Thursday, October 22, 2015

How I Became a Mad Scientist - Episode 20




“I wasn’t doing anything wrong!” I protested. “I was just working on my science project!”

“Actually, son,” the agent said, “you’re in violation of Title 18, Part 1, Chapter 39, Section 831 of the US Code of Criminal Justice.  I hope you’ll enjoy your stay in the local penitentiary.”

“I know my rights!” I shouted as he marched me around to the street. “I demand a lawyer.”

“You’ll get a lawyer when I say you get a lawyer,” the FBI agent replied as he shoved me in the back of his car and locked the door.   I screamed. I kicked against the door.  I tried to break the windows. I broke down crying. None of it did any good.  I was trapped.

The car slowly pulled away from the house. I saw my mother, pale-faced and shaking, standing on our front porch. A bunch of neighbors stood in their front yards, watching everything that happened. I closed my eyes. I couldn’t stand to see anymore.

Suddenly, the car stopped. Something was pounding on the windows.  I opened my eyes in time to see the FBI agent rolling down his window. Frank leaned in.  

“Agent McCawber, this is an awful mistake,” Frank said. “George was just helping me. I’m the one who collected the nuclear material and made the reactor.”

“You were.” Agent McCawber frowned.

 “Yes. I was. I mean, obviously. Who else would it be? George is just my lackey. I’m the one you want.”

“Odd,” Agent McCawber said. “I never had you pegged as the type too stupid to take proper safety precautions.”

 Frank’s face turned bright red. “Look, just let him go. Take me down to the station, and I’ll give you a full confession.”

“Get in the back. I’ll take you both down, and we can work out the blame when we get there.”
Frank slid in next to me. 

“What are you doing?” I hissed. “I didn’t ask you to save me.”

“It’s not fair to your mom to lose you like this,” he whispered. “What were you thinking? You could have killed yourself!”

“You’re not my boss,” I grumbled. “And I would have won the science fair.  Are you the one who ratted me out?”

“No. I was going to, but I didn’t get the chance.”  He frowned. “Agent McCawber,” Frank spoke loudly and clearly. “Who called you about the reactor?”

“I have my sources,” he said. “I know everything you boys have been up to. But this was the first time there was a law broken.”

I swallowed.  He knew everything?  “Please, sir,” I choked. “I’ll tell you everything you want to know, without a lawyer. Just don’t tell my mom what I’ve been up to.”

“I’m pretty sure it will all come out at the hearing,” McCawber replied grimly. My stomach suddenly felt queasy.

“Stop the car. I think I’m going to be sick!”

“Sorry, kid. That only works in the movies. There’s a bucket on the floor. Feel free to use it.”

I looked out the window. The police station was only a few minutes away, and we were still driving.

“Where are you taking us?” I asked, suddenly panicked.  “We’re going towards the highway!”

“FBI regional headquarters in Louisville,” he said. “You had nuclear materials. This is a terrorism issue. Your local cops are happy to see you go.”

I couldn’t handle it anymore. I felt like I was going to pass out. Frank handed me the bucket, and I used it.

Next Episode.