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Chapter 10: Dr. DeGroot (Part 1)
Let’s turn the time back to 20 years ago, when Dr. DeGroot first appeared at the conference of Hanso Foundation Award for Science. Unfortunately it was also his last.
In some scientists view, the Hanso Foundation Award was nothing but a meeting of crazy geniuses and conspiracy theorists. They heard many wild things leaked from attendants, things like the secret of the UFO, the “real” truth of the lost continent – Atlantis, the super-modern prehistoric civilization, etc. You get the idea.
At the same time, for others this award was the best showcase of cutting-edge science. It was a place that they could witness the true modern marvels well ahead of the time. They saw inventions that could completely change the way we lived, and they heard about discoveries that made you jaw dropped. If you were one of the lucky guys who were invited into the meeting, after hearing the whole session, you would become “crazy” like them. It was just that powerful.
In the science society, the discussion about the awarded discoveries being real or fake never ended. Some of the things turned into reality after more than 10 years, like the making of silicon chips and fiber optic technologies. Some was never marketed and mass produced, like turning salt water into fuel or personal flying machines. They were just existed but ignored.
Nonetheless, many of those discoveries were so advanced, so ahead of time, that if people outside knew about them, it would have caused a lot of panic, or it would be destroyed before the technology became matured. Therefore, officially no one was allowed to talk about the award at all. Every attendant had to sign a non-disclosure agreement before he/she could attend the conference. They were even warned that if anyone ever violated the agreement, Hanso Foundation would implement any possible way to keep the matter silent. That meant they could literately kill you if you leaked anything out to the public. It was not a pleasant thing to keep in mind, but since the scientists and explorers all craved for the huge funding of the award, which was ten times more than the Nobel’s, they all signed their names in the non-disclosure eventually.
The year was 1955. Not surprisingly, it was another eye opener. Since Dr. Watson and Dr. Crick discovered the structure of DNA molecule 2 years ago, a lot of important discoveries were found. It was the perfect place to announce them.
The first one who spoke was Lara Yang. As a young genius in bio-chemical research, she pushed the envelope of DNA manipulation to a new height:
“Thank you everyone for listening patiently to my theories for the last 20 minutes. I am sure that it was quite boring if you knew nothing about Bio-Chemistry.” She said.
Some laughter came out of the crowd. Everyone smiled. She was talking none-stop about some DNA fragmenting and mixing techniques. No one really understood what she really did.
“So here I want to tell you my work in plain English. Thanks to this award, and the generous funding from Hanso Foundation, I will be able to combine DNA fragments from different species, like fishes and birds, and I will create birds that can swim and breathe under water. Give me another few years. I am confident that I will be able to use this technology to improve human bodies. Imagine that one day we will have children that can breathe under the water, and fly with wings. The potential is limitless…” Lara happily announced with excitement.
Some murmuring came out from the audience. They had heard enough of wild things from the meeting so no one had any problem accepting her effort of combining fishes with birds, but put the animal parts into their children? It was a little bit too far.
The next one analyzed his super high resolution pictures of the moon. He pointed to an enlarged white spot and told everyone that it was a gigantic tunnel on the surface of the moon. He believed that there was an alien civilization living inside it. Most interestingly, he warned us about the imminent invasion of aliens from the moon. Some people couldn’t help but giggling all through his speech, but he got the award nonetheless.
It took the host about 5 minutes to peel that astronomer away from the podium, who was still insisting on staying away from the moon. Some rocket scientists yelled back at him: “Never tell us what we cannot do!”
Finally all was quiet. The host knew his time was running out, “Everyone, please give Dr. DeGroot a round of applause for his amazing discoveries of a rock from Tunisia.”
The whole conference room was again filled with half-hearted applause and some cheers. The young Gerald Degroot, who grew heavy beard and long hair, came up to the stand.
Compared with others, his lecture was very plain. He only talked about a rock he found in Tunisia.
“… My friend, my discovery is quite disturbing. I have been thinking about it over and over again, and can only draw one conclusion, which I will share with you all today for the first time.
First, this rock was formed during the Cretaceous-Tertiary Extinction. It has all the signs of going through the K-T extinction event: high iridium concentration, shocked quartz granules and Chromium isotopic anomalies. We even found a tail of a small dinosaur in it, so without a doubt it was formed at least 65 million years ago.
However, to my astonishment, the remnant of the dinosaur and plants still contains carbon-14, which should have depleted 65 million years ago. It put the age of this rock to be about 5000 years old. Can you believe that , how come a rock that was supposed to be 65 million years old, formed only 5000 years ago?”
