Currently Available Eureka Books

Eureka book

If you’re a fan of Eureka, you might be interested in giving the Eureka books a try. These books are set in the world/universe of the Eureka television program and promise to deliver additional adventure and fun with the characters we’ve grown to love. Eureka tie-in novels are a great way to revisit Eureka during the off-season (like now) while we wait for new episodes to come to Syfy.

The two books below are set during the time between season 3.5 and 4, before the time travel incident that led to season 4’s big “equation” change.

I’ve gathered plenty of information about these Eureka books here. Enjoy!

Eureka: Substitution Method bookcover
Eureka: Substitution Method
By: Cris Ramsay
Published by: Ace
Publication date: August 31, 2010
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9780441018857

Substitution Method

Welcome to Eureka.
Population: BRILLIANT

It’s a town of geniuses—and now it’s the smartest series going.

Founded by Albert Einstein and Harry Truman after WWII, Eureka is home to the greatest minds in science and technology. But the creations of these eccentric geniuses threaten to destroy the world as often as they save it. Jack Carter is the everyman sheriff who must use his common sense and unique street smarts to keep a lid on this Pandora’s Box of a town. Especially now, when Eureka’s people, cars, and buildings are being swapped with people, cars and buildings from other places.

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Available Formats for Eureka: Substitution Method



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Eureka: Brain Box Blues bookcover
Eureka: Brain Box Blues
By: Cris Ramsay
Published by: Ace
Publication date: November 30, 2010
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9780441019830

Brain Box Blues

Even the brightest of Eureka’s residents can’t read someone else’s mind. Then Global Dynamics develops the Brain Box: a device capable of capturing and storing human thoughts. When the Box starts messing with people’s minds Sheriff Jack Carter will have to keep his thoughts to himself if he’s going to save the town from going out of their heads.Even the brightest of Eureka’s residents can’t read someone else’s mind. Then Global Dynamics develops the Brain Box: a device capable of capturing and storing human thoughts. When the Box starts messing with people’s minds Sheriff Jack Carter will have to keep his thoughts to himself if he’s going to save the town from going out of their heads.

Read an excerpt…

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Substitution Method Excerpt

Chapter Two

Carter pulled the key out of the ignition and hopped out of the Jeep. Seth Osbourne was already waiting for him, arms crossed, and once again Carter marveled at the fact that you could never judge a book by its cover. Tall and broad (and a bit round), with thick beefy arms and jowls and a menacing glower, all Osbourne needed was the too-tight black T-shirt, the jeans, and the club-sized Maglite to be the standard image of a bouncer. Instead he was a scientist, and a brilliant one. Cranky and difficult with a tendency to break the rules—like so many other Eureka residents—but brilliant nonetheless.

“What seems to be the problem, Seth?” Carter asked as he walked over. He noticed that Osbourne’s car—a beautifully restored Mustang he’d reconfigured to run on nuclear power cells—was sitting off to one side of the driveway under a dustcover, and he felt a twinge of guilt. The last time he’d been out here it had been to confiscate those same power cells, which Osbourne had resisted turning in despite a GD demand. Of course, someone else had gotten to it first, but Carter still felt bad about being even peripherally involved with shutting down such an awesome car.

“It’s Fargo,” the heavyset scientist told him. He kept his arms crossed, which meant there would be no welcoming handshake. That was fine. The two of them had never been particularly cordial. Carter did his best to get along with everyone in Eureka—it was part of his job—but some residents were easier than others. “He’s at it again.”

“Yeah, you said that on the phone. What exactly do you mean by ‘at it’?” Privately, Carter was really hoping Osbourne was wrong. He knew Fargo well, better than he knew most of the people here, and though they weren’t exactly friends they did associate a lot. And Fargo was frequently very helpful in solving the problems Carter faced. Of course, he’d also been responsible for a few of those problems, but nobody was perfect.

