Ace, Aug 2004, 23.95, 304 pp.
In 2019 Baja, California, Russell Sutton owns Poseidon Projects, a relatively small marine biological research firm. Russell targets two to three projects a year, but none involving the American military having worked in the government back at the turn of the century. Thus, his highly regarded staff (six PhDs) is stunned when Russell accepts US Navy Admiral Jack Halliburton deep-water salvage proposal. Lying on the bottom of an oceanic trench, seven miles form the surface, sits a metallic object that Jack wants raised.
Russell succeeds in lifting the small object out of the sea. In Samoa, they investigate the find, but the object is impregnable to their probes. While the scientific team continually fails in its query, two aliens roam the planet. The Changeling lived in the sea for millenniums before arriving on land nearly a century ago and dons any identity including an inanimate; the Chameleon has become the world's richest person. He also will kill without feeling any remorse. News surfaces about the object; along with the usual whackos in and out of the media and some intrigued scientists, the Changeling and the Chameleon have personal interests as both know that this is the key to their finally going home.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner