Aaron wasted no time getting the two siblings involved in his project. He showed them the blueprint of it and explained the instructions.
It was a vest, made from a metal-like material that had been proven to be fire proof in all the tests Aaron had tried on it so far. He told Corbin and Dania that he had been gradually getting the temperature of the fire he put the vest in higher and higher until it was the same temperature as the fire used in fire guns. So far it had stood the tests extraordinarily well, in fact, the vest hadn’t shown any signs of burns or softness.
“The real secret to this type of metal substance’s destruction is the opposite of all other metals found on our planet,” Aaron explained during a quick break. “The vest would have to be submerged in a cube of water, and then frozen solid in the cube of ice for a week. Then the metal would melt with the ice and float on top of the water.”
Corbin shook his head in amazement. “That’s incredible!”
“It certainly is,” Dania agreed.
Aaron held the vest up to Corbin and strapped it on to him. “Now comes the real test…” He muttered to himself.
Corbin was told to stand in front of a wall while Aaron reached up to a shelf and took down a small case. Almost fearfully, he drew out a small gun and showed it to the siblings carefully.
“This is a fire gun that I was able to take off a sleeping alien,” He said. “I think he could sense the presence of a human even in his sound sleep; his eyes were glowing pretty brightly through his eyelids.”
Dania shuddered at the thought, and Corbin eyed the gun somewhat nervously. “Are you testing that…” he gulped, “on me?”
Aaron nodded, but to put him more at ease, added, “Don’t worry; I know what I’m doing. I’ve handled fire guns before. If something were to go terribly wrong and you were to catch on fire, I have a supply of blankets and a few buckets of water kept here at all times in case of just such an accident.”
Corbin was still worried, but he was just as eager to find out if the vest would work, so he gave Aaron a nod showing that he was ready for the test to begin. Aaron motioned Dania to step back, out of the way, and then he pulled the gun’s trigger.
There was an angry hiss and then a beam of fire leapt from the end of the gun, landing with a sizzle as its heat met the cold metal of the vest Corbin wore.
But nothing else happened. Corbin, who had closed his eyes and stiffened when the beam of fire leaped from the gun, now opened his eyes and glanced down in surprise, thinking for a moment that Aaron must have misfired. When he saw the beam of fire sizzling on the vest, his eyes widened and he looked up at his sister and Aaron.
Aaron turned off the gun and the beam of fire disappeared with another angry hiss. He was grinning from ear to ear. “It works!” He yelled, forgetting himself for a moment in his excitement. He grabbed the vest off of Corbin and examined it feverishly. “Look!” He continued, pointing to the spot where the beam of fire had met the metal. “It didn’t even leave a scratch in the metal! In fact, the metal got thicker where the fire hit!”
Corbin and Dania looked at the vest in utter amazement. Sure enough, not even a scratch could be seen on the vest’s smooth surface.
“Wait until I tell the Government Invention Society!” Aaron exclaimed. “Now that I know it works, humans can mine this metal and our factories can churn out identical vests for all humans. We can all be safe from the aliens at last! I can’t believe I lived to see this day! I can’t believe I helped this day to come!”
Unfortunately, Aaron’s excitement was short-lived, for behind the three humans came the sound of another voice: “We’ll be taking that vest off your hands now, I think.”
At the sound of the new voice, Aaron, Corbin, and Dania all spun around. In the door stood what appeared to be several human men. Upon closer scrutiny, however, the humans realized to their horror that all five men had bright yellow eyes that glowed and flickered like so many candles. They were the dreaded alien race.
Aaron’s face had gone white as the blood drained from his face. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” He faltered.
“Oh, I think you do,” the tallest alien replied, coming into the room calmly and walking past the frozen humans to pick up the vest. “This would have proved helpful to your government? We wouldn’t want that to happen, would we?”
The other aliens shook their heads solemnly, never taking their glowing eyes off the humans.
The tallest alien appeared to be the leader, he motioned to the others and they soon had all three humans in handcuffs.
“You may be wondering why we haven’t killed you,” the alien said while the other aliens were busy locking the humans in the handcuffs. “I’ll tell you to save us from any needless questions: our chief told us to keep you alive until the vest was destroyed, we want you to see the end of your hopes and dreams before we execute you all.”
“Your chief is so kind,” Aaron replied sarcastically.
The aliens eyes glowed brighter and he took a threatening step towards him. “Watch your tongue human,” he spat, “You we may not kill, but our chief said nothing about your friends.”
Aaron nodded sullenly. “I understand.”
“Good,” the alien replied. Turning back to the other aliens he muttered something to them under his breath and the aliens obeyed whatever he said by covering the humans’ eyes with blindfolds and spinning them in a circle as soon as they were outside the hut until they had no idea which direction was which.
The aliens led the humans for quite a ways without making any sound. There were a few doors opened and shut and then the aliens let the humans out of their bonds and blindfolds.
Once free, the humans looked around themselves for a moment, trying to figure out where exactly they were. They were still together, for which they were very grateful.
The room they had been left in was very bare looking. The walls and floor were made of the same material and had all been painted the same shade of off white. There were three cots, a table and three chairs. That was it. All the furniture was also the same shade of off white and it made the room seem incredibly uninteresting and drab.
“It’s enough to make one insane!” Corbin muttered to himself as he looked around him in disgust.
Dania shot him a look of warning and gave a slight nod towards Aaron who had sunk down onto the nearest chair with a sigh of despair. His head was in his hands and he was groaning softly.
Motioning to Corbin silently, Dania sat down on one of the chairs. Corbin took the other and they sat on opposite sides of the table so they could see each other better. The siblings had made up a code between themselves so that by simple facial expressions and impatient movements of their fingers, they could carry on an entire conversation without making a sound. To the aliens, who the siblings were sure kept an eye on them somehow, it would look as if the siblings both had a bad case of fidgets. But in actuality, they were carrying on the following conversation:
“This is quite the adventure, isn’t it?” Dania began by pulling her left ear with her left hand while tapping the table with the thumb of her right hand.
“It sure is,” Corbin agreed by blinking his eyes rapidly three times and then clearing his throat.
“Poor Aaron, I feel so sorry for him.”
“Yeah… did you ever figure out what happened to his wife and little girl? I mean, do you remember where they were supposed to be while we were working on the vest in the hut? I know Aaron sent them away so they were safely far away from the fire gun.”
“I vaguely remember him telling Miriam that a neighbor wanted to talk to her. Maybe she went to visit.”
“Well, for Aaron’s sake, and for his wife and daughter’s, I hope she was still there when the aliens came.”
“I don’t think she was captured at any rate, otherwise we would have seen her. In fact, she probably would have been put in this cell with us.”
“Speaking of which, when should we try to escape?”
“Not yet. We have to wait for a good time when the chances of us getting out without being hurt, and being able to take the fire gun proof vest with us, are best.”
“When will that be?”
“I don’t know…”
“Do you suppose they can tell we’re communicating to each other?”
“If they can, they certainly won’t know what we’re saying. You know that even other USRSA agents couldn’t tell what we were saying, and they knew that we were communicating.”
The cell door opened and the conversation stopped suddenly when three aliens entered. Without a word to the human prisoners, they handcuffed them again and put blindfolds over their eyes.