Fargo and Osbourne did have a history, though. Fargo’s trailer was just on the other side of Osbourne’s property, and the two had gotten into a pretty nasty dispute about noise at one point last year—Osbourne had been blaring opera in the middle of the night to encourage the growth of his experimental plants and had refused to consider his neighbors’ attempts to sleep. He’d also ignored Carter’s cease-and-desist. The feud had risen to an all-out war, with Fargo sneaking in to sabotage Osbourne’s speakers, and the two had actually come to blows—though admittedly that had been at least partially the plants’ fault, because their pollen had released people’s ids, causing them to act without restraint.

Carter was hoping to avoid such unpleasantness this time around.

But Osbourne was clearly out for blood. “Take a look!” he insisted, and led Carter around to the side of the house—and a field of colorful flowers.

“Oh, come on!” Carter couldn’t help saying. “We talked about this, Seth! No more plants, remember?”

“No more experimental plants,” Osbourne corrected him. “And I haven’t. I’ve stayed entirely in other fields since then.” Of course, one of those fields had been bioluminescence, which had led to some other problems for the town, but Carter decided it wouldn’t be politic to point that out just now. “These are just regular plants, entirely for color and fragrance and the natural calming effect such beauty produces.” His brow furrowed. “Or at least they were!”

“Okay, then I’m not seeing the problem.” Carter studied the flowers. “They all look healthy to me.”

“That’s not the point! Look at this one! And this one! And that one!” Osbourne was gesturing to one of the rows of flowers, and Carter tried to pay more attention. He really wasn’t a plant person. At all. In fact, back when he’d been married, his wife had accused him of having a black thumb more than once. Of course, the fact that she’d never remembered to water the plants might have had something to do with their dying, but try convincing her of that. Anyway, all he could tell was that these were bright and cheerful, with pretty yellow petals clustered around a thick stalk, and the smooth-edged leaves were a vibrant green.

“What’s wrong with them, exactly?” he asked after another minute.

“Are you blind as well as stupid?” Osbourne burst out. This was exactly why they’d never gotten along. “They’re Linaria genistifolia dalmatica!” Carter just stared at him. “Dalmatian toadflax?” Osbourne threw up his hands. “They’re weeds!”

“So you have weeds? That’s the big emergency here?” Carter was sure he was missing something, but for the life of him he couldn’t figure out what. “What’s the big deal? Can’t you just pull them and plant something else in their place? And what does this have to do with Fargo?” He couldn’t exactly see the wiry little science geek out here planting flowers—or weeds. No matter how much he hated Osbourne.

But Osbourne wasn’t about to be pacified. “I did have something else there!” he replied, his volume rising as he grew more agitated. “I had Rosa rugosa there! The entire row is Rosa rugosa!” Now that he mentioned it, Carter did notice that all the other plants around those three were very different—they were wider and bushier, with shorter, thinner, serrated-edged leaves, and their flowers were delicate pale pink blossoms with small light yellow centers. “And Fargo ruined it!”

Carter held up a hand to forestall any more accusations. “Look, I can see that these plants are different,” he agreed, ignoring Osbourne’s muttered “How astute of you!” and continuing, “but I don’t see what any of this has to do with Fargo. You said these Dalmatian plants are weeds, right?”

“Of course!” Osbourne looked personally offended. “They’re an escaped perennial ornamental from the eighteen hundreds. Highly aggressive.” Carter repressed sudden images of these plants breaking out of a greenhouse and rampaging down the highway, shoving cars out of their way and beating up pedestrians. No sense borrowing trouble. This was Eureka, after all—stranger things had happened. “Once their root system is established, they’re extremely difficult to remove,” Osbourne was explaining. “And most herbicides are ineffective. Though I have a few that might do the trick.”

“Uh-uh,” Carter warned him. “The last thing I need is you killing all the vegetation for a twenty-mile radius!” Osbourne actually had the decency to look embarrassed. “But I still don’t see how or why you think Fargo had anything to do with this. Couldn’t these weeds have simply blown into your garden and taken root?”

Now the big scientist’s discomfort switched to condescension, which was certainly more typical for him. “Do you have any idea what sort of growth cycle Linaria genistifolia dalmatica has?” he demanded. “No, of course you don’t—look who I’m talking to. I’m surprised you even know they need dirt and water! It would take weeks for a Linaria genistifolia dalmatica to reach this height, much less flower. And these weren’t here yesterday!”

