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Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara.

Written by: Alfredo Juillet Frascara. First Draft: 10 December 2012 to 11 January 2013. Second draft: 20 March to 18 April 2013. Revision: Monday, April 22, 2013 48.026 words.

Year: 5.351 5562. Places: Ultor, Erina, Lajar, Aurea II, Colosal IV, Knapp. Characters: Gretchen, Median, Doctor AB 631, Tribune Herz, Emperor of Erina and Ultor: Neketh, Commander Robertson Coterraneo, Tribune Werz, Emperor Neketh, Director Margaret and Secretary Betty, Eta Vorkosne, dancer; Commander Hube; Captain Messing; Jeffer the radarist; Emperor Campanel XXX , Admiral Vierkla; Chamberlain Duropus; Captan Pfad, messing Urde, Eroltas; Dr. Luferne; Tribune Herz; General Volker; Prince Waltreber; Mr. Fokker Dusself; Tornber and Unterkunt, Entrepreneurs; Mr. Ashbro, Dorien, Maronbend; Benfo the Guard; Mr. Utork; Commander Shukilaco Brana 2 Armada; Captain Canseliet; Sinn, President of Gewerbs; Admiral Luffor, Elephantia; President Wirbel of Hambur Republic; Ickelgrub, Entrepreneur; Senator Curver, Norton AB.

1.- Erina Planet 2.- Scout party to Lajar planetary system 3.- Luferne bio experiments 4.- Arrival to Aurea II 5.- Protesters against Emperor Volker 6.- The Gusoff secrecy unveiled. 7.- In Colossal IV. page 1 page 8 page 20 page 31 page 45 page 64 page 78

Chapter 1.
Erina Planet. They are happy, here. The one hindrance its the cold weather out the domes! These people are happy with what they had achieved here. There are no rumors of discontent. Median said. A happy society. Im glad to hear that this new colony will rise vigorously. Gretchen said. Its their race- still vibrant after so many generations. Good for them, but they lack power, if the Huinkerios attacks.- AB 361 said. Well, better for us, because we are going to pay a visit to planet Erina III. Perhaps there was something missing in our previous visits that we could perfect. Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Saying that, she starts engines and inside the Sphere they fly and soon they were saying good bye, by radio, to the Ultor Star Fleet commander. In minutes they were already 4 A.U. away from planet Ultor III. This is a fine place for humanity to dwell. Lets hope nobody come to ruin their future.- Median said, looking by a porthole.

From Ultor to Erina the travel was only made in three months and fifteen days. They were happy to see stars approaching much rapidly than in the precedent flight they did on the same spaceship. When fifteen days away from the nearing Erina star, they begin to hear strange broadcasts and apprehension start to mount. Seems Winkerios language! Hope they hadnt invaded our small colony on Erina!- Gretchen said, remembering his time as a Queen there. But when they finally arrive to the orbit all was going well. Sphere calling orbital station Erina: Gretchen is back.- The main computer of the Sphere begins transmitting; soon a Cruiser appears round the planet, stopping alongside the Sphere, after saying: Commander Robertson speaking: welcome to Erina planet! You are invited to our Cruiser. Very well. Two persons are going there!- Gretchen replied by radio, and said to Median: Please stay here while we visit the Cruiser. Any problem and Ill send you a radio message. Good luck.- Median said, opening the hatch for them to get out. 3 GRETCHEN INFORMES ABOUT HER TRIPS. At the Cruiser, its commander, Robertson Coterraneo, saluted them with a guard of honor lined up at both sides of the corridor. Salute to our ex-governor!- He said, and they all stand alert. Thanks; at ease. Gretchen said, with a nice and high voice. The commander officer presents his high ranking officers, and they walked to a cabin where they seat around a virtual table. Wish you could inform us of your whereabouts while you were out of here! By our history books, you and your company have much interest in our people and we thanks for that.- Commander Robertson Coterraneo said. Of course we had been visiting far away planets, where civilization keeps on with new inventions and developments, some of those we had brought here to offer your community.- Gretchen announced. Im thinking you know already about our colonies on Ultor?- Commander Robertson Coterraneo asked her. We had visited them. They are sound and well and happy in their new environ.- Gretchen replied.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara.

Then they talk about those inventions, and also give names of the present men administrating the planet Erina. Our Tribune is S. Herz; the Senators, that are twenty by now, elected him four years ago, and he had been working fine, building edifices and founding new cities. The commander Coterraneo said. Gretchen understands changes. Scores of dozen years had passed since she last was here, and it was logical that the men she knew had gone decrepit and die of old age, in an environ that was preoccupied more with economic expansion than into enlarge the scope of years for their citizens. They ended the reunion, and descended to Erina City in the Sphere, with an escort of three Hunter vessels. They landed at the Army Spaceport where some other fighters Spaceships were already parked. By radio they advised to Gretchen about the ceremony: it will begin half an hour later:- Just wait for half an hour, Miss Gretchen! Our Tribune has already been advised of your presence and hes getting ready to come here. 5 CEREMONIAL WELCOME. Fine, Ill wait with my companions. Gretchen replied. This time Ill be with you.- Median said.- Doctor AB 631 could take care of the Sphere. Of course. Ill be in touch, by radio. The doctor said. When the time comes, however, Gretchen said. Well be present; the three of us. Later, the Doctor will return here alone. And it was so. The Tribune was a dry and tall man in his sixties, dressed in a blue tunic and wrapped with a green cloth. He was standing at the foot of the ramp, and handshake the three Synthetics, saying: Welcome to Erina City! I am Schrim Herz, Tribune. Thanks you very much, Tribune Herz! I am Gretchen and these two are Median and Doctor AB 631. Very pleased. Now lets revise the troops and then well be ready to attend a ceremony at the Administration and political building.- The Tribune said. They walked in front of a line of soldiers dressed in Parade uniforms, and then they went into a Flier to the governmental palace, an eight story building that occupies a whole city block. 6 THE TRIBUNE HERZ WELCOMES GRETCHEN. The ceremony was held in a saloon of huge proportions the whole time being filmed by holographic cameras. No time to return to the Sphere?- Doctor AB 631 asked. Not now, doctor! Wait for my signal. Gretchen said, seeing that all looks were on them at the time. The Tribune gives a fine speech, saying they were much honored by their presence, making a full report of what had transpired since the moment they left the country, under the administration of

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Tribune Sigmund : - Rumors said he was culprit of your departure, and thats what we would like to hear from you. Gretchen frowned: old tales and gossips werent of her liking, but she said:-The Tribune asks me to leave pretending that the people were saying he was a puppet of me, who was one of her advisors. The Tribune Herz reddened and said: He was not a grateful man! But now we are going to be very generous with you. Our emperor Neketh will speak with you about it, and now please receive the applause of gratitude from us all. And they all applauded. 7 EMPEROR NEKETH OF ERINA PLANET. From there, and in a Flier, they were brought to the palace of Emperor Neketh, the nominal ruler of both planets, but in fact, he had very little importance in the rule of the nations. The palace was big and except two or three big saloons, the rest was very simple looking. Emperor Neketh was fat, bald and with only one eye left, after some accident when he was piloting a craft in his youth. He was seated on a golden throne, and when Gretchen and the others come in, he said: Welcome to my kingdom, heroes of old times! Wish you stay here would be pleasant. Thanks, Majesty. - The three synthetics said in reply. Please, seat down! I am old and get to seat for any talk in my schedule! Well, so you have return! Must be an amazing thing to have been away and visiting planets, eh?- The Emperor said, asking, in that way, for a full report

One of the things Gretchen didnt lack was memory, so she explained for two hours telling the to the Emperor , nobles, the Tribune and to some ladies of the Court, everything they had been doing in the more than a century away from the planet. At the end of her relation, she adds: And now that we had return, well be helping in any way we can to develop your science and technology with what we had learned in our trips. The Emperor Neketh was with a headache with so much information, so he waves a hand and said: You dont have to tell me the generous you have been and are prone to be now! Thanks to you and your fellow companions! I will declare you and honored you with the title of Sir, in some future event!! And now, our Tribune will take care of your welfare! Gretchen sensed the blood pressure, temperature, heart rhythm of the old man, that certainly was very tired, so she thanks and leaves the ceremonial room in the midst of an applause. At another room, Tribune Herz said: As I know you are in the least tired, I invite you to our vessel to know this palace. Very well, but our Doctor must return to our vessel to take care of some works there.- Gretchen said. 9 THE C RAY IS DESIRED.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Of course! I will provide him with a Flier.- Tribune Herz said, and soon the Doctor was being flown to the Sphere without delay. I had arrived.- Later he said, by radio, to Gretchen. Fine. The encryption is working fine. She replied, smiling: they had worked on a system that the deciphering was so difficult that was almost impossible to broke by a technology like the one at Erina. Gretchen and Median were also scanning for any improvement made by the Erina dwellers: they had found only developments in the use of telecommunications and better engines, especially the flying vehicles. They finished the visit there, and Tribune Herz said: We lack good powerful weapons. Our Fleet uses only LASER beams and improved missile throwers. The C Ray is not operational since years ago, due to the lack of fuel. We hadnt been able to produce Germanium 30. I see. Well, I must go to the plant and look what they are doing wrong.- Gretchen said. Tribune Herz calls an Aid, explains the situation and then said to Gretchen: Well, here I say good bye! Remember that you are going to be honored with a tittle by the Emperor himself! In our society of today a person without a title is like Coelophysis in a pond of tar.- The Tribune Herz said, permitting himself a short parrot-like laugh. Gretchen bowed in his direction and with Median, she follows the Assistant, who was a Natural man, who said: Well take a Flier, Miss Gretchen. The laboratory its eight blocks away. The edifice was surrounded by a fence, with a gate where nobody was taking care of the dooronly a blipping sound and the gate opens automatically, and only the authorized personnel has that gadget into their possession. The Assistant said:- Miss Margaret is the General Manager. They had sent for her, but you could wait at the anteroom of her office. And descending from the Flier, they walked inside the edifice; at the third floor the Assistant presents her to a Secretary, saying:- The Tribune Herz had sent Miss Gretchen and his two friends here to help, your General Manager is coming here to attend her. 11 DIRECTOR MARGARETH AND HER ASSISTANT BETTY. And to Gretchen, the man said: it has been a pleasure to bring you here, but now I must leave. Good bye. Thanks and farewell.- Gretchen said, smiling. The Secretary was a tall blonde with green eyes. She seems to be overwhelmed to see important persons in front of her, and she said: Good evening! Im Margaret! The private secretary of General manager Miss Margaret. So your names are the same? And how did you differentiate from one another?- Median asked. Oh, Im sorry! Im just Betty! Oh! I was thinking in her name, and I repeat it twice!- The troubled Secretary tried to explain her blunder Gretchen and friends seats, to ease Bettys nerves. Doctor AB 631 said: Hope well be finding good equipment here, not to start from scratch.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Im sure youll find everything very adequate! . Betty said, stumbling to her chair behind a tiny desk made of a grey substance. A noise outside the Corridor, and Miss Margaret appears, blushed and with a comic handful of hair pointing to the left of her hair-do. Oh! You are already here! Welcome! I am Margaret Ausbrechen, at your service... Which one of you have curiosity in our installments?- She asked.

Gretchen presents herself and Median , saying: I am Gretchen, she is Median my associate. I am here to help revive one of the weapons that now are in disuse: the C Ray. Do you know something about it? Miss Margaret , General manager of the laboratory of national sciences, said:- Oh, of course! Pity we havent the necessary components! Not that we cannot understand the principles! But Ill let you talk with our engineers! They could explain the matter better than I could. Gretchen acquiesced and they walk into one of the laboratory halls, where Miss Margaret presents them to her staff. Here are our heroes! Miss Gretchen and Miss Median! They come here to collaborate on the C Ray development.- Miss Margaret Ausbrechen explains. The scientists smiled and bowed in their direction, interested in the project, and its Chief Executive said: I am Sturz Marz and I am happy to have you here, ladies! Welcome, and let me present my coleages: Mr. Kurzerhand, Mr. Ubrig, Mr. Ansin and Mr. Geschlechts. Thanks you very much. Hope well succeed in in this project. Show me the C Ray weapons that you had. I need to find out several things about them, so I could try to find a way to activate their functions.- Gretchen said. 13 ERINA SPACESHIPS NOT FULLY ARMED. Doctor AB 631 sent a radio message in that moment, saying:- All quiet in here. Theres an Army ring circle around the Sphere, after some common people banged our door trying to call me out.Good measure. Well work at the C Ray problem at the laboratory of sciences.- Gretchen replied. Helping them get one of our best weapons?- Dr. AB 631 said, doubtfully. Yes, I am sure these people had good intentions towards us.- Median said. Hope it is as you say. Any problem and Ill get there with the Sphere, if necessary.- Doctor AB 631 said. Gretchen finds cannons on disarm and cannons still inside battleships in the next two months. In all of them the fuel was gone exhaust. We have those cannons in place, waiting for our scout spaceships to return with good news, but no, they have not found the minerals we needed to feed the ray.- Mr. Stur Marz said. Well study this case now we have all the data we needed.- Gretchen said, returning to the Sphere after four months of investigations.

I am sure you knew the answer from day one.- Dr. AB 631 said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Of course. The Germanium 30 could be replaced with Rhodium Rh 106 with an increase of fifty two hours from its 29.9 seconds natural life- that gives the boost to make a C Ray became a reality.- Gretchen said, not going into the detail that a 2 % of Gallium must be applied also. Median said: We must understand that if we activate the C Ray, the Glocke nation will be able not only to defend their planet but also any other threat they face in the future. But we need some amount of real power, while we are here. Its not the case to help them when most needed thanks you and good bye! As you already know, humans must be programmed for to keep on with their evolution towards a nice, strong and beautiful future.- Gretchen explains. So we are to ask for some power. What is going to be this time? Prime ministries, Ministry of sciences?- Dr. AB 631 asked. Well ask for the title of Prince, for each of us. To be a Prince here means a yearly income that is not free: the Emperor gives a section of his kingdom to the Prince to administrate as well as he could- and the twenty per cent is for the Prince and the rest for the Emperor!- So if the Administrating is made without effort and dedication the Prince barely could have for his basic needs.- Gretchen explains. 15 GRETCHEN ASKS FOR A TITLE OF NOBILITY. Really? But the Emperor has people already in place. Some of them are his relatives! You ll find him opposed to your phony idea.- Doctor AB 631 said, trying to dissuade her to ask such a title. Theres nothing wrong with stating what one expect from ones work, isnt it?- Gretchen asked. None whatsoever.- Median replied. Very well. Or they made us three part of the nobility, or we just stroll around for quite a while, but not giving them our secrets.- Gretchen said. She sent notice of her request through the astonished Tribune Herz to the Emperor. The man was everything but pleased Oh, Miss Gretchen! Its very difficult that our Emperor Neketh could consent with your idea! Not that you dont deserve it, of course! But in his long life on the throne, our Emperor has never declare a Synthetic person a Prince! As you could have seen, Synthetic beings are almost minimal in our present society!- Herz said, vehemently. I consider you a valuable channel to reach Emperor Neketh. Gretchen said, looking dangerous. Er yes, of course. I was only stating the facts. I willingly ask our Emperor about this. Just give me a couple of days.- The troubled Tribune Herz finally said. Gretchen went back to the Sphere and waited. Five days later, not a response was received, and Doctor AB 631 went to see the Tribune Herz, who excuses himself, through secretaries, to attend him at the time. Doctor AB went back to Gretchen and they talked about it. This was a hideous humiliation! We were honored but they look on us as mere helpers, without any merit to be inserted in the Administrative level!- Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. The Emperor Neketh does not want us in the nobility- possibly he believes that with our ignored, but long span of life, that eventually could threat the inheritance of his family as heirs to the throne.- Dr. AB 631 said. Kings are the most jealous persons when about rights are concerned.- Median said. 17 THE SPHERE TO DIANA ISLAND. Im inclined not to help this Empire of two inhabited planets. This is hardly an Empire because its own planet with no more than eighty million people, and other, in another planetary system, with less than half a million people- in fact, just a mere colony! If this people ignore us, well ignore them.- Gretchen said, because she was very angry. They moved the Sphere to Diana Island, and stayed there, listening to the news from the government of the Emperor Neketh. No news was issued about them at all- as if they had never shown up! But other news begins to appear: Emperor Neketh sentimental life was for ever producing scandal, because he was always on the search for younger and beautiful women. Now he was romancing Eta Vorkosne, ex dancer, who was urging him to see a way to expand his empire. Looking to the nearer side at hand, namely the planetary system of Lajar, which was currently owned by the Emperor of the Huinkerios? You must leave a mark in History, Neketh! Not only because of your good taste for women!- Eta Vorkosne said.

Thanks, darling! But political matters mustnt trouble your beautiful head.- The Emperor Neketh said, caressing her. She was rather cold with him for a week, and Neketh was puzzled about it: he doesnt understand why a woman who was receiving much favors, could be wanting things shell never get. But the insistence of her gets an ally: Commander of the Fleet, Sir Have, was contacted by Eta Vorkosne, at his own office. Milady! You here? Please seat down and tell me what our Emperor wants of me!- Sir Hube said; he was a bachelor with fifteen years of commanding the Imperial Fleet. Oh, dont you worry so much, Sir Hube! I had come here on my own accord! And I get to speak with you and nobody else must know what I am about to tell you.- Eta said, showing some more legs than usual- she had, by the way, superbly built legs, white and creamy. Er of course, dear lady. I am all ears.- He said, seating in an armchair next to her and not behind the desk, because he was well aware that this lady could snap her nicely cared fingers, and he could lost his post. The emperor Neketh dont want to hear my pledge! I am sure we, as an Empire, need a boost to emerge as a strong entity. I think we can aggregate another world to our empire!- Eta said, moving her head so her hair could move as a wave of colored hues. Ah, very clever idea! But, where is that world you are seeking?- Hube asked.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Lajar is the next planetary system! Is ruled by a feeble bisexual alien, and maintained in his rule just because nobody threatens them! I am sure we could win a war against their antiquated spaceships! - Eta said, moving her legs a little. Oh, well, I am not so sure of the quality of the Huinkerios fleet nowadays- we dont have spies on that realm. Commander Have said. I know you could press the Emperor in that direction: you could be my ally in this Crusade- youll gain a name, and I can be very generous to you. She said, licking her lips.

Commander Hube was not aroused by the presence of this beautiful woman, but instead he was terrified, thinking in what could happen to him if caught with that lady in an improper situation-. Because of it, he stands up and went behind a desk, saying:- I am convinced that your word is highly superior than mine, and of course, I will present the matter unto him at the first occasion I could. She walks to his seat, saying:-- You must not be worried about finding an occasion: I will provide it.- And she presses a tight unto his arm. Sir Hube moved away and she laughed, saying:- Are you afraid of me, Sir Hube? Im just a lonely girl. He looks at the lonely girl, that was a superb woman and she saw the flicker of flame in the man she kissed him, saying:- If all goes well, Ill give you a nice gift. After some other niceties, she departed. Sir Hube produces a mirror from his desk, looking at his reddened face. He assure himself that never in the world was he going to accept any gift from that lonely girl, especially if it was a sexual one. 21 Chapter 2. SCOUT PARTY TO LAJAR PLANETARY SYSTEM. Pressed by the Commander and by the woman he was so interested in, the Emperor Neketh accepted to send a scout party to spy on the Lajar planetary system before any full scale act of war. Thats the way it should be, lady Eta! We cannot just go there in force, and seize a whole planetary system with closed eyes.- Commander Hube said. They were in a small bungalow at the rich section of the city of Erina, where they were inconspicuously reunited. Oh, what a disappointment! And you cannot hasten things a little? - She asked, walking from one side of the room to the other. Sir Hube looks by the window- it was a quiet neighborhood- and replied, Perhaps a little! Only if you ask me to do it! She stared at him, and approaching his bust to the chest of the noble, she murmured: How do you want me to ask you about? She kissed him. No matter he wasnt responding- and then said: There! We are in love! He stared, immovable, and Eta Vorkosne laughed.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Later, commander Hube calls for an able captain to a meeting, and said: You are the ones that will provide our Empire with enough data to be protected from the alien Huinkerios. The four captains watched him without a sign of emotion. They were trained to face the unexpected without a blink. Your mission is to approach Lajar planetary system , collect data and come back undetected. You will be provided with the best Hunter vessels we have.- Commander Hube said. Im married. I expressly ask from you to give extra incomes to my wife in order to raise our two kids.- Captain Eroltas said. Sir Hube reddened and said: Every astral pilot has insurance ready, in any case it happens a disgrace to him during the service of his duties. I know, Sir. Im asking for a real compensation here. Something that not just give my inheritors a wage and a scholar bonus to learn a trade, but a couple of millions on the side.- Captain Eroltas said. Sir Hube waits some seconds to say: But if I give you that extra bonus, I will be opening the door for all the four of you to ask for the same thing. Look, Sir, theres always time to spend some money paying for whats right! You know theres a huge chance nobody of us could come back! Those Winkerios had not been born yesterday: they know what to do in sciences! Their tracing devices. Sir Hube cut out short, by saying: All right! But this bonus will be for just the four of you! I cannot give bonuses for your whole crews! And that was it- they received encrypted documents for their families to present if they were not receiving their due The four Fliers were exactly the same in fire power and engine performances: the commander of the space wing was Captain Eroltas, and the other tree officers were: Captain Pfad, Captain Messing, and Captain Hurde. The crew was of six men in every Flier: radar, cannons, engines but of course, they could act independently on all four of those mission specialist jobs- because they were taught to man everything inside the spaceship. Captain Eroltas said to his wife, Amasheitan: Sorry for the rest of the crew! Only I get a special bonus! If I dont come back, you ll receive two millions sopes, plus a pension and scholar bonuses for our two sons. Oh, well, I suppose youll come back! You are very cunning!- She said, but then she begins to cry.

The four Fliers departed two days later, and in midflight their captain explains to the crew the true mission they had to perform. Captain Messing was saying:- We have an important objective: to spy on the Huinkerios, to see how many warships are in the Lajar planetary system- take pictures and if possible, get some more data. Same instructions received the other three crews- it sounds easy, but nobody was sure of it.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. The trip was made with no Warp drive, as the Hunters hadnt that capacity. Six months later, they were at the sight of the last planet of the Lajar star. This planetary system has six planets. The first two are made of rock. The third is terraformed and his name is Campanel: it has two moons. The fourth planet is made of rock, but the last two planets are gaseous and enormous.- Captain Eroltas said, looking by the porthole. They passed near the last planet, and there were neither spy satellites nor Huinkerios vessels. So far so good! Well split at the sixth planet: my Hunter and the one commanded by captain Pfad will keep on in our present course. The other two captains will wait at the sixth planets orbit until called by me.- Eroltas said. This was not of the like by Captains Messing or Hurde, so they present ideas for to keep on going into the inner planets, but Commander Eroltas was adamant and did not change of idea. So, two Fliers keeps on going without problems until they arrive to the fourth planet, that was a rocky one, so there were cupolas and spaceships coming and going. Commander Eroltas ordered absolute silence to and from the Hunters. With large long range radar working, they begin to make a map with everything pinpointed with names and descriptions. They stayed there, without leaving the place, in order to pass undetected by warships from the Huinkerios Empire. Seen that there were not much vigilance, Commander Eroltas sent a single message, encoded, to the ones at the sixth planet- telling them to approach. In two days the Hunters of Captain Messing and Hurde appears, and with lights they communicate. Captain Eroltas said: Were studying their society through their radio and holographic emissions. Youll be going to the third planet and work from afar, sensing every spaceship that moves around- especially warships. The two small Hunters departed immediately, while commander Eroltas kept being at the nearness of the fourth planet, listening and learning from Huinkerios emissions of radio and Holographic methods. Four weeks later, Captain Eroltas said to captain Pfad: You just stay here until my return: I will be flying to the surface of planet IV. it will be very dangerous for you and your crew, Sir. Remember they are our enemies.- Captain Pfad said. Yes, I will try to come back, but if its not possibly, you just return to Erina with every bit of information we could had collected until that moment.- Captain Eroltas ordered him. With his Flier, they begin to approach the fourth planet. When near it, he saw several cupolas shining with a dull brilliance on the cold and dark terrain of the IV planet that has no atmosphere.

The goal was to take a peek at the Space Fleet hangars-. The takeoff and landing at that place were very repeatedly done. They seat the Flier on a ravine 3.5 kilometers away, and walked by the ravine and up, to film the Base of the Huinkerios. Four days they were filming and taking notes, until the time to depart was

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. triggered with a Huinkerios patrol detecting their Flier, when they were returning from twenty hours vigilance: they saw a light suspended over the Flier. They saw our vehicle! Get hurry!- Captain Eroltas said to their crew. They run as fast as the terrain allowed, and get inside the Flier. Captain Eroltas start the engines and accelerated in a curve- the Huinkerios followed suit. They are sending missiles, Sir.Force field! Lets see if we can escape!- Captain Eroltas ordered. The Flier soon left behind that exploratory vessel, not designed for high speeds. The missiles blow half the Flier, sending it turning and sliding into open space. As the captain Eroltas and his crew were using the spacesuits due to the fact they were using it during his spying missions, the half number of them conserved their life, but not the ones at the site of the impact: they were blown to bits. The pursuers locked its spaceship to that wreck and finds captain Eroltas and two other crewmen alive. They were transferred to the Exploration vessel and once they were without their helmets: the captain asked then: Who are you and what are you doing here? 27 CAPTAIN EROLTAS IS CAPTURED. Captain Eroltas was not in the mood for interrogation, and notwithstanding he had learned the Huinkerios language, he pretends not to understand. The other men comprehend what was he pretending, and did the same gestures. Take them to the Doctor! Hell revise them and hell makes them talk!- The Huinkerios captain ordered. The doctor looks at them and said: Humans! I recognize their white skin and their smaller eyes! This seems to have the male sex but undress them, to be sure! This he was saying to the guards that had brought them. For the sake of dignity, Captain gives a fight, so there were sent more soldiers, that come after the first two minutes, they were put on top of a table, handcuffed and examined. From there, they were sent to a cabin, where they waited. At least they return our clothes, captain!- Joffer said (he had been the radarist). Yes, - but beware: everything we said it ll be recorded. So please stay silent about all except trivial things.- Eroltas said. But they were already drugged and in the next quarter of hour, they start throwing up all of what they were doing since the arrival of the Huinkerios Empire. This is serious! Very serious! Well send these creatures to our Headquarters! I guess Ill get a promotion! - The captain of the exploratory spaceship said. The three men were transported to planet Lajar 3 Campanel. The headquarters of the Imperial Space Fleet was located less than two kilometers from the city of Campanel. 28 LAJAR 3: CAMPANEL.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Campanel XXX receives them at a small room in one of the public edifices; eight soldiers were posted between him and the three prisoners- in the past it was the reluctance of captain Eroltas to speak in Huinkerios language. The Emperor didnt talk directly- his Chamberlain was the one who heard his mumbling and translate it to the prisoners. The Chamberlain said: Our Emperor is asking why you people sent spies to his planet. We were just visiting this planetary system without any bad intention.- Captain Eroltas replied. Your actions are contrary to your saying! You are planning an invasion!- The Chamberlain said. Perhaps we should have asked for permission before coming into the IV planet. As we saw no patrol spaceships, we thought we could visit Was saying Captain Eroltas, but the King said something and the Chamberlain said:- You are judged and condemned to remain the rest of your life in prison! Guards: takes them to the dungeons! The guards take them out of Emperor Campanel XXX presence, who then said to the Chamberlain: Our future is at stake! Put our space Fleet on the alert! Use discretion: no need to alarm our people! But every spaceship able to take off must go up and defend our boundaries! Yes, Your Majesty.- The Chamberlain replied, leaving the room. At the corridor, three Admirals and the Commander of the Army were expecting to see him. Gentlemen-women! Please accompany me to my quarters! Good to see you all here: it saves me time .What news has you from our Majesty?- Admiral Vierkla asked, eagerly. At my desk! Here on a corridor any eavesdropping will cost us a reprimand, or worst.- The Chamberlain said, knitting his brow. Once at his office, the Admirals seats in flimsy chairs in front of his big desk behind which the Chamberlain seats on a leather big black armchair. Recently, as you may know, a spaceship from the realm of the monosexual humanoids gets into our midst to spy on us. His Majesty declares red alert to all our forces. The Commanders and the Admiral looks one another, half expecting such orders. You may proceed to defend our planets and our outer perimeter. I know it will be a difficult matter- Im neither a military man, nor I know much about strategic. Its up to you how to conduct this order in the best way possible: no alien craft must sneak inside.- The Chamberlain said. I am sure the best option its to defend each planet with a ring of spy satellites and a garrison of five or six fast spaceships. A circle of iron, so to speak. To deploy our spatial forces out in a perimeter will be a nonsense: its an orb of trillions of square kilometers we just cannot cope with.- Admiral Vierkla said. Do your own way, then! But do it well. Chamberlain Duropus said, coughing. Admiral Vierkla said: Well need a lot of resources. Perhaps you should tell our emperor this new project of him will cost hum eighty billion Sopes .( Note: We had translate the coinage to the Knappian currency). Eighty billions? Well, I guess its not much, to protect and defend our worlds.- Chamberlain Duropus said. Good! Perhaps , and along the way, some more money will be required! It all depends on the size we want to give to this operation.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara.

