Far Horizons: Tales of Sci-Fi, Fantasy and Horror. Issue #13 April 2015 - Page 155

his displeasure known later, but Joran didn’t care; he was sure that his research was sound. The Justices talked and discussed amongst themselves for a while. Joran felt a little more relaxed, he’d made his points, and perhaps they’d decide to act on his words. The Principal Justice stood up and the rest of the room quietened. This was their decision. “Lecturer Joran, we’ve agreed that your theory has some merit, but we require further evidence. Please report to us again when you have such proof. Meanwhile, is there anything else you would like to offer?” Joran sagged, disappointed. What would he have to do to convince them? He paused, thinking. He did have an idea, but then shook his head; it was too soon. students had gone home. Only Lecturers completing research papers and administration staff stayed much beyond the last lectures. His office was small but well ordered, furnished with a couple of chairs and a desk with a screen built into it. In the corner stood a robe rack. Joran dumped his papers on the desk and shrugged out of his bulky Lecturer’s robes, arranging them on the rack. Underneath he was wearing a shirt and trousers. He ruffled his short blonde hair, leaving it partially standing up in damp spikes, and shook his head, enjoying the cool air on his hot shoulders. He sat down at the desk and stared at the screen for a moment. He keyed in a number and the screen went blank, then an image of a blonde woman appeared, her long wavy hair piled up on top of her head, leaning “No, Principal Justice Taleron” He admitted. “I don’t down towards the screen pickup. She shared Joran’s have anything else to offer, I just think-” fine features and her loose clothes accentuated her slim form, the pale threads of scars moving with the “Lecturer Joran, if you are ‘just thinking’ then maybe skin of her fingers as she jiggled a laser cutter in one you should do it when you are not wasting our time. hand. Behind her, Joran could see a workshop fesThank you.” Taleron rose and walked out. tooned with technical printouts and computer screens. She looked dismayed as she saw the expression on Joran sighed and collected his things as the Justices Joran’s face. left. They’re frightened, he thought; frightened enough “Oh, I forgot it was today. Do I need to ask how it to pretend nothing was wrong, or they had more time, went?” She said. or something. “Hi Shaan. Not well,” Joran replied. “They just “Force it!” He muttered. He’d have to come back with wouldn’t listen. I don’t really blame them; I think that more evidence, then maybe they’d listen to him. He if I hadn’t worked with Mum and Dad on this, I’d be a began to pick his way through the clutter of equipment bit sceptical too.” and curious glances belonging to the gathered news crews, muttering to himself. “Well, we just need to keep talking. Someone else is bound to come to the same conclusion sooner or later. He left the lecture room and walked back to his office There are still a few people around who worked in the through the main building. The corridors were quiet, same sun-study unit as Mum and Dad.” the Justices having left for the main Justice building in Nairid City. Joran smiled. “You’re right. Let’s forget it for now. How’s the propulsion design going?” As in all of the Institute buildings, the corridor was wide and brightly lit. Notice boards announced end Shaan grimaced, “Oh, don’t even ask. I think my of term parties and other festivities. Doors along the brain’s about to shut down. Come over for dinner and walls led to lecture theatres, studies and tutor rooms. I’ll tell you all about it.” She keyed off the contact. Nearly all were empty now, the buildings quiet, as it Joran leaned back and made a face. Not a good day. was nearing the summer-cycle break, and most of the Then he gathered himself, and prepared to leave. PAGE 154