71 - Fehlsprung der Tigris
The Tigris Leaps
Kurt Brand

The cargo ship ORINOCO arrives in Terrania with a hole of six hours in its schedule. The security services determine that it has been followed by Arkonide ships equipped with structure anticompensaters. A plan is finalized to momentarily divert the Robot Regentís attention.

On June 19, 2042, the cargo ship TIGRIS, commanded by Clyde Ostal, heads toward a point in space which is supposed to represent Earth and whose coordinates are registered in the P brain. All traces of previous transitions are eliminated. It then simulates a transition toward the planet Goszul but emerges in the Naral System. The third planet of this system is Ekhas whose inhabitants, the Ekhonides, presents all the features of the former Arkonides. The TIGRIS is forced to land and the Ekhonides are delighted to have captured it, persuaded that it arrived there by mistake. The thirty-three Terran crewmembers are placed in prison. The general Sutokk, the Arkonide commander on the planet, wants to have the Terran prisoners undergo psycho-interogation but is opposed by Egg-or, the Ekhonide chief of Planetary Defense.

The LOTUS, equipped with a newly developed frequency damper, which counteracts the Arkonideís structure anti-compensator, leaves on a rescue mission. Aboard the LOTUS are Perry Rhodan and the three mutants Fellmer Lloyd, Kitai Ishibashi and Tako Kakuta. The LOTUS links up with the Springer ship MAB-1 but the Terrans realize that something is not right. Indeed, they are welcomed by Mabdan III instead of the Patriarch Mabdan I, which is in direct contradiction to all the rules in force among the Galactic Traders. Mabdan III is under the control of a mental block. A Hypercom communicating all conversations to the Regent is deactivated. Aboard the MAB-1, Perry Rhodan and his companions arrive on Ekhas aboard and search for the prisoners from the TIGRIS who have since escaped from prison.

The thirty-three Terran prisoners on Ekhas have run away naked while taking advantage of a medical exam and have now found shelter in a nearby forest. They stumble upon a camouflaged spaceport and Clyde Ostal is captured. He is brought before Egg-or but Sutokk, upon learning about Ostalís capture, demands that the prisoner is handed over to him. The other Terrans make contact with the Springers and return to the spaceport. They are immediately pursued by Sutokkís men. The mutants then intervene. Thanks to the faculties of the mutant Kitai Ishibashi, the fleeing Terran prisoners, Ostal, Rhodan and the mutants all succeed in capturing an Ekhonide ship. The ship escapes from Ekhas pursued by the Arkonide fleet. The vessel is destroyed but everyone on board is able to reach the LOTUS.

Michael Mahoney 2012-08-23

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