The Trigan Republic (continued . . .)

For two days and nights, Janno struggled on. Then, on the morning of the third day, a monstrous shadow was cast over him ! Aaaaaagghh ! He knew the massive creature to be one of the savage predators of the frozen continent . . . and he ran for his life. Gn-a-a-a-a-aaaghh ! Next moment the young Trigan stumbled and fell. He felt the brute's hot breath on his face . . . before he heard an explosion ! The great beast toppled and lay still . . . and from out of the swirling snow came a strange-looking craft. Are you all right ? Yes ! Thanks ! The newcomers introduced them- selves as hunters from Zedd, and eagerly Janno informed them that he himself was heading for the outpost. You are a fool to travel in the frozen continent alone and unarmed. The territory swarms with predators. It's a wonder you've survived so long ! My mission is absolutely vital. Can you possibly escort me to Zedd ? The hunters agreed, and some days later they came in sight of the last outpost. Janno looked down on the drilling rigs which drew out the precious fluid that fed the engines on the planet Elekton. Janno's companions had no news of his uncle, but they suggested that he make inquiries in Zedd's one and only inn. They're a rough- looking lot !
I seek news of my uncle . . . the ex-Emperor Trigo. I believe he passed through here. You'll find no emperors in this accursed hole . . . ex or otherwise ! You only get the dregs of the planet here, lad . . . and we like it that way ! Wait ! There was a stranger here ! Janno turned eagerly, and the man at the next table described the “stranger”. Yes ! Yes ! That was my uncle ! Well, he left for the great ice barrier three lunar months ago. Hired a transporter and two guides. If you were wanting to follow him, we own a transporter, and we know the route. Yes ! When can we leave ? As soon as you like, lad. Now, if you want ! Some moments later, Janno's new acquaintances muttered together. So hes looking for an ex-emperor, eh ? Well, ex-emperors come expensive . . . in ransom money, for instance. And so do their nephews ! There could be a fortune in this for us ! The three set off in a transporter. Two days later, a forbidding wall of whiteness blanked out the sky ahead of them. From here we go on foot . . . over the great ice barrier ! The long, gruelling climb began. And they were watched . . . every step of the way . . . from the high crest.

This installment was originally published in Look and Learn issue no. 409 on 15 November 1969.


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