Went Missing

"Could be risky," he observed, one month later. And this was Henry expressing in the only way he knew, his concern for the man which he considered to be his friend.

But Sam Nolan didn't need anyone reminding him to be cautious. Two years with a special unit in Vietnam made that point clear enough for him.

And so, in September of that year, as hundreds of men were hauling in all that salmon along the beaches of that harbor, Sam Nolan took all his strength, and all his wits, and crammed them into a backpack which held quite a bit more than books and magazines, then struck off for a particular place at the eastern end of the Kenai Peninsula.


One week later, Sam Nolan stood on the southern shore of Kings Bay in which he thought to be the spot where Dr. Lemuel Carver made his observations of that certain ape-like creature. Two days after, he found those huge foot-prints upon the sands of that shore, as well as what he believed was the hidden cave where Dr. Carver watched the beast retreat to for hours on end. And since Sam was a man of patience as great as that of his size, he also found a large stand of drift-wood on that beach in which he took refuge; where he sat and waited for hours on end, thinking about all those things one would ever find in the mind of Sam Nolan.

The following morning Sam woke to the sound of something heavy landing upon wet sand. His training with that special unit back in Vietnam kept his body motionless and his breath hidden, but his eyes and ears roamed the surrounding shore upon which he lay with the franticness one would expect in that situation.

Then he noticed a terrible smell, as brought from the drift of an early southern breeze. The odor had a pungent, animal quality about it, but a "thickness" which left Sam alarmed as to its proximity. Whatever owned that stench was very near.

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