Carter sighed and scratched his chin. Despite the insults, Osbourne had a point. There was no way the weeds had grown there overnight—well, not no way, but he suspected such phenomenal plant growth would have affected all the surrounding plants as well, and they were all neatly tended. So something had brought these Dalmatian plants here. But Fargo? Why would Fargo replace three of Osbourne’s flowers with weeds? As far as he knew, the two had been keeping a safe distance from each other since that last incident—why stir up trouble now?

Squatting down, Carter studied the weeds—and the soil around them. “This doesn’t look disturbed at all,” he commented after a second, tracing the base of one plant with his finger. “The dirt here isn’t loose, and there isn’t any clinging to the lower leaves.” He might not know plants, but he did know evidence. Or the lack thereof.

Osbourne crouched next to him and examined the spot he indicated. “No,” he admitted after a second, though he clearly wasn’t happy about it. “Whoever did this did a masterful planting job.”

“Well, that rules Fargo out,” Carter told him, straightening up. This time it was Osbourne who stared, and he got to explain. “Oh, think about it! You know Fargo! Sure, he’s clever, but he’s a total klutz! There’s no way he could plant those things there without making a mess—he’d have dirt strewn all over your garden, and tracks everywhere!” He glanced around again just to confirm what he’d already noticed without registering it fully—sure enough, the only fresh tracks here were one set of his boots and several of Osbourne’s extra-wide sandals. “You’re looking at the wrong guy.”

“Well, someone did this to my garden!” The beefy scientist insisted. “These plants didn’t replace themselves!”

“Are you sure?” Carter asked him. “And are you sure there isn’t anything you’re not telling me? Like some new plant formula you’re testing, or some hybrid seed you’re developing?”

“No, of course not. I cultivate these flowers strictly for relaxation.” But Osbourne didn’t meet his gaze.

“Uh-huh.” Carter brushed the dirt off his pant legs. “Well, I’ll do some poking around—not literally—and see if any of your Rosa rugosa turn up anywhere else, and if anyone’s been playing with these Dalmatian plants. But right now I’d say your best bet is just to pull the weeds, plant a few more of those other things, and forget about it.”

“It’s not that easy,” Osbourne muttered as Carter turned to go. “It takes months for them to reach flowering height—though if I altered the formula by adding…”

Carter left the big scientist there mumbling to himself and returned to his Jeep. He would keep his ears open, but he had a feeling nothing would come of it. Osbourne had probably let a few of those weeds creep in unnoticed, and then watered them with some super growth formula he probably wasn’t supposed to be messing with, and now he’d rather blame Fargo than admit his own mistake.

Well, Carter thought as he pulled out and headed back to the office, at least it had gotten him out of his chair for a while. Maybe something else had happened while he was gone, something a little more exciting than some random weeds appearing in a garden. But if there’d been real trouble, Jo would have called him.

On the way back, Carter spotted a tall, lean figure walking along the side of the road. He was wearing tan slacks and a bright blue Hawaiian shirt, and the top of his head glistened in the sun. It was Dr. Baker—or one of the Dr. Bakers, at least. There were several of them, and they all looked exactly alike. In fact, Carter had no idea how many there were—he’d seen at least four of them together at one time, but he often suspected there were more because some days it seemed like everywhere he turned there was a Dr. Baker crossing the street or reading the paper or eating a bagel. It was hard to tell for certain, though, because it seemed like they always dressed exactly the same. Strange.

Carter slowed alongside him and rolled down his passenger-side window. “Morning, Dr. Baker,” he called out.

“Morning.” None of the Bakers were very talkative. At least not to him.

This one continued walking, and Carter kept pace. He’d already noticed that Dr. Baker wasn’t wearing a hat, and in this heat that wasn’t a good idea, especially for a man with so little hair. Plus he seemed rather flushed, and his shirt was soaked with sweat. “Out for a little walk?”


Carter considered that one. Was Dr. Baker being sarcastic? He was used to that from so many of Eureka’s residents, but he’d never seen the Bakers employ it, at least not in his direction. And it had actually sounded sincere—less of a Can’t you tell? and more of an I guess so.

