A Shift in Priorities - Sequel

No good deed goes unpunished.
(Oscar Wilde)

The soldiers were back. Their number was unchanged. They all were still carrying arms. Their backpacks were – almost – empty. One could see that the load still to be carried was light; the men were moving with ease. – Okay, that was the anticipated outcome. No real surprise here…

Anton Mbwesi had patiently waited until the platoon leader had led the troopers out of the village again. Together with Masrul, a Nuba guide, he was now following the trail the soldiers had taken towards the border. The camp sites were interesting him – or rather the rubbish pits. Yes, the men had lived from canned food. – After rummaging two camp sites, Anton felt already able to do a rough estimate.

Yes, the backpacks must have been full – of cans. There was no way the soldiers could have carried something else. This platoon evidently had not transported weapons or ammunition to the border. They had indeed conducted an ordinary border patrol, so it seemed.

But… The third camp site, the one close to the border, was much larger. Men from the south, said Masrul, about forty of them. So, the lieutenant and his men had met a group arriving from the south, from Uganda. – Could one identify those incomers? But Masrul was only shrugging his shoulders. Hardly any extra refuse, no boots, perhaps a band of rebels, perhaps somebody else…

It took Anton quite an effort to coax Masrul to cross the border. He had to find out who these visitors had been – and what they had taken along from the soldiers. Following their trail shouldn’t be hard for the Nuba.

Well, they didn’t come far… The ambush happened promptly. At least Anton and Masrul weren’t shot on the spot. By all appearances, Anton could now learn live who the visitors were.
There are things that are so serious that you can only joke about them.
(Werner Heisenberg)

It was incredible, but RRA and Bosch were observing the schedule indeed. The first parcel of the generator was ready to go up – on January 8th, 1961, as proposed as early as half a year ago. Klaus Fuchs was deeply impressed. Actually, the operation had already begun. The assembly crew had been deployed to Raumkolonie three days ago: four kosmonauts thoroughly trained by the Bosch engineers.

Construction would be accomplished under the cover of Raumkolonie. It was hoped that the space station’s signature was going to obscure the activities required to complete the generator. Keeping the whole operation secret would be impossible, of course, yet one shouldn’t make scouting too facile for the competitors. It was known that the Russians were working on a nuclear pulse project of their own, but one hadn’t detected any activities directed towards fusion drive.

Well, it all was only a matter of time. One could gain several months – or, if lucky, even years – but one couldn’t hope to remain the sole possessor of new technology for ever. Once an idea was out in the world, it couldn’t be ensnared and boxed in again. – However, the generator was his brainchild; he was going to figure in the history books – if the gadget should truly work as foreseen…

Yeah, Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker would reap the accolade for the general theory – and most probably be awarded a Nobel Prize; and he was going to be mentioned in the specialised press and the subject books. But that was okay; it was the way of the world...
All are lunatics, but he who can analyze his delusion is called a philosopher.
(Ambrose Bierce)

Addi Zugebe had indeed facilitated a casual meeting between Max Sikuku and Fritz Polowesi, the new MANaP chairman. Good grief! What a xenophobe! The man had even denounced him – because he had a daughter with a white woman. Polowesi had never tarried outside Middle Africa. He was a lawyer from Zentralkongo specialising in industrial property rights – and quite a political animal, Max had quickly found out.

Well, the chap had known a lot of half-truths about Max and his enterprises. Obviously, he had rated Max an internationalist, a kind of unpatriotic money-grubber. – Hopefully, Max had been able to clear up some misunderstandings. Eventually, one had parted in good understanding – on the surface, at least. And, as it happens, the covert attacks had stopped.

Nevertheless, Max wasn’t entirely happy. Polowesi hadn’t fallen from the clouds; he could be supposed to express the mood of the majority in his party. The old Zugebe government, in which Max had been minister for nuclear energy and water economy, had managed the intervention in Somalia. This intervention had been a dire necessity, because the Italians had abandoned the country precipitously and left behind a mess.

