The next day was mostly the same as the previous one. Kids still glared at him in the hallways, and they still sported bruises, painfully reminding Jack of his mistake each time he saw one. By the end of the day, being in detention was almost a relief because it meant he didn’t have to face all of the people he hurt.
“Ready to finish your generator?” Harold asked as Jack walked in.
“Yeah, I’m ready to test it out, too.” He lifted his box out of the cabinet it was tucked in and placed it on the table with a grunt. “All I need to do is put it all together.”
“Good, good,” He nodded his approval and started walking away. “Just call me over when you’re ready to test it out.”
“OK,” Jack reached into his box and started heaving his parts out of it, placing them gently on his table. Putting it together was a lot easier to do than building it because it was mostly just screwing things together and connecting some wires. Some of it, however, Jack noted as he tried to mount the central component again, only to fail another time, is harder than building it.
He spent the next hour or so carefully hooking everything up and placing each piece within the precise tolerances he set up for it. More than once he had thought he was done, only to find a piece of it twisted slightly out of line, and he’d have to take the whole thing apart just to fix it.
When Jack finally took a step back from it and decided that everything was where it was supposed to be, he couldn’t help but let out a whoop of excitement that drew Harold’s attention.
“You done?” Harold walked over and glanced at Jacks creation. “Ready to test it out?”
“Heck, yeah, I’m ready!” Jack hoisted his generator off of the table and set it on the ground. “Just plug her in so I can turn her on.”
Harold pulled down a wire from the ceiling and Jack plugged his machine into it, moving it closer to the wire so it wouldn’t pull on it so much. He let his finger rest on the power switch, but didn’t press it yet. His gaze met Harolds, and the older man nodded, silently telling him to press it. With a small ‘click’, Jack flipped the switch.
At first, nothing happened, and Jack thought he did something wrong, but then it started humming – quietly at first, but getting louder with each passing second. He looked at Harold and grinned.
“I knew it woul – ahhh!” Jack cried out as his feet left the ground. His grin grew even bigger when he saw the other things in the room that were floating with him, too. “I knew it would work!” He crowed as he flew around the room, dodging floating hack saw and powerdrills.
Jack swooped around the room, reveling in the excitement a project’s successful completion brought. A tinge of blue could be seen flickering in a large sphere around the device, showing how far its anti – gravity field went.
“Shut it down, kid,” Harold stood just beyond the reach of the device.
“Why?” The question flew out of Jack’s mouth before he could stop himself. “What’s wrong with it?”
“Nothing. Just shut it off,” He waved his hands at the device. “Now!” He added when Jack hesitated.
Reluctantly, Jack flew over to the globe like device and unplugged it. With a dying whine, it powered down, and shortly after, Jack could feel gravity returning to the surrounding area.
“This is my fault, kid,” Harold sighed, walking over to Jack. “I didn’t explain to you how the pulsers worked; I guess I thought you just knew what they were. And now?” He gazed sadly at Jack’s anti – gravity generator. “Now you spent two days build something we didn’t need.”
“Then how do they work, if they’re not anti – grav?” A confused look came over Jack’s face.
“They invert the gravity. The more the earth pulls on them, the more they push against it.” Harold explained. “Our school is still being pulled on by the earth, but our pulsers are puahing on it the same amount its being pulled, keeping us suspended a few thousand feet in the air.” He looked at Jack. “You getting this?”
“Yeah,” Jack nodded. “It makes sense.”
“Good,” He yawned. “Because it’s time for me to leave.” He grabbed a silver suitace of a table and walked out the door, Jack following close behind. Harold stopped at the door and turned to face Jack. “You’re not done yet,” He motioned for Jack to turn around. “You still have to clean up the mess your generator created.”
All of the tools and materials that had been picked up by the anti – gravity field were strewn across the floor, leaving the workshop looking worse than a war zone.
“Damn,” Jack whistled. “That is a lot of work to do.”