741 - Die falsche MARCO POLO
H.G. Ewers

When Atlan receives the emergency message from Orcsy, he decides that the fake Marco Polo represents a big threat to the New Einstein Imperium, and that it must be destroyed. The SZ-2 heads for Yollschor dark cloud.

On the fake Marco Polo, Laren scientists are busy trying to salvage what they can from Kalmeck's brain, hoping they can still locate where the new humanity is hiding. The SZ-2 materializes in the system and attacks the Marco Polo. Hotrenor-Taak was ready and twelve SVE spaceships immediately defend the Marco Polo. The SZ-2 escapes into linear space.

The Marco Polo is mostly unharmed but the attack has allowed the two Halutians on board to break free. They set on a suicide mission, resolved to destroy the Marco Polo. When the fake Rhodan realizes this, he calls Hotrenor-Taak for help but the Laren refuses to help him. The crew of the Marco Polo manages to kill one Halutian but the other one sets off a bomb that destroys the spaceship.

The Halutian survives the blast and manages to get on board his own spaceship. He heads for the decoy headquarters of the NEI in the middle of the cloud, unaware that the Larens are tracking him. The SZ-2 notices the manoeuver of the Larens and Ras rescues the Halutian before Hotrenor-Taak finds the main planet.

Cedric Beust

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