2578 - Das mahnende Schauspiel
The Cautionary Play
Marc A. Herren

In search of the "black hole that sings" - the only trace of Samburi Yura - Alaska Saedelaere reaches a strange cosmic constellation in the spaceship LUMINOSITY. A solar system with a single planet consisting primarily of hyper crystals, a hyper-perforation curved into itself from which an unfamiliar radiation is emanating, and a harmoniously resonating black hole forms a triangle with an edge length of 1.8 light years. The radiation heavily affects the systems of the Cosmocrat cylinder. Countless spaceships are assembled in the solar system. From the captured radio traffic, the crew members of the LUMINOSITY learn that on Tolmar, the planet, the cautionary play of The Lake of Tears is to soon take place.

The LUMINOSITY is paged when it should be invisible to all. Even more surprising than this fact is the way in which the crew is welcomed: Heartily, as if they were old friends who had visited Tolmar before. Eroin Blitzer, however, denies ever having been there. Alaska and Eroin Blitzer are received as honored guests on Tolmar. Vetri, a hauntingly beautiful woman that arouses feelings in Alaska, leads the two visitors to a room and explains about the spectacle that takes place once every twenty-three years. It deals with the Empire of Harmony that was once visited by an emissary of the higher powers and involved in conflicts which led to its demise. Alaska feels to see relationships to himself in this, but does not clarify this suspicion. He assumes that the Empire of Harmony really existed and Sholoubwa , the designer of the BOTNETZES, had something to do with the whole thing. But he finds no evidence of Sholoubwa or Samburi Yura.

Alaska meets Martus, a toad-like creature that dwells as a critic on Tolmar and supposedly has information about the Empire of Harmony. He sends Eroin Blitzer later to meet with Martus in his spaceship. Alaska separates from his companion despite an uneasy feeling, because he wants to participate in the cautionary play. He does not listen to Eroin Blitzerís misgivings about this and does not recognize at first, that he is affected and has already lost his free will. Only when he is transported through hyperspace in a space capsule, to where the actual stage (a type of space station) is set up, does he have a moment of clarity. But when the play begins, this clarity is gone again. The thoughts and feelings of the actors are reinforced by the planet for a range of two light years so that everyone within that area gets the impression that they are part of events depicted. This is what happens to Alaska also.

Eroin Blitzer, meanwhile, enters the Protenor Gavras , the criticís spaceship. Martus is indeed on board, but he appears to have already been dead for centuries...

Jerry Schneiderman 2013-03-13

Back to the cycle