The black helicopter sped across the Brahmaputra River with mere feet between it and the water. But Kathy’s mind was far to the north, in Siberia. The mosaic they’d just seen raised some very disturbing possibilities.
In 1908 there was an atmospheric explosion above the Tunguska River in Siberia. Even though authorities didn’t reach the area for years, the devastation was still evident. Nearly half a million acres of trees were flattened.
No one knew what happened at Tunguska. Although there were some exotic suggestion, conventional wisdom held that an asteroid exploded in the lower atmosphere. The mosaic seemed to reinforce this idea. It suggested the Maya were able to see far into space and calculate the paths of objects with precision.
None of the three had spoken as they were laundered off the mountain in the company of the tourists. About halfway to the river the truck had stopped and they’d swapped back out with the three from the helicopter. Then the EC120 had flown to the west.
On the helicopter Anne had plugged her handheld computer into the helicopter console and put a star chart up on the LED screens in front of their seats. She’d punched in the date for Tunguska and by George, the map looked an awful lot like the mosaic. Now Anne was busy using Quetzalcoatl’s orientation to try and track the path of whatever landed.
Kathy wondered what other secrets lay hidden in the mountain and who had access to them. Now she looked at Anne in a whole new light. Kathy was glad she didn’t consider the woman wasn’t a rival anymore. Anne was someone who lived in two worlds. She’d been born into our world, but initiated into a whole other, strange world.
They’d been flying directly over the trees and marsh that surrounded the river —pilots called it nap of the earth flying. Now they emerged over the runway of a modern airport Kathy recognized as the Lhasa-Gonggar Airport. A black business jet was rolling from the tarmac onto the approach ramps.
The black helicopter landed about five hundred feet ahead of the jet. Leaving the oversized tourist jackets from the monastery in their seats John and Kathy grabbed their luggage and followed Anne out of the helicopter. Seconds later it was gone to the north.
Kathy now recognized the approaching black jet as a Bombardier Challenger. The decade old design was used by several governments as VIP transport and even as a naval patrol. It was also used by the Chinese Air Force.
As it reach them the jet slowed, a door slid open and a metal ramp was lowered. As it passed them Anne leapt onto it and they followed suit. Moments later they were inside the aircraft and the door was closed. Anne led them to three seats in a narrow cabin. They strapped in and held on.