On the planet Perdide, somewhere at the edge of space, a vehicle driven by Claude (accompanied by Piel, a young boy) is followed by a terrifying swarm: Perdide's hornets.
In space, Claude calls his friend Jaffar for help, but Jaffar doesn't answer. He then records his message, which he confides to his son, as well as to the "microphone"- the talking machine- before perishing from insect bites.
Far, far away, Jaffar is in his spaceship with Prince Matton and his companion Belle, who have fled a totalitarian, fundamentalist revolution in their country.
When Claude's message reaches him, he decides to return to Perdide and save Piel, but he must await the passage of the Blue Comet, which will draw him in its magnetic field.
While waiting for the comet, he stops on Devil's Ball, a beautiful planet whose custodian, his old friend Silbad, agrees to join them, despite the fury of Matton, who is looking for a way to get back to his original destination, to get a share of the public treasure which he absconded with at the time of his "departure." Two stowaways, gnomes named Jad and Yula, sense the bad intention of Matton who, aided by the microphone, directs Piel toward certain death. Belle saves the child in time.
A space race takes place between Jaffar and Matton- who, in his escape, steers toward Gamma 10, where an Evil Thing is located.
Getting his honor back, Matton sacrifices himself to let his companions pursue their voyage, which has in store many more dangers, such as the Perdidian henchmen who look for Matton and his precious treasure. Then a magnetic storm blows.
The whole crew loses consciousness, but gets back into good spirits aboard the hospital spaceship of the Masters of Time, who colonize planets while projecting them years into the past.
It's thus discovered that old Silbad, who made insults, is none other than young Piel. This, then, is the paradox of time: an old space courier who foolishly tried to save the small boy whom he once was.
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