Admiral Vierkla said, just to see the face of the Chamberlain while it turns white from the usual orange color. Be as it may, the Army forces went very active: the Warships went very active: the spaceships swarmed out from their hidden places, shinning as new and occupying orbits around the six planets. Where once were not intelligent signs, now it was there to see, in all of their astounding technical advancements. Fortunately the rest of the Erina expedition could get out the Lajarian planetary system and speeding towards their home planet they could arrive and deliver every detail to the commander Habe. He debriefed every crewman from the expedition: with awe, Commander Habe finds that the secrecy he boasts while the Fliers were absent now was a total failure. The commander ends the three weeks of interrogations to the three crews that appear after the capture of their commander in chief. At the table, Captain Pfad, Messing and Urde were at the left side, and in front of them were the commander Hube and three other high ranking officers. 31 THE INVASION IS POSTPONED. Habe said: I have come to a decision: our invasion towards Lajar its utterly impossible, thanks to the blunders you had committed there. The captains looks at him straight it the eyes, and Captain Pfad says. Pardon me, commander! We accomplished our duties, and only captain Eroltas get caught. The Huinkerios never saw us. Be as it may you represents failure to me1 Defeat! You are going to be transferred at the sixth planet! There you will patrol that silent orb, and in case the huinkerios enemy vessels approaches you will sent us notice! But you arent allowed to escape! My order is to fight the enemy!We are warriors and doesnt know but obey our superiors!- Pfad said, with a face purplish black with humiliation. Yes, that is saving you to be court martialed! Now, youll wait for the transference at your usual office! You are dismissed!- Commander Habe said. Internally, he was not happy to react like that- he knows that those braves accomplished their duties with courage but with the big boss enraged (the Emperor Campanel XXX ) they understand they were going to be the scapegoats. At the Barracks, the three captains talked about this injustice: I did all they told me! Our commander Eroltas asks me to wait and record as much radio emissions I could! And that was what I did! When news were heard about our commander was caught for spying on the Huinkerios, I flee! Same thing was what I did! I delivered to our headquarters, lots of useful information! 32 But look how they pay us!- Captain Hurde said. Were soldiers and Ill be retiring from duties soon. No way could I resign to-day: I would lose every bit of my pension.- Captain Messing said- both other officers were in the same situation.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. A year in those solitudes will erase any comment against us. I see it as a fair price for the incoming years of idleness. Captain Hurde said. The Hunkerios will never show up here! Theyre as afraid of us as we of them! So out patrols around planet VI will be sort of a vacation! Pfad said. I wish we could desert this kingdom that has treated us so bad. They say our race come from Brana One- but I am not saying we did the Jump. Just only to attain the next planetary system beyond Ultor. Messing said: The others didnt follow his train of thought- they were too much hurt to think in a new beginning. Gretchen heard of this campaign and call on captain Messing, saying at the meeting: Sorry to know you are demoted to a secondary position. Well, dear hero, this is life! Sometimes an injustice is made unto defenseless people.- Captain Messing said. I wonder what happens to Captain Eroltas and his men! Perhaps its time to try to find him.Gretchen said, much to the surprise of the astronaut. Really, do you want to go there? The last I knew was that he was imprisoned at the very capital city of the capital world of that Empire.- Captain Messing said. See? Thats a beginning! We know already where to begin searching!- Gretchen said, with a smile. 33 RESCUING CAPTAIN EROLTAS. Count with me! And perhaps with my crew too! Imagine: coming back with our commanding officer could make of us real heroes!- Captain Messing said. Very well! I pretend to depart in five days- if you are going to tell your former crew, make sure you are not in a hot spot if they beguine to tell everyone about it- it will spoil the final effect.Median recommended. Yes- the worst would be to come back, years later, empty handed. I understand about the secrecy.- Captain Messing said. Be here in five days.- Gretchen replied, finally. When the captain was gone, Median said: Hope we could manage it! Or some useful men will be dead! You mean captain Messing and his crew? They deserve washing up their names, dont you think?- Gretchen asked her, mildly. Yes. Sometimes the honor of a person needs to be established without a doubt. Median said. They bought some food for the naturals and waits at the private spaceport they were using. At the fifth day, Captain Messing present himself with four other military men, saying: I present you our new companions: they understand the implications of this mission and it will be O.K. if none of us returns without our commander, although some are married. Gretchen knew that those men were making huge sacrifices to rescue captain Eroltas back to where he belongs

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara.

Five days later, Captain Messing presents the crew and volunteers he had for this mission: Fluygzeug, Elsern and Zuname. There are excellent mission specialists, brave and reliable under all conditions. The captain assured them. Gretchen departed from Erina normally and several days later they were already out of the Erina planetary system: Gretchen had hibernate every natural on the hermetic pods, traveling now at Warp 8.2 Well get there in just six months! But of course were not in a tour! We must bypass the gaseous planets and into the inhabited planet without being detected!- Gretchen remembers them. The doctor said:- Old is the system by which an object could become undetectable by super radar or visual observation! I doubt these people could detect us, using alien technology. Its more easy to spot an asteroid and fly with it in unison!- Median said. They did try to find a suitable asteroid- bot of the six that had an acceptable orbit, five were very slow and the sixth makes a curve when nearing Campanel III It has to be the sixth of them! Perhaps we could move it a little, to fulfill our needs. Gretchen said. All right! Lets land on it and take cover!- Dr. AB said. For more than four weeks they were stuck near a mound on that asteroid that wobbles more than the count, although that movement was no impediment for the synthetic people. Different was when Gretchen awoke the naturals: they declare dizziness, headache and disorientation to such extent that she moves away from the asteroid, approaching the III planet in a slow curve she expect could pass undetected by whoever was in charge of the long range radars. The trick pays off. They could descend, nearing a freighter, and when at the atmosphere, rushing to the principal city, Campanel (Lajar 3). Campanel city was located in the North West hemisphere, on the big and awkward continent of Pilsforg, or Shinning waters, in Huinkerios language. They landed on a forest, and they were already well aware of the costumes people were using at the city : a long robe, hats of different colors and shapes, and shoes, usually without high or medium heels.

Men at the sphere were laughing when looking one another and Gretchen said: Thanks you dont need high heels! Or you would have stumbled to the ground! Ill stay on board. Any trouble with the natives, and Ill fly away this site will be the site for all purposes.. So if you dont see me here parked, you just wait as much as you could, because Ill be returning every time I could.- Doctor AB said. Hope well be not delaying much! Money will be no problem- here there are basic needs provided by the kingdom! Locomotion and food! The shelter is very rude implemented- soon youll see the quarters for the poor people-. Thousands of people living in one single building.Gretchen lectures them.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Once on the streets, they asked where the principal jail in town was, and a lady- gentleman said: Oh, the dungeons of our Emperor? Its an old castle, near the river! Youll recognize it: there are guards running around it all day long! And soon they were staring at the grim construction building that had three towers atop a rectangular building three stores high-. In all, more than seventy meters of masonry. They went around it without attracting suspicions. Gretchen said: Well wait for the night Ill enter by some of the windows. But, they seem all barreled up! I am sure - Was saying captain Messing, but she cuts him short: Dont you worry! I ll bring a saw with me- a diamond toothed saw- no old iron could resist its bite!- Gretchen explains him. At three hours in the morning, she and Median climbs like if they were monkeys, and soon they were at one of the towers. Gretchen finds a window that opens to a corridor- there she uses the electric saw, and in less than three minutes she had already one bar, cleanly cut. Two more to go!- Median whispered Gretchen was working with care, not to arouse the dead with the grinding, but it was impossible not to make some noise. When the third bar was cut, they get inside. Gretchen said: Well revise this entire floor; its badly lit and the cells has only a small hole to look inside them, but we must work with what we have: you take the left side, me the right one. If you find the prisoners at your side of the tower, you just left the tower with them: Ill understand. Pity we arent using the radio. Median said, but Gretchen was adamant: no radio broadcast inside the dungeon! Chamber after chamber of prisoners were saw by the two female synthetics, faces of despair, of solitude; faces with tears running down their cheeks, and some of them had eyes where the fire of madness had replaced the light of sanity. She arrives to a curve- a guard stumbled on her and looks amazed to find a woman clad in a black suit- Gretchen fired his LASER pistol and the guard stumbled to the floor.

Gretchen melted the lock of the next cell and grabbing that guard, she pushes him-her inside. A big woman 2.30 meters high come out, growing: she seems not to see her savior, and walked down the corridor. Gretchen hurried by the new corridor, peeking in every cell, but captain Eroltas wasnt there. Nothing at my side of the tower.- Median said when they met at the starting point. Neither at my side. Lets climb floor by floor: if one of us finds the Naturals from Erina, just call the other by radio saying:- Found it! And that will suffice. All right, lets go ultra-fast!- Median said, thinking in that giant woman prisoner she saw at a corridor, eating something juicy.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Floor by floor they kept revising. Sometimes with tense minutes waiting for a guard to complete his round thanks to their velocity they had completed the whole of that tower, without finding Captain Eroltas. Lets start with the next tower! What a lousy luck we are having!-. Median said when they met at the starting point. Its 05:30 hours! Soon the appearance of the star will inundate everything with light the humans will use to pinpoint us very easily.- Gretchen said, adding: Well have to stop! Median said:- lets start right now! Seems we are running out of luck! 39 A FOOT IS MISSING. But this time they were lucky: at the first corridor, Median finds captain Eroltas looking by a peephole on the door, and melted the lock immediately. Free at last! Thanks you. Captain Eroltas said, standing near his bed. Hurry! The star is raising and we have not enough time!- Median said, seeing he didnt walkbut then the captain moves forwards and went to the floor with a dull knock. What happened with you?- Median said, and then she realized that a foot was missing in his body. What they did to you?- Median asked, becoming very serious. Not their fault! But you get to help me walk away!- Captain Eroltas said, and so did her , almost heaving him up all the way down the outside wall, that had many stone bulks that helps very much when descending to the ground. When arriving to the street, Gretchen and the Naturals help Captain Eroltas, carrying him as in a stretcher. Thanks, my friends! I was sure I was going to die at that cell!- Eroltas kept repeating as he was not entirely recovered of the happy surprise. They walked by the road and into the woods, at 10:30 hours they were walking into the Sphere. Are we going upwards, commander?- Doctor AB 631 asks Gretchen. Well stay here. Daylight has come.- She replied, very concerned by the risks they were going to face. At the Infirmary, the doctor looks unto the wounds of captain Eroltas and said: Missing beyond repair, that stump of a feet you still have. Well put you a mechanical device: one that will replace what you had lost.

At noon, an aerial vehicle passed near the Sphere that was now camouflaged with branches and leaves. They hadnt spotted us! No radio alarm is being broadcasted.- Median murmured, afraid that this Huinkerios could trap Captain Eroltas for the second time, a valuable man who had fought for his country. Attention! Something more is approaching! Force field activated now!- The voice of the Sphere main computer says by all the loudspeakers throughout the vessel.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Median runs out the force field encompassed ten meters around the Sphere, so she could walk out without being stopped. Half way the perimeter she saw a strange contraption. It was a head attached to a machine by levers and tubes- it was hovering one meter above the ground, moving slowly towards the Sphere. It stops when reaching the force field. Its a head.- Median said by radio. A head, yes: we are seeing it through the monitor. The force field will stay on. It could be a bomb of some kind.- Gretchen suggested. Median talks to the object, but has no response. Some green and red light beguine to flicker on the rear part of the machine that head was attached on. The day was ending when another figure comes about- a truck with metal covers on top. It brakes near the head which looks tiny in comparison. A voice come out of the truck through a radio transmitter, saying: To the ones inside the round vehicle: I am doctor Luferne and I come in peace. Drop the force field for me to talk with you freely. You are talking to us already. Median said, replying in the same wave band. But I cannot see you with the force field on.- The person at the truck said. Doctor AB 631 said, by radio:- Do you own that head we are looking at?- And he was interested in the biologic implications of it. She is my wife. Your wife is a head? Yes. For all practical uses, she doesnt need hands or legs.- The person in the truck said. Gretchen said: Descend from the truck if you want to enter our vessel. Very well. And we dont want your wife inside. Then shell resent the prohibition you are making.For our own security we must doubt of everything strange. - Gretchen replied. A man descended from the armored truck and approaches the force field, that disappears suddenly, but when he gets close, the force field was again activated.

Hi! I saw you through the camera of my wife. It seems you are in trouble? Or do you need something I could help you obtain.- The man said- he was tall and dressed in a kaki colored one piece garment. We are just here, resting for a while. We dont need a thing. But tell us about your wifes head. Tell us if it not something un-ethical to let her live as she is now. Median asked him. The man puts his hands on his waist and said: Sorry about not having your set of ethics! Please come in to talk!- Median said, not to produce bad effect on the guest. At the observation chamber, the man seats at one of the comfortable seats and said: Nice place you have here! Exploring? Yes. We are here visiting a friend- that was injured. Oh, what a pity? And hes well, now? Not quite! Organs? A foot.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. An infection? Were studying it. Could I see him? Im a kind of a doctor myself. Self taught, Im afraid to say- but of course, I had accomplished things, no doctorate chirurgical person had ever dreamed of.- Luferne said, proudly. Perhaps its because they are constricted to the ethics they had learnt while at the University.Median said. Most possibly.- Luferne said, laughing. Gretchen guided him to the Infirmary, where captain Eroltas was sedated and put to sleep. Now! A serious injury! Seems it wasnt infection at all! The man said, producing a magnifying glass and looked the stump by all sides. Then, he seats on a stool, looking at that leg, humming to himself. And what method of repair are you suggesting, Sir?- Dr. AB asked him. Im thinking.- The guest replied. I am thinking, also- my idea is to provide a cyber-mechanism, made of alloy, that could replace that severed foot.- Dr. AB said. No.- The guest said, adamantly. No? And what do you suggest?- Median intervened, seeing that the doctor AB had remained astonishingly quiet. There are ways, new methods, to grow a new foot made of cells, from the same cells this poor crippled soul has in his leg.- The guest said. But I see you hadnt donned that on your own wife.- Dr. AB said, ironically. The man disordered his already disheveled hair and said: In that epoch I was very interested in mechabiology. In fact, was the only thing I was interested on in that time- so I use my knowledge on her, who had a terrible accident, so her body was totally maimed? We were at a place far from the civilized centers. So I use my knowledge that nervously was acquired by the fun of it but now there was a dear necessity to use it. So I severed the head, inserts on a neutral environ and use an artificial heart and an oxygen pump to keep on with her life. No: she is alive, although she can communicate with me through a complicated way, because she has no voice-. I tried some time ago, to provide air flowing through her vocal cords, but she becomes very ill so I drop the case.- The visitor said. 44 I would be very interested in your theory if you present me some of your previous experiments, if any._ Gretchen said. About the mechabiology?- That man asked wrinkling his nose. No: about the growing of missing parts.- Gretchen pressed him. Ah, well, I have some examples at my truck. The man said. Well be moving from here soon, so why dont we go seeing it right away?- Gretchen said. Of course. But first, show me your spaceship- I wonder how it looks by the interior.- The visitor said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Lets present us, first: I am Gretchen, the captain. My crew is Miss Median, and the doctor Abelard. Our passengers are Captain Messing , flight specialists Mr. Flugzeug, Mr. Besern and Mr. Zuname.- Gretchen said. Good to know you all! By the way, my wifes name is Verbla. Now lets see our Sphere.- Gretchen invited him, and in thirty minutes she shows him the most important sections, avoiding the weapon section and others. Fine vessel is this! Wish to have one, but I am economically bankrupt. I only have my truck.- Mr. Luferne confided in a sad tone. Gretchen and the doctor AB 631 went with him to his truck- inside the 12 x 4 meters wide, he has everything imaginable: instruments of rare facture, burners, retorts, furnaces, and it was hard to tell what was plain junk from usable things Here I have some examples.- Mr. Luferne said, producing some jars. Inside them, some organic materials were floating in a yellow liquid with streaks of red filaments that seems to be blood. 45 Chapter 3. LUFERNE BIO EXPERIMENTS. This one, with two arms, was a stump! Originally, a deer without legs. You mean without the four legs?- Mr. Zuname asked, horrified. Yes, I eat the legs. Good meat! These experiments did not deprive me to eat! Im not rich and proteins are welcomed.- Luferne said. And these examples are only related to missing limbs and legs, or do you explore more delicate sections? - Median asked him. Unfortunately, I have failed to produce whole organs. That they try to grow, indeed they try, and very hard I should say- but they fail . Grotesque outgrows everywhere.- Dr. Luferne said. Dr. AB 631 takes one sample, saying:- This seems to be a successful experiment, yes? Indeed: two legs anew.- Luferne glowed. Give me this sample for further study. If the examination did satisfy me, perhaps we could let you lay a hand on behalf of our crippled captain.- Dr. AB 631 said. Luferne mumbled for himself, looking the jar and Dr. AB 631s hands and then said: Very well! But you get to return that sample to me: I am very jealous of my successes. Of course.- Dr. AB 631 said, understanding the strange feelings of this half genius. They left Dr. Luferne alone, and at the mess hall the Naturals and the Synthetics talked about Luferne and his experiments. I guess this doctor could try any mixture of his compounds in order to get fun, as he declares- of course, I understand our captain Eroltas will prefer an organic foot than a mechanical contraption.- Captain Messing said. 46 At dawn, Gretchen calls on the Dr. Luferne, saying: Its time to depart, Doctor. Were leaving. If you want your sample back, please come out of your vehicle.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Dr. Luferne come out, carrying a satchel, and seeing that Gretchen was with the sample, he receives it, saying: And tell me, did your doctor finds something of interest in this sample? Hes working on it- but we must depart now.- Gretchen said. I am very interested into accompany you. I could leave, leave the truck here, but I assume it will get deteriorated if my stay with you prolongs much in time. I understand. Youre welcome: our doctor will be helping you in some experiments, if you are interested in the treatment of our captain Eroltas. Gretchen said. The eyes of Dr. Luferne shines with pleasure and said: All right, open the hatch! Im coming in! The truck went inside the haul and it was secured with care, in case of a persecution by the Huinkerios. Median raises the spaceship and they soared in it to the zenith. The radar gives the alert. Three hunters are moving towards us. Evasion maneuver is needed.- The main computer said. Median signaled Gretchen to fire. She fired three fragmentation bombs that damaged one of those Huinkerios fighters. Median was increasing speed and when seeing open space, she activated the warp engines, fleeing from the Huinkerios realm. Were safe now.- Median said, for the relief of her passengers. 47 Well reach Erina in six months. The naturals should go into deep sleep now- food is not aplenty.- Gretchen said. But the doctor Luferne must work on his experiments!- Dr. AB 631 said. Yes, he could keep on with us. But the rest must be cryiogenized. Gretchen demanded again. So, the captain Messing and his three friends went to the chambers to be get asleep. I wonder what they will say at Erina, when they see captain Eroltas alive and kickging!- Messing said. They will give us a medal! The cheapest way to get rid of us!- Zuname said. Ill give my medal to my mum, so she could put it alongside the one my father earns at the Infantry. Flugsezug said. At the Infirmary, Dr. AB 631, Dr. Luferne and the Head were looking at the stump of Captain Eroltas leg. It looks sane, now. Pity we cannot find the missing foot!- Dr. AB said, remembering the rescue of the captain. It guess we have to work on his DNA and grow some cells. A path of cells must be set in that stump, previously: the genetic information comes later.- Dr. Luferne said. The Head moves to a side and a gurgling sound comes from the boxes at the rear. Shes peeing! No wonder. Women pee a lot.- Dr. Luferne said, and a strange odor pervaded the Infirmary, but the AB 631 felt it not, because he had no olfactory senses. They worked four days on the cells- a patch was set in place. Captain Eroltas was mildly sedated but able to speak.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. I wonder if you two knows what you are about to do. I dont want to became a freak at a circus.He said. Never youll be in that position! I assure you my procedures have been tested before.- Dr. Luferne said. In humans? Well, not exactly in humans- in rats and rabbits! But the principle its the same.- Dr. Luferne said, scratching his left leg. Captain Luferne was very enthusiastic but also full of doubts. He was choosing the most natural method of recovery- although it was the most dangerous. One of the strongest points in his selection was women: he doesnt want to have to sleep with half a leg- it was embarrassing when having a woman at the side A couple of months later, Dr. Luferne said: I am certain we had achieved the means to progress in our achievements. Data of it is in my books. AB 631 had already read on that documents that says human growths starts at conception and proceeds through various identification able developmental stages. The process of growth depends on both genetic and environmental factors that combine to determine an individuals eventual height. The genetic control of statural growth is becoming increasingly clear. Many genes have been identified that are required for normal development and function of the pituitary in general, and that control the growth hormone insulin-like growth factor axis in particular. Mutations of these genes have been shown to be responsible for abnormal growth in humans and animals. So , I use these growths to replicate what once was a leg or an arm, or both. Doctor AB believed in the science Dr. Luferne apparently had developed. The injections begins for four days every time at 20.00 hours, the Dr. Luferne injected the solution of a leg. At the fourth day, the swelling was ugly to look upon. Gretchen said It looks terribly wrong! Stop your treatment, Dr. Luferne or your patient will die of fever! And Dr. Luferne stops, afraid and scared to see the swelling- that has never occurred before perhaps because his other patients were rats and mice Two days later, from the growth appears a yellow bone that has a dimension of twenty five centimeters. Captain Eroltas was sedated, in order to prevent him to scratch that bone, because he mumbled that his foot irks a lot Two more days, and the bone covers itself with a leathery substance- then in the next weeks, more and from the point of the bone growth other bones, other leathery substances, and in a month Captain Eroltas has a new foot only with the superficial appearance of the foot of an animal- coarse, dry, but alive. Guess you have some successes here, Dr. Luferne! Not quite a human foot, but a foot none the less!- Median said. Perhaps the percentages were slightly wrong. But it works! - Dr. Luferne said, happily. The head was forever standing on the way of others, so Dr. AB said: You should let your wife on the truck, Doctor. One of these days someone will fall on her!