After another minute of driving alongside, he decided to make the offer. “Can I give you a ride back to town?”

He was more than a little surprised when Dr. Baker stopped, turned, and gave him a smile. The sunlight winked off his wire-frame glasses. “Thank you, I would appreciate that.”

“Well, okay, then.” Carter braked and popped the passenger-side lock, and Dr. Baker pulled open the door and slid into the seat, shutting the door firmly behind him. He buckled in conscientiously, and once he was ready Carter started moving again.

“I hadn’t planned on taking a walk this morning,” Dr. Baker informed him abruptly after they’d been driving a few minutes. “Actually, I thought my brother was taking a walk. That’s why I don’t have a hat on.”

“O-kay.” Carter wasn’t really sure how else to respond to that. He’d thought his brother was taking a walk, not him? Did they take turns and this one had forgotten it was his day to walk?

“Yes, by the time I realized I was the one walking, I was already outside of town,” Baker continued. “There was nothing for it but to walk back. Until you came along.” He smiled at Carter again. “Thank you again.”

“You’re welcome,” Carter assured him. He was more confused than ever about the Bakers, but that didn’t surprise him. This one walked all the way out of town before realizing it, and that’s why he didn’t have a hat on? These guys were weird!

Carter tried to ignore the fact that the hair on the back of his neck was standing up. Somehow, in Eureka, whenever he noticed something was weird, it wound up becoming a problem. And usually a dangerous one at that.

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Brain Box Blues Excerpt

Chapter One


The bell over the door of Café Diem jingled as Eureka’s Sheriff Jack Carter stepped inside. He nodded to patrons as they turned and smiled. To his right sat the elderly android twins playing chess. Just past them sat a few men in business suits, their heads bent down, focused on their PDAs as one of the local’s biomimetic dogs barked.

A step behind Carter was Deputy Sheriff Jo Lupo. She grinned down at the pooch and gave it a pat on the head.

Spotting Fargo, Carter strode purposefully toward a small group huddled around the back table. Douglas Fargo, the assistant to the director at Global Dynamics and Eureka’s brilliant but accident-prone problem child, sat among friends and co-workers, including Carter’s daughter, Zoe.

Home on a short break from Harvard, Zoe had offered to help bus and wait tables again at the café, only this morning she looked more like a patron than an employee.

Vincent, Café Diem’s stout and ever-helpful owner and proprietor, waved at Carter as he entered. “Morning, Sheriff—hey, Jo. The Thank-God-It’s-Friday Fritters are fresh.”

Carter shook his head. “Morning, Vincent—maybe not today. S.A.R.A.H. says I still need to cut back on the fried foods.”

“Oooh… Vincent.” Jo diverted to the counter. “I’ll take one, and a Bavarian Hammer.”

“Coming right up, Jo. Your loss, Sheriff. They’re guaranteed to make your Friday go smooth as silk.”

Though the idea of having one of Vincent’s delicious fritters sounded wonderful—especially to Carter’s growling stomach—he really was trying to cut back a little on the rich food he’d enjoyed since moving to Eureka.

Café Diem boasted an eclectic and entertaining array of interior decor, much of which reflected the town’s history, as well as her more famous scientific residents. Vincent himself held a reputation that he could fill any order asked of him, and he prided himself on having a freezer stocked to suit anyone who came through the door.

Also seated at the table with Fargo and Zoe were Julia, Fargo’s girlfriend and researcher at Global Dynamic, and Henry Deacon, the town’s most versatile scientist, mechanic, and mayor.

“Morning, Carter,” Henry said.

“Good morning, Sheriff Carter.” Julia’s smile was incredibly bright and chipper for a Friday morning.

“Morning.” Carter stood in front of the table, his hands on his hips. “Fargo—about this complaint against your neighbor—”

“Yes.” The diminutive assistant pointed at him with the pencil in his hand. “That noise has got to stop. The lights, the yelling, the moaning…”

Carter frowned. Moaning? “You said they were making a movie.” His eyes widened as he felt a smile tug at the corners of his mouth. “What kind of movie are they making?”