With a government led by Polowesi, anything like that was going to be impossible. Middle Africa would just sit and let things happen… That wasn’t okay. How could you invest in foreign countries, when your government wasn’t ready to support and assert your legitimate interests? Affairs in Uganda and Kenya were heading for violent conflict – and the WAU was about fall out with the Amis… And Middle Africa was going to perform the lurker?
Anyone who does anything useful will not go unpaid.
(Henry Ford)

He was officially dead and nobody was looking out for him. But that hadn’t stopped a Venezuelan magazine from publishing a photograph showing ‘the wicked Yanqui desperado who almost slew our beloved President Enrique Peña Morales’. It had frightened the hell out of Malcolm Little to see such a picture of him – clad in convict uniform – in a popular rag. Fortunately, this time no one here in Willemstad seemed to have recognised him. But it had been a highly dangerous occurrence – one that might happen again any time…

He had to get away from here! But not back to Venezuela or Sranan… There were the freighters coming from and returning to Middle Africa. But the bloody Middle Africans wouldn’t accept aliens for crew members. Yet, they did hire locals for their base at Sint Willibrordus – cleaners, groundsmen, scavengers… He didn’t speak Dutch though, which was rather close to German, hence he wasn’t considered eligible. And his ability to communicate perfectly in English didn’t interest the Middle Africans at all…

What a mess! Malcolm was stumped. He was trapped. – Okay, let your hair grow, stop wearing glasses – and pray that nobody will ever identify you as ‘the wicked Yanqui desperado’. You are a lowly floor runner; they won’t even notice you. Keep bowing and crawling… But it stung…
Always remember this: if you don’t attend the funerals of your friends, they will certainly not attend yours.
(H. L. Mencken)

Visiting Daressalam was always a climacteric event for Felix Houphouët. These Middle Africans were matchless xenophobes – and had no qualms about revealing it. Fortunately enough, his counterpart, Gottfried Idodi, was a gentle character, a clerical educator by profession, turned vice chancellor and foreign minister of the Muramba administration. And the ruling socialist-religious coalition was – in many respects – much easier to deal with than their nationalist-liberal precursors.

Nevertheless, people coming from the WAU were aliens of ill repute, infested with tacky Ami manners – and that horrible language. Although Felix had been raised with the Baule language – and French – and had only learnt English while serving the WAU, he had to cope with all those jaundices. Even if Gottfried was kind and considerate, his counsellors, the ministry officials, were dyed-in-the-wool difficuties.

Of course, Middle Africa would not tolerate Ami aggression on the African continent – south of the Sahara. But that was not the question here. If at all, a trade conflict might happen, where the Amis could act out their technological superiority – and the power of the big purse. Middle African demand of WAU resources was fairly limited, that couldn’t be helped, but one was ready to allow unlimited exports – even of vital armaments – to the WAU. And one was ready to facilitate WAU exports to UnSA and CAF via the MARB rail network.

In a nutshell: the buggers aimed at taking advantage of the WAU’s problems – without promising any substantial agreement. A treaty of alliance with Middle Africa would immensely improve the WAU’s position opposite the US. But that, evidently, was not going to happen … Yeah, Musa G’Norebbe was a crummy putschist – in their eyes. And Felix was a god-awful alien…
When everyone is looking for gold, it’s a good time to be in the pick and shovel business.
(Mark Twain)

Tahuesco again… Waiting for the boat that was to bring him home again. He would not engage in the Opaque Woodlands. Not the Middle African instructors had caused this decision. They were loath to accept a subordinate role to a despised Ami, sure, but they were professionals. One could have got along… It wouldn’t have been easy, particularly in the beginning; yet Jimbo Owens felt certain he could have carried it off.

No, the Peruvians were the reason why he had declined. They were an obstinate lot – and their ideas about statehood were… – well, weird. The thing was they were quickly taking over the joint. Their numbers were ever growing. They were farmers, engineers, craftsmen, traders. The North American Indians were… – not even hunters and warriors. The Middle Africans had spent considerable effort to turn a few handfuls of them into soldiers.

Jimbo didn’t know much about the ancient empire of the Inca. But the brotherhoods of the Peruvians made his hair stand on end. It reminded him of… – Ku Klux Klan. Yeah, it had been immediate dislike. Those people were hidebound fanatics. One better kept a healthy distance to them. – Because his visit had been a probationary period, leaving was not a problem. He was entirely free to go whithersoever.