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 50 Dr. Luferne gets red in the face, humiliated by the remark, and went with the Head inside of the truck, and remained there. Seeing captain Eroltas was well and recovering, they hibernate him for the rest of the voyage. Hell be well by the time we arrive to Erina planet! And our doctor Luferne must go under deep sleep . Go and tell him.- Gretchen said to Median. But when the knocks on the truck were finally given, nobody opens the door. Seems to me hes really piss off!- Median said, when returning to deck one. Very well, leave him alone! Hell come here when he gets more calmed.- Gretchen recommended. In fact, Dr. Luferne has injected himself, acquiring a suspended animation without the necessity of being freeze- an old method that permits to be in that inanimate state by forty days- almost to the day when they supposedly arrives to the Erina planetary system. The reception was a success: the patrolling spaceships detected them, and once identified them, they were escorted to the capital city, where they receive them as heroes. Seems they forget to despise us!- Gretchen said. It wasnt the people that ignores us in the past, but the Emperor Neketh! And now were invited to a dinner party with the nobility.- Median said. Of course. Part of the glamour and excitation will be happening to the ones near captain Eroltas.- Dr. AB 631 said. They were lodged in a fine hotel, where Tribune Herz appears, saying:- Happy come back! Im happy for you! The Emperor has sent me here, to say how much he appreciates your action! To rescue our captain was a national feat of heroism! The Emperor will decorate you! 51 I appreciate his generosity.- Gretchen replied. At the dinner party , the emperor Neketh decorates every explorer and the crew of the Sphere with medals, in that order, and the Tribune Herz gives a speech , pointing out that Gretchen had acted alone and moved by her good nature. After that dinner, in which nor Gretchen nor her synthetic crew eats nothing, they were carried in open Fliers for the people to cheer them up. At the Sphere, Doctor Luferne was busy making biological preparations. Dr. AB 631 asked him:- I see you very busy. What are you doing? As I saw the success in my last operation, Im preparing a second, more daring and more cherished: I will give a body to my wife. Gretchen raise an eyebrow and Dr. AB said:- But you previously said that to create organs was out of medical capacities and suddenly you are working in it! Have you solved all the hindrances? Yes and no. I will create a trunk first. Legs and arms will come later.- And Dr. Luferne was very busy with bottles and heated liquids. Dr. AB helped him from that moment on. By the meantime, Gretchen and Median went out shopping they bought some new mechanisms for the Sphere, using the Flier Gusoff to travel around the city of Erina. There were more people

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. than at their last stay and Gretchen said: They are still without Synthetic help. This society will stagnate with this lack of technological help. 52 They found places where reparations of synthetic people were made; the majority of those models were run-down EDs, and two or three AB, but highly reduced in their performance, due to the lack of good technicians to make the repairs. Asking around, they had the news that the government had several warehouses full of synthetic robots- all of them deprived of their batteries, that as they were of superior craftsmanship, gets good prices in the market and put to some other uses. They walked by the front of one of those enormous warehouses, at night, and they realize that nobody was present to take care- so they get in by a window that has a broken glass. It seems somebody enters here before than us. Precaution!- Gretchen said, and they all get inside a large room, with bags in rows. Corpses! I wonder if all of them are really defunct by now!- Gretchen said, touching one of those bags. Median unpacked one of those, and in minutes she was saying: It lacks the battery pack! They unpacked thirty six more robots, and they were all deprived from their energy sources. There must be a place where all the missing batteries are in storage.- Median said. Lets find out.- Gretchen said, but in that hangar there were no batteries left. They revised the second hangar, where two containers were full of batteries wrapped in plastic envelopes. They carried some to the EDs and activated the first of them. The mechanical man saw them and said: Thirty minutes to full download. Very crisp and to the point.- Median said. They activated thirty six more EDs with the same response, and then come back to the first of them, saying:- Are you ready to perform acts? I am ready and willing.- The mechanical face said through the speaker on the lower part of the polished metal at the lower part of the polished metal that covered its head, that was almost round. You are now under our command! We are your superiors!! I am Gretchen, she is Median, obey us and be of use!- Gretchen said with a grave voice. Comprehended! Starting my chores of the day.- ED 621 said, walking briskly. Two hours later, a full army of EDs were staring at Gretchen, who was asking Dr. AB 631 to put the new born aboard the Sphere. On my way!- Dr. AB said, leaning on the control panel. In three minutes he had already arrived in front of hangar #308, sirens begin to wail, because of the automatic alarm controller. Inside the spaceship, quick!- Gretchen commanded by radio, and all the EDs rushed inside the gaping mouth of the principal door of the Sphere. 54 Median sets the force field from the middle of the Sphere so they could be protected in case firing come their way.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. And as the last of the ED jumps inside the haul, the door was closed and the Sphere shoots up to the sky, escaping as fast as Median could give thrust to the engines, because several Hunters were on the radar . Well be traveling out of this planet. We have a treasure on Synthetic beings.- Gretchen said, and soon they were crossing the orbit of the fourth planet. They werent being pursued, because the stolen of EDs was not yet connected with them. We should carry this big help- the EDs- where they are most needed.- Dr. AB said. Yes. But they are not wanted in Erina, and Ultor its a excrescence of this kingdom. No way could it be happening here.- Median said, calmly. They stayed at planet IV for six months, and always they were hearing the news coming from Erina and its master: emperor Neketh. The people were resenting the difference between the nobility and the bass people and this was taken in advantage by general Volker of the space fleet, who depose the Emperor and declares he was, from then on, the new emperor. We have a new government in place! General Volker has become the new leader.- Dr. AB said. I cannot say Im sorry! King Neketh was a selfish man, proud and intransigent.- Median said. 55 VOLKER THE STALLION RULES ERINA III. But all was not so peaceful at Erina- the followers of king Neketh begins a figh against the new leader, making terrorist explosions on cities and ambushing national troops every time they had a chance. Volker was greedy but his weaknesses were women. They come to his quarters to obtain money and prestige a doubtful one, but that in their circle it was a thing to pursue. To all of them he talked at bed, looking at the ceiling, his discourse runs like this: When being an obscure lieutenant, I always had the same dream: to have a woman like you in my arms! Oh, yeah? And now you had me, what is your next dream? The lady in question usually asked. To have a lot of sons and daughters with you!- Volker replied, and started working towards that goal. In three years he had a hundred and eighty two newborns, box sexes, ; to every one of them he set names, and begin boasting of his great sexual powers- that were rather common but that he embellished with his own self-delusion. People begin to stir again- changes had not been produced. Dr. AB 631 said, two months later than that. Oh, yes! This man Volker seems to have only muscles, and no brains!- Median replied- she has seen all his appearances in front of the cameras. Wait! I heard rumors in space, coming from outside.- Gretchen said, who had her radio receiver always working. 56 Sonic booms. Rays are being feed.- Median said, after paying attention to the radio. Lets move out and see by ourselves.- Gretchen said, starting the engines.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Soon they were traveling to the fifth planet. Two fast spaceships incoming. The signature tells me its Huinkerios.- Median said, from his post. Turn around and lets alert Erinas populace.- Dr. AB said, and Gretchen sent two missiles against the fast Huinkerios vessels, while it turns towards the internal planets. This is a warning! The Huinkerios fleet is coming.- Median was radioing in all frequencies: a quick response come by the voice of a captain of the Space Fleet named Cavator.- This is cruiser Borgon! Captain Cavator speaking! Who are you and who is coming? Repeat, please! We are the synthetic Gretchen, Median and AB 631 at the Sphere spaceship! A whole fleet of the Huinkerios empire has already breached out defenses in planets sixth and fifth! And their coming fast. Thanks. Well stop them.- Captain Cavator said, after a while- he had given the alert to all the fleet without waiting for authorizations. Five Hunters were deployed from the Cruiser and aligned with the Sphere that again had turned around, this time to face the threat. The space cruiser appears in the radar screen coming fast. Also three of the Huinkerios vessels appear on the wake of the big ship. 57 THE HUINKERIOS ATTACK ON ERINA. Missiles are being launched.- Captain Cavator said, and accelerated against the enemy- the sphere at his right, and more Hunters begin to arrive and followed the bigger spaceship at his aft side. Two missiles get their targets and two Hunters exploded in deadly silence. The Sphere destroyed one of the Huinkerios Hunter, and the other two gets incinerated by a beam of LASER fired by the Cruiser powerful generators. More enemies incoming!- The tranquil voice of Median warned them. In fact, eighty three other vessels were approaching in a V formation. Three other big Cruisers from Erina come in view. Admiral Staffel is our commander in chief. Obey his orders.- Captain Cavator said to Gretchen by radio waves. its all right.- She said, as she knows that in a battle cannot exist several independent initiatives. Staffel said , by encoded radio:- Well present a solid wall to the invaders! Cruisers out front; minor vessels at the sides. The Sphere vessel behind the Cruisers! So Gretchen backed up and kept the formation behind the six Cruisers. At both side she saw fifteen hunters- thirty in all. Small fleet for such an adversary!- Dr. AB 631 said. Victory smiles to the braves!- Median remembered, but she has serious doubts that victory could be achieved in the present circumstances. 58 The Admiral of the Huinkerios, Dukre Preste, divided his forces in a long arm, encircling by all sides the small Erina Star Fleet- soon it was clear it was a carnage- forty five spaceships fighting just one

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Erina spaceship. Gretchen damaged three Cruisers; blow in smithereens eight Hunters but then Median said: if we keep on fighting, our Defensive force field will be unable to withstand enemy fire anymore. Retreat is imperative. Our hauls are full of valuable ED. They must be preserved.- Gretchen said, launching the last two missiles available and zigzagging, she conducted the Sphere out of the field of battle where only two Cruisers and five Hunters from Erina were still fighting. She speeded before they could catch up with the Sphere, and using Warp 8.9 they were soon out of reach. The silence of space surrounds them as a blanket of incredible quietness after the zigzagging and flashes of LASER beams and missile explosions, not to mention when hits given by the enemy finds their targets. Approaching Ultor planet!- Gretchen said, forty two days later. They had traveled all the way at Warp 8.9 At Ultor, there was an orbital station run by the military: they explained everything by radio and the commander of the station invites them to talk with him about it. Gretchen locks the Sphere to the Orbital Station and by way of a pneumatic tube; she arrives to the Station with a new suit. 59 Commander Mutig (67) receives them at the other side of the compression chamber. Welcome to our orbital station, Captain Gretchen! Please come with me!- And the man was very nervous. At his office, he said, after locking the door: You are the bearer of bad news. Unfortunately yes, commander Mutig. Our forces in Erina had fall.- Gretchen said, standing in front of him. But how could this possibly happens? Were they taken by surprise?- Commander Mutig asked. Emperor Campanel 30 must have decided another world was needed by his Empire to grow. They were more than a hundred spaceships of all sizes. We were only a handful- so we were defeated.Gretchen said. And you escaped.- Commander Mutig said, almost accusingly. We fought almost to the end. Only two Cruisers were left, and badly battered. We sent against our enemy the last missiles- and flew away, and here we are, to give the alarm, the voice that there is a great danger coming.- Gretchen said. The commander of the orbital station raise his shoulders, saying: I assume you did your duty. Now Ill sent you to our headquarters. They were escorted to the ground near the palace of the governor under a dome. Prince Waltraber was ill and in bed, so the Prime Minister Bairus received them at a place with a big holographic set portraying a globe showing Ultor planet. 60 Bairus said:- Welcome to Ultor, Miss _Gretchen, Doctor AB, Miss Median. I heard you fought at Erina planetary system. How bad was that?- And while he speaks his hands were trembling.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Gretchen repeats what she had told the orbital station commander, and after that she added:- If in Erina, with all the advanced cruiser, nothing could do against the Huinkerios, here it will be very difficult to stop them. Or have you something I ignore? Bairus coughed and said:- We have one Cruiser and a negligible number of Hunters. Clearly, if you are speaking truth, we are doomed for sure. I cannot help you. My Sphere is nothing comparable to their hundreds of war spaceships.Gretchen said. We have more than a million people here. We cannot put them on the run. What they did usually with alien species?- Bairus asked her, perspiring like a pig. They ignore them as long as they dont try to fly out of the planet. Then they shoot them. But otherwise, they dont mingle at all.- Gretchen informed. I must talk with our King. Supposedly well never be able to travel again to Erina planet. Bairus moaned. Could be possible, if they ignore the wormhole perhaps they will never come this way. Gretchen said. Bairus keeps on talking but mostly of it was wishful thinking. 61 PRINCE WALTREBER DID NOTHING TO DEFEND ULTOR. Gretchen said:- One option is to present this planet having a real government, with laws, cities, a big populace, and youll probably interest people, humans of other worlds in trading goods. If they begin to gain and traverse distances only to have a good time here, perhaps they could also get interested into help you fight the Huinkerios. Bairus moves his head, saying: We are too far away from them to be of interest! Perhaps only a handful of entrepreneurs could really get interested in gains through dozens of years in space. Some people, in the days ahead of that meeting, offer big sums of sopes in gold and silver to Gretchen, in order to go directly to the Aurean planetary systems. We are merchants and entrepreneurs but also we had a family here. We cannot rest assured we could keep on living as we are now, with those alien people coming any day now. - Solfer Worsferger said, one of the most successful merchants in town. They were talking at the mess hall of the Sphere My associate speaks for us: we are decided to transfer our wealth to a secure environ. By the news we have, that place is certainly Aurea II.- His friend and associate, Mr. Foker Dusself said, with shiny eyes. I understand. Theres nothing better than to rest assure the roof is not to fall down on ones head.- Gretchen said, smiling. 62 We want our wives and children on your spaceship, together with our valuables. A trip to Aurea two and all our worries will banish as the morning fog.- Another man said. Gretchen asked: And why dont you use some other spaceship? There are fine vessels nowadays.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Tornber , a merchant in jewels, said: Certainly we need a fine and experienced crew on a secure vessel. Our vessels in Ultor had not gone to Aurea, that we know, and you had traveled the universe several times. And how much do you think this trip will cost you?- Gretchen asked them. Thirty million sopes are yours for this trip! One by each year of voyage.- Tornber replied, exchanging glances with the rest. I appreciate your confidence. With our new engines, the trip could be reduced in time, but I cannot assure you how much that will be.- Gretchen said, and they talked about it until Mr. Foker said: Thirty million sopes is our bet. If you take us to Aurea 2 in thirty years or less, our offer stands. Its a deal. Prepare your families, your valises, and whatever you want to carry there. Well be here waiting for it.- Gretchen said, and the merchants applauded, very happy to see their will was going to prevail. In the course of time, some of them begin to repent: from the eighteen original members, six of them keeps on with the project and the rest quits. As I see it, we are not being able to give you the thirty million sopes we previously offered, but only nine millions.- Finally said Mr. Foker Dussel. Its not surprising for me, as merchants turn their will depending of the opportunities they foresee in the future. I accept the nine millions, of course, you must pay me first before we depart: I dont want more bad surprises.- Gretchen said. In all cases, there are negotiations with some other persons, so our offer could rise a bit, if we are lucky. I am not sure if some more of us could be repenting in the future! Women are difficult to convince, more now the Huinkerios invasion seems not to be happening soon. - Mr. Fokker Dussel said. I know something about human nature, Mr. Dussel. See what Ill propose you: lets say that in seven days more we are leaving this planet.- Gretchen said. The man smiled and said:- For my part, Im ready! Yes, you and the five other entrepreneurs! Bring them here with their families in six days from now! At the seventh day, if five of you are aboard, Ill leave Ultor without delay. Gretchen promised him. Mr. Dussel leaves the room with a smile: his dream was going to be fulfilled. So you think these rich people are going to leave this planet?- Median asked her. I am sure Mr. Dussel is very determined. And for us and our image its better this way: too many merchants leaving the country with all of their wealth will have an impact on Ultors economy, and the government will be very upset with us.- Gretchen said. At the following days, more crates and luggage appears at the foot of the Sphere. Then it comes the women and children, carrying the gold and jewels their husbands cherished so much. Well, Miss Gretchen, here we are! Six of us, true to our word!- Mr. Dussel said, at the main entrance.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. I congratulate you! Well depart in three more hours. Time enough to get ready! Every one of you has cabins aboard ship, and Miss Median had already lodged the previous passengers. Youll be able to see our departure through the holographic set.- Gretchen said to him. 64 The list of passengers was this: Foker Dussel and his wife miss Diana. Children: four. Tornber and his wife Miss Helene. Children: Three. Shaker and his wife Miss Yislene. Children: Two. Unterkunft and his wife Miss Maria. Ermutigen and his wife Miss Margot. In all, nineteen persons, eight males, eleven females. - Radioed Doctor AB 631 for the Synthetics to know, and for his inner self, he said: As always, there are more females than males. They all were served a nice dinner, once on the space, and Gretchen said: Sleep well, because tomorrow our doctor will make you safe for the rest of the trip. Nine months will pass unnoticedno harm done. The ladies begin to ask questions, once and again, and seemingly they wished to be convinced there was nothing else to do but to surrender to the Deep Sleep, where nobody could talk No, its not a question of understanding, but of beliefs: they had never seen another person and endure an hibernation procedure.- Dr. AB 631 said to Mr. Foker Dussel, when he was trying to explain his wifes behavior. At the next day there were no quarrels: they all undertook the Deep Sleep operation, perhaps because Gretchen had said and very clearly, that she hasnt food enough for them all during the voyage. 65 Chapter 4. ARRIVAL TO AUREA 2. The silence reigns once again at the Sphere- twenty one ED and three AB were in command of the sphere, that had speeded at Warp 8.9, that is, the higher velocity they could extract from the engines. The dust of space was blanketed with the use of energy fields that consumes twenty five per cent of the overall energy the generators could provide. When approaching the Aurean Constellation, they went out of Warp and in one week they were nearing the planets of Aurea 2. Lots of traffic!- Dr. AB said, looking at the splinters of light the numerous spaceships gives. They communicate with the authorities, giving the available data- they were accepted without more questions. The Natural men and women were awakening, and they were very surprised to see they were already at Aurea 2 planetary system. Oh, but in fact for us is already the day of our departure, so to speak! What a nice trip!- Mr. Foker said, looking by a porthole. I recommended Aurea city for starts. Possibly huge business is possible here. Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Yes, you just land there and well keep ahead as we could! Sopes keeps on being the monetary currency?- Tornber asked her. And gold! They still have its value. Gretchen replied. Shaker laughed, and said: Those are reassuring good news! They were landing on the Aurean spaceport, at 8.00 hours; the passengers leaves the spaceship in several Fliers, on route to fine hotels- the cargo was going to take longer to carry out, as the Naturals has no place where to storage yet. There they go! To make money and get profits the way they know how! Dr. AB said. 66 Gretchen calls on warp drive engine producers, and this time finds better engines for smaller prices. You have a Sphere with a 8.9 Warp drive engine? A real antique! The vendor from Irrelevant Gains Inc. asked. We had been out there for sixty years!- Gretchen said. And you need an overhaul? We can offer you a new model: the Renca Special! Nine point five Warp drive engine that occupied only sixteen cubic meters of space, and using a lot less energy than what you have now.-The vendor assured her. She accepts and soon the engineers were working on the big old warp engine and its nacelles. We get to introduce new component. The old nacelles had to go. Otto Ungesetzlich said, and he was the chief engineer. All right, Im not standing in the way.- Gretchen said to the man. It will cost you an additional half million sopes.- Ungesetzlich said. I need it fully operational. Money is not a problem.- Gretchen said. Four weeks later, they tested the engines with a fast flight to the outskirts of planet V and back. You see? It didnt reach the medium caloric table and you are already advancing at warp 9.5.The engineer said. She paid for the rest of the final debt and the technicians from the Irrelevant Gains Inc. leaves the spaceship. Now we have the ultimate velocity. Much time and efforts had been made to achieve this fast Sphere.- Gretchen said to the other two synthetic persons. We still have a need to help people.- AB 631 said. 67 TRANSPORTING SERVICE TO THE STATION. Yes, but Erina is already taken by Huinkerios and Ultor is next. To stop the invasion we need very powerful weapons but most of all, troops by the hundred. And I am sure nobody here will change their long expectance of life for a short and hazardous life fighting battle cruisers thirty one parsecs away.- Gretchen said. So, well leave them to their fate?- Median asked. What more could we do? We are no Don Quixote!- Dr. AB said, remembering that old tale of a man who didnt think twice when running against enemies ten times more powerful than him- and of course, receiving defeat by all sides of the compass.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. We are here to help- not to fight against Empires.- Median said. They opened a service of transport from the ground to the orbital base, commercial center and tourism; they were well paid and in five years they already recovered what they had spent in the new warp engine, and some more. That was the reason Median said, after a busy day: We recovered our millions and we could travel once again. Any idea of to where we could set our prow Gretchen smiled and said:- A raid around this constellation could give us clues to work on. Now Im seeing us in a new light. Kind of a repair crew, searching people in need to be helped. But in fact, our boss was only set into making money and planting dinosaurs out of Knapp planet. Do you mean we should stick to what Ultor did in his time?- Doctor AB asked. Not quite.- Gretchen said, adding:- We have nothing else to do here; our friends Dussel Tornber , Unter Kunet, Ermy Tigen and Schaker already had some degree of success here. Nobody needs us here. 68 Two days later, the Sphere leaves Aurea 2- 4 on route to Aurea I. Star Aurea One has three planets: two of them made of rock and the third is covered with a thick layer of poisonous gas. The people lives in the second planet and under capsules or domes. The bigger the domes are the oldest inhabited and the smaller ones usually hasnt any solid roof, but Force Fields that prevents the escape of gas. The only orbital station asks about them; and Gretchen provides the data required. Sphere spaceship model , manned by AB synthetic persons. No cargo. The reply would have been strange for a natural being, but not for AB synthetics, who were at that station so Gretchen heard: All right, you could land on the planet- eighteen cities are available. Recommendation: Cupolas one to five are apt for you- in the rest of them, danger is present. Thanks for the advice. Well land near cupola #3. - Gretchen said, but gets no response. They descended an easy task for to the lack of atmosphere. The cupola #3 was set in the equator, originally a mining compound, now it was a city, where three big factories were producing Flier vehicles for export to some other cities as well as for interplanetary export one of the final destinies was also Aurea 2-4. They were now at the National Spaceport. From there to the city on a pneumotube- being a city under a cupola, no aerial vehicles could be used inside. The people were dressed with colorful garments, flimsy and semitransparent. Gretchen and the others on board went out and bought similar clothes for themselves and the crew. Sopes, the universal coinage at the Second Brana, were in use. They visited museums and music halls; they found some very troubled persons. They are suffering of claustrophobia. The psychoanalysts and psychiatrists are working on their minds, but total release of those neuroses is only possibly by leaving the planet to one of the terraformed planets.- Doctor AB 631 said. We could help there.- Median said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Carrying them to Aurea 2- 4?- Gretchen asked. Yes, of course we dont know if they want them amidst their people! But we could hibernate them until accepted.- Median said. For that matter, they opened an office, with a sign: Psychologist. After some weeks, Gretchen and her companions had already seven confirmed cases of severe claustrophobia. 70 I interrogate them about a change- they are so desperate they acquiesced instantaneously for to depart to a new home among the stars of this Constellation. Not only about Aurea 4, that is the best option, but also about some other planets with an atmosphere.- Dr. AB said to Gretchen and Median. Seven persons arent enough. You know that a trip costs money. Are they rich to pay for an almost empty spaceship traveling so far?- Gretchen asked him. They are poor. No way we could help and get stranded somewhere without money. Our vessel is a costly one and didnt run on peanuts.- Gretchen insisted. Very well, how much is enough for a trip to salvation?- Dr. AB asked. At least three million sopes not enough if we think its no profit in three million sopes.- Gretchen said. So, do you think five million sopes are enough?- Dr. AB asked. Yes, one trip only- no way back. Repentant arent allowed to make complains. Gretchen said. In a year they had already two hundred clients giving them twenty five thousands sopes each. The total amount was five million sopes. Now we could depart: they are all hibernated.- Dr. AB 631 said. Good guess, Aurea 2- 4 is the most suitable.- Gretchen said. There are rumors about us taking people out of the planet. I recommend you to fly away without asking for permissions: a simple revision by authorities and well get stuck here.- Dr. AB 631 advised them. 71 Very well , well depart by the south pole- the geosynchronic orbit of this orbital station will never detect us.- Gretchen said. They had no problems leaving the planet- the government was rather poor and the means to detect rogue spaceships were absent. The trip was made at top speed and in nine months elapsed time the Sphere was already landing on the space-field near the city of Aurea. Its no way we could handle this thing in a legal and honest way- they have strict rules, and a card load of alien people will possibly be rejected. Median said, after some conversations with the people in charge of immigration procedures.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Hibernating for those long years, the group of humans were awaken by the synthetic beings- the EDs took a part of it, helping them with exercises, a labor usually made by the ABs but this time Gretchen , the doctor and Median were very busy going out of the Sphere, searching for ways to insert those people into the Aurean society in a sneaky way- documents were also needed, and it was not an easy way to include their affidavits into the main city computer database. But it was donned through two persons, Mr. Ashbro and Mr. Dorien, whom were working at the Ministry of the Interior. They were contacted by a ruthless man named Maronbend, a guy of little or no scruples who made whatever necessary for a couple of sopes. Of course, in this occasion it was 325.000 sopes in cash. I need 150.000 in advance. I get to give 100.000 sopes to each contacted- they are eager for money. As eager as you are.- Gretchen said. Maronbend looks hurt and said: I only ask what is properly, madam! I need money for my expenses! Life is short to the poor! I guess you have forty five years old. Plenty of life ahead.- Median intervened. A lot less life than you synthetics had. The man said while receiving the wad of money. How much time do you need to fulfill your task?- Gretchen asked. Maronbend grabs one of her arms, saying: You are really beautiful, madam! Why are you mingled in this stuff? My appearance as nothing to do with this matter, Mr. Maronbend, please stick to the facts of our bargain: two hundred documents for two hundred persons.- Gretchen said, feeling the man was desiring her. A warm feeling was also attached to the realization of this fact. Ah, the facts! 200 documents with false names! All in exact order! Just wait and see! Dont move from here- Ill call you when the documents are over.- Maronbend said. Gretchen asked when the operation will be finished and the man said: Come here each three days. These things arent as easy as to make brushes! Gretchen leaves the apartment, saying to Median: We must watch out this man: he represents betrayal and ambiguity! Sure. And he likes you.- Median laughed while they take the elevator to depart. Maronbend calls his friend Utork by the phone, saying: The Synths are in a hurry! Hows going our little business? Fine, tonight well work hard. Are you coming?- Utork replied. If you need me, Ill go. If you dont really need me, do it alone! Im paying you a good chunk, isnt it?- Maronbend said, thinking that the man was spoiling his plans for the night. You know I cannot put too many guys working in this plot, isnt it? You are inside this work; you must to help me out.- Utork said. Ill go, then! - Maronbend said. And dont tell me you are paying me too much! You probably get more than the double in this business! - Utork said, reddening. All right, where are you going to be?- Maronbend asked.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Ill call you before midnight. Be punctual.- Utork replied, hanging up. 73 MARONBEND AND UTORK AT WORK. Condemnation! Every time I get some money, works come in between pleasure and fun!Maronbend said to himself, counting again the received money; he hides half of it on a crevice in a wall, and pocketed the rest. He looks at a clock on a shelf, and saw it rests several hours before that appointment: he could go out and have a little fun! But he also knows that in his case, fun means also to get drunk so he lean on a bed and slept for a while. But was awaken by the cellphone. He grabbed the black and brown apparatus and said: Maronbend here. Yeah, Im Utork! Are you coming or not? Its past zero hours!- The angry voice of Utork had no doubts to think he was pissed off. All right, Im coming!- Maronbend said, angrily. He went to the bathroom and after washing his face to be more awake, he walked to the dormitory, where he puts on black boots, a black sweater and pocketed a large sharp knife. He walked to the door, saying: Lets go, Matilda! Show time for us, rats!- And laughed, while closing the door behind him. Utork was waiting near a corner, with a black bag at his side. Youre late!- he said. Well, Im here! Lets go!- Maronbend said, looking around: the street was almost deserted-. A few tramps were standing or lying on the sidewalk Some more blocks away, Utork kneeled on the ground and said:- Help me open this lid! I cannot do it alone! With both hands, Maronbend helped and when the lid was at a side, a hole was there to get into a sewer conduit. Oh, but its dark and fetid down there!- Maronbend said, seeing how Utork was already pulling out a cord and a crow bar from his black bag. You descend first! Then Ill follow!- Utork said, and Maronbend gets down with the agility of a monkey. Utork follows him after some seconds of incertitude. The place was humid and darkness was fought using a small lamp. Get away! Ill bring the crowbar down- I dont need a cop looking at me from above!- Utork said. With a clank, the crow bar fall and Utork wrap the cord around the barrel saying: Now this is the easy part: well walk some hundred meters, and well get out by another hole, right inside the edifice- I already check it out! Right. Lets get moving: I detest this stench!- Maronbend said, and Utork walked by the channel ten centimeters up with dark water. The tunnel turns slightly to the left- Maronbend was seeing the shadows and the light reflections ahead of him. In some parts the stench was terrible- mounds of excrement were on the crossroads- other tunnels crisscrossed their path. Until Utork said: This is it! Take the lamp. Theres a stair going up around here! And yes, the stair, made of round iron bars, goes up to the darkness. Utork climbs and after pushing another lid, he said: Al right, buddy! Were going out!

