2555 - Kante des Untergangs
Edge of Doom
Leo Lukas

Perry Rhodan informs himself by way of Licafa and his team of scientists. The Terran assures the Frerins of his assistance with the investigation of the occurrences at the edge of the world. They accompany the next expedition there and protect them against the destruction, which would otherwise be inevitable. On the way there the Terrans and the Frerins develop an inexplicable powerlessness and exhaustion, while Clun'stal Nobody loses more and more memories. Both are caused by the raging of the degenerating psi-matter, by which the world is surrounded. Arriving in the danger zone, the Terrans observe, how the disk world disintegrates from its edges. They want to induce the Frerins to turn back, but do not count on Orcizuís actions. The Apostle is in the possession of a holy relic and thereby reinforces its hypnotic powers. It even gives Orcizu the power to influence mentally stabilized Terrans. It sets free the psi-matter contained in the relic. This unites with the sphere around the world and stabilizes this for a short time. But then the dissolution process starts again and progresses all the more strongly.

With the loss of the relic Orcizu loses the greatest part of its Hypno-powers, so that the expedition can turn around and barely escape destruction. Some air cushion tanks of the Frerins are destroyed and Orcizu suffers fire injuries, but the Terrans suffer no losses. Rhodan learns that there is probably a Polyport court in the center of the city Frer, directly under the Basilica of the Pontifical Hermitage. The transfer chimney, with which they arrived, was only an alternate location. Rhodan plans the evacuation of the Frerins using this court, since the dissolution of the disk world cannot be stopped, even with the superior technology of the Terrans. Just in case, though, he gives the instruction to MIKRU-JON to gather and bring to Frerino as much psi-matter as possible from TALIN ANTHURESTA. When Sebyri addresses the Vicaress General on the threatening danger, she only harvests denial. The Vicaress General is afraid for her position of power, so she refuses the evacuation and orders Sebyri to murder Orcizu, because he has outlived his usefulness.

Since an evacuation without the agreement of the dominant caste is impossible, Rhodan penetrates into the capital with a camouflaged team, in order to speak with the Pontifex personally. Orcizu, who experienced a further change of mind and now wants to support the Gnostics, accompanies them. It turns out however that the transfer chimneys do not function because of the raging psi-matter, and that the Pontifex is long long. Its corpse, rigged with cybernetic elements, serves the Pontifical Hermitage for the manipulation of the masses. The priest caste could obviously access the high order technology of the Polyport court, but has used it exclusively for its own purposes instead of the well-being of its people. It turns out the Vicaress General has used it to artificially extend her own life by bio-implants and the entire basilica is stuffed with various weapon systems. When Orcizu recognizes the truth, he attacks the Vicaress General hypnotically. But she is prepared and strikes back - however not against Orcizu, but against the members of the various rivaling groups around her. It comes to violent battles, with which the basilica is almost totally destroyed.

Rhodan and Fellmer Lloyd/Ras Tschubai pursue the fleeing Vicaress General, but end up being led into a trap system, from which they cannot free themselves. Clun'stal Nobody appears to save them from the deadly danger and lead them to the Vicaress General. When she attacks them, Clunístal resapes into a foil, to cover and suffocate her. MIKRU-JON appears and pumps in great quantities of psi-matter to regenerate the global dome, which thereupon stabilizes. The fighting Frerins regards MIKRU-JON as a tool of the gods and lay down their weapons. Orcizu has Fortela proclaimed as the new Pontifex. It takes over the media congregation, an institute for propaganda, with whose assistance he wants to gradually change the dictatorial societal system. Sebyri receives the post of the Vicaress General. Licafaís Gnostics become scientific advisors of the new Pontifical Hermitage. Frerino is saved and the Frerins are on the way to a better future. On April 30, 1463 NGE, Rhodan leaves three TARAS as a parting gift, which are to help protect the Frerin reformers and takes off with MIKRU-JON.

Jerry Schneiderman 2012-03-27

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