293 - Unternehmen Central-Station
Operation: Central-Station
William Voltz


The Terrans now know that there are three more interstellar Maahk bases in the Great Void. They are regularly spaced between the two galaxies. The biggest one, Central-Station, is situated 450,000 light years away from Andromeda. Rhodan decides to attack it. He will use the fleet from the Gleam system, made up of 900 ships.

Rhodan and the fleet head for Central-Station. Before engaging in battle, a small team led by Redhorse is sent into the station. There is a lot of activity going on so their small ship goes unnoticed. However, what Rhodan doesn't know is that Miras-Etrin himself is in the base and he is readying a main strike against the Milky Way.

As soon as they enter the station, Redhorse and his team are captured since the Terrans have greatly underestimated the defenses of the base. Miras-Etrin then proceeds to question them. Using cruel torture tools, he eventually learns about Rhodan's imminent attack upon the station. Faktor IV then sees the opportunity he has been looking for. Central-Station has just received a massive reinforcement made up of the latest antipolar cannons. He will lure the Terran fleet to the station and will then open fire on them.

The Master of the Island is so confident in his victory that he lets the Terrans and the Maahk wander in the station. He then sacrifices his own fleet of 600 ships against the Terrans in order to comfort them in their superiority.

Redhorse remembers seeing a captured Maahk ship in the base. The Terrans go to see it but as they finally approach it, Miras-Etrin appears on a giant screen and laughs at them, saying he has been following them and he has always known what they were after. The Maahk ship doesn't have any hypercom. Depressed, the Terrans lose hope. Miras-Etrin resumes his surveillance of the Terran fleet.

Grek-1, soon out of hydrogen, wanders aimlessly in the Maahk ship. He eventually sits in the commandant's chair and readies himself to die. He suddenly realizes that the ship has some energy left. He opens fire with the impulse guns, causing great damage to the hangar first, and then making the whole base shake.

Rhodan has immediately understood that something is going on and retreats. He opens fire on the base. Central-Station soon gives in and the base collapses. Miras-Etrin dies in the battle.

The Terrans now have only two stations left to conquer before they can definitely bar access to the Milky Way to the Masters of the Island.

*Note - found this summary several years ago on an old internet site - http://www.ed.ac.uk/~geas?CYCLO/P/PR-293.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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