Julia sat up straight and pushed her dark-framed glasses up higher on her nose, blushing just slightly. “Nothing as brash as that, Sheriff. They’re re-enacting Contact—making a satire out of it.”

Carter blinked and frowned as he tried running as quickly as he could through the list of movie titles he could remember. “You mean like Star Trek?”

Fargo sighed, lowering the pencil and his shoulders. “Sheriff, that’s First Contact. This is Contact, the beloved book by Carl Sagan, where man’s first contact with extraterrestrials is—”

Carter held up his hands. “Okay, okay. Sorry. My bad. The movie with Jodie Foster—”

“Awful.” Julia sniffed.

“Totally not the book,” Fargo echoed.

Zoe moved from her seat beside Julia and touched her father’s arm. “Hey, Dad… something for breakfast? Fritter?”

Carter smiled at her, feeling the soft affection he always had when he was with her. He was thrilled she was home from school even if it was only for a long weekend. But he was also aware of something else in her expression. Something sad.

He moved a few steps to the counter, away from the others as Zoe joined him. “Hey… you plan on telling me what’s been causing you to walk around like a zombie? S.A.R.A.H. said you called her Lucas twice this morning.” He lowered his voice as he watched her face.

Zoe shrugged and looked back at the others as they talked among themselves again. “It’s nothing… really.”

“Uh… Zoe… it’s me… remember? Your dad? The one who always embarrasses you? The one who’s always right but you never admit it?”

Her gaze immediately moved up to meet his, and she gave him a half smile. “I know, Dad… It’s just that”—she glanced back at the group—”I look at Fargo and Julia and I feel… kinda…” Her shoulders rose and lowered. “I don’t know. Sad?”

Frowning, he glanced back at them. “Well, I know it’s kind of an odd pairing… but they seem to go well together.” He grinned. “Kinda like spaghetti and meatballs.”

“But that’s just it.” She sighed. “They’re so happy together.”

“Uh…” He sighed and straightened, now understanding his daughter’s seemingly listless behavior since arriving in Eureka. “This is about you and Lucas.”

She nodded. “Dad… he’s just so… At first we were keeping up with each other. Texting, e-mail, calling… And then I got busy… and then he got busy… and now…” She shrugged. “Now it’s so hard to even get a response out of him. I told him I was coming back to Eureka for a few days—but he never responded.” She turned a pained expression to him. It broke his heart. “I miss him.”

“Oh, honey.” He reached out and gave her a quick hug. “I’m sorry. I should have seen this. Look, I’m sure Lucas is busy at MIT. Why don’t I pick Henry’s brain later, okay?” He tilted his head from side to side. “Maybe kinda see if I can get information?”

“I wish I could pick Lucas’s brain sometimes. I’d do anything to know what he’s thinking.”

“Trust him, okay? Like I said, he’s probably just a little preoccupied with school. And I’ll see what I can find out for you.”

“Thanks, Dad,” she said in a whisper. Then she lowered her voice and said, “Just don’t let Henry know I’m the one that wants to know.”

Carter grinned. “I promise.” He moved back to the group with Zoe beside him. “So what exactly have we got going on here? Some kind of game?”

Jo joined them, a to-go cup in one hand, a napkin-covered fritter with a bite out of it in the other. She chewed as she looked at everyone. “What’s up?”

Henry was the one to answer, looking Carter directly in the eye. “Remote Viewing.”

Carter pursed his lips, nodding. “Annnd… by that I’m assuming you’re not talking about binoculars or like a telescope.”

Jo shook her head and swallowed. “Nope. Like the Morehouse book, right?” She looked at Henry.

Julia’s and Fargo’s expressions slipped into surprise as they looked at the deputy, their mouths dropping.

“How did you know about that?” Fargo said. “Morehouse’s book? Psychic Warrior?”

Jo’s eyebrows arched high into her smooth forehead. “It’s called reading, Fargo. You should try it sometime.” She looked at Julia. “Though I’d always assumed it was fiction. So this Stargate thing was real?”

