By David R. Palmer
Candidia Maria Smith-Foster, an eleven-year-old woman, is unaware that she's a Homo put up hominem, mankind's subsequent evolutionary step. Hominems have larger IQs, they're more suitable, speedier, extra proof against disorder and trauma, and feature faster reflexes. Their eyesight, listening to, and experience of scent are more advantageous as well.
By the time the narrative opens, sweet has discovered karate, having accomplished her 5th measure Black Belt, from her neighbor, 73-year-old Soo Kim McDivot, who she is ended in think is in simple terms a retired schoolteacher. McDivot, whom she calls "Teacher", is de facto the discoverer of the H. put up hominem species, and has pointed out and maintains to mentor and lead a bunch of them, the AAs. As a part of her karate education, she has discovered to liberate her hysterical power, which allows short bursts of approximately superhuman activity.
With diplomacy quickly deteriorating, Candy's father, publicly a small-town pathologist yet really a closet govt biowarfare professional, is termed to Washington. sweet continues to be at home.
The following day a global assault, that includes a bionuclear plague, wipes out nearly all of H. sapiens. With Terry, her lifelong "retarded, followed dual brother," a Hyacinthine macaw, who has a tendency to "parrot" Candy's phrases even prior to she speaks, she rides out the assault within the guard underneath their apartment. rising 3 months later, she learns of her genetic historical past and units off to go looking for others of her kind.
First the quest turns up "Adam," a cheeky, irrepressibly punning, multitalented 13-year-old boy, who instantly units out to win Candy's center; subsequent, Rollo Jones, a middle-aged health care provider with a wide background of survival-in-the-wilds adventure starting from a stint within the Peace Corps to hiking; and eventually, Kim Mellon, an early-20s mother whose historical past is in computing device engineering with Lisa, her six-year-old daughter. Rollo finds himself as a sociopath, whom sweet is compelled to kill protecting Terry and herself. Adam, Kim, and Lisa sign up for Candy's quest for the AA neighborhood. As a part of the hunt, Adam finds that he's an ultralight plane pilot. Later he teaches sweet to fly.
Thereafter, an ultralight engine failure separates sweet from the others. once you have it working back, she spots a contrail, which leads her to Vandenberg area travel release complicated, the place instructor and the AAs are laboring to preflight a go back and forth, renamed the Nathan Hale. They've pointed out those that burnt up mankind, the Bratstvo, translated because the "Brotherhood," a cabal of H. sapiens, operating from contained in the Russian army to break all H. put up hominems. As assurance, they've positioned a doomsday equipment in geosynchronous orbit, a Strontium-90 bomb whose fallout will render Earth uninhabitable for two hundred years.
At this aspect, even if, the AAs' plans have come unstuck: They've changed the Hale to arrive geosynch orbit, notwithstanding it's a one-way, suicide voyage for the staff; however the miniature robotic handler they've equipped to penetrate the bomb-carrying rocket and disarm the doomsday gadget isn't as much as the duty. sweet realizes, along with her small measurement and hysterical power education, she's the one person who can get contained in the warhead chamber and disarm the bomb. although it's a suicide venture, she volunteers.
Meanwhile, as Adam, Kim, and Lisa look for sweet, Terry starts relaying her concepts, although at the start they don't become aware of that's what they're hearing.
Arriving in orbit, Kyril Svetlanov, considered a Bratstvo defector, kills Harris Gilbert, the project commander. Kyril seems to were a double agent, whose activity eventually was once to sabotage the project, yet he doesn't find out about Candy's karate abilities. She breaks his neck and assumes accountability for finishing the mission.
Navigating throughout to the bomb-carrying rocket in a spacesuit, she disables the warhead. Then she resets the navigational computing device to land at the dry lake at Edwards Air strength Base and attempts to safe herself opposed to a bulkhead in instruction for the stresses of reentry.
As the missile starts off to power-up for reentry, Adam ultimately realizes Terry is actually relaying Candy's innovations; that someway she is in reality in area, approximately to try reentry in a non-human-rated automobile, and that she'll quickly be touchdown at Edwards. He, Kim, and Lisa arrive because the missile is touching down, simply in time to extract her, resuscitate her, and deal with her injuries.
The writer has left a few threads trailing on the end, a few of that are followed-up on 25 years later in a sequel monitoring, serialized in Analog technology and truth journal in the summertime and fall of 2008.