XXII century

The Chronicles of the XXII Century

The late 30's were marked by another three important events, namely development of mechanic embryos by Sidorov ("Atos"), the birth of the infamous Maxim Kammerer, and the discovery of the planet of Ruzhena, almost exact copy of the Earth but completely void of intelligent life. In the mid-40's, the case of The Ugly was quickly resolved and then sealed in the archives of COMCON-2. The essence of the case is as follows. Some time ago Jonathan Pereira, a famous biologist, decided to shut down his research in theoretical eugenics and advised the World Council to close up this area of research. However, due to an information leak, five talented but careless researchers from the Schweitzer Laboratory in Bamako commenced and almost completed their experiment aimed at the creation of a new version of the Homo Super.

In the year 48, the agents of COMCON-2 found out that certain signs appeared on the Stepchildren's right forearms next to their elbows, each Stepchild bearing a unique sign. About a year later, thirteen "life support elements 15/65A" (which later became known as "the detonators") were discovered inside "the sarcophagus". The "detonators" were round items bearing signs identical to those born by the Stepchildren. After an experiment involving destruction of the element 12, Edna Lasco (file 12, sign "M Gothic") died in an accident in the Northern Andes. Since then, any work with "the detonators" was forbidden. During this time, there appeared the Sikorski Syndrome, an uncontrolled panic fear of the Wanderers' incursion, which has led to a tragic outcome some thirty years later. In the early 50's, "the Case of the Baker's Dozen" took place. Thirteen fanatics of science voluntarily implanted computer devices into their brains to get rid of the human weaknesses. The experiment turned out to be a disaster; twelve human machines destroyed themselves and the last one named Camill continued to operate without communicating to the outside world.

Approximately at the same time, Paul Gnedykh (a Hunter whose name was mentioned in the chronicles of the 10's) hunting at the Crux system (EN 92 star) shot a "three-fingered four- hander" which turned out to be an intelligent alien. Crushed by his sense of guilt, Gnedykh could not forgive himself for the rest of his life.

In the year 57, Maxim Kammerer, a twenty-years-old FSG volunteer, accidentally "discovered" the planet of Saraksh which by that time was under COMCON's custody for about five years. After six months of adventures in the spirit of the twentieth century thrillers, Kammerer, by that time also known as Mak Sim, had been caught by Rudolf Sikorski, then COMCON chief of station at Saraksh. As a result, Kammerer became involved in the Progressors' activities and succeeded at that. He devised Operation Virus, for which the Super President personally awarded him the nickname, Big Bug. Also, Kammerer was the first (and the last) man of Earth who had been to the capital of the Island Empire. He remained COMCON chief of station at Saraksh until the mid-60's.

The early 60's were marked by the ill-fated Operation Ark headed by M. Sidorov. The goal of the project was to move the population from the planet of Panta whose star was about to turn into a super-new. However, the planet of Ark initially chosen for that purpose turned out to be inhabited by a non- humanoid civilization unwilling to communicate to the outside world. Also found on the planet was the space Maugli, the Little One, Pierre Semenov, the son of Alexander and Mary Semenovs mentioned above whose starship crashed there in the 30's. Found near the planet was the Wanderers' armed satellite which shot Semenovs' starship, the Pilgrim. There has never been a contact established with the civilization of the planet.

At approximately the same time, a nightmarish event occurred at Rainbow, an earth-type planet given to null-physicists for experiments. During one of null-transportations, two deadly Waves formed at the planet's poles and began to converge towards the equator, killing every living thing on the way. Only luck saved the human community of Rainbow; close to the equator, the Waves had offset each other. Thanks to Leonid Gorbovsky being present at Rainbow at the time of the crisis, the World Council has forbidden conducting similar experiments anywhere but in the open space. However, this experiment led to the emergence of null-T which still exists and thrives.

In the year 63, the relationship with Tagora was restored. A little earlier, in the year 60, Lev Abalkin, a Stepchild (file 7, sign "Stylized Asterisk") who became a talented zoopsychologist, began his work with the Headies, intelligent non-humanoids earlier discovered by Maxim Kammerer at the planet of Saraksh. Lev Abalkin carried out several assignments to establish a contact with the Headies; Operation Man and Headies on Saraksh in 60-62, Operation Headies in Space at the planet of Pandora in 62-63, and finally, together with the Heady named Schekn, Operation Dead World at the planet of Hope.

This planet deserves special attention. The people of Earth have faced the latest intervention of the Wanderers in the affairs of other civilizations. Through reckless disregard of its government and scientists, the planet had experienced a genetic catastrophe. The whole population of the planet suffered accelerated metabolism and related fast aging. It appeared that the Wanderers led the population to other worlds through the hyperspace tunnels. Only a small percentage of population voluntarily stayed at the planet. This was the target contact group for the expedition headed by G. Komov and joined by Abalkin and Schekn.

After the operation, Abalkin was at the request of COMCON-2 relieved from work with the Headies and involved (against his preference) in the Progressors' operation at Saraksh which led to his emotional breakdown in the year 78.

By the mid-60's, the work with the Stepchildren carried out by the psychologists became more intensive. In the year 62, the mystery of his origin was disclosed to Corney Yashmaa (file 11, sign "Elbrus"). He became a voluntary ally to COMCON-2. The same experiment conducted in the year 65 with Thomas Nielsson (file 2, sign "Deformed Star") led to horrible consequences. Nielsson died at the planet of Gorgona under the circumstances which do not allow to rule out the suicide. In the year 67, Toiwo Glumov was born ignorant of his space related future. And finally, by the end of the 60's the people of the Headies left the Earth.

The beginning of the 70's was full of light and promise. This is when a new type of starship, Ghost, was designed based on the biotechnology, the branch of science which gained momentum after studying the civilization of Leonida (see the chronicles of the 30's). The space expansion of the mankind reached the scale never seen before. During a short period of time, Yaila, Redut, Nistagma, and Cassandra were discovered.

In the mid-70's, Paul Gnedykh, still feeling guilty of murder, wrote The Book of Wanders. At the same time, Corney Yashmaa, a Stepchild, became the chief of Progressors at the planet of Giganda.

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(c) 1998 Graphical design Alex Andreev (c) 1998 Translation to English Nikolaj Chuvahin
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