4 - Götterdämmerung
The Twilight of the Gods
Clark Darlton

At the 3rd Power's base, the ceaseless bombardment is drawing to a close. In addition, Dr Manoli pronounces Khrest to be in good health after his bout with the leukemia like blood disease. Thora and Rhodan have a discussion about their plans to get the Arkonides back home, but Perry explains that they must fix the situation on Earth so that the Terrans are ready for their step into space. The heads of three secret services hold a secret meeting to discuss the situation in the Asian desert. Attending are Alan D. Mercant of NATO's Intelligence Agency, Iwan Kosselow of the Eastern Bloc and Mao-Tsen of the Asian Federation.

The agents,Klein, Tschai-tung and Kosnow are asked to attend in order to report on their mission to introduce a biological agent into the area protected by the energy dome. It's agreed that a new plan will be tried. A tunnel will be dug to a point under the energy field and a nuclear bomb will be detonated.

Khrest invites Perry and Bell to undergo hypnotraining and explains that the process will increase their brain power in days to what would required 10,000 years of human evolution. As would be expected, the indoctrination is vehemently oposed by Thora, but Khrest proceeds with the training.

While things are calm in the Gobi, several occurences throughout the world signal a radical new development in human evolution. In Australia, telepath John Marshall stops a bank robbery before it can begin. In America, the telekinetic mutant Anne Sloan is recruited by Mercant to help in the fight against Rhodan but she recognizes the renegade astronaut as a force for good. Deep in the heart of Africa, Ras Tschubai longs to see his family and finds himself abruptly transported to their home. Finally, in Germany, Ernst Ellert finds he can teletemport to the future for brief periods.

After the hypnotraining, Rhodan dons a special Arkonide suit and goes to Los Angeles in order to find suppliers for the 3rd Power's projects. In LA, he is approached by Marshall who has recognized him and picked up his thought waves. Marshall offers his services to Rhodan and points out secret service agents who have found him. Rhodan uses the Arkonide suit's power of invisibility and escapes back to the Gobi.

Among the personnel working on the tunnel for the intelligence agencies is another teleporter, Tako Kakuta. Kakuta, in league with Klein and the other two secret service operatives, decides to inform Rhodan of the lastest plan to destroy his base. Perry has the Arkonides destroy the tunnel with no loss of life and Tako is asked to stay. When the Japanese teleporter accidentally happens on Thora in in a state of undress, Bell is enthused by the opportunities presented by teleportation.

Another undercover plot has been stopped and Perry has 2 powerful allies in the mutants Kakuta and Marshall.

Larry Eischen 2005-08-15

Back to the cycle