My sides were screaming and I felt nauseous.
Doc Pearce said I likely had a broken rib.
I was grateful for the silence in the car. It had been a couple of hours since we’d merged onto the freeway. No one said much and I was glad. It allowed me to nurse my wound and gather my thoughts.
How did the bastard get in? Why? Nothing in that lab would have made much sense to anyone not directly involved in PLATO. Nor was it anything that was difficult to procure through conventional means.
It didn’t add up. There was too much of an effort threshold. Cui bono? The ROI of breaking into a secluded, covert, military installation for a handful of experimental mushrooms and some psychobabble ridden research was dubious.
It wasn’t even worth the gas in the tank.
Unless I was missing something. I didn’t think so. I couldn’t think of anything. Yet, there was the vague outline of something, some variable, dancing at the periphery of my conscience.
I gazed at the thick line of mute forest dappled in noonday sun. The tinted glass lent a surreal and somber cast to those leafy sentinels.
‘How much there is to know….’ By now the melody of that old Zeppelin song was solidly associated with the vast Kentucky wilderness. I had coupled the two when we’d first arrived at Luckadoo Cove. It was a perfect summation of the rolling sea of green, undulating as hills, crashing spectacularly into the heavens as waves of mountain. The hoary scent of the very soil was redolent with mystery.
As we approached Louisville I felt more and more like an astronaut reentering Earth’s atmosphere. Which world was alien? The hills or the city? I did not know.
There were a million questions and I would just have to wait.
1.1 (Intro) The Sketch of Sam Monroe
1.2 The Cajun Prayer
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