There were some discussions among the audience. They were all top-notch scientists, who perfectly understood his confusion.
“Since the puzzle unsolvable in the lab, I went to Tunisia and visited the family who discovered the rock. What they said shocked me even more.”
Dr. DeGroot took a little pause. I hope they were prepared for this. He thought. They are probably the only ones in the world who will accept his conclusion.
“They said one day the sky turn purple. A very bright light almost blinded them, and then the rock appeared from nowhere and destroyed their kitchen. I know it sounds like a movie. I was suspicious at first, but the other 50 families in the village all confirmed the same thing, purple sky and bright lights. The rock couldn’t come from any mountains nearby, because it should belong to islands on the other side of the globe. My visit of Tunisia didn’t solve the puzzle at all, on the contrary, it greatly increases the questions I had about this rock.”
Dr. DeGroot paused again, measuring the risk of telling the truth. Should he tell everyone the truth and risk being humiliated? Or should he just stop there?
No, the whole truth. He decided. I don’t want to hold anything back. I’d rather be the joke of the year than holding any information back.
“So one night, while I was watching the popular television show ‘Lost’, it suddenly dawned on me what exactly happened. Obviously the rock had gone through a time-space traveling. It was formed in the K-T extinction time but somehow it jumped to a village in Tunisia 10 years ago. It is the only rational explanation I can find so far. It perfectly explains all the anomalies of the rock. Most notably, the day that the rock jumped into our world was exactly the day that the atomic bomb, ‘Fat Man’ was dropped in Nagasaki. The time was so perfectly matched that I believed these two events were connected…”
“Hahaaa…” a young scientist couldn’t help his laugh anymore. The whole scene became very embarrassing immediately. Most of them could hold their smile but a few burst in laughter with him. Everyone was thinking the same thing: We all know crazy, but this is beyond crazy. Time-space traveling with atomic bomb exploding! What kind of weed did this man smoke?
Gerald DeGroot knew it would happen. He was much more relaxed since the words were out. Let them talk. As long as I know in my heart that I am telling the truth, I’m happy.
“Ladies and gentlemen, I know this is very hard for you to accept. I had a very difficult time believing it myself. So today I am here just to announce my findings, I don’t expect anyone here to believe me. A thousand thanks to the president of Hanso Foundations who chose to give me the award. I will use the fund the best I can to uncover more about this mysterious rock. Thank you!!”
A warming applause gradually arose as usual. Everyone in the meeting had heard enough of strange things today to criticize a fellow scientist just like themselves. Deep down in their mind, they had to wonder how such ridiculous theories could pass the meticulous examination of Hanso Foundations.
As one of the scientists explained his feeling, “Well, you hear all kind of unbelievable things in the meeting. It was truly a freak show. Isn’t it?” Yes, even though every attendant was a believer in Science, they still wouldn’t believe other’s stories, even though it was already proven by Hanso Foundations, the biggest name in scientific research in Asia. It was ironically the human nature that people only chose to believe what they know, and always suspected things they were not familiar with. Even the scientists were no exempts.
After the Award, there was the party, which of course held by Hanso Foundations in a five-star hotel’s grand ballroom. It was luxury squared two. The scientists finally had a chance to get out of their boring lab gowns and dine like a king.
Dr. DeGroot was supposed to be the star of the boutique, since he just won the award, but he just ate in a corner and tried his best to avoid any attention.
Dr. Pierre Chang spotted him and said hello, “Well, my friend. What a pleasant surprise to see you again! It’s be a long while since I talked to you last time in the university. We were talking something about … uh… about …”
“Brain-washing.” Gerald shook his hand and said.
“Right, the brain-washing.” Dr. Chang remembered, “At that time you told me my method was too extreme. Look at you now! You really surprised me today. I thought you were the one who was conservative.”
“I am being conservative.” Gerald replied politely, “There are some far more scary speculations I had drawn from that rock.”
“Really? Like what?”
“Like what cause the dinosaur to extinct. Like what kind of technology could make this space-time jump possible. Like the reason it appeared after the atomic bomb was dropped. Those are really troubling questions from the things I learned from the rock.”
“Come on. It’s just a stone. Maybe someone threw it to play a plank.”
“Not a half ton one. As a geologist, I can tell you that every rock has a long story to tell. I was very lucky to find this particular one, which revealed us such a big secret.”