“Very much so,” Henry grinned.

Carter looked from Jo to Henry. “Anyone care to give me a book report?”

“Remote Viewing, or RV as it’s called, is the science of gathering needed information about a remote target,” Henry said. “The means of the gathering is what’s always been called into question because it relies on the mind and its connection to all things. The term itself was introduced by parapsychologists Russell Targ and Harold Puthoff in 1974.”

“Harold Put-off?” Carter grinned at Henry, and then straightened his face when he realized Henry wasn’t smiling. He cleared his throat. “So parapsychology?” Carter made a face. “Uh… so you’re into psychics and tarot cards now?”

“Of course not, Sheriff,” Julia piped up. “RV is actually based in science. Our own government believed so in the seventies to the tune of about twenty million. They called it the Stargate Project.”

“Stargate?” Carter looked at each of them before looking back to Henry. “You mean like the TV show?”

Jo chewed on her fritter.

“Oh, hardly,” Henry said. “There’s always been a fringe interest in using psychics and psychic sciences in other countries. Germany was more of the leader in this research, until the United States got involved. A lot of interest in the idea of actually ‘seeing’ something from a distance with the mind—without having to risk operations or teams, manpower or weapons and time—always appeals to those in charge. You just have to prove to them it works.”

Carter shifted his stance and glanced down at Zoe, then over at Jo. “You two know about this stuff?”

“Not really.” Zoe smiled. “I offered to help him teach it—be a test subject.”

“Teach it?” Carter’s gaze whipped back to Henry. “You want to teach psychic mumbo-jumbo to smart kids? You know you’re gonna get laughed at, right?” He looked at Zoe. “And you’re going along with it?”

“Dad…” Zoe began.

Henry frowned. “Carter—do you even know what it is we’re talking about?”

Carter opened his mouth, paused, looked at each of them, then closed his mouth. “No—no, not really. I’ll admit I’m thinking of crystal balls and voodoo dolls.”

“Well, first off, voodoo dolls are a part of a religious practice called Voudoun.” Henry shook his head. “But that’s not what we’re talking about. Back in the seventies, Puthoff and Targ were working at the electronics and bioengineering laboratory at Stanford Research Institute, or SRI. They were studying quantum mechanics and laser physics.”

“Okay, now that sounds like real science, right? With lasers and quantum… stuff…” Carter looked from Henry to Julia to Fargo and then to Jo, who was smiling around her fritter.

Fargo made a frustrated noise and looked up at the ceiling.

“Oh, now don’t you go all ‘I believe in this crap.'” Carter pointed at him. “Go on, Henry.”

“While they were doing that work, the two of them also created a few experiments in the paranormal, which were funded by the Parapsychology Foundation.” He smiled as he leaned over the table next to Fargo. “Puthoff found a prize subject in a man named Ingo Swann, back in 1972. Work with Swann brought in a CIA-sponsored project.”

“So.” Carter frowned. “What did this Swann guy do that brought in that kind of money?”

“He created the procedure used in Remote Viewing,” Julia piped up. “The steps Viewers took for later, more successful experiments. He and Puthoff were able to train other gifted Viewers.” She grinned.


Jo nodded. “You guys are using the SRI method? Descriptives and set-asides?”

Fargo nodded, though his expression was still confused. “Yes. But still”—he made a face at Jo—”how did you know about that procedure?”

“I took a class in Remote Viewing, Fargo. Not that hard.”

Carter opened his mouth, but Henry interjected, “Swann came up with a series of motions used for better results in tapping the mind for answers. Like Jo just said”—he gestured to the blank paper in front of Fargo and the pencil in the assistant’s hand—”the pad is the blank starting point, the pencil the tool.”

“And the target”—Julia lifted the paper, retrieved a sealed manila envelope, and held it up—”is in here.”

“See, Dad,” Zoe said, and Carter looked at her. “The target is hidden from the Viewer. It can be a person, place, or thing. Let’s say this particular target is—” She looked at Henry, her eyebrows raised, seeking an answer.