There were people in Austin and Houston who were hiring people to resettle Cuba – the second attempt, after their experiment with the Indians had gone awry. Perhaps they would offer him an interesting job. It was worth a shot. He was still too young to retire – although he had money enough. But money had never intrigued him, it was just money. A purpose – or even a duty – was what turned him on. Resettling Cuba sounded good…
Machinations, hollowness, treachery, and all ruinous disorders, follow us disquietly to our graves.
(William Shakespeare)

The figures were encouraging; the AFV voters were coming round – or rather a considerable portion of them was. Well, it was too early to rejoice; there still remained fourteen months until the ballot would deliver the verdict. But nevertheless, his schemes seemed to work. Franz Josef Strauß was very satisfied.

In fact, circumstances were favouring the DVP. The foreign workers imported galore to cobble the losses caused by the pest were alienating the Germans. Even voters of KPD and SPD – workers! – were suddenly leaning towards the DVP. They were viewing the aliens as threat, as wage squeezers and social parasites.

And many traditional voters of DNVP, LPD and Zentrum were disgusted by the conduct of those aliens. – Now, what could you expect from gypsies and other rabble? – Fortunately, the foreign workers would not go away. There was no way to quickly replace them, even if the economy was working hard to accomplish it.

At the same time, the loss of the western neighbours was shifting the scales. The Germans were now confronted with southerners and easterners – disorderly folks. And they didn’t like that. – Okay, the nationalist government in Norway had just fallen, but in his days, Quisling had been quite popular – not only in Norway.

Yeah, the time for a radical change seemed to have arrived. The auspices were propitious across the board. The old order was crumbling.
Most of my ideas belonged to other people who never bothered to develop them.
(Thomas Alva Edison)

Memel at the border to Lithuania, the northernmost town of the German Empire, had not suffered from the pest or any riots. People hereabouts were dour down-to-earth folks. Shipping, rail and forestry were providing the bulk of jobs. Doris Zülch had arrived here yesterday – in vehemently blowing snow. It was snowing still. The Curonian Lagoon was ice-bound, but not yet the Baltic Ocean.

The meeting today had been gratifying. The Lithuanians were very much interested in having the projected data transfer line extended from Memel to Liepāja, the Libau of old, their main port. Hence, they were ready to sign a substantial agreement with Telefunken. A preliminary contract had been agreed upon after intensive discussion. She had already cabled the contents to Berlin. Next week, a Lithuanian delegation was scheduled to sign the real thing at the Telefunken headquarters.

Okay, mission accomplished. Tomorrow, she was booked for a flight from Königsberg to Vienna via Leipzig. But tonight she was off. Well, there wasn’t much one could undertake in Memel. Getting a decent supper here in the hotel was perhaps the best thing to do. The Lithuanians had already left for home – and the local participants had quickly dispersed at the end of the meeting. Anyway, the thick snow did not invite to dare a tour of the town, which was just a dreary Prussian provincial backwater.

This was GDNP country, conservative to the bone. Even the Lithuanian minority – about ten percent of the populace – were known to have balloted for the GDNP. In the remote past, when Otto Braun had still been the ‘red king’ of Prussia, the SPD had indeed managed to gain a number of votes in this clime. But when the rest of Prussia had elected Herbert Weller for minister-president, the Memel country had gone for the GDNP en bloc. Doris was intrigued. Clear-sighted people were living here, it seemed.

She lately had come to view AFV and DFU as jokes. It was perhaps a function of age – or of the general experience she was gathering in her job. Yeesh! The sins of one’s youth… When, some weeks ago, she had secretly joined the rioters in Frankfurt am Main, she suddenly had realised how silly this was. And how silly the cause of the rioters was. It had been her Damascene conversion, kind of. Yeah, and now, with the DVP on the rise under that crazy Bavarian, she was contemplating to join the GDNP herself…
A criminal is someone without the capital to incorporate.
(Clarence Darrow)

Okay, one had identified the Amboni Creek corpse. Her name was Rose Kimeli. Her family lived in Shantytown West. They were migrants from Kenya. Father Kimeli was an alcoholic beyond all hope. Mother Kimeli worked as a charwoman, when she was sober enough. Elder sister Lavinia was a whore. Younger brothers Eddy and Freddy were holding promise to become successful petty crooks.