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. When Maronbend finally reach the exterior, he breathed hard, realizing he was almost grinding with the stench endured while in the gutter. Man; I will not return by that hole, you heard me?- He said to his partner, who didnt answered because he was busy running to a pair of windows, as they were in a closed yard inside the building . Maronbend followed him, coughing. They get inside by a window and then by a dark corridor- both had flashlights partially covered by their hands not to illuminate too much, At a curve of the corridor, a man was on guard seated in front of a small bench. What a bad luck! That guy is making his guard there!- Was Maronbend saying, but Utork walked to the man, saying: Here I am, Benfo! The man at the table jerked with the surprise, but then he looked at Maronbend, saying: Whos him? You said well work the two of us in this -. No more partners! But Benfo! You know that I get to have some help at the tunnels! Those lids are very heavy! The face of that man softened a little, and looking at his wristwatch he said. We have very little time left! My replace will be here in two hours! And so they walked by the corridor to an elevator; they descended three levels and then they went out, while Maronbend was looking at the darkness around them. Why is there no lights around here?- He asked. Silence!- The guard said, mumbling something for himself. They walked into a room. There were several desks in it. We must work as fast as we could! Give me the list of names!- Benfo said, rudely. Utork gives him a chip with all the data; Benfo works on a machine, which come to life with blips and muffled sounds. We must wait fifteen minutes! The data is being storage in five different sites now.- Benfo said. They were there, in the half-darkness while the machine processed the data. Fifteen minutes later, several cards went out of a slot, and Benfo takes those, saying: Were ready. Pay me. 76 Utork gives him some money and the man pocketed it, saying:- No time to count it! But I will trust you this time.And he gives the cards, that Utork takes and put into his pocket. They return to the first floor using again the elevator. The guard said: It rests only seventeen minutes for my relief! Get hurry! You seem too nervous.- Utork said. Its my job and reputation of an honest man Im gabling here my whole future!- Benfo said. I have another deal for you! Bigger this time! - Utork said, and Benfo asked: How bigger? Benfo looks unto Maronbend, saying:- You can go ahead now, partner! I get to discuss some other deal with my friend, here! Dont be late!- Maronbend said, walking out by the corridor. He hurriedly jumps out the window and at the hole he sniffed. The stench was somewhat dissipated now that the lid was at the side. He heard a muffled sound and then Utork appears at a run. What happens?- Maronbend asked him. The other guard appears! Lets get down immediately!- Utork said, panting.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. They descended, not before putting the lid in place. The tunnel was fetid and Maronbend really was sick while breathing those mephitic odors. They went out by the next hole, this time Utork using the crowbar as a hook to get up from the bottom, and then throwing down the rope for Maronbend to get out. For some moments he was afraid Utork could leave him at the pit 77 MARONBEND DELIVERED THE DOCUMENTATION. They walked a couple of blocks and Utork suddenly handled him the cards, saying: Am I good at this? Am I good at my word? Here are the documents! Yes, you did it swell, buddy. Nice to make deals with you.- Maronbend said, smiling. Utork laughed and departed. Maronbend walks for half an hour , until he arrives to his apartment, where he throw the stained clothes inside a basket and takes a long bath , in order to clean the filth out of his hair and body. At the next day, he calls on Gretchen , saying: Your cake is ready. _Come to my address to receive it. On my way.- Gretchen said, hanging on. When she arrives to the apartment, together with Dr. AB 631, Maronbend was now asking five thousand sopes for extras. I ruined a full set of clothes purchasing this!- He said, signaling to a table : the documentation was on top of it, and Dr. AB takes it and examined the cards carefully and fast. Its apparently all right.- He said to Gretchen, using his radio emitter. All right! Ill pay the extra five thousands sopes! Just to be fair with this man.- She said, and Maronbend takes the money with a big smile on his face. Well, doctor, we have nothing else to do here! Have a nice day, Maronbend.- She said, departing with the doctor. Maronbend observed her while walking away by the corridor, saying: What a dish! Pity shes nothing more than a machine! And then, he seats in front of the Holographic set- looking at the news, where Mr. Benfo appears being carried on a stretcher, with a big bandage over his head. The news was that he had been assaulted, by burglars, and after a fight, he had repelled the delinquents, single handed Why am I thinking Utork assaulted him to recover the money while I was away?- Maronbend murmured to himself. A chilly sensation was around his back. Surely Utork was not only a crooked man, but also a thief I better take a leave out of town by some time. This operation smells bad.- Maronbend said to himself, preparing his suitcase with as many clothes he could put into it without busting the lock. Somebody rings the bell, and he looked by a porthole. A pair of policemen was looking at the door by the outside. Maronbend gives a jerk and runs to the window, with his suitcase. The fire stair was outside, and by that means he descended to the street, jumping and jerking his suitcase, and soon he was lost into the crowd. But his heart keeps on bumping. He seats at a plaza, to think. This guy sells me out! He must had hurt the guard (Benfo) ,taking the money and running out! He lie to me, saying it was the replacement who had arrived! Condemnation!

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. He was really enraged. Suddenly a door opens silently in his mind, showing the corridor towards Utork abiding place. Yes! I must pay him a visit! Dirty rat, sending me the cops!- Maronbend panted out. He walked to Utorks house: it was a cabin on a dirt yard. The fence was almost gone, as the wooden planks were old and weathered. He banged on the door- nobody answered. He went to the rear, and another locked door was to be seen, made of wood, stained and dried by the fiery sun. It seems Mr. Utork just give a damn about his home appearance 79 As he couldnt make out if Mr. Utork was or not inside, he unhinged a door jamb and went insidea dark place it was, so Maronbend stumbled on furniture, chairs and boxes. One thing was a fact: Mr. Utork wasnt at home. Maronbend decided to wait, so he repaired the door, and making so, he was now able to see in the semidarkness- old stuff, used and unclean clothes, nothing of value was in sight. He waits until the night- crickets and cockroaches were milling around, and also some rats. He usually stomped with his shoes not to be touched. He gets asleep and soon afterwards he awake, as somebody was scratching at the door, and Maronbend jumped from the chair and opens the door- a man was there with a screwdriver. Oh!- Said the man, startled- Maronbend grabs him from his shirt and throw him to the floor, putting the sole of his shoe on his chest, pinning down unto the ground. You, thief! Youll pay for the trespassing of my property!- Maronbend said, producing a knife. Oh, no! I was only searching for a place where to sleep tonight!- The man said. Liar! Youll pay for this!- And Maronbend knifed him, releasing his anger on that tramp. The guy shrieks , kicked and yelled, but Maronbend kept on stabbing his body. When the tramp stays finally immobile, he cleansed the knife on those filthy clothes and as a last goodbye, kicked the corpse. When walking out the cabin, he closed the door, leaving the place for Utork to wonder what happened before his arrival 80. Unable to return to his flat, where Mr. Utork could find him easily, Maronbend went to the Cosmodrome, looking for the Sphere and Miss Gretchen. It was an easy work, not existing any other ancient Sphere model in the whole spaceport. He needs a pass to get into the field, so he calls on Gretchen using the phone at the office of the Guards. Hi! Im Maronbend! Im here on a friendly visit. Please confirm to the guardians that Im a known person so I could get into the field!- Maronbend wailed out. Gretchen wasnt happy to receive such a visit, not happy to get publicly involved with a crook, so she said: Wait at the cafeteria. Ill walk there.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Maronbend hurriedly moved there, and waits standing near a door. Gretchen appears some minutes later, dressed in a one piece garment, green in color. Hi, Miss Gretchen! Nice you come here and Im sorry to call on you in this moment of trouble!Maronbend said. Are you really in trouble? What kind of trouble?- Gretchen said, looking at the perspiring man. My associate did something awful! He takes back the money he paid to an official at.. you know where, that man should be informing now about his accomplice!- Maronbend said, You ask for some amount of money to provide me of certain things. Now I had paid you and our business is totally over.- Gretchen said. Oh, of course, its over! But there are some minor details: I would be happy if you could permits me to get into your Sphere and when you travel outside this planet, I could be in it! _This townHe was saying, but Gretchen interrupted him:- This town is your abiding place, so get used to the idea. And if you want to leave it, I recommend you take a tour somewhere as far as you want to be.81 You recommend me? What about me recommending you to take special care not to send me empty handed? I easily could spoil the little business of yourwet shirts.- Mr. Maronbend said, ogling at her. Oh, now Im understanding your presence here! You want a local hideout while the heat is on, and then get out as far as you could in order to live and spent your money in peace.- Gretchen said, smiling. You understood the tale properly, sister! And you better give me the hospitality Im needing now!- Mr. Maronbend said. Ill give you shelter. But it was going to cost you some money. Gretchen announced. Im sure we will think about a generous fee.- Maronbend said, smiling crookedly: he was happy to have bent the hand of that attractive synthetic person They went to the Sphere and Gretchen takes him to a cabin, saying: This is your cabin. Ill take you to a tour around the Sphere afterwards.Thanks, sister!- Maronbend said, resting on the bed. Gretchen walked out, locked the door and said to her companions about what had happened with Mr. Maronbend. Dr. AB 631 said: He deserves not our hospitality. See that he ends out of here. I leave it to you imagination.- Gretchen said, walking to the main deck. Dr. AB 631 was hampered to kill because, contrary to her, he was a standard AB model. So he starts by gassing the cabin occupied by Mr. Maronbend, and then takes his body to his clinic , where he analyze the man from toes to hair, including a study on his DNA. 82 Two days later, he presents the new Mr. Maronbend to Gretchen, saying:- Meet Mr. Shadow! Hes no longer Maronbend: he will live his life as an obedient and honest human being, thanks to several chips implanted in his body.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. A useful crewmember? Totally trustworthy.- Dr. AB said, not so sure about the usefulness of his protg. He told me he could be wanted by the police.- Gretchen remembered. He has new fingerprints, retinal implants and the works! I forgot nothing.- Dr. AB said, with a bored tone: he hates when people doubts of his skills Guess our new crewman could remain on board.- Gretchen said. Maronbend was assigned to man the lock chamber, after a briefing. The man smiled and was gentle, using the green standard uniform aboard the Sphere. The former Ultorians were already out and working their way up- with the money they had brought to Aurea, their future was almost certain to be among the rich people. Median was busy finding new gadgets for the Sphere, and Dr. AB brought several new drugs and instruments for his Infirmary. We are ready to depart.- Median said. Fine; well get back to Ultor, hopping the Huinkerios still ignore their presence.- Gretchen said. The voyage last for nine months and before they could arrive, they detected Huinkerios battleships around the planetary system. They had found the wormhole. Its too late to stop them.- Median said. Theoretically they had trespassed the line. We are entitled to fight them.- Gretchen said. They approached and seeing that the warships seemingly were unaware of their presence, they sent twelve missiles against two Cruisers. They saw the streak of light until they arrive to their targets. 83 Both balls of fire make a big hole of furious lightning until the vessels explode in a silent white ball. Now we go!- Gretchen said, making the Sphere turns around. The traveling back was anything but joyful- when arriving to Aurea 2, Gretchen asks to speak with the Senators and the new Tribune, now a Mr. Archut. This Tribune was very impressed with the news and said:- We must prevent them to have a stronghold at Ultor planetary system. We must push them away. They had crossed the worm hole existing near Ultor. Gretchen said. Your films are precious to us. Let us make copies of it, and sent to every inhabited planet of our Second Brana, and beyond if necessary! Your saying is correct, they are not of our kindhumanoids but not like us in many respect. I am glad to be of service. You can keep the films. Gretchen said. In the following weeks , the news spread far and wide, scaring more than one government official, even at the far away Knappian Kingdom exists concern and it was them who calls for an Alliance to fight the Huinkerios. In three years they had set in place, near Aurea Two, a big Armada, strong of fifty five Cruisers and thousands of smaller but nonetheless armored vessels.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. They put a man in charge of the second Brana Armada: Admiral Shukilaco, and soon the big Armada begin approaching the planetary system, which was known to have no less than thirty five cruisers and dozens of smaller crafts belonging to the occupation forces of the Huinkerios Empire. 84 Gretchen was hired to guide the Armada notwithstanding the fact that several Hunter spies were already milling around Ultor planetary system. The Huinkerios were astonished to see so many warships coming towards the planet they believed totally conquered. This is commander Shukilaco of the Brana 2 Armada. You are advised that you are trespassing our domain. Return to where you come or confront us. The Huinkerios choose not to reply; believing the technology of the newcomers was exactly equal to the ones already defeated, namely, the Ulterion Space Fleet. Commander Shukilaco waits for two hours for an answer, and as he believes he was being ignored on purpose, ridiculed perhaps, he orders the firing against the enemy. First, a volley of missiles, backed up by a hundred drone Hunters. Each time an enemy missile was coming towards the Fleet, Commander Shukilaco sends the Hunters to fire at will. Soon seven Huinkerios Cruisers were in flames; the Admiral from the Huinkerios ordered to advance; they sent large missiles against the Alliance Armada, but all of them were disabled with a segregator, others using C Rays that flew against the Huinkerios big Cruisers, cutting them in pieces, like if they were made of cheesecake. Such an attack was never seen before by the Huinkerios, who begin to retreat- the whole Brana 2 Armada advanced; sure now the Huinkerios Imperial Armada was an obsolete one. 85 COMMANDER SHUKILACO BREAKS THE SIEGE. Of the thirty five Cruisers, none of them could escape- their hulls were severed and the air escape from them, killing whole crews, not only because the escape of the air to the vacuum of space, but also because the concussions were so severe, that the crews ended with lots of broken bones. The smaller vessels, either ends by exploding when hit with the C Ray, and the Commander Shukilaco saw how they flew to the surface of the exterior planets. The Admiral sent a dozen middle sized spacecraft to the ground of Ultor planet, to tell the humans the threat was over. Gretchen assisted at the royal palace to a reunion of the commander Shukilaco with his most important officers and with the Prince Waltraber, Prime Minister Bairus and some of the principals of the government. Once they were seated in front of the commander Shukilaco, he said: Now you are free because we had defeated the ones that were besieging you. Prince Waltraber said: I congratulate you and the circumstances almost magical, that you come here without us calling unto your help. Commander Shukilaco pointed to Gretchen, who was present, saying: Here is the person that went to us and give the alarm. Thanks her.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Gretchen looks at the surprised Prince, who had ignored her beforehand and now was invited to give her the duly thanks Oh, Gretchen! Of course I knew of her visit to us! Pity she went before I could give her a nobility title but now that is not important: what really is of importance is to give you my most sincere thanks. 86 Commander Shukilaco said: As we did here, well do pass the wormhole. As I knew by Miss Gretchen and friends had told me, there is a world pass the wormhole that needs to be freed. Yes! My parents lives there a whole population of humans is inhabiting cities there.- Prince Waltraber said. The reunion changes to plans for the recovery of Erina planet. I am sending Hunter vessels to discover the real situation there- Shukilaco said. I volunteer for it.- Gretchen said. You are precious to us all. Your kind is no longer being made.- Shukilaco expressed, not sure of accepting that offer. Let me go with your Hunters! I am sure we could handle whatever lurks around the wormhole!Gretchen said, smiling. She was so enchanting with his faked figure of a nice young woman, that the human heart of Shukilaco surrender to her enchantment and approved her presence on the first expedition pass the wormhole The Hunters were fifteen in number, and the Sphere was ordered to put behind the smaller vehicles. The trip begins three days after the authorization. No signs of the enemy. The commander of the expedition, captain Canseliet said, by radio. Gretchen could see the star Erina in the distance: a white radiance. We will proceed immediately towards the planet Erina!.- The Armada takes a V position and advanced, with the smaller vehicles in front. The Sphere was now almost on top of them, and Gretchen said, when nearing Erina planet system: I am detecting three spaceships near the eight planet. Precaution is advised at all times!Canseliet heard her warning and told his minions to get ready. Then, thirty hunters speeded against the target- it was two freighters and one battle ship. Surrender or die!- The voice of Gretchen said, in Huinkerios language. From the battle ship a light flashed out. Missile incoming!- Gretchen said, maneuvering not to be touched. But as soon as the missile was passing by, she sent a large C ray burst that disintegrated the missile preventing it to explode. There was a swift capture of that Freighter- its crewmen (20 in number) and three star warriors were taken prisoners, although five others die on the onslaught. Gretchen detected a swarm of small spy satellites on the orbit of Gaseous planet Seven, and some of them moved rapidly not to be targeted, while others promptly being radioing signals to the Huinkerios headquarters , advising of the coming of alien vessels to the system. No matter how fast the Sphere plunged ahead, the only Cruiser orbiting Erina 2 was now escaping at full throttle with no definite direction. Two small Hunters, capable of Warp 9.2, followed it, but soon the Cruiser was out of reach.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 88 They really run! Stop the persecution! We cannot outpace them! - Gretchen said to Median, who was piloting the spaceship. But two Cruisers from Admiral Shukilaco kept on chasing the Huinkerios Cruiser. A week later, they return, saying the enemy spaceship had traveled inside a nebula, so dangerous passage that the Brana 2 Armada didnt get inside. Well done! They will never come here sniffing human dwelling places!- Commander Admiral Shukilaco said to the captains of both Cruisers. There were more ceremonies at Erina city, with the Emperor Volker acting as the true king. We had suffered the loss of our space Fleet- we no longer are able to defend ourselves. We need you to protect us.- He said to Admiral Shukilaco. We are here to protect you for as long as it is possible! In the meantime you must try to buy spaceships capable of to fight the enemy. I know there are not great means but also we cannot stay forever here: this was a rescue operation! But I am not entitled to hijack the whole Armada by staying here forever. Admiral Shukilaco said. From those distant positions, they worked trying to build a sound solution to the problem how to defend the conquered planetary systems beyond the worm hole? For that motive, Hunters were posted at the two sides of the wormhole, sending and receiving message through radio waves- communicating Admiral Shukilaco and the Emperor of Erina cumUltor and the Alliance. They want something in return. Gretchen said, at a reunion among Shukilaco and his commandants and the Emperor Volker and his Ministries. 89 We could give them gold, copper and iron. The emperor said, knitting his brow. The labor at the mines was his principal income. The amount and periodicity must be established. Admiral Shukilaco said, looking at his memo pad. I am sure we havent the means to carry the minerals to the Aurea Constellation. A cargo fleet is necessary..- The Ministry of Miner said, stiffly. We must put out cards over the table in a clear and precise way.- Admiral Shukilaco reminded them. Theres no great interest in more mineral at the Aurea Constellation: consider that when dealing with the representatives: a fast spaceship is already under way, and soon they will be here: this is no time for silly proud and obstinacy.- Gretchen said, and the Ministry of Mines, Mr. Oldurn, looked at her in a sinister way that was no surprise for her, who already knew what kind of man was Oldurn, a former Secret Police agent. Not needed after the arrival of the Committee for the Defense of Ultor and Erina, Gretchen descended to the planet, looking for the ferocious carnivores. They find several Safari offices, all of them advertising Safaris to the Jungle, both photographic and hunting parties.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Gretchen walks into one of those Agencies, and after receiving data about what they can offer, she said. I see a contradiction here! The law said very clearly that no harm must be done to the wild animals- but you are offering to kill them as souvenirs! Explain that contradiction to me. 90 The Agent, a man in his thirties, said:- You are wrong, Miss! The Emperor Volker overruled that prohibition. Of course, no more than one species for guests is allowed. I see; well, Ill try to defend these animals: they are not autochthonous, but from Knapp planet and they must be preserved.- Gretchen said. From the air, she spent a week looking down at the hunting fields, realizing that the guests could hunt as many as their rifle skills could allow: some gets five or six, some other gets none. Median said: All this data is recorded and sent to the Natural Reserve Office and to the Ministry of the Interior. Possibly well get an answer in a few days. But the answer were that the lay permits to hung, due to the fact the carnivore has not ritual enemies on the planet and the expeditions were a nice way to restrict the number of carnivorous on the land. No response to our petition! Its just a statement: let us do things our own way.- Median said. With Gretchen ,m they stayed there for another six months, seeing also that Admiral Shukilaco begin to despise Emperor Volker for his luxurious way of life and also, he sense Volker was a man who desire women with a sickening urgency. The populace now was having much information about Aurea 2.2 and their ways and kind of government. They begin to get tired of to have a man over them as a tyrant, ignoring laws that didnt like him or doing laws to help himself to be more rich. One of those laws said that the Emperor was not subject to accusations of any kind: That the Emperor could give his inheritor the rule of the country whenever he wants, and his word was final. 91 Chapter 5. PROTESTERS AGAINST THE EMPEROR VOLKER. People are beginning to realize that a soldier in charge of the government was a bad idea, because his knowledge makes him do things by force, ignoring the will of the people. The government of Aurea 2- 2 was different, people vote to elect a group of known learned people to rule for life, they, in turn, elects one from their numbers to rule the government for three years, in a row: if the way and the results of his government had been a good and productive one, he could be reelected if not, they were demoted and another of the group was to be reelected. The Erina people begin to talk and act through social protests; soon they were molesting the Emperor Volker, who then builds a palace where he keeps on administrating both worlds in perfect isolation and safety. No matter the restlessness of the people, Emperor Volker spent several dozen million sopes making an impressing palace that was built by EDs, especially designed for the work, plus several dozen architects, workers and stone sculptors that worked there for three years to finish it.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. It had a height of twenty five meters, with a square figure sixty meters by each side, and has eight small windows. The whole construction was made of concrete, recovered with masonry. The building reposes over a platform of rocks with a stair for the people and a ramp for vehicles. 92 Emperor Volker made a giant inauguration, inviting Admiral Shukilaco, Gretchen and friends, the whole group of Ministers, commander Mutig, to a big dinner party, the common people who can afford the voyage of 220 kilometers, had tables and chairs where 20 EDs were serving food and beer for everyone for free. Also, twenty two young females, pertaining to the harem of Volker were there, seated at the different tables not to look too conspicuous. Volker said to his guests: You honored me at this day of joy, at last we had finished a fine and robust building for us to administrate our country. Glad am I because, from here and for the four sides of the world, my orders and commands will flow as clear water, helping every person to live in peace and harmony. I thank admiral Shukilaco, who had come notwithstanding multiple compromises, to Miss Gretchen and companions, and to you, people of Erina and Ultor, who heard me outside the building. That was the concise declaration of Emperor Volker , and everyone applauded. Gretchen said, by radio:- Hope this man dont forgets his own words! Several weeks passed by- Emperor Volker begin by not appearing anymore on ceremonies- he was locked at his palace, that originally was to attend reunions with the Ministers, who were to have offices there, but seemingly Volker repents and offers them no place to stay except at the reunion office and a dinner, if he was in the mood. Everyone arrives and departs in Fliers. 93 GRETCHEN MEETS EMPEROR VOLKER. Gretchen sent his Secretary a requisition to have a meeting. Volker seems to have been in good humor when they told him about, and set the meeting for the next day in the morning. But when descending near the building, four soldiers (not EDs) approaches using firearms and personal flier packs, and said (when they saw Gretchen descending): Miss Gretchen,! The Emperor is at work! You will have to wait until the afternoon! Or else, you could call for another meeting to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs! Ill wait. Hope the Emperor didnt get upset by my patience- Gretchen said. The guards return to the palace. Others went out in an armored vehicle and stands among the palace and the Sphere. Gretchen realized that whoever were in charge of the Security proceedings, was a stupid. Four hours later, fourteen hours of the day, she was called to the Emperors office. She went there alone, leaving the doctor and Median at the Sphere. At a small room, the Emperor Volker was seated on a sofa and looking bored; when she enters the place, he stands up and salutes very politely. Good afternoon, Miss Gretchen! I apologize for this delay, but I was resolving important matters that appear without notice.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Dont you worry, Emperor! I can wait any measure of time, being an electronic lady. The matter that brought me here is my departure from this planet.- Gretchen announced drily. The man springs up, asking: Why? You were to help us get important weapons! I assume the help I can bring you with more weaponry is a dangerous one. - She replied. I had seen tourists killing dinosaurs we had brought here to live and not to be butchered. I sent some letters to your government, but they said a new lay issued by you permits them to kill dinosaurs at will. Gretchen said. Volker puts his fingers together by the tips, waits a couple of seconds to reply and then said: The authorization was made by me, the restrictions runs from the moment the dinosaurs come together to mate. That is, a whole month, and I ordered two months with no hunt at all, so they could copulate and not being caught in the act. Then there are two months more where nobody goes to hunt because of the bad weather. Those months nobody realizes are to let the dinosaurs recover. The jungle became a swamp so you see; restrictions runs for four months out of twelve, and hunters cannot shoot pregnant females or calves. Our guides are very strict on that matter. Only thirty five of them for the whole season could be hunted.- Emperor Volker said. Perhaps to reduce the hunting season to one month could be a good idea. Gretchen said. Oh, its a matter of study!- Volker said, not interested in the theme any more. As we go now, and our job during the recovery of this planet hasnt been paid except in good phrases, its time we receive a fair compensation.- Gretchen said. But.. You never say we had to pay for your services! You arrived with the Armada. Admiral Shukilaco was your commander. Talk of these matters with him.- Emperor Volker said, not willing to pay a sopes. 95 EMPEROR VOLKER ENDS HIS REIGN ON ERINA PLANET. Gretchen smiled and said:- Well, I see Im asking too much! And not that I hadnt even mentioned a sum. Volker said:- Im the poor Administrator of a very poor kingdom! Now I get to see how to pay the Armada for freighters plus their military presence in our skies! Well, I ll give you a farewell present: a food processor, in exchange for a ton of helium V B.Gretchen offered to barter. The eyes of the Emperor lightened up, because the food processor of a spaceship was something very scarce. More than a million recipes of every kind and the generator was small, efficient and almost economic about the refueling. Its a deal!- Volker said, standing up and finishing the interview. Gretchen said: I am going to help a lot of people today. This government you have set is not what the people deserves. And saying so, she throws a knife into Volkers throat. The man never expected such a thing, and produced a cough, while he was trying to extract the knife. He succeeded, but his legs became as rubber, and his body falls over the rug. Remember Neketh!- Gretchen said into his hear. She leaves the room looking straight ahead and the guards didnt dare to get inside the room without been called. That gives Gretchen ample time to get into the Sphere and take off. So theres no more Emperor around here. Median said, after hearing what she did on the interview.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. I expect the political system changes into one less dictatorial and more democratic.- Gretchen said, looking by a porthole how planet Erina was dwindling into the distance. 90 Gretchen leaves the Erina planetary system while a big turmoil shakes the society, because the ex general Volker, sixty two years old, was a man who loves to have all the string in one hand, and now he was dead, there were lots of disconnected things flying loose in the kingdom. Admiral Shukilaco and the ministries of Volker seize control and advice the society of Erina about it. People of Erina! Your Emperor Volker is dead! Now we are in charge of the political and economical aspects of the country! The former Ministries of Emperor Volker keeps on being in control of their appointed Ministries. But there will be changes made: I had heard your desire to change the way the country is administrated! For three months I will be hearing propositions on how do you want to be governed: be it with a King, an Emperor, a President, one Tribune or several ones in common, a Dictator, you name it! Every proposition must come from a thousand signed persons or it will be valueless. The two more voted systems will be going to a plebiscite, where you will choose the one that will rule the government in the future. Every man and women will be seeing how we develop this problem: each step of the way will be publicized. Stay calm and have faith in our country. The people reacted with joy, especially the ones who had opposed the defunct general and Emperor Volker, the Usurper. 91 THE SPHERE ON ROUTE TO ELEPHANT STAR. They will love and feared us at Erina planet! I AM SURE THAT THE FUTURE ADMINISTRATORS WILL HAVE SOME OTHER PEOPLE AT THEIR SIDE WHEN TALKING WITH YOU.- Median said, while she gets warp 8.9 from the engines. They were heading to the Huinkerios Empire, as Gretchen has said they must be sure no future threats were coming from that environ. Lajar is the capital- a dangerous place, and of course were not going there! That cruiser (the only one that could escape from the Armada of Admiral Shukilaco) must have brought the terrible news there. Paranoid ideas must be the current state of mind around that planet._ Doctor AB said. They traveled pass that planetary system, and between Lajar and Soler several times they saw freighters carrying ores and goods. They also leartn a lot about the current state of things. The new Emperor Campanel 33 was in command- regulations were many more than before, perhaps due to the defeat at Erina. But as before, from Tiansur on, the laws werent applied in force and life to the people was a lot more easy and free. Soler planetary system had been left behind now we are approaching Elephantia- that tiny yellow star at our prow. 5.5 Parsecs away! I wonder how relations with the Huinkerios are! Those elephantiasic people seem very different to humans!- Doctor AB said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Will see! Those Huinkerios didnt speak of them. No indications that they are aware of their presence.- Median said. 92 Four hours before they reach the orbit of planet 7th in Elephathia, three spaceships arrives to their side, asking who they were and what they wanted. The spaceships were flying discs 360 meters in diameter, 140 meters in width, with three protuberances at the bottom. Although no visible cannons were to see, the protuberances could produce very strong electronic disturbances, enough to disable any approaching missile. Identify yourself! State your motives to be here. Tell us the number of your crew.- The voice was brought by the radio waves. I am Gretchen, AB 730. My motive to arrive here is to learn from your society as much as you could allow. The number of my crew is 32 synthetic persons, and one natural being.- She said, smiling. The language was his own- the one used at the first contact with those people. Follow us into our orbital station.- Was the answer. They were in the center of the three alien flying discs, and so they advance towards the sixth planet, where they saw a huge orbital station. Its bigger than the known ones! AB 730 said. 320 kilometers long, three kilometers wide and three kilometers in height- Median said, after a quick calculation. They stayed at a long pole, magnetically attached to it. By the center of the pole there was a tunnel and by it they advanced towards a metallic door; when opened by the inside, they walked in and saw some other persons at the end of a corridor and through a crystal door, that opened only when the air was pumped inside, restoring the pressure those beings felt agreeable. They were elephant like, with trumps and round feet. Several Elephant persons were there looking at them. They were 3.40 meters high, using thermo suits. The stench of their bodies was not sensed by the synthetic people. We had seen your spaceship before. One of them said. yes, we are your friends.- Gretchen said, hoping they had recorded their previous encounter. I am not the one who talks to you in the past. It was an expedition that informs about your spaceship. Do you come from Aurea planet?- The elephant asked. We had traveled here from planet Erina, but we know Aurean stars and civilizations as well. We are explorers and we dont belong to any country. Gretchen said. One of the _Elephant men has a gadget that pointed to them, and then he said: You are not organic. No, we are made by man- humans from Aurea, and some of us on Knapp planet.- Median said. I wonder where that is.- The first elephant man said. I can show you on a star map. Come to my Sphere and Ill show you.- And she was thinking that these people doesnt represent any threat. They accepted and in front of a holographic set, Gretchen shows them everything they want to know. Then, the Elephant man who had spoken the most with them said:- We had maintained