“Secret of what, that Alien had killed the dinosaur? Or the rocks can jump in the worm-hole by itself?” It was clear that Dr. Chang was mocking.
Gerald took a deep breath and said, “My dear friend, I think it’s better not go that far. We are here just to enjoy the party. I know both you and I don’t want to make a scene.”
Dr. Chang finally realized he was a little bit over the edge. He apologized immediately, “I am really sorry my friend. I don’t know what just got into my mind.”
“Maybe you did the brainwashing too much.”Gerald said with a little wink.
“Haha, maybe.” Pierre admitted.
Gerald smile, “You didn’t change a bit. Just like back in the universe, you don’t know anything about being diplomatic.”
“Yeah, if I were working as a diplomat, I would have gotten us all into war.” Dr. Chang laughed.
“Ha! Probably, but that’s why we are friends, you are the one who’s not afraid to act.”
“And you are the one who’s always telling the truth, no matter how hard it is.” Dr. Chang looked at his old friend as he recalled, “I still remember the day you said that you loved my girlfriend.”
“I still remember how you destroyed my nose.” Dr. DeGroot pointed to his nose, “See. It’s still flat.”
“You should have thanked me for not killing you right at the spot.” Dr. Chang pretended to hit him, “How is Karen now?”
Gerald barely avoided his punch, and replied happily, “She is still with me. Can you believe it? Even after I grew such a big black beard, she said she liked it.”
“See. That’s why I hate you so much. You made me lost such a nice girl.”
“Hey, that’s your own fault… Wait, wait…” Gerald changed the topic rapidly when he saw Dr. Chang raised his fist, “Did you see the first speaker in the meeting? Lara Chang? She’s a beauty, isn’t she?”
Dr. Chang put down his hand, “Yeah, she certainly is. She is so young, yet she already made such huge progress in her field…”
“Well, we happen to know her. Karen and her work in the same research building. Maybe I can introduce you to her.”
“But… but that girl is way out of my league.”
“Come on! You both are young scientists working in biology field.”
“That’s it. You and she are the perfect couple, period. I will introduce you to her, you want it or not.”
“Yeah, of course.”
“Right! That’s the fearless man I know.”
It was on Dr. Chang’s way to meet his future wife when a girl about 14 years old stopped them in the midway.
“Dr. DeGroot, can you give me a minute.” She asked.
Gerald looked toward Dr. Chang with a question mark. Dr. Chang just shrugged, “Please, take your time. I can wait.” At the same time he kept peeking at Lara’s direction.
Gerald shook his head and smiled. He turned to the teenager and asked, “Sorry, do I know you?”
“No, you don’t.” the little girl replied without any shyness and extended her hand, “My name is Amy Maxwell.”
“Amy Maxwell?” Dr. DeGroot suddenly realized, “Your great great grandfather is …”
“That I know, thanks.” The little Amy interrupted him, “My family always had a reputation of being the electronic geeks.”
“That’s not what I meant…”
“Dr. DeGroot. It’s ok.” Amy interrupted him again, “Do you mind if I call you Gerald?”
“Of course not.” Dr. DeGroot never mind the names, and then he realized something, “How do you know me?”
“I saw you in the meeting.” Amy said with a little girl’s naughty smile.
“Well, that’s impossible. Only the best scientists can attend the meeting, and obviously you are not one, yet. ”
“But my papa is.” Amy kept smiling.
“What did you mean by that, little girl?” Dr. DeGroot suddenly found out this little girl was not as simple as she looked, “How did you see me without being there?”
Amy showed him a pen, “This is my invention. It has a camera and a microphone inside.”
“Oh, my goodness! You are truly one of the Maxwells.” Dr. DeGroot’s eyes were wide-open. No one in the world had seen such a small camera yet, not even the top government secret agents. It’s a marvelous invention that was way ahead of the time, and it was made by this little 14-year-old!
“I watched the whole meeting through my headset.” Amy showed him something looked like Captain Z-Ro would have used to see the history. “The picture was not clear, but I can hear everything you said.”
Dr. DeGroot put the headset on. His jaw almost dropped. He could see and hear from that pen’s perspective. It was the first time he had ever experience something like that.
“So now I let you know my secret.” Amy said with a little shy, “Could you tell me yours?”
“My secret? What kind of secret are you talking about?”
“The secret of the rock.”
Dr. DeGroot took off the headset, thought for a while, and said, “I don’t have any. I told everything I knew in the meeting. You heard my speech already, right?”
“But you let out an important detail.” Amy said, “I really want to know.”
