Newly accepted as a Special Agent of the star-spanning United Planets organization, Ronny Bronston found that his first assignment was one which had taken the lives of dozens of agents before him: he was to track down a man named Tommy Paine.
‘We’ve been trying to catch him for twenty years,’ said Ronny’s section chief. ‘How long before that he was active, we have no way of knowing. It was some time before we became aware that half the revolts, coups d’états and assassinations that occur in the United Planets have his dirty finger stirring around in them.’
‘But what motivates him?’ Ronny asked. ‘What’s he get out of all the war and killing he stirs up?’
‘Nobody seems to know. But the best guess is that he’s insane – a homicidal maniac on an intergalactic scale. He’s dangerous, Ronny, and you’ve got to get him!’