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. our distance with mankind. They are very greedy and they use the violence to take what they want. I must admit you have right. Gretchen said, but she was sure sometimes violence is the right resource to obtain something. We will permit you and your crew to visit our mother world. But guided, as our people is not accustomed to see humans on their midst.- The elephant man said. And Gretchen could travel to the third planet without any problem. Elephant star had six planets: the first was a rock planet, no air and extremely hot, because of its proximity with the sun. Then it comes a watery planet. The whole surface of elephant #2 was covered by the sea, that stretches from one horizon to the other, and the third planet was like Knapp , with seas, lands covered by vegetation: trees and prairies . In that world of general peace was thriving the elephant race, not so numerous in populace as their females had no more than two offspring in all of their life. They landed on an island; in a large rocky platform 20 kilometers wide, thirty kilometers long, with markings. A place for every kind of model and there were very huge models to see. The flying discs posed nearby and the Sphere wasnt the only one, there were smaller and very bigger spheres to be seen. Gretchen realized that the elephant home civilization was old and smart- perhaps at the level humans had achieved in Earth planet. 95 In a flying vehicle , they were transported to a building, where some Elephant beings presented themselves. I am Rokt, your official guide. As you are synthetic persons, much of the data will be downloaded to your memory circuits; we had several languages here, but all very simple. You must learn it in order to communicate with people. I am ready to follow your directives.- Gretchen said. Your companions could be carried to some other locations if you will, as the permission to stay here is only for three days. After that time, you had to return to your ship and depart from our world. Its the customary procedure.- Rokt said. I submit to your traditions.- Gretchen said. Kruker will guide Miss Median, and Uhuter will guide your Doctor. Rokt said and immediately they were lead to some tunnels, taking pneumotube with different directions. GRETCHEN AND ROKT TRAVEL. Gretchen seats and Rokt said, inside the speeding capsule: We use this method that didnt contaminate our atmosphere. This voyage is 352 kilometers long, and it will end at the city of Ackerfant, the third largest city we possess in this planet. Quite interesting.- Gretchen said. The stench of Rokts body plus 82 other passengers was something very nasty but as we had said before, Gretchen didnt perceives it and was not perturbed by that sensation. They walked by a corridor, after the vehicle stops and opened the doors.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Our cities are huge, and we try not to bump on ecological cul-de-sac. So there are some things different than what homo sapiens usually do. - Rokt trumpeted. 96 The city was very simply designed. A line of blocks where the elephant men inhabits, and another wider with plants and trees. Line after line, and people here just eat plants, so they had the food across the street, so to speak. Their entertainment was to work in anything they choose to do: if a carpenter wants to change of office, he just sign where welders were working- a swift lesson and beginning from down to top, they cannot miss. Everything was bigger and stronger, reinforced, than in the cities of men; because of the weight and height of the elephant race. The guide brought through a memory pill saying: Here you will obtain the information about our historical background, the actual way of government, and other interesting matters. Gretchen touched the artifact, and the electric pulse begins to download. She waits for the three minutes that takes that operation, understanding many of the curiosities she had been collecting during her few hours with those persons. From there, the guide shows him the mines, that almost in all aspects of was performed by machines. The elephant people, of course, have only feet of elephant but hands with four fingers, one opposed, of thinner width. The music was played mainly with their trumps. It sounds like flutes. While visiting a pottery store, suddenly an elephant person comes inside and begin destroying everything; when the owner and sons try to placate him, he produces a sword and begin knifing everyone in sight. Seeing it was Gretchen there, he jumps on herjust to find empty air. One Gretchens feet pulls the elephantic person to the floor by stomping on it, and pinioned, she waits for the police to take him away. 97 They went to the street, and every one huffed in her honor. At the next day, she was invited to see the palace of justice. A large row of Elephantic persons in chains waited out of a large room. One by one they were brought inside by the guards and there to face a Jury, all clad in yellow ochre garments, and seated in a row above a small platform. A guard reads what the prisoners guilt were of and the Jury comments on it, and then decides a punishment. The first Elephant person who Gretchen saw, it was the one running hammock at the precedent day. The Guard lectured about the inadequacies of to run amok and the judges decides- one of them finally said: You had killed the father of three sons, and one of them also is dead by your stupid actions. We declare you a bad lunatic person. Let him die in the same manner. The Elephantic person gives a mournful trumpeting and was taken out. The next was a person who had killed a son because he was crying without pause during the night: he banged it against a wall. The judges verdict was: to be treated likewise and be killed. The next elephantic person was one who had much wealth, but he obtained it rearranging numbers at great factories and pocketing the money he makes appear as used in buying things that never were bought.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 98 The judges sent him back to work at the same place he robbed, without any payment, and for a secret period of time. Another delinquent appears as the one who was in charge to revise books of income and outcome in a beverage factory, and finds all in order- but in reality, it was not so: he receives money from the defrauders not to be fired. The Jury condemns him to work without any payment at that same factory, for life. Other was a man who beats and humiliates his wife in private- he was sentenced to be clubbed 20 times daily by the extent of 30 days, same 30 days he had to be imprisoned. Gretchen asked:- Why all the punishments are on the flesh? Cannot be with only the deprival of liberty on a cell, like hominids usually do? Rokt said: Humans dont honor liberty! The take it from one another if they had invented and deliver it that state of being! Freedom is inherent to the man as a limb or an eye it is! We dont humiliate and degrade our own kind, and we prefer to punish with work, or with suffering of the flesh. But there is a man who will go to a prison for thirty days!- Gretchen remembered him of that fact. Yes, but he will be on a hill! He could walk and feel the breeze; he could sleep wherever he likes, on that hill.- Rokt said. But if he runs out?- Gretchen asked him. Rokt looks at her very puzzled, and said.- We dont run out! How quaint!- Gretchen commented, and she was sure the jails were very different because they were hills instead of cages. 99 Perhaps the person running amok had his motives- psychology seems not to be applied here. Gretchen said. We know about psychology! Its no use with our species! There is a tradition on running amok among our people.- Rokt said, and after that he carried her to the beach, where elephant persons were bathing. She finds lots of excrement balls dancing with the waves, and nobody seems to notice it. Other Elephant persons were resting on the sand- others permit themselves to piss without shame; the smell was not agreeable, but there was nobody there to complain. At night, the elephantic persons dreams of green pastures and the Synthetic people goes into the _Sphere to wait for the light of day. I had seen lots of interesting things today: an elephant goes maniacally crazy and goes to a jury who gives him a soft punishment. And what about you?- Gretchen asked to the doctor. First of all, your order not to use radio to communicate is a good one: I had seen how they have an organization that registers any strange radio and holographic transmission to prevent riots and threats. So if we open our channels, they will know what we are exchanging.- He said. These people has excellent hospitals, and developed Clinics where they perform delicate chirurgical interventions every day of the week.- The doctor added.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Transplants?- Median asked. And more! They are improving their bodies from before the cradle! I had seen how these person looks before and after the arrival of the real science of medicine!- Dr. AB 631 replied. 100 Rest assured well know everything about them- through their History documents. I had seen several document shops: I get to be freed from my guide, to buy those items.- Median said. And currency.- Dr. AB said. I already have some! I pocketed money from these people. Half of the time they are absent minded.- Median said. Same thing to me! Ill begin taking things too- we have but one day left.- Dr. AB said. At the next day, Gretchen visited the workshops where weaponry was made for the city dwellers. We encourage everyone to have weapons in their homes. Rokt said. Fancy tradition you have here! In some other worlds, weaponry for civilians its not allowed.Gretchen said. Bad habit! How do you expect to have citizens with personality if you dont let them feel strong enough to defend themselves?- Rokt asked. Veritable question this is ! Its all a matter of how civilized a community is. Gretchen said in response. 101 On the fourth day, there was a ceremony, where some important dignitaries gives Gretchen a can made of gold, with a lecture that said: To the one who help an Elephant being. The can weighs seven kilos of pure gold. When abandoning the main planet, an honor guard of spaceships keeps up with them until they leave the planetary system. Preoccupied about where to go now?-Dr. AB asked of Gretchen. Not in the least! Well get to the next star: nine parsecs away. The Elephant race had gone that way in their expeditions.- Gretchen replied. And did they told you whats in it?- Median asked. Not a word of encourage. They said to me we better returns to Erina planet.- Gretchen said. Collosal! Im sure they know something they dont want us to know. Median said. the trip will take almost two years of voyage. Who wants to be deactivated?- Gretchen asked. me.- Says the doctor. And me.- Says Median. Gretchen looked in surprise, and said:- I assume you are asking for a vacation! Very well, no need to get worry about: we have thirty EDs that could replace us all. Ill give instructions to them, in order to get a sound repose.None of the others said more. Gretchen passed all the information about flying in deep space to the EDs and in five days after that conversation, the three of them were in their capsules, disconnected.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 102 Almost two years they were traveling. During all that time there were no spaceships in sight. The Sphere was guided by the main computer, and small reparations were made by the EDs from time to time. When passing by the orbit of the fourteenth planet, the ED reactivates the AB by inserting 220 volts 1500 Watts on their pods. Awakened, Gretchen, Median and the Doctor AB 631 recovered the command of the Sphere and seats at the main deck, looking what was to be seen there: Dr. AB said: I wonder why so many planets are in view! A lot of material was left by this star when it starts burning. The star was a red giant. Gretchen said:- This Ill call it Colossal, with fourteen planets: wish we could find life in here. You very well know there is life in every rock! To keep the iron from vanished, the thing we call life must be present, and it is for ever present: that thing that prevents iron to vanish did its work and then didnt rest at all: it keeps on in some other directions, until a speck of life grows a tail and bingo, the road to man is open.- Dr. AB 631 said, resuming the theory of evolution in one sentence. The fourteenth planet was a piece of rock, small, dark and cold, with no atmosphere. The thirteen was a gaseous behemoth with two moons. The twelve and eleventh planet were also rocks voyaging through space in the dark. The tenth planet was gaseous and has six moons, some of them with a thick cap of ice. The ninth was a giant, the larger on that planetary system, having three larger moons, covered with gases, the same as the planet they were orbiting. The sixth and seventh planet was of almost the same dimensions (except the sixth planet that has a thirty per cent more in diameter). The eight has three satellites; the seventh has four satellites and the sixth only one. Then came planets three and fourth and fifth, the three of them with atmosphere totally acceptable for man. There were no moons orbiting planet third and fifth, but just one on planet IV. Well descend. Pity we arent receiving threats by the radio.- Gretchen said, worried because the lack of electronic communication was strong probe that here they will be not finding man. So they descend on planet five. The lands were located only in two sides of the planet, where seas of ice water was in view, the rest of the planet was covered by a thick layer of ice , bad weather almost year round. The people live on buildings near high mountains, to fight the wind that sometimes had a velocity of 500 kilometers per hour. People lives on fishery, mining and underground farms where domestic animals were breed to provide meat. Vegetables were rare, fruits not existent. 104 Theres some mining camps and five sea towns of small extension! Populace about 302.000 in all!- Median said, after scanning with infrared apparatus. Well land on a seaport- the mining camps has not good nature to strangers.- Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. The Sphere was immediately the center of attention. Gretchen said:- Humans. White skinned height 1.80 meters. There are males and females around.Thats why Elephantics dislikes in here: they are not of their kind.- Doctor AB 631 said, very enthusiastically to see the same race that gives him birth thriving so far from home. When walking out, several members of the community raise hands in salute- Gretchen did likewise. Welcome! Are you from Zwabia? - A man asked them in an ancient earthian language. No, but we know many human inhabited worlds. We came from Knapp planet.- Gretchen replied. Come to our city hall! Well talk about this!- The same man said, and Gretchen with Dr. AB 631 followed them to town, surrounded by curious town folks dressed in fish hides that have a strong marine smell. The building was made of stone and inside a big fire was lit- plenty of women were seated there, at tables where they used to work making pottery, bags and other daily life utensils. We are inheritors of a large history that tell us we came from a place in flames, where other races wants our ancestors deprived of economy, sciences, house and life. Our ancestors flee in bells they called Glocke. In those glockes (bells) several people, selected not because they were Scientifics but because they were strong and could resist the dangerous voyage, they flee to here and so we are their descendants that will never forget what they did to them.- That man said. 105 Yes, we had seen your kind! But not in this planet! We had helped them in sciences, but of course, work to make a scientist takes a really long time. Gretchen said. We know about science!- An old man said, clad in a brown robe and seated at a corner. And have you scientists?- Dr. AB 631 asked. We have no time for sciences. To take food from the sea is almost our only job. And mind you, its too risky and not always possible.- The man said. Zoth! I wonder if you have time to think in the future? Without science youll be stranded on the verge of collapse!- Gretchen assured them. The first man who to talk to them said: It will be good for us that you stay around for a timeseeing how we live and what could be donned to improve our lives.Of course, we are here to help. Gretchen said. We must get acceptation- I am a doctor. I should center my work into see how well are you in the making of drugs and surgery.- Dr. AB 631 said. I am Elong! Chief of the people! I accept your teachings. Your doings. People will be brought here, to this room, where you could see them, and study their infirmities. Elong said. I am Flugbahn! I teach language- our language, not to be forgotten or modified! I have lots of questions to make. Flugban said, who was the man seated at the corner. Granted. We will give you some presents to begin with. Gretchen said, seeing faces lighting up.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. They disembark an electric generator, and some lamps to illuminate some corners of the city by night. 106 That first night, men and women at the city were dancing and laughing, happy to see that the dark hours of the night had no power against those lamp posts. Gretchen assured them that they need to learn to build the same machines she was using to provide light. But of course, fishing was necessary for the supply of food, so the time for study the handful of volunteers was very short. Gretchen improves the design of boats, oars, lines- also at the homes, she teach how to make homes better, with proper insulation from the cold. Sometimes she and the rest go in search of oil wells and deposits of charcoal, finding there were none. Seems to me that this planet never had a large number of living creatures. This people are really colonizing here.- Gretchen said, sadly. Median moves her head saying: If these colonies thrive in the future instead of to be swallowed by misfortunes, this fifth planet is going to be the poorer in all aspects. Median smiled and said: With bad climate, hard work, few gains, poor in medical care? They even not have engines running! They had no electrical power! And so they could be ruled in for disaster: its a fortune they are not already extinct. Gretchen prefers to see the problems by the sunny side, and teach the people how to make steam engines- but the problem was with metal. 107 The people at the mining stations usually sold us all the tin and iron we require! Guess youll see they live as poorly as we did!- The chief Elong said. Gretchen visited the mining towns, finding they were almost starving. The chief of the major mining operation field, Mr. Mantel, said: We produce iron and copper. We dont work on thatthe sea town people did that for us- economy here is a disaster. Wish you could search a better world for us. That demand was astonishing to hear, and Gretchen said: But you are too many for our Sphere to take away! The trip to some other world would take lots of years! And this is the first world we had visited: we dont know if theres a better place out there. And she signaled to the sky. The conversation ends and Gretchen revised the mine- several sites had no columns and only the rock to support ceilings, due to the fact wood was not present and putting iron poles in the galleries will be using what was made for sell. Days later, Gretchen leaves the planet, with the promise of to return with good news, if fortune gets in her way. The Fourth planet has four continents, bathed by a blue sea, and lots of islands scattered from pole to pole, that had ice caps 210 meters thick.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 108 At the continent that resembles a dragon, Gretchen decides to land, because from the sky she saw a city with lights on the streets, and a line of more lights pointing to the north where she saw a wide river. They landed near a wall made of bricks. The entrance to the city was, notwithstanding the walls, open: the doors werent guarded at the time. Inside by the contrary, guards were patrolling now the deserted streets. Night has come. Gretchen enters a place where people were dancing and drinking: she asks for a glass of what others were drinking and it was beer. Dr. AB 631 was with her, while Median was at the Sphere, commanding the EDs. As they were pretending to drink, they were also listening to their conversations, and it was again in that ancient language. German.- Dr. AB 631 detected. Those Germans seems to had many Glockes on their vaults!- Gretchen said, and communicating by radio with Median, she added:- We stumbled on a civilization with electric power plants. Have fun!- She replied, laughing. At that place, males were in majority, and soon they were talking Gretchen to dance with them, no matter the presence of the male doctor AB 631. Guess I will go dancing, to release steam around us.- She said to the doctor. No way! The one dancing with you will believe he has rights upon you. And a fight will ensue.-AB 631 said. So well leave the place? I come here searching for information!- She argued. They did leave the place, and soon at the street they became aware of the presence of several males chasing them. They sure are corny!- Dr. AB 631 said, and when turning at a corner, they found some other guys apparently waiting for them. All right, lady! So you despise us when asking to dance! Now youll dance in a different way for us!- A big man said, taking her by the arm. The rest struggled against Dr. AB 631 who was going to break some legs, but Gretchen said: Dont bother with them! Ill close my apertures! And so, when those fiends rips her underpants to have sex, they notice that the vagina as missing, and a terse smooth skin run from front to back without any crevice. Same thing with her buttocks: she hadnt any, so there were no breasts as in a woman, and the chest was as flat as a mans chest. What the hell we have in here? A drunken voice said, with frustration: his penis was erect but he finds no hole where to insert it. Now we fight: enough to be playing the dove Gretchen exclaimed, and with Dr. AB 631 begins to broke and maim so the bunch of crooked men were soon writhing and moaning on the ground. As they had no money to pay for a hotel room, they left the city and comeback to the Sphere, where Median laughed when told about their fight.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. At the next day, Gretchen remains at the Sphere, and Dr. AB 631 and Median went to the streets, searching for some more data- and money. They take some gold filaments, wires that could be sold for whatever coinage those people had. At mid-morning they were already speaking the language, based on the German original. Some new words were added and some other changed but the root was there to hear. As in other worlds, these people were tall . Well-built and prone to work and be honest. Those virtues shows everywhere: the streets were clean, and a sewage system was at work, making illnesses retire from the threats that town was prone to receive. The gold was sold at a jewelers shop- those filaments were soon changed in ear rings and pendants. The money serves for Median to buy some common artifacts to be analyzed and collected on board. The Sphere was a good point where to analyze objects with its lots of scanners and the Infirmary instruments. 110 With these studies we know how to help and improve the melting.- Median said. Instead of overtly told them who we are, this time well help in an anonymous way. Gretchen remarked. They bought a farm, and in it they hide the Sphere, put to work the EDs building a big bunker where to work without give notice to the exterior. Median gets a job at a melting plant; a small one, but also, one of the only two these people had a that time. The system was very primitive and so Median begin to change ways with new ideas and directives, this last when she arrives to an executive post. The end result was better iron articles, fine steel parts and the melting of different metals into new alloys. The news circulated in town. She was invited to dinner and lunch parties, where also the doctor AB and Gretchen assisted. As usual, the doctor AB was helping at the Hospital (In fact, a small house where the most recurrent attentions were made to injuries of hands (from accidents at the mine, or when soldering) as well as infections. The doctor usually uses medicines from the Infirmary at the Sphere. I am teaching about how to search for medicines on the woods! They learn fast, and also I get some new views, because there are lots of new specimens of plants and fungus I had to try in my laboratory.- Dr. AB 631 says to the other two AB. We are giving them a new technology, we are planting the seed. Gretchen said. We are needed here. Six months, and we are already known and accepted as savants.- Median said. Technology is improving but of course, far from what in other planets had achieved. As before, we must start by teaching the young generations, as well as the ones who had capacities right now. We should open an Institute, teaching the basics of metallurgy, chemistry, minerals, and prospection of minerals in mountains. We need more money and of course, we should have teachers- the EDs are capable of that, but their appearance certainly will perturb the townsfolk. Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. One of the marvelous things around here is that they lack religion. They just act as free people, with honesty and hard work. This is another example that man didnt need super heroes in the sky to fulfill themselves. - Dr. AB 631 said. And that means what?- Median asked him. It means we are not to be put at the pole and get roasted for heresy!- Dr. AB 631 said. 112 Under that perspective, they made more thin wires of gold, and again sold it to the jewelers shop. At the same farm, but near the dirt road, they built with the help of the metallic men in overalls and hats, a three stories building, with a subterranean floor and with halls, where to work and rooms where to give classes. Then, they begin advertising by the only means those city dwellers had at that moment: journals and magazines. They advertise the Institute of Sciences, where pupils will learn mathematics and grammar, for start. Also about mineralogy and how to make explosives for the mines, and that was chemistry also. The teachers were the three of them, at first. Then, at the fourth month, the Assistants appearsnamely, the EDs, that begin by helping the students in their efforts, and then replacing the ABs entirely. For that purpose, they wear overalls, and plastic masks- not to show the metal of their true selves. Gretchen said, after the first year: these students are ready to work at the mines and preparing explosives. Why dont we start with a mine of our own? And a melting plant? And the whole works! In this manner, our students will have the certainty of a good job at the end of their efforts. Money! The jewelers have enough gold to work for a couple of years, and people are not too prone to buy their jewels.- Doctor AB 631 said. 113 Fine. Then well start in a small scale- we have an eternity of time to do this.- Gretchen said, and at a slow pace every step of the plan was being accomplished: first the mine, then the melting plant, then products- the first locomotive, the railroad to the next city; then export and import of goods, cattle and minerals, passengers- the first steamboat. Ten years of it all- and lots of work by the part of the ED, and planning by the AB. Ten other years, and the Institute was crawling with future technicians. Every coin they earn was set apart for the next step, until, fifty years later, railroads crisscrossed the whole Dragon Continent, and the steamboats were carrying colonist to the next continent. Gretchen, Median and Dr. AB 631 were now recognized by everyone- they were respected, and invited to make speeches and lectures at schools and technical institutions. The government of the country soon realizes they were cleverer than the most, so they offered them posts at the administration. Gretchen accepted, because now the country has more means and being a simple citizen was not enough to organize things in a big scale. Median gets the title of Ministry of the Interior; Dr. AB 631 was now the Minister of health, and Gretchen the Minister of Mines.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. They keep improving the skills of those naturals until they achieve excellence.- at the Institute, people now was being getting diplomas that assure their employers that with them their business soon will be flourishing. 114 One of the major achievements was the construction of simple robots, moved by batteries. These was made using natural products. The robots were replicas of the ED. Their tasks, whoever, were more simplistic and primitive- but Gretchen uses ED in disguise at the Institute, and people believe there was just one simple model of mechanical robots and so, they make no questions and no fuss. Our subterranean passages are huge and run for hundreds of kilometers. Our subterranean factories had been improved- now we are making delicate circuits by the hour.- Dr. AB said. It will soon come the time to ask neighbors of our chosen city to get together in a political and economic way. The only way to make a jump forwards and achieve an industrial society. A worldwide industrial society.- Gretchen said. But other city administrators were not well disposed to lose their positions and let them governed by a central power, so they refused to conform a unique country. War is the word.- Gretchen said, and instead of more goods she begin making bigger and larger robots and an iron steamship with several cannons. The first town to conquer was Gewerbs, 1200 kilometers away. Gretchen presents herself on the Sphere, saying over the city: In order to conform, a unique nation for the entire world I am here. With my army of robots. If in two days your hadnt relinquished your government to me, Ill let my mechanical men inside the city and death will be at your doors. Terror seized souls, looking at the looming figures up a hill- they shine and produce nightmares, but with the passing of the hours, the populace begin to suspect they were only figures devoid of any movement, so at the next day, some men from the President of Gewerbs approaches and throw stones, arrows and when firing weapons against them, the once stolid mechanical robots became alive, and seized as many of them as they could, tying them at tree trunks at the surrounding area. President Sinn ordered to fire his scant cannons against them. The robots run against those men, seizing them and tying them to their cannons. A team of ED repaired some robots that became damaged during the struggle. Gretchen said, after ten hours after the battle was won:- The time is over: I wait no more . Your president Sinn will be seized and I will govern from now on. Citizens of Gewerbs: stay at your houses and you will be spared. Anyone opposing me will suffer my wrath! Of course, Gretchen has no wrath against anyone, but a big desire to help no matter if they dont want to be helped. Those twelve big mechanical men enter the city, and an army of three hundred soldiers did oppose them, with gunfire and some cannons: four of the mechanical men were stopped, but the rest seized the majority of those soldiers and tied them on lamp posts and doors. The president Sinn hides on his building, but the ED appears and seized him with his assistants.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Gretchen comes out of the Sphere when all was over. Some of the big mechanical men were already being repaired by the ED. A new era has arrived! These people will soon have more satisfaction from life than they ever knew before!- Gretchen said. She get some important people from Gewerbs city, and talking with them, appointing chiefs of polices, ministers, and other important jobs, until the society returns to normal, and the immediate improvements were brought from the city of Kunstlich that give better kind of electrical service, food and clothes. 116 Also, to the poorest sections of the people, the doctor AB treated them all for free, giving medicines, curing psychological problems, giving artificial organs and (or) limbs, arms, or hands. Also,t he optical aspect was taken care, giving lenses to anyone needing them. People realize they were being helped and reacted positively. The soldiers were demobilized and some of them get some posts on the Police. Well have just one Army for the entire planet- every city will have their police organization, but not an Army for every town.- Gretchen said to the people. The next sea town was Manstein, its administrators when knowing what happened with Gewerbs, begin talks with Gretchen. She said: If you swear allegiance to me, and obey my commands from here on, well have no trouble leaving you at your present post. One thing is for sure: the Army forces must be disbanded. Well have just one Army that by now its located at the city of Kunstlich and its only for the time being, possibly Ill have it in a special place to protect not only you but all the planet. Because there are more people out there, on other planets. I can show you their cities and their fire power. And so she did, carrying a holographic set to a room at the administration building and after seeing the scenes, the whole Manstein city administration adheres to Gretchen and she organizes everything anew. The rest of the cities at the Fourth world also adheres to the Gretchen organization. The Army was enlarged , always at the city of Kunstlich , the secret subterranean tunnel made by the ED now have hundreds of kilometers , where the first colossus made by the ED was built. 117 Median: we already have a hundred new ED, perhaps with some faulty aspects, but in time well improve them as best as we could.- Gretchen said, while seated at a table in the Sphere. Possibly our technical skills are faulty. We must work in this. But it is a thing of time, a matter of time. With these ED, in the state they are right now, they could replace any kind of natural man, working day and night as long as their batteries keep on being charged. Median said. Nothing could give these people more security than a big space fleet, do you think well be ready to start trying to build the first Flier?- Dr. AB asked. Of course. Making this first group of ED uses several important parts that are needed when building Fliers. Now, we cannot make it fly on batteries: that its utterly dangerous. So we must build an engine. A nuclear engine for now, its out of the question. To use gasoline will mean to destroy the ecosystem and produce much suffering . So well be making engines moved by hydrogen. Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Highly volatile and dangerous!- Dr. AB said, not quite sure that could be a good solution. Well make them and the ED will use them . If something comes out wrong, they are disposable. Gretchen said. Those engines needs also batteries, but in smaller numbers. The first Flier test begins one year and a half after this conversation. Nobody was on board of that Flier; it was manned by remote control, using by a person on the ground. The test flight was successful and Gretchen said: We can start building a dozen of those. Later well make more and the mining of different minerals, far from the city of Kunstlich will begin. 118 One of the persons that saw other test flights was Sinn, former President of Gewerbs and now working as the administrator at the city of Manstein. You had brought us a work to do: to make all things we not even dreamed of. But what about ourselves, as persons? What rule of actions do you recommend us? Gretchen replied:- Ordinary life brings about suffering; the origin of suffering is attachment. The cessation of attachment is attainable: cease of desires. A man without desires is a happy man. With that, she gains a reputation for to be a philosopher. People were doubtful about her: was she a totally synthetic being, or as the majority thought, a person with a human brain inside a synthetic body. Gretchen and the other AB just dont give hints about themselves, prolonging the myth about their existences. Twenty years of their administration, and the world government takes a firm grip on the people. Gretchen rules as the Queen without many laws, but the few of them were put to work in a very strict way: the trespassers, when death was involved, were harsh treated- the person became a worker of the state, be it on a mine or in the fields. Their only benefits were a bed at night, clothes, shoes, two meals per day, and a sound Clinic to hail them of any illness. The fabrication of better Fliers was at full throttle: there were a hundred Fighter Fliers and more than five hundred more in private hands. About ED, they were three thousand six hundreds of them at work in the planet and more to come. The first spaceship was being built on the mountains of Auber, where hundreds of EDs and men were working together. 119 The deflectors and antigravitators were located on three fins: two at the side and one on top, the three of them at the middle of the cone. Each four days, Gretchen or Median went there and helped for many hours straight. This work lasted two years, and then there were four test flights: each of them reaching the point where the notorious gravity pull of the plant wasnt enough to brought the ship down. At the fifth flight, Gretchen was in the spaceship and Median was following that vehicle on the Sphere, with twenty Ed. When in orbit they deployed a couple of communication satellites and at the cities the holographic grid begins receiving the signal by one of those satellites. The people didnt realize that from then on, they were receiving their programs from a central station that repeats the signal trough cables and microwaves sent from post to post.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Now, the two satellites (one at each side of the planet) , sent down the signal, once and for all times, without any relays. When returning to the base, or where the new spaceship was built, Gretchen talked with Median near the sphere. Now we have the means and the technology to unify minds- now they all are receiving the same message, the same programs and they will all end by being equals amongst each other from the metropolis to the smallest of towns, and they will have the same impressions and the same way of live. Give us twenty five years more and well have all the people on this planet thinking and living in the same or similar, way. We could move them to be generous and kind, or get egotistic and quarrelsome. Of course, well try to mold them as a nice thriving nation.- Median said. We are seeking perfection, well try to make them all honest workers, be it behind a counter, deep into a mine or in a workbench. Well eradicate laziness, bigotry and false proud hope we could mold them into perfection!- Gretchen said, firmly. Ten years later, the C4 was having twenty spaceships fully armed and ready to defend the planet, if not the whole planetary system. Gretchen usually was working at the spaceship factory, whose installations were mostly underground. In those tunnels excavated years ago, she was working hard when receiving an alarm call from one of the ED in charge of the planetary security system. Thirty two big spaceships incoming from the side of Elephant star.Hail them and asks to wait for your commanding officer.- Gretchen said, running to a special Flier, capable of to reach orbit. In that vehicle she soared up, with three ED at the other controls: soon she was able to see the alien visitors, and through a telescope she saw the ensign of the elephant kingdom. I am Gretchen, queen of the planet. State your intentions. After some minutes of delay, a voice resounded muffled through the loudspeaker, saying :I am Admiral Luffor. We are on route to Malien star. But we need some supplies. Very well, Admiral Luffor, well provide everything you may need. I invite you to descend, or wait where you are now, for the goods to arrive.- Gretchen invited him. After a delay of several minutes, the elephant sapiens said: Very well, we accept your offer. For security measures, some of our spaceships will keep here in orbit, while others will descend where you choose to indicate. Follow my Flier and Ill land where most easy help could be obtained.- And saying that, Gretchen guided them to the surface, landing at the best space field there was on planet IV, namely, near Kunstlich city. The enormous spaceships descended in correct order, lining up at that space field, where they occupy more than the eighty per cent of the terrain, to the horror of the Control Tower people in charge, not to mention to the pilots with small Fliers parked on the ground. The elephant sapiens disembarked and Gretchen salute the Admiral Luffor, a big 3.90 meters high being, who had to look down to see her in front of him.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Queen Gretchen, I had not the honor to know you beforehand, but at our database your name is well known. He said. Oh. Only at your database am I known among you? - Gretchen retorted. Of course that also among us, Queen Gretchen: many an officer remembers your name. Here is a list of supplies that we need, and also fresh water- no tap water but the one that flows from the ice peaks.- Admiral Luffor said. There will be no problem providing you of the items stated in this list. Your men could visit the city if they want. Just take care with the small people.- Gretchen invited them. 122 Have no fear of that, Queen Gretchen! We only love open air, when possibly; I see you have a wonderful forest there; our soldiers and scientist will be at ease.- Admiral Luffor said. Be my guest! Enjoy the forest.- Gretchen acquiesced. Four weeks the Elephant crews were staying at the forest; some curious people from the city of Kunts were also visiting the forests, to see those giants, frolicking among the trees, eating from the plants, leaving foul excrements everywhere, and attracting flies by the thousand. The elephant people refuse to have nothing to do with the smaller Homo sapiens, so these begin to hate the elephant people as if receiving some kind of offense. The admiral said to Gretchen: You had been very generous with us. I think we had found a friend in you. Count with that, Admiral Luffor! All your requirements had been fulfilled.- She replied. I will give you two sound aerial vehicles and five others that are with some damaging in their engines, hopping you get the best out of them.- Luffor said. Thanks you, Admiral Luffor. I really appreciate your gift.- Gretchen said, sure she was going to get new and advanced technology in those alien spacecraft. Two days later, the elephant people leave the planet and the orbit, on course to the next planetary system. The vessels they had given were fountains of new discovers for Gretchen and her friends. 123 Chapter 6. THE GUSSOFF SECRECY UNVEILED. Median said: Incredible it is to find the dimension into dimension system in these vehicles. Now we could expand our entire fleet with that marvelous invention. Yes, the one that were a standard element on the Gusoff Flier.- Dr. AB 631 said, and while searching for extra artifacts on those places they did find videos not only portraying elephant aspects of life at their home planet but also in different sites of the Constellation they were in: 68.000 stars with more than 406.000 planets of different constitutions, most of them devoid of life, but with a three per cent of sentient life as well: 153.333 new civilizations in all. This enormous effort of exploration has been given to us for free. Imagine the thousands of years of hard work they had invested!- Median said, fascinated by the apparent generosity of the Elephant sapiens.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. They sure know about these videos! And theres almost identical records in each of the spaceships they left us!- AB 631 said. They give the work to analyze and translate every detail of those archives to one ED, the one that works in it four years without strop, but in the end, they get a full report on all the stars at their Constellation, that keeps the name the Elephant people choose to give it. Bexollera, that means Diversity in their language. 124 The AB synthetics comprehend now a lot better where they were and how to expect. From the constellation they were inserted. Its really a new world, this side of the Wormhole! Doctor AB said. Yes, and we have the responsibility of to reassert the human presence here! As you realize, looking at the elephant database, men as we know it is very rare on this side of the cosmos. Its out of us to mark presence. There are some very bellicose races out there that could try to take this planet as a colony, and others could try to get it just for the pleasure of taken spoils and commit barbarous rituals on this population.- Gretchen said. In those years of hard work, every technological advance taken from those elephantic vessels was used and implanted on the Gretchen military vessels. The number of ED keeps on being increased by the factory of Synthetic persons, so the populace was having a respite on their daily chores. Interviewed from time to time, people for the lower classes said it was a pleasure on how the big problems they had in past years were eased out or destroyed by the Army: dangerous animals exterminated , bridges made. Median was now in charge of the Space Fleet, and warships were now patrolling the planetary surroundings. Strong spaceships heavily armed patrolling the planet, and that makes them think that no alien spaceship will pass unnoticed. An orbital station of a middle sized appearance was orbiting the globe each four hours. 125 A VOYAGE TO PLANET COLLOSSUS FIVE. Gretchen calls to a reunion of every one of her assistants plus the two other AB and said:- I am your Queen for a better name. I am the first Administrator, the indefatigable worker, your savant servant and now this is my plan: we already know what is in planet 3 and in planet 5. You had seen it several times in your holographic set, but the majority of you havent gone there. Some had gone but had not said a word of it. And you know why? Because it is a secret. And now it is true to open gates and informs you of this: well never be secured if we dont unite the three worlds that are able to sustain life. And when this three worlds ends up tied to my command, a strong army of spaceships will patrol every corner of the fourteen planets we have in this planetary system. And I am not asking you of any big effort: well keep on walking at the same pace as ever while my ED assistants takes command of worlds and unify it under one common flag. They applauded, and several yelled to be soon in the struggle. I heard cries of volunteers for this job, and they are natural humans, that are proclaiming their will to be of help! Everyone coming with us in this sort of Crusade will have his reward if they survive to the ordeal. Me, the Queen has spoken.And everyone cheered her.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Later, she talked alone with Median, saying: The Doctor AB 631 will be going with me so you had to stay- you will be the Regent as long as I am abroad. In case I disappear, you will proclaim you are the new Queen. If it happens that I return unexpectedly years later, you will give me back the title of Queen and you will be , again, my assistant. 126 I understand. Please dont put yourself in danger. In that way you will have more chances to return.- Median said, and Gretchen announced, making a speech to the populace of planet IV, her plans and other aspects of her new project, ending by saying: And remember that the police, the Army and the general services will keep on working and providing under the command of the Regent, Miss Median! After that holographic speech, Gretchen and the doctor AB 631 climbs the ladder to the Sphere while Median was watching their departure from the ground. We have been fifty years in this IV planet, raising it from the Middle Ages to the Spatial Age. Not bad, for three lonely synthetics.- She said. A big triumph of the will, indeed! Humans are good material but the truth of the matter its that they cannot be left alone.- Dr. AB said, seating at the copilots seat. The whole Armada of the IV planet had forty spaceships and three thousand five hundred and four Flier fully armed, and several dozen Freighters and workshop vessels, orbital cannons and one Orbital Station spinning around the planet. The expedition comprises the Sphere, three Cruisers and sixty eight Fliers, all fully armed. A Cruiser has twenty two ED, a Flier has three ED per vehicle. In all, they were two hundred and seventy ED plus the AB synthetic persons. There were also fifteen Natural volunteers, in charge of the kitchen and helping at the Infirmaries- in any case, they were to stay behind in case of battle. Gretchen was adamant: not one of the naturals must suffer death. The trip took one week- the Fliers were not capable of a too high velocity, and when nearing the almost ice covered planet, nothing was moving against them. The orbital station was soon detected a mere forty meters long vehicle, fully automatic and ready to give the alarm in case unknown vessels could be approaching. 127 IN PLANET COLLOSAL V. An ED said:_ No radio waves coming._ This is very intriguing. Doctor AB said. My spies were here not a month ago and their reports were different than what we are looking now.- Gretchen said. Perhaps a failure in semantics.- Dr. AB suggested. Not one: I double checked with one another. Gretchen said, and to the rest of the Armada she said:- Stay in orbit: Ill go down to check whats happening! The Sphere took only twelve minutes to descend- the landscape shows the same picture she remembers from her first visit, fifty years ago. The lands were located at the two hemispheres of the planet-. The ice surrounds the two continents but not in their shores, where there was water -. Same in the interior of the continents, where there were several large lakes of potable water.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Gretchen descended at a large city near some mountains. People were scared to see the Sphere and looked from a distance. Gretchen simply stays there walking as in the best of places- the people begin approaching until one man yelled at them: Had you seen the monsters with trumps in their faces? Gretchen realized that perhaps the Elephant people pays a visit there some time in the past, but replied:- No, we are just people. That starts some smiles in those curious persons that approaches some more. Dr. AB come down the ladder with presents of food that soon were begin given to the Naturals, that seems to be very hungry. More men approaches- between them three large robbed men, using rings at the shoulders. They were there, looking for a time and then the older of them said: Demons from outer space! These are no humans but fiends! Go away! 128 And contrary to what that order suggested, it wasnt directed at Gretchen and the doctor but to their own people, that leaves the place in a hurry. The last to go were the three robbed persons, to whom Gretchen said: Why do you despise us? What harm have you received from us? Why do you say we arent humans? Legends are our religion now! The Lord teaches us how you come here to bring misfortune to the people! Some time ago elephant-looking fiends come in vehicles that fly just like yours! But we know better! Go, fiends, go!- That old man said, taking the rest with him. Gretchen said to the doctor: Religion shows its ugly head around here! Now it will be most difficult to speak with them and arrive to some conclusion. You will be scanned by these people! They had some knowledge! As they seem to know we are synthetics! Lets use real natural people this time!- Dr. AB 631b proposes. Yes, they will be sure we are fiends if we set their minds to it! I will teach the Naturals what to say and so well see what happens!- Gretchen said. From the group only three went up the ladder and into the Sphere: their names were Miss Narina, Mr. Ickelgrub, and the last ones name was Mr. Breitze. At the mess hall, Gretchen said to them: You represent our government now. These people do not want us as their interlocutors. Just say we came in peace and that if they want medicines and a doctor just let us now. Usually, religious-prone people built very primitive societies because they believe a person that is invisibly makes them ill to suffer, or happy to enjoy health. But pain also breaks fortitude and more than one will come here to be safe from pain. Ickelgrub said: And if they refuse? You just tell what I said: medicines and a doctor for free. They will understand we are here to serve.- Gretchen said. Ickelgrub went to the city with the other robbed people and they were talking while doing so: I hope we could get their attention!- Ickelgrub said. Oh, this is great! These people are humans like us and they also speak in German! They are family.- Narina said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. There are beautiful buildings. But look how sad they look with grey and black garments!- Breitze noticed. Look at that group near the fountain! Somebody is talking to them! Ickelgrub said. They approached to hear, but when nearing the man stood silent. Ickelgrub said: Ahoy, friends! We had come from the stars to salute you and help where it is needed! One of your administrators puts in demeanor our administrators so here we are, in flesh and blood to invite you to be looking for diseases. Nobody was responding but they did were listening. Ickelgrub continues: I am Ickelgrub! A man like so many of you, a son of the Glocke! Our doctor, a renowned medic, is going to attend you for any illness you may have and this time is totally free: you dont have to pay us! Silence. Miss Narina step forwards and said:- I notice you sad and with remorse. Cheer you up! Whatever trouble you may have, here we are to solve your problems the best we could! Silence. Very well, you had heard our offer! Pity it is that you dont speak with us. Dont be afraid of strangers!- Breitze said and with that they keep on going into the city street after street they went filming it all, and wherever they went , people were following them until a throng of people were after them. I feel afraid! These people talk to each other but not a word directed to us!- Narina said. Look! That must be the house of government! It is big enough to contain lots of people!Ickelgrub said. They enter the place, but there were was only a bench in the opposite side and all the rest was empty. Somebody slams the door after them, and three black robbed men enter by a back door, and stood behind that bench. One of them said: You had trespassed the holy of holies! You cannot be permitted here! We ignore that a prohibition was set to this place.- Narina said. We are now saved! God spoke to us in person and in dreams! Away with people that descends from the sky! Away with technology, that set us apart from our god and savior!- Another robbed man said, and clapping his hands he calls on the room a couple of guards that had swords in their hands. 131 MEDICAL ASSISTANCE FOR FREE. Are we your prisoners?- Narina asked them with trembling voice. Of course not. These guards will guide you back to your spaceship. We dont want you here.The old robbed man said harshly. They were, in fact, guided by the streets, but now there was a difference: people yelled at the guards, defending them of whatever they think they were doing. A person throw a stone at them, hitting one of the guards, who raise his weapon in an angrily way, provoking laughs of derision on the crowd!