Hermann Kizwete had interviewed Lavinia, who – in principle – was sustaining the family. Yeah, she had trained Rosie, more or less. But the lass had been pigheaded – and had soon struck out on her own. Lavinia didn’t know where her sister had worked to the last. Yet she had churned out a lot of marks recently; she must have found quite a remunerative nick.

So, it had come down to footwork. It was an interesting ambience; one Hermann hadn’t known yet. Indeed, several farmers remembered Rosie. She had been the runt that nobody had wanted. Mele or Liz were the ones to have sex with. That skinny kid had had nothing to offer.

Mele and Liz were exemplary trash sluts, cheap enough for the stingy farmers. Rosie had been around quite often, but had never wandered off with a customer. She had been a bitchy bitch. – Hermann was satisfied; his initial feeling had been correct. This case was more than fishy. How could a whore who never had customers have delivered money at home? How had Rosie earned the marks? What was clandestinely occurring at Amboni Creek?
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The cat went here and there and the moon spun round like a top, and the nearest kin of the moon, the creeping cat looked up.
(William Butler Yeats)

Unaffected by events at Hammerhorst and Shishmarevo, the lunar exploration programmes of RRA and NASA were progressing steadily. – Raumkobold missions 39 and 40 had – again – confirmed the existence of water ice below the Crater Meton fringes. One was now certain that the ice stocks were sufficient to support a permanent settlement. Consequently, specific planning had entered the implementation phase.

Sending material transports to the moon required new landing vehicles. The transporters, named Drohnen – drones, were going to be unmanned – and were to be landed in direct approach. The hulls had to be used as construction elements. The shipments could easily be homed in once the construction crew had arrived in the classical way via Raumkobold and Hüpfer.

The Raumkobolde, however, were to return home without the construction crew. The builders, a crew of six, were to remain at the incipient station, which was to carry the name Mondlager – moon camp. Survival of the builder group would be the crucial element of the operation. The Hüpfer were too small to contain significant supplies.

Hence, the initial set of drones to arrive had to hold everything that was needed to sustain six men – women weren’t considered eligible for the mission – for six months. This also comprised water, because the sublunar ice wasn’t accessible yet. Special machinery had to be constructed to support the builders – and a particularly small – graphite moderated – nuclear reactor for energy supply.

Realistically, the first components couldn’t be ready for launch before mid-1963. That left time and room for more scientific exploration. The Meton area – future cradle of Mondlager – had been mapped. One could now have a thorough look at other climes. Therefore, the Raumkobold-41 mission, scheduled for April 1961, was targeting Mare Oculensis on the far side of the moon.

Quite unsurprisingly, NASA was planning along similar lines. Their station – called Lunoseló, lunar village – was to be established in Crater Klaproth, where they had identified water ice stocks deep below the surface. Because the Lunobegún vehicles were considerably larger than the Raumkobolde, they could easily be converted into transporters. This fact allowed NASA to save precious time. Their effort was scheduled to start in the third quarter of 1962.

Ottoman OŞU had completed their series of preparatory Göktaşı launches. They were now expected to begin the construction of Uçan Halı, their space station. – The Indian SUS, having accomplished everything that could conceivably be achieved with a single Dornier Projekt SR aircraft, was keeping calm. – Middle African MARFAK had gone into catatonia, it seemed, after the Ninki Nanka disaster. – And US Fedrock, constantly hampered by other priorities set by Washington, was still far from launching their first manned mission.
It's still the 1960s and they're already making plans for a moon settlement. I'm impressed.
IOTL, the US authorities put von Braun on hold - or rather kept him busy with peanuts - from 1945 to 1959. ITTL, there is no such imposed break, on the contrary: the GQDD ramifications push development.
The important thing is to know how to take all things quietly.
(Michael Faraday)

Being a high-profile reporter manifestly could be life-saving. Recognising whom they had captured, the Kakwa rebels swiftly had turned into a hospitable lot. Anton Mbwesi and Masrul had cordially been invited to stay and share the life of their captors. The Nuba, however, would have preferred to return home, but that wasn’t part of the invitation. Anton, for his part, was intrigued. Learning more about current proceedings in Uganda – from worm’s-eye-view – was better than backtracing Egyptian soldiers in southern Sudan.

