Book six in the Bounty Hunter series.
2405 AD - Far away on the galactic rim, an isolated world is hiding the most potent weapon ever constructed. A team of top-class bounty hunters is despatched to investigate.
Gun-Loc was a remote and primitive world. Its location at the edge of the Akuzus Sector meant that it was more than twenty thousand light years from the core systems - over six months travelling time at maximum sub-space speed. As you would expect, Gun-Loc’s great distance from anywhere important meant that it had been completely overlooked by explorers and traders. Only when Gun-Loc’s inhabitants finally invented rapid space transportation just over a century ago was it finally noticed and put on the map. And only in recent years had regular trade routes been set up.
As usual, along with the positive benefits of interplanetary trade came the negative benefits of crime and corruption. Smuggling, murder, espionage, rape, car theft, shoplifting, and name-calling had all become commonplace, and with all the competent crime fighting organisations so far away Gun-Loc was left to fend for itself. A feeling of paranoia and insecurity swept through the planet’s population.
Over many decades Gun-Loc’s leaders set in motion procedures to quash the crime wave, and they had remarkable success considering their limited resources. The leaders soon became satisfied that their world, although still suffering from annoying transgressions, was generally in good shape.
They really had no idea.
“Can you see it?” Panman asked.
“It is not visible to me at the present time.” Justin replied, his voice devoid of all emotion.
“Then check the engine section.”
Justin looked across the hull to the ship’s rear. “I obey.”
Using the powerful electro-magnets on the soles of his plate-like feet, Justin the cyborg began to clank heavily across the Blenheim’s armoured hull. The mass of the ship’s advanced weaponry across its surface made the going tough, and the fact that the Blenheim was orbiting low over the night side of the planet Gun-Loc did not help. The whole ship was in almost complete darkness.
With the help of his image enhancers, Justin made it to the engine section. He surveyed the scene, his visual processors outlining the area in vectors of green and blue. The outline of an object a few metres ahead turned red. Information on the object’s dimensions, mass, and materials entered Justin’s digital consciousness. The object matched the one he was seeking. More information appeared, this time the information was flagged as urgent. Justin engaged his neural integrated communications unit and contacted the bridge.