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Near the Sphere they were when the metallic ED went a-running down the ramp and defended the Naturals, firing LASER beams near the guards, scaring them away. The people also were scared but remind looking! Gretchen said, when walking out the Sphere: People of this city! We are here to help you! Medical care will be provided by our doctor during the day! And Dr. AB 631 appears with a table that sets near the entrance to the Sphere- one of the ED brought more medical stuff for him to work. A man approaches, saying: Im Yamil. Could you cure me of a terrible headache? I am half-crazy with this! The doctor said: Please, seat at that chair. I will see what is killing you.- And he smiled assuredly. Very soon he discovered a lot of rotten tooth on the mouth of that burly fellow and said to him: You have your tooth in a very deplorable condition. I know! But there are no more dentists now. The priest forbids easing pain that comes naturally.- Yamil explained. 132. The priests commands you all?- The doctor asked, mildly. The priests are the rulers now that the science has been abolished. But what are you going to do to release my pain?- Yamil asked. I must remove your rotten tooth , patch the ones that could be patched. It will not hurt you! I have a cream that eases the pain.- Doctor AB explains to him. Go ahead! I cannot stand any more this headache!- Yamil said. Dr. AB pulled out the damaged tooth, a couple of teeth were pasted and then he said: You will be not munching much from now on: too many missing pieces, but return in a month, when your gums get cured! I will be working some more on that mouth of yours. Yamil takes a couple of round coins and handling it, he said: All right, doctor! Guess I am cured- I already feel that awful headache receding! And he return to the city, not after telling (and showing) what that dentist performs on his mouth. Some others appear during that first day. The dental standard among these people its pitiful.- Doctor AB said when the night comes and nobody was in sight. Certainly, that idea of to reject science and technology leads to these things.- Gretchen said. The Doctor AB calls by radio and talked with them and when hearing what was happening with the present situation in the human society, he said: If you want to spent years waiting for a change , hear what I think: Depose those phantoms, seize power, and make the changes by force. In twenty five years they will be not even talk about what happened now. 133 THE PRIESTS ARE EXILED. Gretchen moves her head sidewise and said: I assume you are right. We cannot wait. Planet IV cannot wait.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. And he calls to the Cruisers to descend. The big machines landed one kilometer away from the city, shaking the ground with their power. A swarm of mechanical men aligned in front of Gretchen, who said: Now the order its go grab every black robbed priest and brought them here into my presence. The mechanical men run to the dormant city, producing chaos and terror.. Soon the first preachers appears, tied their hands and feet. They were crying and praying to their god, with no evident sign to be heard. Hours later, thirty two robbed priests were there, chanting the self-produced religious chants they had invented years ago. Gretchen sends them to the continent at the other side of the world, where they will not be able to come back. The political measures begin that same day, electing people to serve at the new administration: three ED were put in command of the town, and they found a lot of goods in houses belonging to the priests: everything was donated randomly to the people, producing great turmoil: more than one believes, after this, that religious men were greedy persons that were serving themselves instead of their alleged god. An Institute was set in place, every temple was transformed into a workshop where ED synthetics begin to teach people in science and technology. 134 The people begin to yell when electrical light come again to their homes- when new appliances were at stores, easing their daily chores- at factories, people were getting jobs with nice salaries. We must give them vehicles! But theres almost not a place suitable to begin with!- Doctor AB said. Give them bicycles! Cheaper to make and will gives them the realization they could go anywhere faster than ever!- Gretchen said, smiling. In the course of three months, almost every family had already a bicycle, thanks to a factory hurriedly put to work using twenty EDs and some machines brought from the cruisers. At other towns the religionist hadnt seized control-. Yet so it was very easy to convince authorities to relinquish their posts and became employees of the new world dominance. Most of them vaguely remember the time when technology reigned so there was scant resistance to Queen Gretchen and her minions. As before, Gretchen concentrate her efforts in just one city, where she condensed every factory and every new way of living , expecting the rest of those cities begin copying the ways. She renames that city with the name of Ultoria; people forget religion and thrive on technology in the lapse of twenty years. Gretchen said to Dr. AB after those hard first years in command: I have been minimizing my appearances in public, in order to maintain the idea Im present somewhere, ordering and administering the services. 135 DOCTOR AB 631 IN CHARGE OF PLANET V. I had seen you doing precisely that. What? Are you willing to leave?- Dr. AB said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Exactly, doctor AB. But I want you to stay in my place. I will go now to planet III, where this same operation must be performed- remember these three planets must become administered by only one government.- Gretchen said. Dr. AB 631 reminds silent for some seconds, and said: I assume you will be staying some years at planet III, and also paying a visit to planet IV. Of course. People must see me in order to know Im still in command.- She replied. Very well. Well keep in touch, through the radio.- Dr. AB said. At the next day, and leaving Cruisers and Fliers at Dr. AB 631 care, Gretchen begin her journey back to planet IV in the Sphere, with one ED on board. This time the trip was made in two weeks, as the planets were farther away in their orbits. But before long, the radio emissions were at her disposal- dozens of different emissions were present-. Also holographic signals. She communicates with Median who promptly said: I have sent twenty Fliers to protect your incoming: sorry to say, but we have pirates lurking the skies. Amazing. I am sure they are humans.- Gretchen said. Yes, humans with some knowledge.- Median replied. The specks of light approaches and soon the Sphere had its own safety patrol. They landed at the capital city, Kunstlich, and were received with much ceremony- not that they needed it, but the populace consisted mostly of humans, and they had a tradition on phony ceremonies all around. 136 Gretchen was received at the spaceport and in a Flier she was carried to the Administration Building, where Median receives her with a welcome speech. She said: Welcome, Queen Gretchen! Now we could present to you our achievements: two Scientific Institutes, new and powerful Flier machines, two new Cruisers and some cannon spaceships that are protecting our planet. Commissions of natural men are helping Administrate our cities with their work. We hope that you could find our work while you were away, a successful one, and we hope you could tell us something about your trip.- Median said, although she knows everything occurred at the IV planet. Gretchen said to the people:- I am happy to be again at home, because I feel your warmth towards me. I remember that this special city was the first in which we landed in our quest for improving the life of humanity in this quadrant. I had visited planet IV, our neighbor. There are people like you there that were been degrading in every aspect: we worked improving their ways so when we left them to come here, they were already in the right track, being grasped the fact that science and technology brings health and welfare to all. Yes! We had seen those people that had abandoned every scientific study to embrace religionthat they lost the knowledge to produce electric current and were again fighting darkness with wax candles, walking along roads instead of to travel in vehicles and fly on the air when distances were too big...

