by Hydrargentium

“…which is how the polymerase actually inhibits the process in this case.”

Nevaeh stared at her tablet, the screen nearly blank from a lack of notes. Blinking, she realized she had no idea what Professor Ranjay had been saying after the first few words of this example. Looking around, she noticed more than a few glazed expressions in the room.

Sighing, she tapped her stylus against her screen, making random black dots on the expanse of white. It wasn’t that she wasn’t interested in organic chemistry, but Professor Ranjay just droned on and on, like an automaton in place of the real thing.

Her daydream of a mechanical professor, arms and legs moving stiffly, elbow patches on his sweater covering clunky cylindrical joints, was interrupted by a message that popped up on her tablet.

HOW SOON CAN YOU BE AT THE TOWER

Covering the screen with her hand, she looked around, trying to see if anyone else noticed the message, and trying not to be noticed that that was what she was doing.

ABOUT 5 MINUTES, she typed in. IMPORTANT?

The response came back almost immediately.

VERY

Putting her hand to her forehead, she moaned slightly, feigning a headache. As she did so, she scanned her classmates. No one seemed to be paying much attention to her — or to the professor either.

Someone needs to figure out how to harness that for crowd control, she mused, as she gathered up her things and headed for the door, her eyes scrunched up in a pretence of photophobia.

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