285 - Die dritte Waffe
The Third Weapon
William Voltz


The conference is now two days away, and Boyer is more than ever convinced that a third weapon is hidden somewhere. He decides to team with a Willy, the medusa-like beings that take care of the posbi protoplasm on the World of a Hundred Suns. He trusts the Willy and asks him to create diversions so that he can safely search the rooms of the participants.

Atlan is contacted by Boyer's former wife, also convinced of the existence of a third weapon, and decides to carry a search on his own, but Rhodan refuses to cancel the conference. Boyer and Atlan eventually join their forces but they can't find anything.

While examining the conference room, Boyer has an intuition and wonders if the TV cameras could hide this mysterious weapon, but then again, a thorough search reveals nothing.

A few thousand light years away from the Earth, Miras-Etrin is about to send a Tefrodian duplicate on a mission. The Tefrodian enters a minuscule ship and sets sail to the Earth. He must activate the bomb, which is supposed to destroy not only Terrania, but the whole Earth. The duplicate knows he will die on the mission, so Miras-Etrin doesn't trust him. On its course to Earth, the ship breaks down. The duplicate goes out to examine the engines and then reads a message from Miras-Etrin saying that the Master of the Island simply wanted to make sure he could trust him. If he hadn't tried to fix the engine, Miras-Etrin would have sent another ship to complete the mission.

One of the participants is on her way to the conference, on the morning of the third of April, 2405. She has been suffering from pains in her stomach for the past hours but decides to go anyway.

Thanks to the small size of his ship (hardly bigger than himself), the Tefrodian duplicate arrives unseen in orbit around the Earth. He docks with a TV satellite and boards it. He then waits for the conference to begin.

Boyer can't forget about his intuition and questions the TV technicians. When asked to examine their logs, they report an inconspicuous, but admittedly uncommon, failure in one of their satellites in the past hour. Boyer lets Atlan know about this. They rush into a ship and head for the satellite.

As Rhodan is beginning to speak, several participants suddenly feel violent pains in their stomach. Suddenly, spare parts of an unknown device escapes from their bodies and begins to assemble in the middle of the room, hovering several meters above the floor. Once assembled, the weapon is then immediately surrounded by a protection field.

Atlan and Boyer board the TV satellite a split second before the Tefrodian is able to activate the weapon. The Andromedan is killed during the fray, and the bomb is then taken to a safe place to be blown up. It turns out itís similar to Arkonide bombs and that it would have ignited every single atom of hydrogen in the atmosphere.

*Note - found this summary several years ago on an old internet site - http://www.ed.ac.uk/~geas?CYCLO/P/PR-285.sub.html - that no longer exists (same site that the previous short summaries in the "Master of the Island" cycle that Cedric had obtained came from).

Michael P. Mahoney 2007-09-11

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