75 - Das rote Universum
Crimson Universe
K.H. Scheer

Locations: Gray Beast (Myrtha System), Hades and Druufon (Siamed System). This is the 5th Atlan adventure. On Earth, Atlan observes the completion of the new superbattleship KUBLAI KHAN with 1500 m diameter. Colonel Marcus Everson, that should take over the ship, tells him about the bygone events on Eppan and the molecular transmutator Mataal. The Terrans known that a Druuf‐generated overlap zone would soon appear in the Myrtha System vicinity and the solar empire enters an emergency state. That's the new, stabilized discharge zone, which had its beginnings about 10,000 years ago. Perry Rhodan has mounted an operation base in the Earth‐like planet Gray Beast, 7th world of the Myrtha System. Atlan's presence is requested in Gray Beast. With revenge desires over the Arkonid losses suffered 10,000 years ago in the battle against the Druuf, Atlan starts with the KUBLAI KHAN to Myrtha System.

The newest achievement of the men of Terra was the successful copying of the mysterious matter transmitters of the Ferronians and all the major ships of the Solar Fleet were now equipped with at least one of these transport devices. Perry Rhodan now wants to station such a Transmitter in the universe of the Druuf in order to be able to act unseen.

Detecting the dimensional breech, the Robot Regent on Arkon sends out a fleet of over 30,000 ships. At approximately 20 light-years off Myrtha, they begin to fight a bitter battle with the unknown opponent. Rhodan picks up first measurements of the battlefield with the light cruiser CALIFORNIA. The cruiser CALIFORNIA belonged to the new State class light cruisers of advanced, lightning‐fast scoutships whose armor and weapons had been greatly restricted in view of their oversized propulsion units and power plants.

The CALIFORNIA starts in direction of the discharge zone with a Transmitter for a station. She arrives from her transition in the middle of the battle turmoil. The funnels of the discharge zone united already to a rip of approximately one light-year of length, from which the ships of the Druuf come again and again. The CALIFORNIA breaks through the battle front and flies directly into the rip. She is met by a fleet of the Druuf, which immediately opens fire upon her. With one, short transition the CALIFORNIA escapes the turmoil and appears 2 light-years further in a double star system with 62 planets.

The 16th planet [later called Druufon] of this system [later called Siamed] is circled by countless masses of Druuf ships, allowing the conclusion that it is the central world of the Druufs. Perry decides to land on the 13th Planet, similar to Mars, which Atlan names Hades. As soon as the shock from the transition fades away, the construction of the teletransmitter station, with 2‐light‐year transport range, in Hades begins.

Rhodan, Atlan and Fellmer Lloyd are in a tunnel when the base is attacked. The CALIFORNIA flees without the three men, which stay behind on Hades. Lloyd suffers from an intestinal illness - extremely unpleasant in the closed spacesuit. They must wait until the CALIFORNIA is again in the normal area and the Transmitter is mounted in the DRUSUS. A ship of the Druuf landed shortly after to examine the place where the strangers had landed. Without result, however, they take off again.

Three days later, Lloyd dysentery is in a worrying stage, the teletransmitter panel lights up. Rhodan, Atlan and Lloyd go through it and come out at a foreign place. Almost 2 G prevail there, however the air proves to be breathable for them. A relief for Lloyd! They have rematerialized on Druufon. A Druuf-Transmitter stood on reception and the signal had somehow switched to Hades station. One Druuf comes towards the team. The appearance of the Druufs is finally revealed. They are massive creatures, presumably insect descendants, 3 m tall, with columnar legs, a spherical head of 50 cm diameter, a triangular mouth and four eyes. They paralyze him. They wander through the halls of this seemingly subterranean installation and come upon a power plant with several nuclear reactors. The Druufs send out their Robots, which are received with blaster fire. Soon, also the way back seems cut-off to the Transmitter that there they receive a message telepathically: "Perry Rhodan, I am sorry to have caught you, I will send you back." While further robot keeps closing on them, they reach the Transmitter station of the Druuf and are transported again to the cave in Hades. The teletransmitter panel starts to blink in Morse code: D-R-U-S-U-S.

40 hours later, the DRUSUS landed on Gray Beast. Lloyd is treated and the delayed transportation connection is explained: 50,000 ships of the Arkonide and Springer formed an impenetrable front, so the DRUSUS couldn't come into the rip. However that is past, at present, no more fights take place at the discharge front. But a question remains open: Who is the mysterious foreign part, to which they owe their homecoming?

Michael Mahoney 2009-09-05

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