Analyzing recordings of Tako's brainwaves, Rhodan is able to narrow the location of Monterny's headquarters to a small area in the vicinity of Osaka, Japan. Nyssen is dispatched to try and locate the base. With the help of a Japanese spy named Michikai, he is slowly closing in on identifying the location when Michikai is killed and Nyssen captured by Monterny's agents.

Rhodan and a small tactical force attack the site and liberate Nyssen and Crest. Monterny escapes, but most of his men (including McMurray) are killed when, despite being warned that Nyssen had set a neutron bomb to explode in their headquarters, they refuse to surrender.

Mark J. Golden 2007-08-28

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