Once the automobile was charged, they opened the electric vehicle’s doors and climbed in, Astrid in the driver’s seat and Toby in the passenger’s. The interior was filled with the smell of new plastic and leather. With a press of the button, Astrid started the almost silent electric motor, shifted into gear, and drove smoothly away from the building. She maintained a speed of under 40 mph as they took the access road north.
Toby looked at her.
“It’s a racecar, right?”
“I’ll go faster when we get on the track,” she said. “Remember, I’m an inexperienced driver.”
About ten minutes later, they arrived at the test track. The two-mile oval had been built years earlier, to test a variety of automotive related technologies. It hadn’t seen much use lately, but Astrid thought that would change with the acquisition of Maxxim Motors. Pulling up to the starting line, the girl inventor looked at her passenger.
“Are you ready to go?”
“Hold on,” said Toby, looking ahead. “What’s this?”
A white security SUV was approaching, the emergency lights on top flashing red and blue. It came to a stop directly in front of the electric racecar. The door opened and out stepped Captain Sergio Diaz, the head of Maxxim security. The two teens could see Agent Magro in the passenger seat, but he didn’t get out.
Astrid put her car into park, turned off the engine, and climbed out. Toby followed her.
“Hey Mr. Diaz,” she said. “What’s going on?”
“I have to ask you not to drive anymore, Astrid,” he said. He seemed embarrassed and didn’t look her in the eye.
“I’ve got to test the Meteor,” said Astrid.
“In this state, it’s illegal for someone of your age to drive without an adult in the vehicle to supervise.”
“That’s only on public roads,” she replied. “This is private property, as you well know.”
“I’m sorry, Astrid. I have my orders.”
“Orders from whom?”