It hadn’t been the Kakwa who had met the Egyptians. That had been Field Marshal Okello’s men. – Okello was the chancellor of His Majesty King Muteesa of Uganda, but he also was a war lord. In fact, he claimed to control the north of the country. This wasn’t true, because the Kakwa were not accepting his rule, as were the Ma’di, the Aringa and the Lugbara. – This was interesting. What dealings did Okello have with the Emirate of Egypt? What was going on there?

Well, it had been a kind of information exchange. The border had been drawn by the colonial rulers; it didn’t reflect the reality of the people on the ground. Okello was the guarantor of Ugandan unity, but he was also leaning towards authoritarian solutions. He was an Acholi. And his Acholi troops were the – nominal – masters of the realm. But the tribes of the northwest weren’t doing his bidding. There was transborder cooperation with kin inside the Emirate. And Egyptians and Okello people were cooperating to suppress this cooperation.

Okay, that sounded quite complicated. Was there actual fighting going on? – No, not at the moment. One was just manoeuvring. There had been violence in the past, destroyed villages, killed people, yes, but that phase had petered out months ago, after the rebels had struck back against Acholi outfits. – The leader of the Kakwa troop, a certain Idi Amin Dada Oumee, had been a soldier in the British colonial army himself, a cook. He had served in Kenya and Uganda – until the collapse of British rule. He had risen to kitchen sergeant – and he knew Field Marshal Okello, who had been a warrant officer in the same outfit, the King’s African Rifles.
We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid.
(Benjamin Franklin)

The flipping Costa Ricans had produced intelligence at last. Their expedition had visited two villages in the south of the former RUM. The territory was now called Opaque Woodlands. And the people living there were – surprise! – Indians. However, only twenty percent of them were coming from the north. The bulk consisted of Peruvians with some Bolivians interspersed. The one village had a population of six hundred, the second of four hundred and fifty persons. There were even figures for males and females, adults and children, and a compilation of vocations encountered.

Okay, this information was not entirely futile. In fact, it was quite good, more than Harry Salzman had anticipated receiving – after it had taken the Costa Ricans so long to get going at all. One had seen one single Middle African – in the larger village. He had been training a bunch of Indians to become soldiers. The Costa Ricans thought he wasn’t unduly successful. The recruits had appeared fairly listless. Armament was derisory: rifles, machine guns, some submachine guns; no artillery, no radios, no tanks, and no airplanes.

The pity was, this didn’t sound dangerous at all. How could he sell fifty dudes armed with rifles as a threat? Even if he interpolated the figures for all settlements, there shouldn’t be more than five thousand riflemen around. That wasn’t much, hardly two regiments – and no heavy weapons at all. – If it was true… Was it possible that the Costa Ricans had been deceived? – But their report was quite comprehensive. And the photographs were looking really authentic. No, it had to be true.

Folks in Washington would just shelf the affair. And say he had been chasing ghosts. The Opaque Woodlands were not a threat, not now – and not in any foreseeable future.
The fox changes his skin but not his habits.

The Virnopiddanya Partiya, the Loyalist Party, had – once again – confirmed him as their chairman. Visoky chashky! Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev burped and looked around. Only the party treasurer was still sitting upright. Ura dlya dobra! And the dude also slumped – after the second toast. Brezhnev burped again, chuckled to himself, rose circuitously and wove out of the room.

He needed to pee… Where was the goddam loo? Brezhnev wobbled, cursed, opened his fly and pissed against the wall. With dangling willy, he eventually staggered on – and found the car that was to drive him to his residence. En route, he fell asleep. The security folks, who were blanketing him, didn’t dare to stuff his willy back into the trousers – but jolted him awake on arrival.

Brezhnev had no clue where he was. He bleated peevishly – and jostled with the men who were helping him out of the limousine. They guided him through an open gate – and a beautiful lass was receiving him. Brezhnev gaped. The girl smiled teasingly, grabbed his willy and puppeteered him along. She was the bit of fluff he had ordered to be waiting for him, but he didn’t just recall that.

Anyway… A woman… His willy went erect under her grip – or at least swelled mightily. She had vodka waiting for him. That was fine. He needed a refreshment. Ura! The lass was disrobing him. Good idea! Brezhnev grunted in approval – and emptied another glass. What a great evening…

Ganna, the young woman, carefully pushed the drunken Kantsler down to the bed and made him stretch out, while massaging his dick with one hand. She had been warned he would be sloshed. Well, that was okay. After all, he had celebrated his victory in the party convention. She was used to handling boozy dudes. This one here was going to fall asleep in a trice.

