The Time Catalyst

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Chapter 13

The McClains’ personal estate, outside of Seattle; Wednesday evening…

Samantha had fixed a meal for her and her husband and Tadosh. They had eaten well and now it was time for Patrick and Tadosh to retire to Patrick’s den and update each other what was going on in the search for Drogheda, Tage, and Stefan. The McClains had a maid to clean up after their meal, so Samantha was able to join the two men during the discussion. Whenever the maid was around, the McClains made sure to take care not to converse about anything regarding time traveling or the Solar Unlimited.

“You know what I think, Dr. McClain,” Tadosh said as he put down the Seattle Times onto a nearby coffee table, “I think Drogheda and the others are doing this the old-fashioned way…”

“What do you mean by that,” Patrick asked after sipping from his mug of coffee as Sam looked on from another chair in the large office.

“I think they’re not using their portable teleporters anymore so we won’t be able to detect their movements. I haven’t been able to detect so much as a particle of teleportation residue since we’ve last seen them!”

“Is it possible they have some device to block any detection of their teleporting,” Samantha inquired over her cup of coffee.

“Is it possible, sure. But as far as I know, no one’s been able to avert any teleporting detection from our time…I don’t see how they could have such a mechanism in this time!”

“So, how are we supposed to catch them if we can’t even detect them,” Patrick asked, a bit annoyed at the increasingly convoluted situation. “If we don’t find them in time they’re likely to discover how to time travel with a makeshift time machine!”

Tadosh shrugged as he looked away to a corner of the room before answering. “Is there some way we could go to various stores throughout Seattle and ask the clerks to see if they have videos of Drogheda and his men making off with their items?”

“Trust me on this one, Tadosh,” Samantha said with a half-smile, “as a lawyer, I can tell you that the store owners will tell you where to stick it! I don’t know how the American legal system is in 2287, but in 2008 they don’t have any legal obligations to provide that information. Only cops and the courts can get those tapes and I don’t see how the tapes would show us where Drogheda and the other two went to.”

Patrick and Tadosh nodded their heads without saying a word. They all thought for a moment. Patrick blew out a sighed.

“Well, we can’t just drive around the metro and expect to bump into them, that’s around six million people! Tadosh, I don’t mean to second guess you, but are you sure your spectrometer is working correctly?”

“I even drove by the apartment where we found Drogheda just to test it…the spectrometer registered the trace teleportation residue just like it was supposed to. I’m thinking as hard as I can, Doctor! Under these circumstances, the only time we could probably detect them would be—“

Samantha waited for Tadosh’s complete sentence. When she looked up to see why his words had hit a brick wall, she saw Patrick and Tadosh staring at each other with gaping mouths.

“What…?” Samantha’s head whipped back and forth between the two men.

“That’s how our instruments down at the lab detected you, Tadosh, we just didn’t know it at the time!” Samantha looked at him with a lost expression, so Patrick explained. “Some of our lab equipment at Miracles had detected four glitches in the system while we were running tests of the Solar Unlimited. Those glitches were Tadosh, Drogheda, Tage, and Stefan as they chronoported into our time! If we boot up the Solar Unlimited again—with a new Solar Receiver, of course—we’ll be able to detect Drogheda as they attempt to time travel, just like we did when they time traveled to 2008!”

Patrick looked over at Tadosh, just to make sure he had the same idea as him. Tadosh nodded with a bright smile on his face. The smile quickly faded as a thought occurred to him.

“Didn’t Thomas say that it would take several weeks before you could complete a new SCR, since you’d have to do a special order for materials from around the world? Drogheda might figure out how to time travel without the Solar Unlimited by then!”

“I don’t mean to sound like a pompous king, but with my money and connections, Tadosh, I can have the parts here by tomorrow!”

“Hey, before we do the victory dance, here,” Samantha came in, “don’t you guys think that’s cutting it a bit close to the wire?”

“I don’t understand this contemporary expression, Mrs. McClain,” Tadosh voiced.

“I mean, if the only time that we can detect Drogheda without the spectrometer is by detecting them when they actually time travel, wouldn’t it be too late to catch them by then? That would be like trying to catch a fly as it took off to fly as opposed to swatting it as it sits!”

Patrick was violently shaking his head in negation. “No, Sam, but that’s a good point…all four of these guys from 2287 were able to time it perfectly to the nanosecond when we did our project trials. With Tadosh’s help, we can fit the Solar Unlimited so that it will detect the moment Drogheda even turns on his own time traveling device!”

Like a tag-team, Tadosh now finished up the idea for Samantha. “And when Drogheda and his men finally engage the time traveling phase of their own time machine, we’ll be able to detect them and then Patrick and I can teleport to where they are and apprehend them. And after that, I can chronoport all four of us back to our own time!”

Samantha, now, nodded her head with a huge smile. Tadosh and Patrick were looking the happiest that Sam had ever seen them since Tadosh had so precariously come into their lives.

“Why don’t you guys get some rest,” Patrick suggested to Samantha and Tadosh as he got up from his chair, “I’ve got some international phone calls to make for some parts!”

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