“Ah, this target is a thing, an item. Now what Fargo will do is close his eyes and start writing down on the pad every adjective that comes to mind. But if a noun pops into his head, then he’ll write it to the side.”

Carter crossed his arms over his chest and shrugged. “Why are the nouns being sent to the corner?”

“Well, what we’re trying to tap into is the subconscious. That part of us that’s interconnected to everyone else on the planet.”

“So our subconscious hates nouns?”

“Come on, Carter.” Henry half grinned. “After everything we’ve been through in this town, including the shared dreaming, can’t you even for an instant imagine that we’re all connected somehow?”

“Some more than others,” Jo said as Zane walked by. She grinned and looked back at Carter. “Be right back.”

Carter blinked at Henry as Jo moved off after Zane. “I believe that several of the machines you people came up with did that. But our minds?”

“Never mind.” Henry waved in the air. “The point is, we want him to connect to his subconscious, but Fargo’s conscious mind—like everyone else’s—is going to want to help fill in the blank. The conscious is id. It’s ego. And the ego always wants to be helpful. It’s going to give him nouns. Items. But these nouns aren’t going to be right.”

Carter looked from Henry to Julia, then back to Henry. “You don’t want to listen to the nouns.”

“Okay, fine, leave it at that,” Henry said. “But instead of ignoring those nouns, we write them down in order to appease the conscious so it will allow the subconscious to speak.”

“So you’re saying”—Carter rubbed at his chin—”that our conscious mind gets jealous if we ignore it and try to talk to our subconscious.”


“Uh-huh. Riiiiiight. Well… you all have fun with that.”

Henry shrugged. “You’d be surprised at the results, Carter. This procedure and others like it had quite a success rate—though it’s not something that was ever reported in numbers. All we know is that SRI managed its own stable of psychics for U.S. intelligence agencies, garnering information for them for years. Most notable was a description of a big crane at the Soviet nuclear research facility—an area we weren’t able to penetrate with any camera back in the late seventies.”

Julia nodded. “And a description of a new class of Soviet missile submarine before it even became known. They also found the location of a downed American bomber in Africa. By the eighties, the whole intelligence community was using the SRI group.”

“So?” Carter held out his hands. “What happened to them? If it was so great, how come we don’t use it now?”

Julia smiled. “Who says we don’t?”

“Oh, now don’t you go all conspiracy theory on me.” Carter looked at Henry.

“Officially, when the Democrats lost the house in the midnineties, the Defense Intelligence Agency, or DIA, handed the project over to the CIA. They hired the American Institutes for Research, or AIR, to evaluate it. AIR decided that there wasn’t enough documentation to prove the program was a viable asset to aid in the defense of the United States.”

Carter grinned. “Bean counters.”

“Exactly,” Henry said. “It was declassified, the program shut down, and all research and notes sent here to GD. About four years ago one of the members of the Institute of Noetic Sciences—”

Carter shook his head, blinking. “The what?”

“The Institute of Parapsychology,” Fargo interjected, his elbows on the table as he toyed with the pencil.

“Well, not the same thing,” Henry said. “That institute still exists. Noetic science explores the inner cosmos of the mind: the consciousness, soul, the spirit, and its effects on the body and the world around it.”

Carter looked from Fargo to Henry. “And that’s different than parapsychology?”

“Well, yes.” Henry frowned. “Anyway, Dr. Schmetzer started up his own study of Remote Viewing here at GD.”

“He still here?”

“No, he died about two years ago.”

“So was he successful at this?” Carter hesitated. “Or did he get shut down, too?”

“Dunno,” Henry shrugged. “I mean yes, it was cut off. Most of the rumor at the time was that Schmetzer was successful, but he was having trouble with his subjects.”


“I wish I knew. Most of the research notes are still redacted. I’m working on getting them released to me.”

“Was Schmetzer a nutcase?” Carter inhaled, smelling the fritters. His stomach growled again.

“Oh no, no,” Henry shook his head. “Dr. Schmetzer wasn’t like that at all. He was a dedicated man of science and believed in experimentation to achieve outcome. Like the SRI program.”