Dr. DeGroot almost laughed. What a curious little girl! What could she possibly want? A souvenir? On the other hand, he just witnessed an amazing advanced gadget made by her. Something told him that she must onto something.
Amy glanced around her, making sure no one was watch this way, then she asked, “How about the energy trace in that rock?”
Dr. DeGroot felt like his head was hit by a raging bull. A small detail he chose not to mention. Hundreds of scientists hadn’t noticed, and now being questioned by this little girl! What an ironic world!
He wanted to say something, but then stopped. His mouth opened, but failed to say anything.
If the scientists who saw him making bold announcement earlier knew he was dumbfounded by a 14-year-old, they might have to laugh even louder. Oh, humiliations!
“Ha! I got you!” the girl was jumping a little. “Do you know how I know about it?”
Dr. DeGroot shook his head like a student in front of a teacher.
“My father got a request from his European lab. They said the sample you gave them shouldn’t exist at all, and my father was puzzled by that too. That’s why he attended the freak show, just to see you.”
“Thank you…” Dr. DeGroot couldn’t tell that was a compliment or not, and he didn’t know what to say in front of this ultra-smart girl.
“And that’s why he was so distracted that I could switch his pen without him noticed.” Amy smiled like a champion. “He found it out after the meeting, but it was too late already.”
Amy suddenly became serious like a little adult, “Dr. DeGroot.”
“Yes, Amy.” Dr. DeGroot had a little chill seeing her serious face.
“Why you didn’t mention anything about the energy trace in the meeting? My father and I were both very disappointed.” She asked with an intense stare at his eyes, “Why you hold back that information?”
“Because it’s …” Gerald found himself acting like a little kid who got caught. He almost lost his ability to speak, “It is … uh …”
“Uh… It’s inconclusive.” It was almost the best Gerald could do at that moment.
“Are you kidding me?” Amy forgot she was a kid herself, “That’s the most amazing thing in the rock. Comparing to the energy trace, all other things were just not worth mentioning at all.”
Dr. DeGroot finally gained back his coolness. He felt like he was just ambushed by a ninja, “But we still don’t know what that is. The energy trace was disappearing too quickly. Now it was too weak to do further examination.”
“But we all knew it existed there. The microscopic crystal formation still can prove us that extremely strong EM force had changed the rock’s shape.”
“Too bad that there are other theories existed to explain the crystal formations.”
“It was not the same situation. The other explanation doesn’t apply to this rock.”
“But still, it’s a possibility.”
“Are you still kidding me?” Amy felt anger, like her intelligence was challenged, “How could that rock pass through the earth’s core and return to the surface and found by you? This scenario is simply impossible.”
Gerald sigh, “The other explanation is even more ridiculous. How could an alien spaceship put a strong force on a rock and then threw it through a time-space tunnel? I couldn’t tell anyone this as long as the other theory is still valid. I am already the laughing stock among the scientists. I don’t want to attract more attention by telling another even wilder theory, especially when the phenomenon can be explained by normal science, and I cannot prove my theory anymore.”
Amy listened to him with all her attention. She nodded and agreed, “Hmm… you are right, Gerald. I understand now. My father told me that you were a good man. I believe it now. You are not lying or withholding things. You just had no way to tell the whole truth.”
“It was the most difficult thing in the world. It took a lot of courage. I am ashamed that today I could only tell half of the truth.”
“It’s much better than none.” Amy returned to her cute sunny smile, “Thank you, Gerald. You taught me a lot tonight.”
“No, thank you! You are the only one who pointed out the weakness in my speech. I felt much better after talking to you. I hope in the future I can work with someone who has such a bright mind like yours.”
Amy was already walking toward her table. She heard it, turned back and yelled, “I will work for you, Gerald. Give me a call!”
Dr. DeGroot laughed out loud. It was the first time he laughed like that since he came to the meeting. Yeah, if she were 5 years older I would have hired her right here without a blink. He thought to himself.
At the same time Dr. Chang already took 3 rounds of drink. He looked a little drunk, but was bold enough to try his luck with the beautiful young Asian scientist. Dr. DeGroot held him tight and walked him toward Lara Yang.
4 days later.
“You looking for me? Mr. Hanso?” Dr. DeGroot asked.
He was standing inside a huge office which looked more like a presidential suite of a five-star hotel. The only odd thing was that there was a full Suit of ancient Japanese general’s armor standing in the middle of the large room, which completely destroyed the post-modern feel of the room.
