Aoraki – Chancellor’s Building – Office of the Chancellor
Thursday – midday
Chancellor Saxe: Are you out of your mind? Absolutely not!
The Chancellor had fluffed himself up into what he considered to be his most intimidating and self-important posture. It was having no effect on Layan who stood his ground firmly.
Layan: The three stones which the boys hold, we now recognise as being the lode stones; that is, they provide the key to leading, guiding and activating the others. It is only when the lode stones are brought together that the light effect – the tri-luminal effect occurs. The energy produced is exponentially beyond anything we have seen before. We are as certain as we can be that it will be sufficient defeat the Bugaarians.
Chancellor Saxe: Then we take the stones from the boys as originally planned, to send up with the other stones that we have collected.
Layan: You saw for yourself in the Schönheit living room that this is not possible. The lode stones are firmly connected to the boys. Any attempt to separate them would be futile.
Chancellor Saxe: The risk is too great!
Layan: I admit there is risk, however the risk to the planet –
(and the political risk to you I could add…)
– of doing nothing is far greater.
Altai: I concur with Layan.
We must ask the boys if they are willing to be the lode bearers. We need each of them to take their stone, along with their respective cyan stone cairns, up to the TETs. One stone, and one cairn for each TET.
Once we have a lode bearer, a lode stone and a stone cairn on each of the TETs, we should then be able to engage the tri-luminal effect between all three TETs, generating enough combined power to make a core blast strong enough to destroy the Bugaarian ship.
If there was any other way we would take it.
This is the last and only option that we have.
Chancellor Saxe: God help you if you’re wrong.
Layan: If we’re wrong, then God help us all.
Aoraki – Dieter’s House
Thursday – early afternoon
Another meeting complete with triple chocolate chip cookies was underway in the Schönheit living room. The mood was one of mixed-up excitement tempered with a very strong dose of reality to, at least for now, keep everyone grounded so the right and proper decisions could be made.
Layan: What we are asking the three of you to do is no small thing. The mission is not without risk – there is the very real possibility that one or more of you could get hurt or worse. We all saw what happened to TET-4.
So before you give us your answers, you must all think very carefully and not let the excitement and thought of travelling up to the TETs get the better of you. We have spoken to all your parents, and they all understand both the need and the potential risks involved. They have agreed that the final decision is yours to make.
Altai: Let’s adjourn and let the boys have some time to talk on their own.
Jaak, Dieter and Tag got up and then went outside onto the back terrace by the pool and sat together on the sun loungers to talk things over privately.
Jaak: Holy fluff a duck guys – can you really believe what they are asking us to do?
Dieter: I get what they’re sayin’ – it sure is pretty exciting to get to go up to one of the TETs, but this ain’t no school trip. Goofing around in the bedroom with these stones is one thing, but trying to activate this tri-luminal thing up in orbit between three TETs with a bunch of bugs that are trying to kill us at the same time? This is some serious shit. This isn’t a holo-game with a save point to do over if you die. Do you really think we can pull this off?
Tag may have been the youngest among them, but at times he could dispense wisdom that was beyond his years. He could also be brutally honest.
Tag: The stones have protected us so far. They helped me with the bullies on the school bus. They saved us when the bus went over the cliff. If we hadn’t found the blue cavern then we wouldn’t have been able to help the miners. I reckon the stones are on our side. They won’t let us down.
One thing though – I ain’t gonna lie – this whole thing just about has me packing darkies in my under-jocks.
Dieter: You know it – you and me too buddy.
Jaak: So what do we say guys – we all in?
Tag: Yeah – I’m in.
Dieter: Arooowoof! Yup!
Jaak: Let’s go tell them.