§5: Detracted Declaration
The muffled sounds were back again. Selestine heard them all too often and frequently, but it was different. They didn’t go away like they had done many times before; they lingered, growing louder and louder. Selestine’s consciousness was slowly being rejuvenated, and all at one, she remembered the events that had come to pass.
She remembered Eli telling them that they had to go back, the Wurmple running away, a Pinsir chasing it, and her own insistence on giving the Pinsir what it wanted.
But a reason that not even she knew, Selestine remained where she was. The ground felt soft, and there was a soft crackling that mixed with the ongoing conversation. She slowly opened her eyes.
The sky above her was visible. It was dotted with glittering dots, scattering away from each other with varying distances. The edges of her vision hosted a few trees, their leaves stretching towards each other, but never connecting.
She turned her head, and was met with the sight of Eli and Lawrence standing before a fire, the Wurmple was by their side, now completely calm, and snuggling close to Lawrence. Eli, who was usually very neat, looked like a mess; her hair was undone, and it stood up at various angles, smudges of dirt and mud integrated into it. Her once cheerful pink lab coat had a missing sleeve, and had become almost completely brown.
Her legs were scratched, and there was a bandage on her right cheek. The only thing that seemed unscathed was the pair of glasses she wore, and Selestine guessed that it was because Eli had wiped them extensively. Lawrence, on the other hand, as messy as he was before the Pinsir attack, didn’t seem that much different; the only noticeable change was his pair of wrapped hands.
Next to Eli, Selestine could see the two bags she had carrying; her own, and the one that held all the food. It was only at the sight of those that Selestine realised her tent was just within arm’s reach of her, yet she was wrapped and safely on the ground outside it.
She redirected her attention again, this time on the soft surface she had been laying on. It was a sort of thin, but firm mattress, and Selestine quickly noticed that it would fit in the tent. Just momentarily, she was astonished at how a small roll of a tent can expand to reveal itself and quite a comfortable mattress.
‘Oh, you’re up,’ she heard Lawrence say. ‘How are you feeling?’
Selestine turned her head to Lawrence, whose facial expressions were quite uncharacteristic of him. His walk as he approached her still had the same lazy slouch, but his face was overcome with a look of disappointment. Behind him, both Eli and Wurmple, who had fled into her arms, sported looks of concern.
‘I’m fine,’ Selestine lied; a throbbing headache was suddenly growing in her head.
‘Well, we thought you might need some fresh air; you had been in the tent for hours,’ said Lawrence. ‘I can carry your mattress back inside for you if you want.’
‘No, it’s fine,’ said Selestine. ‘For how long have I been out?’
‘Well, since that Pinsir attack, obviously,’ said Lawrence. ‘There is a slight bump on the back of your head, but Eli couldn’t get you to sleep on you side.’
‘What happened after I passed out?’
‘Well, I managed to fight off the Pinsir with a stick,’ said Lawrence, an obvious pride filling his voice and overcoming his expressions. ‘Now that is saying something, because apparently, the horns on that thing can split a human in two.’
‘The last thing I remember hearing was a shout,’ said Selestine.
‘Yes, that was Eli,’ said Lawrence. ‘She screamed when I hit the Pinsir so hard, the tip of the stick broke and flew towards her.’
‘And the Pokémon didn’t come after you?’
‘You would think that, but eventually, Eli threw some stones at it, and it backed away.’
‘That’s nothing to be proud of,’ said Selestine firmly. ‘That Pinsir had more than enough to kill you two; you shouldn’t have risked all of our lives.’
‘I saved all of our lives,’ said Lawrence, his teeth grinding. ‘It was you who tried to feed the Wurmple to that thing!’
‘Now you, of all people, appreciate that thing? You were the one who said that we should have left him behind!’
‘Yes, but when that Wurmple trusted us enough to jump into Eli’s arms, it became one of our team, and we don’t betray anyone from our team.’
‘This isn’t a team! This is a mission, and we are not required to bring anything along with us!
‘Would you have done the same if it was human? If the Pinsir was after Eli, would you have given her up?’
Behind him, Eli turned her head from the conversation, and started patting the Wurmple. She sat in silence, looking at the fire as Lawrence got up and left, going back to join the pair.
She couldn’t help but feel that everything had changed, and in just one day. She had tried to lead the group throughout this expedition, but Selestine doubted that any of her team, as Lawrence had put it, would listen to her again. Her head was still throbbing in pain, and her body was starting to ache. She lay down on her mattress, looking up at the sky.
She was lost in her thoughts, and all track of time slipped away from her until Lawrence came back and offered to take her mattress into her tent again. He seemed rather disappointed with her, and even though Eli had helped her stand and provided support for her as Lawrence dragged the soft surface to the tent, she seemed disappointed as well.
What was her right? She was the one who had kicked Selestine into a tree, and the situation she was in was Eli’s fault; she had no right to be disappointed. Feeling her anger come back to her, she threw away Eli’s arms, and marched into her tent, shutting it without a word to either of them.
She was furious, and her anger only rose as she lay on the mattress, looking up at the green tent that formed a ceiling above her and blocked all sky from her view. Eli came back towards the tent, and thrust a small jar into the tent.
‘Here,’ she said, her voice slightly muffled. ‘This will help your headache, if you have one.’
Selestine grabbed the pills in silence as Eli’s arm retracted through the door of the tent. She threw one of them into her mouth, and lay back on the bed, still silent. The minutes flew by, and slowly, but gradually, her headache, and with it, her anger, receded.
