JohnnyIn the middle of the stone circle they stood watching as the other helicopters landed on a flat space near Captain Boyd's. Professor Watkins turned to Chief Inspector Haiggert. He pointed at Johnny. "I'll keep it short, Chief Inspector, questions at the end please! This lad here's been involved in a top secret project concerning very advanced physics. He seems to have picked up an exotic form of matter in the form of a massive quantum particle, a Chronon.'

`There's a good chance the chronon may be reaching a nodal point of maximium instability. Y'see, the particle's inherently unstable in ordinary 4 dimensional space. It starts to unwind like an overwound rubber band, unfolding into a +n dimensional form, ripping a wormhole through space-time, also known as a chrono-synplastic fundibulum. How far that might extend, or, the how much energy might be released in the process, I cannot predict. That's dependent upon how much spin-charge was initially stored and the availability of any conversion mass."

DCI Haiggert turned to the sergeant. "Did you understand anything that Professor Watkins here has just said?

The sergeant shook his head. "Sorry sir. I majored in pathology and law."

"Me neither." He turned to the Professor. "What has that got to do with standing here in the middle of this mini-stonehenge. Whit's all the equipment for?"

"It might be possible to use the electromagnetic effects o' the circle. Isolate the chronon in a spinning electromagentic field and Johnny here could just step away from it. Without his conversion mass, the effects should be minimal, provided we all ran for it behind a big enough boulder."

Teddy had been watching the choppers. "Company comin!' At the double! Wid ye take a look at that!" Running towards them, from the Sikorsky, were a group of Roman legionnaries. These legionnaries were carrying Koch machine pistols. Two armoured personnel carriers drove out of copter. One was carrying Von Slagerhamer's, black tarpaulin covered, machine.

The personnel carriers drove ahead and stopped on the edge of the shallow ditch round the circle. Two Americans stepped out of the first vehicle. They wore black. Black mirror shades, black suits, white shirts, black ties.

Frank turned to Teddy. "Oh shit! It's the Men In Black!" He whispered. "Now Ah know we're in fur it!"

The tall old man, stepping out of the second vehicle, wearing a black cap, incongruously atop a purple cloak and golden armour was Von Slagerhamer. "So Johnny, finally, after all these years! We meet again! You're looking hardly a day older. " He indicated the two agents. "Now. You must come with us for debriefing. These gentlemen will be your escort. We don't expect any trouble..."

DCI Haiggert stepped forward. "I'm Detective Chief Inspector Haiggert. I have arrested these people on suspicion of committing several arrestable offence. Their in my custody." He paused for effect. "And who might you be?"

"I am Heinrich von Slagerhamer of Slagerhamer-YoYoDyne Industries. These gentlemen represent the interests of the United States government in this matter. I think you will find that a call to your superiors will be most enlightening at this point. Johnathon Fist is a key member of personnel on a United States government project of the very highest sensitivity. Now if you'll kindly step aside, Johnny you will accompany us."

"I'm afraid He's in my custody until all this is sorted out, Mr Slagerhamer." Inspector Haiggert dug his heels in.

"`N ur ye'r Roman foot soldiers US Military `n aw?" Teddy waved a thumb at the legionnaries.

"What?" Von Slagerhamer looked at him uncomprehendingly. He gave a sign. "Take him!"

As von Slagerhamer's cohorts moved forward to carry out his command Professor Watkins pulled out the remote control. Led lights flashed. A legionnary, spotting the sudden movement, raised his sub-machine pistol and fired!

Colin and Jo were standing next to the professor as the gun went off. Instantly, he shouted, "Look out!" and shoved Jo and the Professor out of range. The bullet that caught Colin lifted him off and spun him round. He crashed to the ground, motionless.

"Colin!" Screamed Jo. Inga took one glance and spun forward, end over end, before doing a double salto that brought the toe of her right boot, precisely, under the chin of the legionary. She felled him like a tree. Then, she paused for a moment on her hands before flipping herself back beside Jo who was knelling next to Colin cradling his head in her arms.

copyright, AndroMan 2003.