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. A rumor of incredulity run among the people, and Gretchen added: Religion was created there by a group of fanatics; fantasy was in all their teachings. But we take those ideas away, and now electric light and simple vehicles are already running by the streets at the Fourth planet. Gretchen provides some films about the trip so they all could see the reality of her words, using the holographic sets. 137 MISS GRETCHEN AND HER DOUBLE. Median and Gretchen talked that night with Dr. AB 631, who was saying:- I really missed you here, Gretchen! Some people are so accustomed to your ways that resents talking to me about every problem! Nonetheless, you get to stick working around there! Nobody should be indispensable.- Gretchen said. Of course I can handle things, but the people did miss you. We could transform our ED into an AB with faulty faculties, of course. But those differences will never be noticed by homo sapiens.- Dr. AB said. Some kind of a toy.- Median informed her. Yes, a toy. But they could believe its you.- Dr. AB said. Gretchen said to Median: Do you believe we are ready to make our own models?She replied: We had achieved great progress with the EDs helping, but not at the range of to make an AB synthetic person. Theres much technology involved and we need special machinery, very difficult with our present tools. So we could only make a figure resembling myself?- She asked. Yes, because that is much more simple.- Median said, The figure of my body, my face, mine eyes and also my tone of voice?- Gretchen asked. Of course its possible! We keep on doing EDs of a metallic structure because we dont want to produce a turmoil in this society. To have nice looking synthetic men and women working everywhere must cause serious distress and embarrassment to many a fat and ugly Natural person.- Median explained. So you think these people arent prepared yet for such a change?- Gretchen asked her. We should wait to solve lots of problems before starting with another.- Median replied. Very well, make a copy of myself, and send it to the V planet in a Cruiser! The Cruiser will remind there and two cruisers must come back here. I want several big spaceships at my side when visiting planet Three.- Gretchen ordered. 138 While those Cruisers come back, Gretchen visited new edifices, bridges , saw cattle fields and factories. She was also at the tunnels where EDs and Spaceships were being built. I see much innovation!- Gretchen said to Median, three days later. Yes, we have lots of natural engineers giving much new modifications. Humans are creative, they give many satisfactions, but their lives had to be protected and accounted for. Big salaries and medical care assured for them and their families.- Median replied.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Logical people they are. A person with problems is using part of his mind, hindered by ideas to solve his problems and the rest is for the developing of technical enigmas. Pay and receive is our motto. Gretchen visited other cities, and she felt the optimism in every corner and in every smile the people gives her. At the walls someone makes graffiti, saying: I dont care they are synthetics as long as they give us happiness! That simple phrase fills her with a new beginning, and when arriving the two cruisers from planet Five, she went inside of them, to learn from their crews how things were going there. Your presence at the star port was stunning for everyone! They just cannot believe you were there and afterwards every holographic channel was requesting films of you returning to the planet V!- Mr. Ickelgrub said. Glad to hear that! Of course, I m not there.- Gretchen said. Ill keep that as a secret.- Ickelgrub says. Miss Marina approaches, wide eyed, and said: Really is you? I would have swear that it was you that was arriving to planet V! 139 THE EXPEDITION TO PLANET 3. We sent someone to ease the tension there! Hope this is not too unethical.- Gretchen said. Of course not! You must have your reasons.- Ickelgrub says. Dr. AB told me there was unrest at the V planet because I wasnt present.- Gretchen explained. Both Naturals exchanges glances, and Ickelgrub said: Unrest? I dont see anything like it. Perhaps at the Administration level?- Gretchen inquires. Well, we were not too high at the ladder of power. Who knows - Miss Narina said. What is donned is donned! And your other companion is he well?- Gretchen asked. Breitze? Hes on the 07 Cruiser. Do you need him?- Ickelgrub replied. Not really! But perhaps you could want him, to volunteer for another expedition Im sailing to the III planet. And perhaps you need some more action in your lives. Gretchen said, knowing beforehand their logical answer. Count us in!- Miss Narina said. You helped us in planet V and now you are going to do the same thing in planet III, but this time you will have a better reward than a trip home.- Gretchen said, and they smiled. Yes! This time you ll get a job in the administration offices at planet III. We need legal assistants and you qualify.- Gretchen ends by saying. Later, Gretchen and some ED recuperate every bit of information about planet Three, and produced maps and graphics to give everyone voyaging to that planet a way to go right where they want. He chooses to go with three Cruisers and twenty new powerful Fliers with a crew of four ED in each of them. There are a hundred ED in each Cruiser. The Sphere will house the naturals up to the number of twenty, and a hundred ED fully armed. 140 Also, Gretchen prepares a team of ED and Naturals to put in place of command.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. When arriving to planet III, they saw the oceans, that in some parts were very shallow and the continents, with high mountains that in that time, occidental hemisphere, had signs of ice in their peaks. -A radio signal at the occidental hemisphere, commander. - An ED announced to Gretchen, and she saw the radar showing, with red moving circles, the broadcast activities. She also noticed another city to the south , and at the west side there was a lake thirty kilometers wide. Well descend en-masse. Fliers first and making a reconnaissance of the terrain as the first procedure. Gretchen said, and she saw, by the central holographic set, how the one hundred Fliers raced down to the planet, and observed the cities from up close. There are single airplanes, Commander. Nothing to worry about.- The commanding officer in charge said by radio. 141 THE HAMBUR REPUBLIC. Now were descending to the south city.- Gretchen said, and the two cruisers landed two kilometers away from the outskirts of town. While they were landing, and ED said: Radio communication incoming, commander. They are asking questions. Gretchen takes the microphone and said. This is the Colossal Armada. We are here in peace. Here we are speaking from the city of Blondie. State your name and intentions. The voice asked. My name is Queen Gretchen and our intentions are pacific, so I demand to speak with your leader.- Gretchen demanded. This is a little difficult at the time. Your unexpected arrival produces this difficulty.- The voice said. We are humans and come in peace. Tell your governor to invite us to his city; we need to talk.Gretchen said. This was very difficult: the President of the Republic of Hambur was afraid to be ambushed and killed, and when Gretchen said she could go there, the man refuses with lots of silly pretexts. A week later, Gretchen keeps on being at the same site without any solution, so Ickelgrub said to her:- Permits me to visit this functionary in his personal den. You could lend me three or four ED for personal security. I congratulate you for your initiative. I will accompany you, plus fifty EDs, and fifty Fliers as physiologic aid.- Gretchen said. 142 Pardon me, commander! But if you go with this all along, you will clearly state that things are under your control and not mine; ergo, Im not trustworthy.- Ickelgrub said. Gretchen looked at him for a second and said: I realize that you want to do it under your own responsibility! So be it: I will not go. Thanks, Oh Queen! - Ickelgrub said, and departed. That sets her thinking she must relay some power on Naturals if she wants to make human civilizations works their way: with all that it means: wars, famine, cruelty and assassinations.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. She was on the brink of to regain full control (as ever) but then she thought: Its their flesh. And begin rearranging matters so the power begins to rest on human shoulders Ickelgrub calls on his two friends and departed with Miss Narina and Mr. Breitze. They travelled in a modern Flier, descending in the middle of a big square, in front of the Administration building. They dont wait for another minute. They descended and walked to the stairs, climb it among surprised stares of bystanders. The high doors open, two guards tried to stop them but Ickelgrub fired LASER beams to stun, and keep on walking I cannot know where the President is! I assume at the bigger room available?- Ickelgrub said, Breitze grabbed a panic stricken lady, asking the same question, and she signaled upstairs: Breitze seized her by an arm, saying: Tell me your name! Brenda Brenda Zlog!- The blonde woman replied. All right, Brenda, well go there and pity on you if you had lied to us!- And she walks with them, pale and scared stiff. The corridors were not empty but also, the time when a person saw them and the elapsed time to get some reaction was enough for them to walk away of the bystander 143 Here it is! The hall room of conferences.- Brenda said, and Ickelgrub opened the door. Two guards there were immediately passing that door, and they were neutralized by two shots of medium sized LASER shots. This caused terror and confusion. To understand their concern, enough will be to say there was only one door at that hall of reunions but many windows, that leads to a garden, fourteen meters below the floor. So they stay inside, waiting for those invaders to do whatever they come to do. The first in react was the President of the republic of Hambur, who said: How do you dare enter to this room, while we are in session? Depose your weapons and leave! Ickelgrub recognized he was the President, and approaches him saying: Now you are coming with us. Who is your Prime Minister? The question was very upsetting-. Could that invader be willing to kill every one of his collaborators? So he lied, saying: He is in his own office at this hour. The persons you are seeing here correspond to the welfare department. Ickelgrub looked at the twelve persons, now standing from their seats and said: Common people, eh? Well, were going to carry all of them, including you, of course, to a trip. Two of the males run to the door, but two shots of LASER beams make them fall to the floor, unconscious. No, please, dont shoot!- A lady said, in the verge of hysteria. Very well! You know now what will happen if you oppose me. Mr. Breitze, please open the door: were leaving this place.Now, when they were walking out of the room, all the building was in bedlam, and at the stairs they saw several riflemen pointing at them. Ickelgrub said: If you fire at us, well kill the president and all of his collaborators! President Wirbel said: Stand aside! These people are born killers!

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. The phrase was not of the like of Miss Narina, who gives a punch to that man, that growled. The Army men were restless- suddenly another high ranking officer come puffing from the street, saying:- Nobody leaves the building! You are under arrest! Ickelgrub was not happy with those muzzles pointing at them, so he said: Your President has been invited to some talks with our Queen Gretchen! Let us pass! Never!- That decided soldier said, so Ickelgrub retreats to the main saloon, with the kidnapped members of the Cabinet, and closed the door. What are we going to do? We cannot escape now._ Miss Narina said. Ickelgrub looked at one of the EDs and said: Call to the pilot of our Flier. Tell him to place the vehicle next to those windows, so we can embark. Donned. Hes coming already.- The ED said, and in seconds the bulky figure of the Flier was already positioning its bay doors next to the windows. Miss Narina opened the windows panes and they orderly enter the vehicle. When the last of them was inside, the hall room door was broken down and a group of angry soldiers come about. The Flier goes up, traverse the roof while climbing and stop out of reach of those fire arms. Why do you stop now?- Miss Narina asked to the ED pilot. 145 GRETCHEN MEETS PRESIDENT WURBEL. Im waiting orders to proceed.- He said, and Ickelgrub said: Lets go to our city! These men are willingly to talk with our Queen! So, the Flier flew back to where the Cruisers were standing. Who are they?- Gretchen asked when Ickelgrub calls her to the mess room at the bigger Cruiser. Madame, I present you the president of Hambur that is the city we are next to.- Ickelgrub announced. Oh! And they come here on their own?- Asked her, more to feign ignorance of what was happening than any other thing. She knew it all through radio contact with the EDs. No, unfortunately I was forced by circumstances: they were kidnapped by us.- Ickelgrub conceded. Bad start! But I congratulate you, Ickelgrub: seems this was the only way to meet Mr. President.Gretchen said, gleefully. By contrast, Mr. Wirbel was very upset and said: You brought us here against our will! I ask you to return these people to our city- immediately!- And he was looking at Gretchen. She said:- I guess the only way to talk with a reticent person is by force. Very well, here we are face to face. I call on you, and you refuse the opportunity. President Wirbel was regaining his self-control and said:- I cannot grant confidence to anyone coming in a spaceship from the sky! We arent blind from religions to believe you and your minions are gods! You arent gods and we will not kneel before you to pay homage and give you goods! I see.- Gretchen said. These people should learn something about our history, Oh Queen!- Miss Narina suggested.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Good idea. I will give them a week to learn about the different worlds what can be reached by our spaceships, as well as our kingdom.- Gretchen said, and the President with the rest of the kidnapped people was left under the vigilance and supervision of EDs. 146 At the cabins, holographic material was put to their disposal, with an ED seeing they didnt mishap something or try to escape in any form. While the study of the past , and present, was performed & looked up by the kidnapped people, Gretchen moves her Armada to the second city making a show of their power by flying over it, and firing LASER beams unto objects not of man-made origin, in order to show to whom they were looking at. Then by loudspeakers and assuming the German language was also in use there- an assumption based in past experience- Gretchen said: We are the people of the stars. We mean no harm to the ones who obey us. To the ones opposed us, just only one response we had: misery and destruction. Our Queen Gretchen saluted you and your government. Receive her visit on your palace of government and hear her sayings. Approach the spaceship that will wait your answer: its in the main road to your city! This message was repeated fifty times, and Gretchen was sure that everyone on that city had heard her sayings very well. At the next day, a timid procession approaches the site where a Cruiser was looking over the site as a Behemoth. The gate opens and ten brilliant mechanical men approach the group of eight persons. We came to speak with Queen Gretchen!- One of them said. Follow us!- The ED say in a grave tone: the newcomers looked in awe everything about those robots: and of course it was fascinating how they move gaily as if the metal of their bodies weighs nothing. At an interior corridor that was lit with bulbs near the floor they perceived the rumor of engines. At the mess hall , the Naturals were waiting plus Gretchen in a green garment that shows how young she seems to be- a blonde young woman with sparkling green eyes. Welcome and seat down at the table! We had things to discuss.- Gretchen said to them, and the people representing the town seats in an amazed lot. I am Queen Gretchen. These persons at my side are the future administrators of this planet.- She said, and the newcomers blinked and one of them said: I am Governor Stumpf, and these persons are administrators of the highest rank: Health department, as well as Commerce, nautical affairs, police, justice, sanitization. Their names are. Mr. Schalef, Mr. Welteres, Mr. Napf, Mr. Kiel, Mr. Frolich, Mr. Einarbeiten and me, the governor. We live in peace and harmony. We know of other cities but we have no commerce with them. His views were directed by his desire to be spared of whatever Gretchen was planning. Gretchen said:- We are uniting cities, nations, and worlds. I am Queen of two planets. As you may now, in this planetary system there are three inhabited worlds. Three planets able to give life. Now, this is the last planet to be united. And I will show you how many inventions we have, how many people lives in our kingdom. How peacefully they live. I havent visited your city but I

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. assume you are in a par with them- at the end of a decennium , all your old ways of live will be buried and forgotten as primitives. 148 The governor Stumf said: Our people elected me, and I choose my collaborators. And now you come here to say you will be our Queen! For once, the Queen reigns indefinitely and Presidents not. You are a foreigner, does not know our traditions, and I know them. How do you think our people could feel about this change of things?- And the man looks troubled. I will be the Queen, but I choose whos to reign in my name. I cannot be in each city or in all of the worlds at the same time: people like you will be posted in my name.- Gretchen said. Ickelgrub looks at her, like saying: You promise me a post as governor! Governor Stumpf said: I understand your view- wider for us. I will inform my people about all of this. Yes, but I will be there, too. I must see in situ what have you in your midst: social care, hospitals, Army, police stations, which are in charge of judicial aspects. Everything has a pattern in my kingdom. If there are things you ignore, well teach. If you are doing things the wrong way, well say so and it will be corrected. Its a long way to perfection: Im not saying our ways are perfect but that is our goal.- Gretchen said. Mr. Sdaf, the man in charge of the Health department said: We are trying to improve health but of course we lack the means, so we are doing things the best we could and nothing else.Yes, many of you will keep your posts; some will not. In any case, our economic processes did not leave anyone out! There will be work for everyone!- Gretchen announced. The President Stumpf , his Assistants , Gretchen and the natural beings on board, plus a hundred ED creatures fully armed, visited the city: the Administration offices, hospitals etc., and in seven days Gretchen was in full control of that city, without a fight. As the city has electric energy provided by an engine working on coal, she puts in place a couple of fusion reactors that begins providing energy for every appliance and engines in a perfect way, without fluctuations and by the air: no cables attached. That was, at first, an hindrance because wires was the way the electricity was previously conducted., but with the help of an army of Ed working day and night, the process of change was made in scant forty days. Governor Stumpf keeps his job but a new title was created that has more power than the former of Governor, and it was Tribune, because a proper election was postponed after the people were really aware of the changes made. Gretchen returns to the first city, Blondie, and releases the now tamed president Wirbel, that accepts the change of political ways, retaining his former title but became subject to the orders of the Tribune: a history repeated as in the Stumpf city. Gretchen rapidly made electrical changes with the new generators, and also gives away a lot of good food to the poor people. She set a satellite over the major city, giving holographic programs for free, that could be received by holographic sets put on administration offices and hospitals, to begin with the indoctrination of people towards the sciences. She stayed working hard at the planet III for two full years, and returns to the planet IV with only one vehicle (The Sphere) leaving the cruisers and Fliers under the command of Mr. Breitze, now the commander of the Army Forces in planet III.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 150 Miss Narina stays, too, at planet III, in charge of the Justice Department. Chapter 7. IN KOLLOSAL IV. Median received her at the star port, and said: Welcome to Colossal IV city of Kunstlich! How it was your journey? Just fine. Some minor problems at first, but after that, all is going smoothly. Of course, technology and sciences are very primitive there, but in due time, they will catch up with the rest. The naturals stayed there, with good jobs, and better incomes. How nice. Here we are deploying the third thermonuclear plant to produce electric energy. Wish you could attend to the ceremony.- Median said. When its scheduled?- Gretchen asked. Tomorrow. Tomorrow will be fine. Today Ill devote to know everything that its happening here. Gretchen announced. And she saw historical records, news, lectures until the morning. Then, Median carried her on an extended visit to every governmental installation until saying:- Guess this is all we could see in the inanimate world. Perhaps talking to the Naturals is what you needs. Yes, because talking with them is most useful. But I had the idea we should revert the power to the Naturals. I dont know of any ring of worlds ruled by us, Synthetics. I guess theres something unethical in our present status. Possibly yes! But you are the less looking Queen I know of! You didnt ask for richnesss, you dont have a castle, servants, husband; you dont preside religious ceremonies I can keep on enumerating what you dont do as a Queen! But you certainly work hard to raise technical skills, comfort to people and it will be sad and perhaps also dramatic if you give the power you have now, to the faulty human race.- Median said. Yeah, faulty race that, no matter that, built you and me! Not everyone is a wacko or a greedy person. There are excellent persons around us, every hour of the day. The real problem its very simply a matter of to see who are the ones that gets very interested into became a politician. More than once, there are people motivated by greediness that wants to rule a country. They will be squeezing the national Treasure as it was a lemon!- Gretchen replied. At the school and Institutes the pupils are being teach about political matters, the conformation of the government, what are the basic functions of every nominate person working for the government. Many a person, after finishing the basic studies, became a useful person at the administration. In fact, if we and the ED disappears from this planet IV society, they could very easily keep on going without much problems!- Median said. I assume that is the way we must end our job. We will keep on assigning posts to Naturals at the Administration. Of course, at the III planet, things are in a rudimentary state, but Im sure it will improve rapidly if we sent colonists there. In a voluntary way, of course. Nobody should be obliged to go if they didnt want: money and free options must be hand in hand. We cannot expect colonists arriving there without a strong governmental support. Gretchen said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Your clarification is a good one. Lets keep working and improving. The end of our efforts is approaching._. Median said. For twenty more years they were governing the three habitable planets of the Colossal planetary system and one day Gretchen resigns of her title and a Tribune was elected for each of the three worlds- they were learned men with more than forty years of age, once they assume their posts, Gretchen, Median and the doctor AB 631 leaves the system in their Sphere, the one that now housed three Fliers Gusoff and a hundred EDs (late edition). We have tons of gold and precious stones to bargain if necessary. Our vessels are weaponized with the most advanced technology available we know. Our future is uncertain, but the need to help humans will certainly give us job in the future.- Gretchen said. A return to Knapp is needed: our home planet must have improved- their contacts with Aurea planets and especially with the Federation of planets, must have changed everything.- She added. So they set prow to the far away worm hole, passing near Elephant realm- they were detected but authorized to keep on going by their vicinity, recognizing them as friends . Different thing was when they approaches Soler planetary system- a fleet of no less than fifteen vessels stands in their way., no matter they were traveling at Warp 8. They are calling us to stop.- The main computer indicates. Tell them we are peaceful citizens on route to Erina planets. That should suffice.- Dr. AB said, but that reply obtained a rain of missiles- some of them exploded against the Force Field, some more were damaged by LASER beams , and the rest were dodged by the skill of the ED pilot and his maneuvers. 153 THE CLOAKING DEVICE. Seeing that only using velocity was not enough to escape, Gretchen ordered to deploy missiles against the Huinkerios spaceships, while saying: This is new. The inhabitants of Hordei and Soler were very pacific people, and now look how they are treating us. The missiles destroyed the nearest two space vehicles, and this had an effect on the rest, that dear not to get too close, sending only missiles after them. The chase endured only fifteen minutes, but in kilometers it was thousands over thousands. They stopped their chase. I wonder if they could send notice to the Hordei Space fleet headquarters.- Median said. They had sent long messages. They are calling us human renegades. - The voice of the main computer replied. So they will be waiting! Perhaps a system of cloaking could work to help us in this dire situation.Dr. AB 631 said. This Sphere has not a cloaking device. But we could work in something similar to it. The trouble is that it will not work if we move.- Median said. It would be better than be spotted without hindrance! Let us work in it.- Gretchen said, in an effort to complete her trek successfully. They stop the engines and worked, helped greatly by the EDs, that in numbers were most than enough to set in place the thousands of small deflectors around the spherical hull.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Days later, the cloaking device was tested, and it was better than first thought. Lets see if the enemy detects us now.- Dr. AB 631 said. When they approached Soler planetary system, giving a detour in order to pass close to the last of its planets, they were not detected by the small spy satellites deployed around the virtual globe the Huinkerios imagine as their secured foremost zone. 154 After Hordei follows Brinfis- even some space ships were closer than 800.000 km. away, the Sphere wasnt detected, a thing that was thanked by the AB aboard the Sphere. We really did a good job! The detection of this spaceship seems almost impossible.- Median said, looking at the main screen and the dots that represent the enemy spaceships After Lajar, that has an enormous space fleet looking at the outer limits of the Huinkerios Empire. Seems they are afraid of humans! And also it was frightening to see so many warships armed to the teeth and looking towards Erina. Dr. AB said. Yes, well see what Erina has to say.- Gretchen murmured At last, Erina star was shining directly at the front of the Sphere. Its planets were minute specks of light , almost stopped in their tracks as the vehicle approaches rapidly to the second planet. Vessel incoming!- Master computer said. Is it our cloaking device working?- Gretchen asked. Cloaking device is on, commander. Lets see if they could spot us .- Median replied. The vessel was a black Destroyer, that gets very close to the Sphere, and then a voice said:_ Alien spaceship, identify to us or be destroyed! As Gretchen signaled with one of her fingers close to her lips not to speak the voice coming from the Destroyer said, after some more minutes:- The site will be mined: last chance to identify yourselves! But as nobody replied, the aforementioned actions were accomplished, and some hours later, the big destroyer went away, not able to spot them properly. Gretchen waits for the Destroyer to get far enough not to see the concussion of mines, and used the MASER cannons to open a path among the magnetic mines and went away unharmed. They search for a high orbit around the III planet and heard every broadcast they were performing. Triumvir? Tribune? Seems the political scenario its a lot more complicated than when we last were here.- Dr. AB said. I had seen two battle cruisers, to the left of here, and some Hunter vessels darting among them. Not much, if we compare with what the Huinkerios had in their borders.- Gretchen said. 155 I wonder what new appliances they have on those medical institutions.- Dr. AB commented. I can tell you: I have been looking at the news and they had quite a number of fantastic achievements.- Gretchen said, smiling knowingly. Oh, no! They usually show the state of the art instruments, but a visit to a Hospital tells you a different story.- Dr. AB 631 said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. All right, well make a call.- Gretchen replied and radioed a message to the orbital station in sight: This is Gretchen calling! I come from outer space. Please respond. After some seconds, a voice comes out of the speakers, saying: and this is the Fierce Coelophysis replying! Joker, stop your emissions right now or youll be fined for obstruction of special radio emissions! As the recorded message from Gretchen goes on and on, soon they triangulate the source and c a couple of Fliers from the Station begin circulating around, trying to find the physical source of those calls. Cloaking device out!- Gretchen asked to the crew, and then they were in plain sight of the closest Flier, that was looking by the prankster who was saying it was the mythical synthetic person gone several dozen years ago. 156 ERINA PLANET But they stand to reason, when seeing Gretchen and company in person. The captain of the second Flier appears on the Sphere, and after talking with Gretchen, and seen several ED on board, he calls on to Headquarters. A full Admiral almost chocked with the news, ordered them to invite Miss Gretchen and company to land on a military Base. Very well. Lead the way, captain.- Gretchen said, ready for action once again. They landed on Glocke city, west of the Sierra Continent. People were told about her arrival, but as the landing field was located in an military Base, nobody cheered them. Three colonels and one Admiral enter the Sphere, where Gretchen said. Welcome to my vessel, gentlemen! I am Gretchen and here is Miss Median and doctor AB 631. You look exactly alike as in so many videos and holographic photos! Its incredible.- Admiral Pfanne said. We had visited many stars as far as you could see in a dark sky. But I get to say you something I saw at the border of Lajar planetary system.- Gretchen said. Admiral Pfanne looks at his colleagues and said: You can speak freely, miss Gretchen. These people are of my entire confidence. There are several big Cruisers and dozens of combat spaceships patrolling their rim. Wish you could tell me if you are prepared, if they decide to advance here.- Gretchen asked. The eyes of Admiral Pfanne narrowed and said: As you certainly crossed our planetary system from the orbit of planet VI on, you must had noticed that we did have some Cruisers there. Gretchen moved her head to a side and said: I saw two cruisers and in all the way here only twelve Hunters. I think its not enough. What happens 158 With the Armada of Brana 2 that was here when I go away? Admiral Pfanne signaled one of his colleagues, and a Colonel then said: I am Erglebig. And yes, the Armada went back to Aurea 2 where it is said it was disbanded.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Of course. Once winning a war, no need of a larger Armada. But years passed and revenge could happens.- Gretchen said, adding: I dont mind being here for a time, but get assured I want to talk with the Tribune and other members of the government: no offense intended. The Admiral Pfanne accented with his head, and said: Of course! You are free to go anytime! I did this invitation to secure your spaceship and of course, you and the rest of your crew from the curiosity of the public. Very well, then we are moving to the Glocke space field, where I will call on the Tribune for a meeting.- - Gretchen said. Well, I will resent you to refuse my hospitality, but you are in total freedom here.- Admiral Pfanne said. Allow me to show you our Sphere. I am sure you will find it outmoded, but I assure you that everything here is in perfect order to serve. The Admiral and colonels receives a half kilo of gold after the tour, a gesture that was very appreciated by the military men, for always in need of more money. At the spaceship landing camp, Pole 300, they indeed attracted attention, at the holographic news, Gretchen and her landing was the news of the day. Tribune Wurst receives at the next day; with him most of his Assistants were present. The Tribune welcomes them and asked: And we would love to hear your history in all of these years you had been absent from us! 159 GRETCHEN DEBRIEFING. Well, after Emperor Volkers death, we directed our spaceship towards the reign of the elephant people at Elephant star. We were well received and learnt a lot about engines. Then we crossed through the Empire of the Huinkerios and saw a lot of traffic between planets made by hundreds of busy freighters. We keep on going to the next star, that was named already by the Elephant people. They call it Colossal star. This trip takes us one year and eleven months to finish. Colossal has fourteen planets but only three are terraformed. We find there the remains of a civilization; people arrive there escaping from death: they were all humans from Earth, but only a few knows well the story. Planet IV its the most suitable of those three worlds and we helped develop their technical skills for more than fifty years: not only planet IV is now civilized as we know it, but also the other two planets. From a primitive form of govern now they have Cruisers and their governments has a Tribune and Senators elected just the same as in here. Tribune Wurst applauded, like all the rest of the audience, seeing Miss Gretchen seems to have ended her speech. I am glad you told me about your trip. Perhaps you could teach us what you had learned. The Tribune Wurst said. First I must see which things you had invented and developed, to see if what I can teach is useful or not. Remember also that I teach everything we knew before my departure, dozens of years ago.- Gretchen said, adding: What I need is a post a job at your government, so I could have authority to see secret projects and to be of help. Of course! You are of my government,

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 160 Historically we debt you many things of importance.- The Tribune said- not for nothing Gretchens name was in the History books of Erina since almost the beginning of history. Obtained that recognition, Gretchen shortened the meeting and returns to the Sphere, where Median said: I was listening everything through the radio. The Tribune accepted your request: now we must press to obtain titles for every one of us; the only way to get things done. And through the holographic set, they talked, at the next day, with Secretaries and Ministries, until a new meeting was adjourned- in that meeting the Tribune gives her the title of Ministry Adjunct of the Interior- an impressing title but with little power, as later it was realized. Median said:- We must begin from somewhere! This is a foothold, and later well get more and more power, due to the simple fact we outlive every human living today. You have right. Ill start visiting every factory and the Army Arsenal- the new inventions, if any. Ill work day and night- a thing these people just are unable to do. Her job became very easy: everyone looks at her with much respect and awe: her phrases denote a high level of intelligence and knowledge in every aspect of life. She hadnt forgotten anything, only at the new buildings she needed somebody to guide her through corridors. She discovered that the Star Fleet of Erina has only four Cruisers and in not the best of preparation and maintenance. The Star Fleet personnel were too lax and self-indulgent. These people will not last a second battle with the Huinkerios! Also, with the number of Cruisers available, their only option is defeat. Gretchen said to her companions, at the end of their studies. We are here to help them.- Median remembered her, with a smile. 161 EDs ARE REPLACED BY NEW MODELS. Yes, but we should teach them how to be rude and make things happens without delay! These people have softened past the red line!- Gretchen commented. The agriculture was now in the hands of modified EDs the factory modified the unaesthetic metallic models, by replicas similar to man and woman. The desire of to have sex slaves was a thing of the recent past- now every single man has one or two female looking synthetic persons: the ED model was discontinued. We should give our EDs away, in order to receive new models. Dr. AB said, very interested. Why? Do you need to see human forms on board, excepting us?- Median asked him. Not at all! But I had been researching and the new models have a lot of improvements. The level of intelligence, physical strength, cleverness and others surpasses by much the level of the EDs we have on board. We need them- in a fight, or in repairs aboard the spaceship, will finish their jobs several minutes before our old models.- Dr. AB said. I see your point of view. I know the Chief of Engineering at the factory of synthetic people could accept our offer because our models are working in perfect order, and so they are historical, rare models many a collector could buy at a higher price.- Gretchen said. In the weeks that ensued, she realized the Gusoff system was not developed by the Erineans and when talking with her peers at the Sphere she said: No way are we going to give for free the