“What we’re doing here,” Julia said quickly, “is taking Targ and Puthoff’s training regime and applying it to a course in noetic science. Sort of an eye-opener for the graduating seniors at Tesla. Try to make them aware that science isn’t always about concrete facts and chemicals and neutrons.”

“And…” Carter tilted his head as he looked at her. “You’re buying into all this new-agey stuff?”

She looked at Fargo. “I’m interested in whatever Douglas is interested in.”

Carter sighed. “I see. Well, that’s all nice, and good but—”

“Want to see it in action?” Henry said. “Just stay right there and we’ll give it a test run. I’ve already used this on twenty students and gotten interesting results.”

Grinning at Henry, Carter said, “Interesting results. You mean it’s not working like you thought it would.”

“Just watch.” He turned to Fargo. “Now, just like we talked about earlier, Fargo. You know it’s an object. So just relax, take a few deep breaths.”

Fargo nodded quickly, closed his eyes, and started deep breathing. Within seconds his breathing increased and he grabbed at his chest.

Henry sighed. “Don’t hyperventilate.”

Fargo held out his right hand, index finger up to indicate a second. He steadied his breathing, still keeping his eyes closed. “Okay. Sorry.”

“Now let your mind go. Remember, if you get a noun, just write that word to the side.”

“Got it.” Fargo’s breathing wasn’t any calmer. When he put his pencil down it was on the table, but Julia guided his hand to the pad.

Once on the paper, Fargo paused, frowning. “Wet.”

“That’s an adjective. Write that down.”

Fargo did, scribbling the word to the side as he wrote it sideways. He then wrote a series of words. Drippy, moist, cold, hairy, red

“Is red a noun?” he asked with his eyes closed.

“No, it’s an adjective.” Julia patted his shoulder.

He continued to write, and Carter leaned over to watch.

Dank, fuzzy, yellow

“Yellow? It’s yellow and red?”

“Carter.” Henry frowned and put his finger to his lips.

Carter nodded and took a step back. Sorry, he mouthed.

Rough, rubbery—Fargo then frowned and moved his hand away and wrote rug on the other side of the paper. He moved his hand back, and over the word red he wrote old.

The adjectives continued for a few more seconds before Henry stopped him. Two more nouns had appeared. Car and yard.

“Car… and yard?” Carter frowned.

“Well, can he see what it is now?” Fargo looked over at Henry.

Jo rejoined the group, moving in next to Carter. He glanced back to see Zane leaving the café.

“So did Fargo give it a try?” she asked. Apparently she’d finished her coffee and fritter and was ready for work.

Henry nodded and pulled the manila envelope back out. He slowly opened it and pulled out a page from a color magazine, keeping the subject image hidden from everyone. “Ready?”

“Yes, please,” Fargo said.

With a sigh, Henry laid it on top of his writing paper.

Zoe laughed softly. “It’s Elmo.”

“Taking a bath,” Carter said. “Yeah, Fargo… that’s one interesting… rug. No, wait. It’s a car.” He snapped his fingers. “Maybe a yard?”

“I don’t understand.” Fargo frowned at the page. “When Julia did it, she got it right.”

“You did?” Carter asked.

“Yes. Mine was an airplane engine.”

Henry nodded. “She actually started drawing her target.” He started to say something else just as his pager went off.

Carter’s pager went off as well.

“What is it?” Julia asked.

Fargo looked at them and then pulled his own pager out. “I’m not getting a page.”

Jo looked over Carter’s arm at the pager. “Ooooh. Allison, 911.”

Henry looked up at Carter. “Mansfield?”

“I want to go,” Jo said.

But Carter shook his head. “No… you head in to the office, see what’s going on there.”

Jo shrugged.

Carter replaced the pager into his pocket. “Oh, this can’t be good. I’ll give you a ride to GD, Henry.” He turned and kissed Zoe. “Trust him and talk to him. Okay?”

“Sure, Dad. Have fun.”

He straightened and looked down at her as Henry grabbed his jacket and headed to the door. “Have fun with Mansfield? I’m going to wish I’d had a fritter.”

Zoe nodded and pointed to the paper and envelopes in front of Julia and Fargo. “Can I try?”

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