Bill Hammons: Writing and Running in Boulder, Colorado

BILL HAMMONS: WRITING AND RUNNING IN BOULDER, COLORADO
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25


"Close. I went back to that bookstore in that Houston shopping mall and bought all their copies of The Zero Decade." Bettmann refolded his arms as he stood before his boss's desk. "It's a good thing that poetry doesn't exactly fly off the shelf."

"I don't know why any book would fly off the shelf." Peters squinted through his glasses at the sheet. "And you got a set of fingerprints off one of 'em." He looked up, over the lenses. "How can you be sure whose they are?"

"Whose they are we still don't know. We got six sets of prints off the seven books on that shelf, one of which you see at the top."

"And the bottom print?"

"Taken off a photograph handled by a one Svetlana Korsakova of Moscow, Russia during an interview at Miami International. We have irrefutable evidence from the FSB that she was working as an attendant on Flight One Sixty-Eight from Moscow to Miami at the same moment that this other woman was handling a copy of The Zero Decade by Henry Bacon in a Houston bookstore."

"Dear God," Peters muttered at the report.

"Yes, a near-perfect match. A striking similarity that, at least until now, has only been seen between fingerprints of monozygotic twins. Except our mystery girl is too young to be Korsakova's twin. Once cloning is considered as a plausible explanation, it becomes the only explanation." Bettmann had started to pace in front of Peters's desk. "If that would explain how a teenager looks like a thirty-something woman down to her fingertips, how a security guard passes every ID test but lacks the ordinary day-to-day knowledge of his workplace that one could only pick up by being on the job--"

"Computer, get me Johnson at the FBI," Peters shouted.

Bettmann glared at Peters. "Stop that call!"







































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