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I had precisely zero seconds to double check the settings and since I knew I couldn’t select the exact moment I’d left Nowhere House (not without destroying everything in Jill’s lab) I just picked something else in the history and hoped that I had done it fast enough so that we wouldn’t end up back in the hub. I assumed that’s what would happen, anyway.
What did happen was a little bit worse because, as we zoomed through the air, I heard the old lady say something.
I realized the Fire Escape wasn’t in view through the windshield anymore. We had missed it
We were now flying into the void of space.
“Turn us around, lady!”
“Does this thing look like a spaceship to you, kid? It’s a car.”
“Well, you were flying it like a spaceship, earlier!”
“NO. I was flying it like a helicopter, only instead of an overhead rotor, it was electromagnetic repulsers I jury rigged into this thing.”
I chills ran down my spine as I noticed a full starfield surrounded us.
“And you can’t use those things to fly in space?”
“Dude, do you even know what the word ‘repulser’ means?” KJ asked.
“Um…” I said, not sure I did.
“With out something there to repulse, you can’t repulse, kid.”
“Oh.” Now that I had a better understanding of the word ‘repulse,’ I now had a moment to completely give into the feeling of massive anxiety clawing at the back of my brain.
“Oh, don’t freak out, man,” KJ said.
“I… I… I…” was all I could say, as I felt every muscle in my body tense up.
“I got another trick up my sleeve,” she said, reaching down and pulling a lever.
“What was that?” KJ asked.
“I popped the trunk!”
“What’s that gonna do?” KJ asked.
“Not sure. Change our trajectory a bit thanks to the escaping air?”
“Won’t that just push the back of the car down but not change our actual flight path since there only the crazy thin atmosphere of the asteroid?”
“Oh, yeah! You’re probably right. My bad!”
“Oh, come ON! Who ARE you lady!?!” I yelled through clenched teeth. Just then we heard a loud crunch and then saw land in front of us again. My body almost completely relaxed. It turned out we were still under the light pull of gravity from the asteroid and hadn’t even gotten more than twenty feet up, but the weird landscape of the asteroid made it possible that we couldn’t see it around us at all at that height, that is until the old lady adjusted our angle which kept us from seeing sooner the asteroidal mountain that was now in our way.
Of course, we were now about to crash into it.
“Oh, crap–now is when I should have popped the trunk–this one’s on me, too.”
“I’m gonna drop an anvil ‘on you,’ lady!” I said, feeling my muscles start to tense up.
“Wait–kid–they said you can breathe this air, right?”
“Good.” She pressed another button causing the roof of the car to flip up violently, shoving a blast of ice cold air down into the car. And me without my fur coat! I decided this is what that rose felt like when my sixth grade science teacher Mrs. Klimko dropped it into that tank of liquid nitrogen.
Then we felt a kind of crunch/thud combination as we impacted into the mountain, wheels-first. Turns out the old lady’s move to pop the convertible top re-angled us just enough to land at an angle almost perfectly matched to the mountain. The old lady hit the gas pedal and turned us around, bringing us down the mountain, back toward the way we’d come.
And that’s when we saw the Conva ships bearing down on us.