It was like volleyball, but with a lot more running. Lehnair threw bucket after bucket, and Tommy used the flying stacks of money to knock them away while chasing after him, the whole time dodging and weaving between crates. Lehnair was nearly at the ship, but Tommy was faster.
Reaching out for Sabreen, he leaped over the last crate separating them, but with a triumphant roar Lehnair caught him in mid-jump, wrapping one of his thick upper hands around Tommy’s throat.
“I thought you would have learned by now,” he said with an exhausted grin on his face. Lehnair’s hands trembled with anger.
As he began tightening his grip on Tommy’s throat the door to the storage room burst open and a small army of green and purple skinned aliens filed in, led by none other than Leij. “Put them down Lehnair!” she yelled out.
“Ah, one of my own employees has come to meddle then?” Lehnair spoke impatiently. “You’ll lose your job for this.”
Leij’s eyes flared. “You’re no longer in charge here. Put them down.”
Placing a foot into his ship, Lehnair positioned Tommy and Sabreen between he and Leij with his big hands. With one of his small hands he took the crystal out of his pocket and placed it into a circular indention on the dashboard. All the buttons and displays lit up, starting from around the crystal and moving outward.
“Lehnair, PUT THEM DOWN!” Leij repeated.
“No, I don’t think so,” he responded with only half of his attention as he pushed seemingly random buttons on the dashboard. “I think I’ll be taking them with me…”
Sabreen had a tear coming out of her eye and was too tired and out of air to struggle anymore. Tommy grabbed her hand, and with his other he slipped the dollar bills out of his pocket.
“Not quite finished yet?” Lehnair chuckled at Tommy’s reaction.
“Nope, not quite,” Tommy gasped and read the bills in his hand. “E pluribus unum.“
The wristband glowed in response. “Out of many, one.”
Tommy flipped the bill over, “novus ordo seclorum.”
“A New order for the ages” the translation echoed back into Tommy’s mind.
“Got any juice now?” Tommy thought out.
“Barely,” the wristband thought in reply.
“Alright then. Everything but the big bad alien.”
“You got it… Calculating mass index, crease distance and trajectory… Beginning fold.”
Tommy smiled as Lehnair’s blank expression gave away his surprise. Tommy and Sabreen faded away and his hands slipped through the both of them.
The fold was quick, and extremely short. Up a few meters and then back down to the ground next to Leij. They both still collapsed to the ground as soon as they appeared.
“What now Tommy?” Sabreen said in a sickly voice.
Lehnair yelled once he saw them. “Hand the MeDai back over Leij, or I’ll destroy this entire station!”
Leij appeared to gain an extra foot of stature as she stood up straight and stepped towards Lehnair. Tommy reached up and grabbed her leg before she could go any further, “no, wait,” he said looking up at her.
Everyone then saw what he was trying to say. Little blue sparks were falling from the folds of Lehnair’s suit coat. All the money in the room spun and swished around him, building up into a massive tornado of color.
Lehnair desperately grabbed onto the inside of the ship’s door. “Leave, and take your paper with you!” Tommy shouted as Lehnair pulled himself into the ship. The money funneled into the vessel behind him, filling the cockpit with blinding distraction. Everyone in the room could hear him growl as the door closed and the ship launched through the circular doorway, leaving a trail of multi-colored paper in its path. Using Leij’s pant leg to steady themselves, Tommy and Sabreen laughed as they helped each other up.
Leij looked down at Tommy with a smile on her face, “how did you do that?”
“Inspiration,” he replied, “and my lastest school science project.”
Sabreen wrapped her arms around Tommy and kissed him on the cheek, “thank you.”
“For what?” Tommy blushed a bright red.
“For saving me silly.”
“For saving you?” he was surprised. “You saved me first, remember?”
Sabreen got a big smile on her face. “Yeah, you’re right… and don’t you forget it!” She pointed her finger at him.
“Thanks for coming along,” he offered back with a huge hug.
“You need to come see this Leij,” one of the purple-skins had gone over towards the doorway to see where Lehnair had gone. Everyone followed to the far side of the room to get a better look.
Tommy’s expression went vacant as he stared at the large pyramids they had seen on the way back to the base. They were spinning opposite each other, emitting a bright light around the now blinding white of the diamond between them. The whole sky was lit as Lehnair’s ship traveled towards the structure.
“What’s he doing?” Leij wondered out loud.
“He’s about to travel through time!” Tommy instinctively added, “shoot him down or something!”
“What?” several of the aliens and Sabreen all blurted out at the same time.
Tommy could tell he must have said something wrong, and felt flushed with embarrassment.
Leij watched the ship as it began to glow the same bright white as the diamond. “No Tommy. Hurting someone is never a good solution.”
Tommy replied quietly so that only Leij and Sabreen could hear him, “but, he tried to kill us.”
“And do you want us to be like him?” Sabreen responded as a flash of light illuminated the sky. The entire structure, along with Lehnair’s ship, had vanished.
“You lost…” Leij whispered out as everyone stared into the sky which was now filled with thousands of pieces of aimlessly floating money.
Tommy looked confused, “what? I lost?”
Leij smiled, “no Tommy, U-L-O-S-T. It’s unfortunate that Lehnair doesn’t understand it better.”
“So I guess that means, he lost?” Sabreen chuckled, causing several of the aliens to snicker. Tommy realized they were making fun of the way Earthlings pronounced it.
Letting out a small laugh, Leij directed everyone back towards the door, “come on you two, we need to get you back to your parents.”
…on to Chapter 18 Home