It was a pity – in a way. She wouldn’t mind having hot sex with the Kantsler. He was a great man – and quite a handsome one, for his age. His rule was a boon for the country. Full employment and full-pay leave, social security and child benefit – the streak of his accomplishments was impressive. He knew how to keep the owning classes satisfied – while doing quite a lot for the ordinary workers and farmers.

But it wouldn’t happen. The Kantsler was already snoring bearlike.
Thought is the strongest thing we have. Work done by true and profound thought – that is a real force.
(Albert Schweitzer)

An outbreak had been reported from the lower Ubangi valley. Professor Eberhart von Misuku’s team was packing up. The Ubangi-Schari government was sending a police helicopter. They had transmitted that no more than six persons and two cubic metres of equipment could be transported in one flight, as long as the total weight didn’t exceed 1,100 kilograms. However, the heli might execute more shuttle flights in the coming days. – That was pretty much differing from the specifications one was used from the armed forces. Hence, the packages had to be rearranged in a hurry.

Konrad Schabunde, Felix, Dieter, Kurt and Ekki were busy doing that, while the boss was hanging on the telephone, trying to squeeze more information out of the Ubangi-Schari guys. It seemed to be one of those haemorrhagic fevers that indeed could kill people within a few days. One had twenty-two sick folks and three corpses so far, in a village between rivers Lobai and Ubangi. The Ubangi-Schari police was cordoning off the place – as far as that was possible. Local medics were already on the spot. An improvised hospital had been established.

Okay, tents, beds and showers would thus be available – and someone would do the kitchen. That meant one could focus on medical equipment, microscopes and testing kits. Most probably, it would be a dash-in-and-rush-out-again mission. Get in, take samples – and return to Duala University for analysing them. That was the standard approach in such cases. The boss might, though, decide to leave one or two of his assistants for performing local work. Konrad thought he was going to be chosen for this task – and therefore was stuffing more underwear and shirts into his baggage.
The sun, with all those planets revolving around it and dependent on it, can still ripen a bunch of grapes as if it had nothing else in the universe to do.
(Galileo Galilei)

This was the third test, the one where the pusher plate really was supposed to fly. The first test had consisted of a single nuke that just had lifted the impact slab for 17.32 metres – before it had dumped back on the starting trestle. The second test had added a second nuke. That had been an important step – according to the scientists – because the second nuke had to be shot through the central tube of the steel plate. It had worked. Lift had been 42.53 metres. The pusher plate had weathered the bounce, but not the starting trestle.

However, repairing the cradle was an easy job for the Krupp folks, a fair bit easier – and much quicker done – than producing a new slab. – Today, twelve nukes would be used. Ten of them for launching the plate and make it fly – and two to cushion its downfall. It was anticipated that it would land 250 metres beyond the trestle. Jochen Zeislitz had thoroughly scrutinised the arrangement. It was extremely basic. There were no shock absorbers, but an incredible plethora of gauging instruments. Only the gun that was firing the nukes through the central tube in the slab was in place.

Well, if this test should succeed, they would start installing the shock absorbers – and test number four would see him – Jochen – riding atop the gadget! Yeesh!
Nations have passed away and left no traces, and history gives the naked cause of it – one single reason in all cases: they fell because their peoples were not fit.
(Rudyard Kipling)

In principle, matters were developing favourably for the Heymshtot. The Russians were increasingly focusing on the Far East, yet – evidently – had decided to refrain from a nuclear preemptive strike. As Chinese strength could be supposed to accrue evermore – ineluctably, because they were coming from naught, this was going to keep the big eastern neighbour occupied for a long time. It duly minimised the Heymshtot’s risk to be annihilated in a conflict between Russia and Germany – over the Ukraine, for example, or some other great power pissing contest.

But hardly had one understood this advantage, when – suddenly – the big western neighbour was creating trouble. Josef Dembitzer hadn’t needed Minister Kalischer and her jarring howls about Strauß and the DVP to be alerted to the problem. This man, Franz Josef Strauß, manifestly had got what it took to seize power in Berlin. And the Germans, it seemed, were tired of the old men and their old parties – no matter if SPD or Zentrum or GDNP; they were ready to hazard mischief at the ballot box.

