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37 - Ein Planet spielt verrückt
A World Gone Mad
Clark Darlton


After the flight of the Springers from the disease of forgetfulness, a plan is devised  in order to recover the combat robots left behind and to conquer the new prototype spaceship. Gucky embarks on a "humiliating" scout mission. He has to pretend to be a strange local animal as he approaches the shipyard, so that neither the abandoned chief engineer Borator nor the guard robots recognize him as a serious threat

In the meantime Topthor of the Mounder clan of Springers accepts a commission from Etztak, the influential patriarch of a major clan of the Springers, to salvage the robots and the prototype from Goszuls’ Planet. Rhodan dispatches ships to set up a detection network for when Topthor reveals his arrival by the transitions of his 13 ships. Perry sends a starfighter piloted by Sergeant Harnahan into space to hide and report to Rhodan on the movements of the Mounders. Harnahan lands on a small moon near Goszuls Planet. He takes a short walk on the planetoid with low gravity and approaches a small mountain. There in a valley Sergeant Harnahan finds not only a mysterious door, but also an even more mysterious creature. It has the form of a dazzling ball, about twice as big as a football and seems to be made of metal. This entity can talk telepathically and can show images from distant places, for example, the approaching Springer ships. The entity is in its own words about 5 million years old and supposedly knows everything about Perry Rhodan. It feeds on energy and needs some more so it can continue its journey. So it had stop here while examining ways to shorten its long waiting time which was imposed by the weak local solar energy. In return for energy, it wants to help Perry. The mysterious door on the moon is completely ignored and forgotten by Harnahan due to the communication with the unusual entity.

Meanwhile the task force, consisting of John Marshall, Tako Kakuta, Kitai Ishibashi, Tama Yokida and Gucky successfully conquer the shipyard and take the Springer's chief engineer Borator prisoner. Next Perry prepares a plan for the new arrivals, by having Kitai Ishibashi manipulate the chief engineer in order to convince Topthor that the disease of forgetfulness is both incurable and impossible to protect from catching the illness. Topthor can therefore be expected to be infected in spite of any countermeasures. Perry’s mutants help promote support for this story, and Topthor immediately flees from the planet without completing his mission.

The spherical being helps itself, Harnahan and thus Perry, by sucking the energy from the 13 Springer ships. It is completely recovered by the Springer ships’ energy. The spherical-being uses a little of its new energy reserve to contact Perry and tell him that they will meet again.

So the combat robots and the new prototype Springer ship of Perry are captured. The Springer ship is renamed GANYMED.

John E McClure 2015-08-23

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