“Of course I am. How else can you pass all the security and come all the way up here?” Alvar Hanso was not a patient man, “I thought you are smarter than this.”
“I am sorry for asking you such a stupid question.” Dr. DeGroot shrugged, “What can I help you?”
“I know that your research on the rock had reached a dead end.” Alvar watched him in the eyes. “The rock cannot give you any more answers. Right?”
“That’s right, but I had no doubt that …”
“Stop right there.” Alvar interrupted him like a whip, “Don’t do any unnecessary explanations. I need straight answers.”
“Then you will get it.” Gerald started to feel uncomfortable with him. I know you are the president of Hanso Foundations, but don’t speak to me like this.
“I know someone who got some more information about the event you mentioned in the meeting.”
“You mean the atomic bomb event?”
“Yes. And he said you might help him find the answer they have been searching for a long time. So I am thinking, with his information, you can form a team to discover the answers.”
“…” Gerald didn’t say anything. He needed to know what the mysterious man wanted before he said yes or no.
Seeing Gerald hesitating, Alvar threw in a bone, “Hanso Foundation will fully fund the operation. I won’t set any spending limits. You can get anything or anyone you want in the team.”
“Why you do this?” Gerald stared back to him, “It sounds too good to believe.”
“Believe it.” Alvar gave him a reassuring nod, “All you need to say is ‘yes’.”
“No.” Gerald felt in his gut that something was not right, “Before I know what information the other guy knows and what kind of operation you are planning, my answer is always ‘no’.”
Alvar became annoyed, “Doctor. There is no free ticket for great discoveries. The information was level 1 top secret. Even I don’t know what it is. The man will only share the secret once you agree and create the team. It’s the only way if you want to find out more about the rock, but once you say ‘yes’, there is no way back.”
Gerald thought about the option he had, and let out a bitter smile, “I felt like Alice.”
“In order to find out how deep the rabbit hole is, I had to jump in. Once I jump in, Texas is no more.”
“Precisely your situation.” Alvar nodded a little, “You are not that stupid in the end.”
“If I jump in, what will happen to my wife? Do I get to see her?”
“You can include her as a team member, but of course she must make the jump too, just like you.”
“What if she jump in and she doesn’t like it, can she get out.”
“No, there is no way out.”
“Even she knows nothing.”
“That really sucks.”
“Don’t forget. It might be the discovery of the century. No. It might be the discovery of the whole human history. You and your wife might become the most famous scientists in the world. The reward is huge. And with our unlimited funding, your success rate is high.”
“But I am just a geologist.”
“We have been watching you, my friend.” Alvar said it in a not so friendly tone, “You have been pulling a lot of strings, conducting a series of experiments with your rock, and no one had suspect anything unusual. You collected all the data together and drew the conclusion all by yourself. It was very impressively organized. The man liked the way you keep everything under the cover until that very meeting. He said that you shouldn’t have announced your discoveries at all. Now you are the best comedian of the science society. The man said you should have learned the lesson by now.”
“Indeed a big lesson I had learned, that no one is capable of handling the truth, not even me.”
“Good. So now give me the answer. Yes or no?”
“I need to talk to my wife first.”
“You are such a wimpy kid!” Alvar finally was angry, “My time is precious. I have business worth billions of dollars to handle. Don’t waste my time here. Yes or no?”
“If this matter is so important, and you need me to do it, then you can wait.” Gerald stared back at him, “I won’t force my wife into it. I need her consent first. There is no other way either.”
Pang! Alvar hit the table with his fist. It left no marks but obviously express how mad Alvar was.
“Just to be clear, I am not the one who needs you here. It’s that man. I think he make a mistake by choosing you. If you cannot control your wife, how do I expect you to control your whole team? You are not the leader we are looking for. I will tell the man what you just told me. I hope he will change his mind so I don’t need to see you again. Anyway, you have two days to talk to your wife.”
“Two days then.” Gerald stepped back and opened the door, “In case you don’t see me, good night and good luck.”
Four years later. It was 1959.
“YOU?!” Dr. DeGroot almost jumped up from his chair. He couldn’t believe the young lady was one of the candidates of Dharma Initiative.
“Yes, it is me.” Amy Maxwell came up and extended her hand toward him, “It was a long time since I saw you in the party. You never called me.”
“Wait. What are you doing here?” Gerald picked up her resume and look at her again, “And why did you use a fake last name?”
“No, it’s not fake. It’s my mother’s last name. My parents went through a divorce. It was sad but it also gave me an opportunity to legally change my last name.”
