Tuesday at school wasn’t all that different from Monday, with the exception that Astrid had a presentation to make in US History class. Her subject was Robert E. Lee. She was a little miffed that Mr. Hoffman gave her an A-, saying that she could have used more creativity in her PowerPoint.
“Substance is more important than style,” she said under her breath.
At lunch, which was Asian lettuce wraps with soy dipping sauce, vegetable stir-fry, steamed rice, and strawberries, Austin joined their table in the quad. There was no trouble from Mark McGovern.
After school they all stepped into the monorail train traveling deeper into the Maxxim campus, rather than the train the other students took heading home. It wasn’t a straight shot to the R&D section. The track stopped at the Business Offices Complex, before continuing on, following along the shores of Pearl Lake, through the Saguaro Cactus Park, and finally to the Research and Development Department.
“So, I don’t get it,” said Austin. “If thousands of people are working all the time to make better batteries, how come it takes a fourteen year old girl to do it?”
“I’ll bet they don’t want to make batteries better,” said Christopher. “You make them last longer and you don’t sell as many.”
“I have an advantage over anyone else,” said Astrid. “I have Astricite. It’s a relatively inexpensive, superconductive alloy that I developed when I was six. We’re already using it in our microprocessors.”
They arrived in the lab and Astrid examined the readings on her experiment.
“I think this might make it till the week-end.”
“What’s in this box?” asked Toby, from across the room. “What’s Project RG-7, and why is it top secret?”
“I was going to show you guys next week,” said Astrid, leading the others to where Toby was standing beside the crate. “I guess you can go ahead and take a look now.”
Reaching up, she flipped open a latch and opened the side of the crate. Inside, packed with straw, was a metallic girl. She had bright silver skin, but was otherwise quite human looking. Her hair was the same metallic material as the rest of her, a solid hair-shaped mass rather than individual fibers, but she was wearing regular clothing. She had on a pink jacket over a blue t-shirt, jeans, and sneakers.
“Oh my gosh!” squealed Valerie. “She looks like me!”