What would the DVP in power mean for the Heymshtot? Quite a disaster, thought Dembitzer after having studied the Seichl dossiers about the leading figures of that party. Strauß himself, ostensibly, was not a double-dyed xenophobe, nor had he been known for anti-Semitic sallies in the past, but was ready to exploit whatever could serve him for seizing power. He, moreover, wouldn’t – couldn’t, certainly – restrain his party comrades, once they had occupied the seats of power.

The German Jews were alarmed as well, but apparently were still believing it wouldn’t hit them. They were Germans, after all, no aliens. The current DVP campaign was targeting foreign workers – gypsies, Romanians, Bulgarians. Okay, a Strauß government might freeze relations to the Heymshtot, but going after German Jews – or attacking the Heymshtot – was unthinkable, wasn’t it? The social climate might become frosty – for a while, but the calamity would pass away. This was Germany, a thoroughly civilised country…

Dembitzer had doubts whether this positive worldview was justified. The DVP folks had been around since the Great War – and they had picked up sentiments that had been present in Germany even before the war. They were a minority, sure, but at present the majority seemed to be ready to give them way… These xenophobes and anti-Semites had had years to concoct what they would do once they had won power. It might get nasty…
The universe displays no proof of an all-directing mind.
(Auguste Comte)

The situation of the Middle Kingdom didn’t look bad at all, thought Prime Minister Deng Xixian. The rule of Emperor Xīn–mìnglìng Dì seemed to be auspicious indeed. – Fēilóng was forgotten. Léigōng had once and for all established the empire’s place at the top. The little peripheral countries were bowing to the centre. The Russians were fearing China’s might. The Americans were highly esteemed friends – and mercifully far away. The Indians were polite – and anxious to keep a healthy distance. – The natural order of things had been restored.

Should the Great Qing join the space race? The question had been raised recently. One had to develop rocketry anyway. Copying the Japanese Ichi-Raiu missile design could only be a start. – Deng held that one should handle the matter quietly: ballistic missiles yes, but no space hype. One was awkwardly backward in development, hence one better kept still and worked diligently to catch up. Once the technology had been mastered, one might also send men into outer space – and spaceships to other planets.

One had to avoid the impression the Middle Kingdom was running after the Germans – or – crikey! – the Russians. No, progress had to be achieved on all fields. One had to acquire knowledge and knowhow. It wasn’t difficult. The American friends were – by their own choice – teaching modern production methods to the Chinese engineers. And the Germans never had had qualms to sell hightech to the Great Qing. These days, with their workforce down, they were even willing to relocate production to China. One could learn a lot without even resorting to espionage.
The best things in life make you sweaty.
(Edgar Allan Poe)

Screwing Gerdi when she was drunk was hard work indeed. It took quite an effort to poke her to climax. But once she reached orgasm, the boisterous screaming and fidgeting went on at least for a quarter of an hour. And afterwards, she wanted more… more drinks and more fucking. – Egon Schagalla was panting and dripping with sweat. Gerdi was nibbling lustfully at his lobe and caressing his limp dick with one hand, while fapping lewdly with the other.

Would his prick get rigid again? Gerdi was hot, steaming hot. But he was exhausted, worn out to the core. – He was getting old, that was the ineluctable conclusion, too old for such filthy acts. – In the past, that never would have happened to him. He was still able to stand his ground in any pub brawl, sure, but that was dealing and absorbing blows only. – Yet, here in the sack, he was sapped after the first round already; not just ordinarily drained – no, truly impotent…

Damn, he did want to poke her… but it seemed he had shot his bolt. What a humiliation! – He goggled at her dangling big boobs with the erect nipples. No, no stirring in his loins. Shit! – Well, he could still eat her out… She was clearly digging that approach. But… when she was wriggling in the next climax and clamouring for his hard-on, his prick was still limp. Egon was utterly frustrated.

When Gerdi was eventually sleeping it off, he went out – looking for a punch-up. A bunch of AFV goons met his desire. There were five of them – and they beat him up without mercy. – The police was not present in this quarter. A patrol of DVP blokes finally saved him. They were looking for AFV scalps, not for knocking Egon out, but it was enough to save his hide. Not bad, those DVP fellows, quite pithy…