Authors: James F. David
NOTE: If you purchased this book without a cover you should be aware that this book is stolen property. It was reported as “unsold and destroyed” to the publisher, and neither the author nor the publisher has received any payment for this “stripped book.”
This is a work of fiction. All the characters and events portrayed in this book are either products of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously.
FOOTPRINTS OF THUNDER
Copyright © 1995 by James F. David
All rights reserved, including the right to reproduce this book, or portions thereof, in any form.
Cover art by Paul Stinson
A Tor Book
Published by Tom Doherty Associates, LLC 175 Fifth Avenue New York, NY 10010
Tor® is a registered trademark of Tom Doherty Associates, LLC.
ISBN 0-812-52402-0 EAN 978-0-812-52402-4
Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 95-21887
First edition: October 1995 First mass market edition: July 1997
Printed in the United States of America
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I would like to thank everyone who encouraged or tolerated me during this project. Thanks to Mark, who gave me the initial push to get started, Carol McCleary for seeing the potential, Bob Gleason and Greg Cox for many good suggestions and for pushing me to a new level, and to my wife, Gale, for hours of reading and rereading.
Abby, Katie, and Bethany—this is why Dad sat at the computer all those hours.
Kenny Randall—Student at Oregon Institute of Technology, and a member of the group.
Dr. George Coombs—Former professor of anthropology, now a chiropractor.
Dr. Chester Piltcher—Professor of system science at Oregon Institute of Technology, and the leader of the group.
Phar Nyang—A student at Oregon Institute of Technology, computer programmer, and a member of the group.
Mrs. Wayne—Member of the group and New Age believer who communicates with a spirit guide by the name of Shontel.
Petra Zalewski—Student at Oregon Institute of Technology, and a member of the group.
Colter Swenson—Student at Southern Oregon State College, and a member of the group.
Ernie Powell—Friend of Mrs. Wayne, and a member of the group.
Robin Kyle—Deputy sheriff, Jackson County Sheriffs Department.
Jill Randall—Kenny Randall’s sister, and tour guide at the Oregon Caves.
Robert Jenkins—FBI Special Agent.
Shirley, Jay, and Kimberly—Rangers at the Oregon Caves National Monument.
Bill Conrad—Colonel in the U.S. Air Force.
Angie Conrad—Wife of Bill.
Dr. Terry Roberts—Psychologist.
Ellen Roberts—Wife of Terry.
John Roberts—Son of Terry and Ellen.
Ripman and Cubby—Friends of John.
Carl, Bobby, Kishton, Butler, and Miller—Motorcyclists from Carlton, Oregon.
Vince Peters—Chief of Police, Carlton, Oregon.
Stanley “Coop” Cooper—Reserve officer, Carlton, Oregon.
Rita Watkins—Stranded motorist.
Chrissy Watkins—Rita’s daughter.
Matt Watkins—Rita’s son.
Ron Tubman—Owner and captain of the deep-water sailboat
Carmen Perez-Tubman—Wife of Ron Tubman.
Rosa Perez—Carmen’s daughter.
Chris Tubman—Ron’s son.
Mariel Weatherby—Resident of apartment bordering the New York time quilt.
Luis Ibarra—Resident of apartment bordering the New York time quilt.
Melinda Ibarra—Wife of Luis.
Gene Diamond—Host of radio show
Emmett Puglisi—Assistant professor of astrophysics, University of Hawaii.
Carrollee Chen-Slater—Assistant professor of botany, University of Hawaii.
Elizabeth Hawthorne—White House chief of staff.
Scott McIntyre—President of the United States.
Dr. Nick Paulson—Science advisor to the President.
Dr. Arnold Gogh—Former science advisor to the President.
Samuel Cannon—Director of the CIA.
Phil Yamamoto—Sergeant, U.S. Air Force.
Natalie Matsuda—Secretary of Defense.
Prologue: Corn Fall
he pickup sped through the forest past the marker indicating the border of the Indian Reservation. Unnoticed by the passengers, the forest changed. Hardy pines replaced the water-loving firs, the mountains melted into hills, and the highway convolutions became mere curves. The truck was moving down the eastern slope of the Cascades into the rain shadow that was the high desert of eastern Oregon.
It was opening day of deer season, at least it would be at daybreak, and the pickup was loaded with essentials. In the back were a tent, three sleeping bags, fishing rods and tackle, two cast-iron frying pans, a propane lantern, three 30.06 rifles, and two cases of beer. In the cab three eager college students kept themselves awake by talking sports and sex. Few cars were on the road, and only an occasional sign advertising the reservation resort, Kah-Nee-Tah.