2654 - Zeichen der Zeit
Signs of the Time
Hubert Hansel

Tormanac da Hozarius works on Urengoll, the twentieth planet of the Arkon system. The ice world is the fiefdom of the Arkonide Chief Scientist Aktakul and has been expanded into a huge research center. Tormanac is promoted and demanded by Aktakul. He masters all his exams with flying colors. After two and a half years - five and a half years after Shallowain's death - Aktakul introduces his protégé to the Naat Ghlesduul from one of his teams. Tormanac's blemish (the failed activation of his extra sense) did not remain hidden from Aktakul. Ghlesduul is assigned to serve Tormanac as a bodyguard and "external extra". The Naat accompanies the young Arkonide everywhere as a sounding board, repeatedly questioning Tormanac’s decisions, and knows how to deliver a snappy comment for everything. In addition, he is a capable helper in every situation. The two soon become friends.

In 1417 NGE Tormanac leaves Urengoll for a round trip through the Milky Way. More than eight years later, he is recalled by Aktakul. Tormanac's mentor has aged significantly and is nearing his end. He presents Tormanac with the choice of working either for the SENTENZA, to which Aktakul once belonged, in the future or joining the Science and Research advisory board under Imperator Bostich. Tormanac chooses the latter. In addition, Tormanac is asked to conduct the funeral ceremony for Aktakul, who died on December 29, 1425 NGE. Bostich attends the disintegration ceremony on January 29, 1426 NGE. On this occasion, Tormanac personally meets the Imperator for the first time. The SENTENZA is also active there and tries to steal Aktakul’s research data. Agents of the SENTENZA penetrate into the sensitive areas of the facilities on Urengoll. Tormanac is committed to ensuring that they at least receive copies of some of the data and are allowed to withdraw without hindrance. He even contradicts the Emperor in this, taking the initiative for himself.

Thirty-seven years later, Tormanac, now seventy-nine years old, has risen in the hierarchy and heads Bostich's advisory board. He is a member of the Arkonide delegation, which travels to the Blue System on March 25, 1463 NGE at the invitation of the Akons. A stranger - probably a member of the Ark'Tussan Faction - informs him of the impending sabotaging of the firing of the Akon Beacon. Tormanac is among the scientists who prevent the disaster, by calling for an evacuation in time. Bostich then turns him into his unofficial right hand man.

Six and a half years later, shortly after the disappearance of the Sol system and the abduction of the BASIS in September 1469 NGE, Tormanac meets with Ronald Tekener and warns the Smiler against the " Ark'Tussan Faction". Thus, the assassination of the LFT conference can be prevented, in which Arun Joschannan is elected the new First Terran. Tormanac himself is still trying to locate the instigators of Shallowain's death, which he also suspects to be from the Ark’Tussan Faction. For this reason, he goes to Travnor and ends up in the power of the Badakk…

Jerry Schneiderman 2018-01-28

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