His name, he revealed, was Christopher Thomas Knight. Born on December 7, 1965. He said he had no address, no vehicle, did not file a tax return, and did not receive mail. He said he lived in the woods.
"For how long?" wondered Perkins-Vance.
Knight thought for a bit, then asked when the Chernobyl nuclear-plant disaster occurred. He had long ago lost the habit of marking time in months or years; this was just a news event he happened to remember. The nuclear meltdown took place in 1986, the same year, Knight said, he went to live in the woods. He was 20 years old at the time, not long out of high school. He was now 47, a middle-aged man.
Knight stated that over all those years he slept only in a tent. He never lit a fire, for fear that smoke would give his camp away. He moved strictly at night. He said he didn’t know if his parents were alive or dead. He’d not made one phone call or driven in a car or spent any money. He had never in his life sent an e-mail or even seen the Internet.
"Curing AIDS? Shit, that’s like Cadillac making a car that lasts for 50 years. And you know they can do it, but they ain’t going to do nothing that fucking dumb. Shit, they got metal on the Space Shuttle that can go around the Moon and withstand temperatures of up to 20,000 degrees, you mean to tell me you don’t think they can make an El Dorado with a fuckin’ bumper that don’t fall off?"