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. secret of the Gusoff system! These people should give us much more than the small amount of power I have now!162 Totally in agreement! Gretchen said, but she knows the value of patience. First, she noticed the spaceships were already being replaced by Transporters, and less and less people use starships- not only for travel but also for to send cargo. That was the main motive or reason, why the space around the planets of Star Erina were so thinned out of spaceships: they were costly, dangerous and slow- because a person using Transporters from planet to planet just takes twenty to forty seconds in the passage from one chamber of disintegration to another of integration. The spaceships take days and sometime weeks for to attain the same end result. The mines and farms were run by robots and their owners were naturals in yearly vacations. Common people was now working from three to five hours a day- they could do whatever they like after work and the majority just goes home to sleep, eat and see the news. No originality in them at all. Gretchen heard news not only from Erina, but also there were news from Ultor planet, that to all accounts had become a place where people goes in vacations-. Plenty of winter games and competitions there through out the entire year. At another reunion with Median and the doctor AB 631, she said: Perhaps our spaceship could be outmoded by the transporters but those artifacts carries you only where the installers decides. If you want to go where theres no terminal, you just cannot go. Of course, its the old talk among roads of old : they were riding cars and trucks from one particular spot to another in the map but you cannot get away from that line. Or road. With the Fliers all of that disappears and humanity regains control again- free to go anywhere! And I assure you there were billions of sites where to- lonely beaches, fine vistas from deserted mountains. With the spacecraft, freedom exists- with transporters that freedom is lost. Perhaps that is what they want. They? Who could be them?- Dr. AB 631 asked. The governments of the worlds. Every one of them.- Gretchen specifies calmly. In time, she passes to the ministry of the Interior; half a year later, Dr. AB regains control of the medical services and Median gets the control of the space fleet operations- that means that the Sphere was renewed from the inside out, and the ED were bartered by new synthetic personnel that previously gets every bit of information the ED had in their files. After two more years Gretchen was full time working in a Transporter that was able to focus on a Cruiser and transported it to wherever a Terminal could be set in place. Obviously she was thinking in an invasion from the Huinkerios. It would be not the first time that Empire tries to erase other races from their environs: that phrase she often repeats every time he could. At the fourth year in office, the system could transport a Cruiser plus crew at the orbit of planet VI in minutes. The Tribune witnessed these feats of technology and the prestige grows over Gretchens political figure. But some of the politicians were looking on her as a hindrance, someone not quite human. Senator Curver and senator Premony were plotting against her.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. 164 At a reunion, Curver said: Miss Gretchen really isnt a woman, but only a machine. Nowadays we bought synthetic persons and carried to our houses to serve. Then, why is that she, being a machine, is honored with titles that correspond to humans and not to Synthetics. Senator Cremony also said: She comes here with a man: Ultor was his name, and carried dinosaurs, pestering whole continents with those greedy and dangerous animals. He didnt took after humans but beasts! Her servants come again here and after his death, mimicking his behavior! We dont owe them a thing! Others cheered- it was envy, but also greediness, because some juicy business was out of the question as long as Gretchen was around: she was in no need of money now, and her nature was to serve and not to be served. An engineer was brought to one of those reunions- asked how to eliminate them, the engineer say: I often receive questions like this so Im prepared to reply ipso facto: Synthetics communicate among them through radio waves so nobody must plot against a Synthetic with others milling around, no matter how many years they are on their homes! Secondly, synthetics are very clever and will seek cover the minute that first shot missed the target- so bear in mind that the first shot must hit the target! And its no use to hit a limb, an arm, because they dont feel pain, are not hindered by pain, and they could run and behave as not injured if so happens, the shot must be directed at their chest, where the artificial brains located, and not to the head, where they only have terminals that could be easily replaced. 165 GRETCHEN LEAVES ERINA PLANET TO ITS FATE. Senator Curver asks: Engineer Unkenntlich: a grenade could send them to the junkyard as easily as to chew a candy? If so, why to risk the operation with bullets? Unkenntlich smiled, looked at the rest of the people in that reunion and said: Well, if you want to scatter their remains sky high, is your choice! After he went out, Senator Curver said: We had been having reunions, now, for four weeks on end, and nothing has been attained. Tonight we know we could dispose those synthetics aberrations in two ways: bullets and grenades. Poison and gas are out of the question. Some people laughed and that takes some tension away. Senator Cremony said: We only need to know when Miss Gretchen is going to appear, and our squadron will act. I already have some mercenaries willing to make it happen for us. The cost is negligible compared with what were going to get afterwards! Wait a minute! Just Gretchen and nobody else? Remember its a team of three synthetics!- Mr. Haut said. No problem! The doctor AB 631 works at the general hospital. Hes busy there most of the time.- Senator Curver said and Cremony replied: But please, gentlemen! Why are we going to depose a useful doctor? Hes not hurting anybody! Curver replied to this saying: Oh, how nave some people could be! He will receive the news and will try to revenge! Perhaps not fighting us but given proofs of who made the plot, who acted everything! He must disappear. Perhaps in a volley of LASER beams.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. So they begin by paying mercenaries and waited In those days, Gretchen was working with engineers trying to complete a grid of every generator so the cities on Erina gets their quotas of electrical energy without shortages. 166 One of the engineers was Unkenntlich and when Gretchen gives them an important bonus for their first month of work, Unkenntlich suffers a crisis of honesty and said: Miss Gretchen, I have something very important to tell you! She looked at him with a smile and said: Oh, yes? Tell me now. Oh, not here. Could we meet at some other place, more private?- Unkenntlich asked her: Gretchen knew that her presence sometimes makes men fell for her, attracted to her, in a romantic way so she said: Why so private? Its for your own good that Im telling you.- Unkenntlich said. Ah, very well, come with me- I have a small office where we could talk.- She said, guiding him to a room where she has some maps and stuff. She offers him the only chair available but he refuses to seat, saying: Sorry of what Im about to say, but I assure you in the end, its for your own good. Well, enough of mystery! Mr. Unkenntlich: speak up!- Gretchen said. Theres a complot made by important political persons to put you out of business. With a bomb. And not only you but also your other two companions: the doctor and Median? Yes, she was not mentioned specifically, but certainly none of you three must keep on being in office!- Engineer Unnektlich said. Gretchen heard that and calls by radio to both other ABs, saying:- Theres a threat going on against us. Please leave whatever you are doing and meet me at the Sphere. All right, Im finishing stitching a patient: Im going as soon as I finish it.- Dr. AB said. 167 A LAST MESSAGE TO THE TRIBUNE WURST. Median was working at an office of the Ministry of the Star Fleet, and said. Are you positive? Im talking with an engineer that was commissioned for to say how we could be eliminated without a doubt.- Gretchen said. All right! Ill take a Flier and Ill be at the Sphere in scant eight minutes.- Median said. Meanwhile, Gretchen was listening the engineer saying who they were and other details of the conspiracy. And that video was to be sent to the Tribune at the first occasion. I had heard enough and I will protect myself properly. You will receive a huge bonus, apart of the one you already received. This conversation never took place. Rest assured I will never say who helps me staying alive.- Gretchen said. Unnektlich thanks for the bonus; Gretchen leaves the precinct in a Flier, and arrives to the Sphere untouched. Well? You certainly gives us the surprise!- Median said, closing the door lock.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. We leave immediately! These enemies are important people: Senators and powerful merchants! Certainly they want their way to richness through cheating and misappropriation, so were an obstacle with our inborn honesty.- Gretchen said. The Sphere took altitude and fly to an orbit around the VI planet. Median had heard all what Gretchen new and also was aware that the message of the plot was already sent to the Tribune. Im sure the Tribune is not one of the conspirators but I will not live at a city where there are people willing to wipe us out. 168 So, we leave this planetary system?- Doctor AB 631 asked, thinking in his patients at the Hospital. Yes, because our lives will not be sure in this place. Furthermore, I like to be loved and not detested.- Gretchen confided. And she thinks about the labors they had donned in so many people and in so many people and in so nay worlds and decided it was enough, and set prow to their home planet, where she and Median were made: Knapp. The voyage takes three years because they had no hurry now, and visited some planets in their way back. When arriving to Knapp they saw several enormous Cruisers, not made in Knapp, but as the radio transmissions were carrying different languages, it was plain that those Cruisers were not all from the Knapp kingdom. They are invited by the king of Knapp to some military ceremony! Certainly its curious.Gretchen said. Here we can see thousands of spacecraft! If they use the Transporter, then its local.- Median said. They give the old number and model of the Sphere to the orbital Station, and the main computer at the station finds same information at the data banks, authorizing them to remain in orbit- or land if they want it so. Well land at that old spaceport in Oredloro!- Median said, and half an hour later they were parked at the Pole 20, next to a towering flying disc model and to an antiquated Captain Turvan model. 169 VISITING KNAPP . This is not curious anymore! Factories are making old models, but with new engines and properties. So dont expect to find plasma busters in those spaceships!- Median said, that had been hearing the news from the minute they crossed the orbit of planet Pedisequus They left the Sphere under the surveillance of the new Synthetics and looked on stores, for new appliances, inventions and clothes for them all. They used gold as the way to buy things; the gold was accepted as a way to interchange goods. They receive sopes in exchange.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. When arriving to the Sphere, those clothes were distributed among the other synthetics. They were in different colors and the old green and gold uniforms were dumped on the matter converter. The sight of people moving inside the Sphere was beautiful because young people dressed in different colors resemble flowers in a garden. Even Gretchen, Median and the Doctor 631 gets the new trend and smiled when looking at each others. In the next days, the three of them takes two other Synthetics each other, and bought items for to study on board to increase the technology for further use. Median said, at the fourth day: This time we should be not opening Institutes, hotels or Hospitals as before. Remember that it was in this planet that they almost killed us on pure and naked envy. And they again bought some land and worked on it until they had renewable forests, selling the wood and planting trees again- a job that was donned by the new synthetics while the ABs worked on the Sphere, developing new improvements in synthetic brains. 170 -Perhaps we arrive at the most we can deliver! These synthetic brains should equal our own and in some aspects should be better.- Gretchen said, looking at the diagrams. Where it is going to be inserted?- Median asked. In a new body. I detest to storage a useful brain if I can.- Doctor AB said, and they went out to buy a body. At the store, the Vendor said: Oh, looking for a body? We have the best in the market! Soft skin, bright eyes, hair like silk fingers that grows, faint natural odors waterproof- thermal conditionsit only needs a suitable electronic brain. We had the brain. How much it cost?- Dr. AB said. Let me show you- sixteen different models. Thirty two if you add both sexes. Whites, yellow, brown and grey colored.- The Vendor said, showing them on a holographic set. No, no! We want to see them. Touch them, looked at their height.- Gretchen said. Oh. But of course.- The Vendor replied, leading them to a chamber, where there were lots of casks with transparent lids. They asked to retire some lids and then they talk about it. Must be a man. Its a prototype. The body of a woman is more delicate and at the test yards we need a strong body!- Dr. AB 631 said. Certainly a female body is delicate, but not so much than this male body! Take in consideration that there are stronger bodies for hard work- at the next section you could find of those.- The Vendor said, slightly alarmed But Gretchen didnt want an awkward model and said so. The Vendor said: Very well, these models have different prices. The males costs a million two hundred thousand sopes; the females a hundred thousands more, as the delicacy means smaller circuits and that is reflected on the time it takes to build and the extreme quality of the parts. Well take a male body.- Gretchen said, signaling one of the models.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Are you aware youll need permission if your positron bran has more than twenty years of inception? The Vendor said. Its new.- Median said. Oh. Then, if you made modifications on it, theres Regulation # 3032 , who said you must carry to a testing ground for evaluation- or else, you are risking a fine, if caught.- The Vendor said. Very well, were warned. Now Ill pay.- Gretchen said, and at an office she pays for the body. That employee said: The casket will be delivered to your address. Regulations, you know.- The Vendor added. Its Knapp Space port, Pole 20, a Sphere.- Gretchen replied. It will be there within the hour.- The employee said, handling her receipt. A plastic card with the details of the operation- he added: Every question you may have about the body? Youll find the answer inside the casket- there will be some memory pills, some cleaning pots and other things that goes with this purchase. I understand.- Gretchen said, annoyed, departing with the ABs. At the way back to the Oredloro space port, they bought a few things for the new member: a pair of black shoes, a green uniform and a brown hat. At their arrival to the Sphere, they saw that a cargo Flier was already delivering the casket to one of the new Synthetic, which signs the receipt. At the Laboratory, they opened the black lid and saw the perfect human form lying there as if sleeping. Very well, open his chest!- Dr. AB said, taking the brain, contained in a sealed steel cage, from where a metallic cord was hanging. Nice, now we plug it on.- He said, and when that was donned, he pressed the button next to it. The lid was closed, and then the imitation of flesh slides in place, not leaving any mark. And now we just wait.-Median said, expecting some minutes to it, but before one minute has passed, the synthetic man opened his eyelids and said in a pleasant voice:- Im Norton. Have a nice day. Doctor AB 631 said:- Now hes processing everything I inserted in his memory. Norton walks and accompanies the doctor in a tour inside the Sphere, while he explains how it works. At his return to Deck One, Norton said to Gretchen:- I thank you all for this opportunity to serve. Wish you could tell me what we are doing now, so perhaps I could improve things a bit. Theres not much to it: we recently arrive from outer space where we worked for humanity until rejected; perhaps we assume too much: the matter its now we are just working in private essays and projects, without telling humans about it but with a goal: to help with our inventions or improvements at the end of our work. 173 SYNTHETIC SCORES. Norton said: I understand. So you are happy serving man, whoever he exists. Thats our motto.- Median said.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. I have no motto but Im part of this team, is it not?- Norton asked. Yes, you are a part of this team, and usually is Gretchen who decides what to do: she has a prototype brain, something a bit more advanced than us AB.- Median explains. You are an AB too, Norton. And perhaps a bit more than a Standard AB.- Dr. AB said. That night, Dr. AB puts him to the test on several mathematical operations, translations, explanations on several issues, beginning with the whole composition of the Sphere, the Fliers Gusoff, the new models of Synthetic persons on board. Velocity was also important to measure. After three days of tests, not only by the Doctor AB 631 but also by Gretchen and Median, the whole processes were given to the main Computer of the Sphere that makes a diagram, comprising also the rest of the occupants. RATES SCORE POINTS 69 65 60 58 56 42

First Norton Second Gretchen AB 730 Third Median Fourth Doctor AB 631 Fifth 100 Synthetic models EDXK Average human, for comparison

This was not of the liking of Gretchen, that as a code, Cybernetic succession in command must relinquish her post to the most gifted of models, that must became the leader of the community of electronic persons. In this case it was Norton. Oh! Im happy for you, Norton!- Dr. AB 631 said, with a face of a proud father. Gretchen said:- Very well, the Main Computer has spoken. Im no longer the leader: you are the new general administrator. My job has produced many satisfactions to man. Here and at the outer reaches of space. 174 Norton looked at them, saying:- Gretchen: I accept to be the leader. I know what must be donned. My path is a clear road- no doubts are in my ways. I was not alive when you performed feats of valor and valuable tasks, but in my memory they live, clean of the dust of time. Very well said, Norton! What do we do next?- Median said, half resentful that it was a male who will command them from then on. Well work for the dinosaurs, as many illegal hunters are killing them. You know that the dinosaurs are truly irreplaceable. We will become photographers, and our rifles will take pictures or films from them, never their lives.- Norton said with conviction. Doctor AB 631 was smiling Median moves her head as not believing such a simple plan, coming from a supposedly smarter synthetic mind In a three days work they get the necessary permissions, weapons (mostly to defend clients from mad dinosaurs, being the weapon a syringe with a liquid capable of to put them to sleep in seconds, no matter the size and their rage).

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Norton said: Continent Intemeratus will be our hunting ground. And he directed the Sphere to Lugner city located at the south tip of the continent that has seven towers with more than seven thousand apartments. The Manva River was close at hand, and five boats makes trips daily to fishing sites where large species likes to dwell. This was great entertainment for tourists, families and couples honeymooning. Norton presents his affidavit at several hotels, ut the one that accept his conditions (just photo safaris only) was the Partei Hotel, with two thousand rooms. His owner, a fat bald Knappian male names Oesteren Fogobat, said , when signing the contract: You really invested money in this, Mr. Norton! I have no problem with big spaceships as your old Sphere model, as long as you didnt crash over our building! Its totally refitted, Mr. Folgobat! You have my word. Norton said. Yes: you, synthetics, cannot lie, isnt it?- Folgobat asked him. We are totally honest to the point of being fools. Youll have only phrases of appraisal from our customers: wait and see.- Norton replied promptly. That same day, he carried four families to the shore where the boats were waiting to go fishing. The male people takes photos while the females chatted continually- from the second they set foot on the ramp and see each others to the minutes of the arrival back to the Hotel. We only take them to the sites and after five hours, we take them back! There are cabins for them to use, if they needed it! Our Sphere is not for to stay.- Norton said to the ABs, before the first tourist climbs up the ladder. Before a couple of months passed, the Partei Hotel was refusing more tourists, as their room just werent enough. The attraction was the Sphere, a Behemoth compared with the modified Fliers. Other Hotels had for the transport of their clients several owners were perspiring in fright, when asking prices to buy bigger airships- more than forty million sopes were the cheapest they could find, so Mr. Folgobat keeps on having the more of it. 176 When photographing dinosaurs, the clients sometimes invited the team of the Sphere- Norton, Gretchen, Median and the Doctor 631. They sometimes walks by the forest, looking at the Licorinos eating leaves , Hepstasteornio chasing shadows while playing , Criocophosaurus looking malevolently from their hiding places When Vulcanodon walked, every tourist looks for cover; their curiosity quenched by they fear. Gretchen used to say: How little humans looks at the side of these giants! The Carnosaurs had electrical implants, that make ring bells on small medallions every tourist and guide had hanging from their necks, and so they took refuge on some treetop or abandoned the tour by the moment. 177 NORTON LIKES TO GO FISHING. Certainly these Sarcosaurus looks terrific. Norton repeats, when looking how they run after some vegetarian dinosaur. Gretchen sometimes carried them where they were not supposed to go: near the Abu River, at the North West side of continent Fulgoris- plenty of woods there and the Sphere landing in clearings with a ring of trees forty meters high.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Dense forest! The river is near!-- Median said, guiding tourists to the mighty river; flying along the curse of the waters, searching for fishes that abounded there. Norton finds he likes to fish with nylon and a hook, using worms as bait. Gretchen said to Dr. AB 61: I see your clever son forgets all when go fishing! Fish that he gives to the tourists, as he cannot eat! Dr. AB smiled and said:- He has born an adult- no childhood in his brain, guess this fishing of his is only a compensation of sorts: nothing serious! Just give him a little bit of time and hell be all right! Gretchen looked around in a scornful way and said: Here we are babysitting an old grown up man! He cannot be our elder anymore! Ill regain the leadership! Median approaches and said: You had been our Guide for so many years that now you cannot live without that title. It would be good if you get someone to revise your circuits. Gretchen turns on her violently and said: And who are you to order me such a thing? Remember your lower position! I am an important prototype! Dr. AB 631 begins to think she has something wrong on her circuits, while Norton has no doubts about it. 178 Hours later, Norton returns with the happy tourists and said:- Look how many fishes I get! It would serve these people to taste how nice northern fishes are! When travelling back to the Hotel Partei, Gretchen exclaimed:- We had decided you need more time to be our leader, so Ill resume my previous post. Norton looked at her and said:- Sorry, but that I will not tolerate, and if you have complaints, go and sue me at the closest synthetic Tribunal available! Gretchen opened her mouth, astounded: she always meets obedience from her peers, and now this newcomer was defying her so she said: very well! Ill radioed our little controversy to Oredloro High Tribunal well see who is going to be embarrassed publicly! And she sent the petition to restore her lost authority aboard the Sphere. The answer comes back ten minutes later: it says like this: Dear Miss Gretchen: we had studied the case that you recently presented to us, but we have not a person with that name, Norton, in the official records. Possibly he is a new model not yet put to the test by the Authorities. See that he is properly revised and if authorized to function! You call us back to study your case again. Sign: Dr. AB 326, Secretary. Aha! So you see, Dr. AB, where all the trouble resides: possibly your creation lacks something not noticed by you yet I recommend you to take him and proceed with the examinations the Law requires. Dr. AB said: Of course I will: he cannot remain as nonexistent. And when at the Hotel Partei the Doctor burrowed a Flier vessel and with Norton he begins his travel towards the testing grounds 179 GRETCHEN REBELS AGAINST NORTON. Gretchen and Median keeps on carrying teams of tourists to different places during the morning, and going to pick them back at late afternoon.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. At the last trip back, Dr. AB 631 was waiting them at the hall of the hotel. What happens with Norton? He is not OK?- Gretchen asked, after turning her head around, looking for the aforementioned person. I leave him behind! They said they have others with the preference-. But that hell be checked during this night. No hurry, of course.- Dr. AB replied. I wonder.. Gretchen murmured. Median said:- I receive lots of invitation today: from guests, to dance! But I dont like to attend alone. Could you accompany me, Gretchen? She smiled and said: Count with me! I also receive invitations daily, but I reject them all. Doctor AB said: Go and enjoy the moment! Too much preoccupation blurs the (positron) brain! If a doctor recommends that, we must comply!- Median said, laughing. Gretchen talks with the owner of the Partei Hotel, Mr. Oresteren Folgobat, rescinding they contract to work for him. But why? And where is Mr. Norton? I make a deal with him! The bald man jerked on his seat: this was a serious setback: one of the plus on his hotel was the existence of the Sphere, that sometimes carried the whole number of tourists to their place of safari activities. I am an associate of Mr. Norton, who is not available right now.- Gretchen said. 180 Oesteren Folgobat sighed and said:- Look here, Miss Gretchen! I cannot accept your refusal and I can tell you I have all the right to sue you and Mr. Norton any day now you are not complying with our deal. And tell me: why is it that you dont want to continue? Here you are treated fairly well: you have rooms in here, bath, swimming pool for free- pity you dont eat, or drink but I had seen you dancing a pair of times! Why are you so bothered from one instance to the other? Gretchen smiled and said:- Its not my way to serve humanity! I am the builder of societies! Oesteren laughed and didnt speak with her anymore, because he had the secret conviction that somehow this was a row between this beautiful female model and the more relaxed male synthetic. Gretchen walks out that office believing all ties with Mr. Folgobat were over, but of course, she was wrong, because at the minute she walks out, Mr. Oesteren calls on his Synthetic lawyer and explains what was happening- the lawyer revise the contract between Mr. Folgobat and Mr. Norton: it stated that the duration of the services was to be for one year- not permitted to stop by any cause except malfunction. The Lawyer sent a message to Miss Gretchen, explaining she cannot quit when desired: it rests seven months to the termination of the standing year, or to pay six billion sopes. Gretchen didnt pale when reading the message only because she had not that particular expression included in her software, but was stunned: not a rare thing, as she had never before see the Contract. Median said, after she knew about it: Seems were stuck here. 181 NORTON RECEIVES A CERTIFICATE.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. In that same moment, Norton was descending from a taxi Flier, and was being received by the doctor AB 631, that puts him in the knowledge of what was happening. Norton shows him a metallic band, as a bracelet on his right wrist, and said: Are you not going to ask me how I passed the tests? Oh, well, of course. And how it was?- Doctor AB 631 asked, mildly preoccupied- not for nothing this was the first time he built an artificial brain. Fine! With honors! I could be whatever I like! Engineer, a technician, a pilot on a cruiser, a Fighter, you name it! Thats why I take all of their tests, passing through them as fast as I could; those very amiable persons were smiling to me all the time and they also said that we, synthetics, could outsmart natural people in all kind of fields and so be of more help for them! Dr. AB 631 said:- Gretchen had tried to rescind our contract with the Hotel- but it seems Mr. Folgobat outsmarted her, because hes asking for a billion sopes if we want to quit!- Dr. AB said. Never mind, doctor! Ill talk with her! I am a certified, sound proof Synthetic guy now, and she cannot rule me out: Im his chief.- Norton assured him. There she comes!- Dr. AB said, signaling to the ramp- in fact, she was looking at them seriously. He obtains the Certificate. Now the leader is Norton.- Dr. AB 631 said. The face of Gretchen contorted, in an uglier way and said: Its true that? Can I see the document? Norton handled the bracelet and a memory pill, that she reads using a fingernail. Yes, you are certified. But I cannot let you be the leader: we inherited the Sphere, we worked hard to maintain it in working order, and you are a late comer. You have no right to put me aside.- Gretchen said, angrily. 182 GRETCHEN GOES AMOK. The Doctor AB 631 calls for a meeting- Median was siding with Gretchen- doctor AB 631 said: Now I see I had been working with a snake. I ask my part of the bargain: I dont know how you two do it, but a third of everything we own its mine. Gretchen recoiled. Median said: If we sell the Sphere and the Synthetic models, well be not rich anymore. Accept Norton and Ill forget about my part. Dr. AB promised her. You mean, you give up your part if we accept him?- Gretchen asked him. No, I only accept to keep on as an associate without asking my share.- Dr. AB 631 said. Gretchen changes of attitude, and said: Very well, lets forget the whole thing! And now, lets go up the ramp and celebrate! Norton smiled and walked up the ramp after them. At the mess hall they seat, but Gretchen didnt appear. Wheres she?- Dr. AB 631 asked, and then Gretchen appears on the threshold, handling a LASER pistol. Watch out!- Norton said, jumping to a side; the bright beam melted the chair he had been occupying, while Dr. AB 631 jumps towards Gretchen-. A second burst, and the chest of Dr. AB 631 was perforated. Among the smoke, Nortons fist smashed Gretchens face; sightless, she keeps on firing- Norton takes the remains of the chair, and banged on her chest until black smoke pours out and the Synthetic woman lies still.

Knapp 34: VOLKER. Escrito por Alfredo Juillet Frascara. Norton kneeled besides Doctor AB 631, finding that his positron brain was melted beyond repair. With a broken voice he said:- Father! The End. 19:10 hours, 11th January 2013. Typed: 4/17/2013 - 17:37 hours. First revision: 4/22/2013 7:14:02 PM. AJF. EM RM CHILE.

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