“Why did you do that for?”
“To be able to see you, Dr. DeGroot. My previous last name was too famous. You will shut me down before I have a chance.”
“Woah, woah, young lady. What do you mean by that? You know I already have a wife, right?”
“Relax, professor.” Amy showed her young girl’s naughty grin. It reminded him the way she looked the first time he met her. Even though she was still a teenager, she had a special charm of a mature woman. He got a feeling that somehow she had all the control over him, which made him really uncomfortable.
Amy smiled again, her pretty flawless face almost made him dazzled, “I am here only to apply for a job in the Dharma Initiative. It’s purely professional.”
“How did you know the DI? Well, anyway, in that case, you are too young. How old are you, by the way?” Dr. DeGroot wiped a little sweat from his hand. I feel like I am the one being interview now. Damn it! Take the control. Don’t let the embarrassing scene four years ago happened again.
“The age is not important. I already have a master degree in Electronic Engineering. One more year I will finish my Ph. D. See? I am fully qualified for the job you are offering.”
Gerald made up his mind, “You are still too young. Our job requires a lot of overtime and handling of secret information. I need an adult with strong self-discipline and good work ethnics.”
“Director. This is exactly my qualities. How do you think I got the bachelor and master degree in such a short time? I didn’t cut any corners. I studied day and night for my classes. As you can see in my resume, I got A or A+ in all my courses.”
“The answer is still ‘no’.” Dr. DeGroot said, “The work might become dangerous. I need someone with experience to handle difficult situations.”
“My parents just went through a bitter divorce process. My mother had an affair and my father was sued by his employees for millions. I help them fix the problems while enrolled in six courses. I assured you that I can handle anything you threw at me.”
“The job required extensive traveling. You might have to live in an island for years.”
“I already had all the survival training when I was in the Girl Scout, and I don’t mind leaving this town forever. There is nothing for me here.”
“My staff is full. The position is already taken.”
“The previous one I interviewed. He passed all my tests with flying colors.”
“You got to be kidding me.” Amy’s eyes turned wide, “He’s my classmate. I saw him sleep in the class and only got a C in Electro-Magnetic Physics class. If you need someone who’s really good at Electro-Magnetic field, he’s the last one you want. At the same time, don’t forget, my family discovered the EM equations. It runs in the blood. I am the best you can find if you ever need an Eletro-Magnetic research scientist.”
Dr. DeGroot opened his mouth, but he couldn’t say anything more. Amy had choked him completely.
Amy grinned like a crowned Miss USA, “Plus, I got a recommendation letter from Mr. Hanso himself. Here you go.” She handed him an envelope.
Inside the letter, Alvar Hanso praised Amy for her extraordinary talents, and suggested Dr. DeGroot hire her immediately. The wording sounded more like a demand. Gerald put down the letter and shook his head.
“So… Dr. DeGroot, would you like me to join the team?”
“Do I really have a choice?”
“I don’t think so. I am very well prepared. I even changed my last name just to get in this interview.”
“You are REALLY well prepared. I had never seen anyone as smart as you are.”
“Thanks. Dr. DeGroot. Can I start today? I have been preparing this for the last four years. I am really eager.”
“Too eager, I have to say. Again, do I have a choice?”
“Well, I can start tomorrow if you want.”
“Get out of my office, young lady.”
“Yes, director. I see you tomorrow.”
The searching for the mysterious island was a very long and strenuous process. While Amy was travelling around the world tracking down EM anomalies, Gerald stayed in the university and monitored the whole project. With millions of dollars poured in, Gerald’s high efficiency made the project turn into a vast global networking, while DI was kept at a minimum profile.
There were a couple of reporters caught some wind and tried to unearth the whole project. They disappeared the day before their announcement and their house were burnt down. Gerald knew it must have something to do with the mysterious man who hired him in the first place. He even gathered some clues which implied that the man must be someone high up in the U.S. military, but there was no proof. He didn’t dig up the dirt further. He already got him and his wife in a deep rabbit hole, he didn’t want to jump in another.
Amy proved herself in the second year by designing the Lamp Post. Her specialty in EM research had greatly boosted the progress of finding the island. The Lamp Post had a whooping 1% of success rate to locate the island at the right time, which was thousands times better than the previous blind searching method. Dr. DeGroot finally promoted her to be the second in command, which everyone in DI thought she deserved.
After Paik Enterprise joined force, his long time friend Dr. Chang became the co-director. Amy’s position dropped to the third. It seemed that she was too busy to mind it.