For a few fleeting moments, Selestine’s head was clear, and as the sky got darker, she drifted into a dreamless sleep.
The next day had went by in silence, as uneventful as can be compared to the events that had come to pass in the day before it. Selestine had only been spoken to when she was needed, which wasn’t as often as she would have liked; it seemed that even though she held an assistant position in the group, she was more of a reviewer to their progress, following in silent, and never participating.
They had gone back to the first spot of electromagnetic energy, where Eli was finally able to scan it without a hindrance, despite Lepi’s, as Eli had taken to calling the Wurmple, cowering. They had passed through the dirt road, and past the spot where they had encountered the Pinsir, marked by a damaged stick, and several large disturbances in the ground.
Selestine still followed in silence, taking a pill whenever her headache returned with force, until the night set again, as a small opening in the treetops indicated. The group had progressed further when both Eli and Lawrence were splitting the responsibility of leadership than when Selestine had kept it all to herself.
They settled on the grass to the right of the dirt road, which seemed to extend endlessly, and set their camp there. Eli’s watch was useless aside from the fact that she used it to detect electromagnetic energy, as opposed to using another small device in her bag that she kept forgetting to check. And as such, they had insisted on ending the day early due to only being able to find one spot in the dirt road where the sky was visible.
Lawrence placed the food bag, which he had been carrying, next to Eli, and went to set up the camp for the day. He began pumping air into all three of the mattresses, and placed them in their respective green tents. Selestine had neglected to notice how he had dismantled them during the morning, but the mystery had finally been solved, and it was the most exciting thing to have happened to her all day.
‘Did you finish setting up the wood?’ Lawrence addressed Eli, who was holding a match over a peculiar looking arrangement.
‘Yes!’ she said in her usual excited voice. ‘Now get ready for this!’
And she dropped the match onto the arrangement. The area lit up, revealing a grand circle of dirt and rocks that sat beneath, and surrounded the fire, which was shaped like a circle with a line going through it, interjecting with another circle.
‘It’s a Poké Ball!’ exclaimed Eli. ‘It’s wonderful, isn’t it?!’
‘How much powder did you use for that?’
‘More than recommended, admittedly, but it was worth it!’ said Eli. ‘Come and sit!’
Lawrence sat opposite Selestine, while Eli on a third log, Lepi leaving her arms, slowly approaching the fire and spreading itself across the ground. Lawrence and Eli started talking to each other, both dressed in brand new fieldworker outfits, as Selestine sat staring at the fire, holding the bottle of pills in her hand.
It would have been a perfect opportunity to apologise, but Selestine still believed that her decisions were the right ones, even though her beliefs were slowly dissolving. She thought the group would be doomed if she didn’t lead them, yet she was proven wrong. She thought Lawrence would never risk his life to save someone else, and would run away, but she was also wrong. She thought Eli would never be responsible enough to carry this mission along, but looking at the container of food next to her, and the pills in her hand; she once again realised that she had been wrong.
‘Hey, Selestine,’ said Eli. ‘How are you feeling?’
‘I’m better now,’ said Selestine. ‘Thank you for the pills.’
‘I’m sorry for throwing you against that tree yesterday,’ said Eli. ‘I was just… I don’t know what I was thinking.’
‘It’s fine,’ said Selestine.
She should have admitted to being the one in the wrong, but Selestine was too proud to do so.
‘Anyway, how much time do you think we have to spend at this forest?’ said Selestine.
‘Probably just a week,’ said Eli. ‘If everything goes as smoothly as it went today.’
‘And hopefully, we don’t meet any more Pokémon, or at least, no more vicious ones’ said Lawrence. ‘Anyway, Eli, I’ve been curious; why wasn’t Mercury able to go to the expedition with… what was his name again?’
‘Erric,’ said Eli. ‘And he was too needed to go on an expedition.’
‘Actually, while we’re on the subject,’ said Selestine. ‘Why is Dominic both Lawrence’s and Holda’s partner?’
‘Oh that, well,’ said Eli. ‘It’s a bit of a confidential matter.’
‘It can’t be that serious,’ said Selestine.
‘Give it up, Sel,’ said Lawrence. ‘I asked her what happened to Holda’s old partner yesterday, but she never told me. For someone so hyperactive, you would think everything would just fly out of her mouth.’
‘Actually, I should’ve told you, Larry,’ started Eli, worry overcoming her expression. ‘Especially since we were attacked yesterday. Ok, here we go…’
She let out a deep breath, shooting a look at both Selestine and Lawrence.
‘Holda’s old partner was called Gaston Sedgley. I worked with him for a year; ever since I myself worked here, and he was a wonderful guy. He was a bit shut out at times, keeping everything to himself, but he was very kind, and really helped me when I was starting.
‘And then, a little more than a week ago he was assigned to Holda as her partner. On the second day of your work, Clair Berton discovered that the radar worked, but he and his partner were told to keep it a secret. Apparently, everyone but me knew; because they thought I would tell the fieldworkers; which is what I’m doing right now, but let’s get back on topic.
‘Project Holon was going to start, as Dominic told me, but it was halted when Gaston disappeared, late on the second day. All leaders should tell their group, because this is really important, and I should’ve told you sooner. All we know is that Gaston went into the Mirage Forest, and never came back.’
A moment of silence lingered around the fire, interrupted occasionally by the crackling flames. Lepi looked around the group, and then stared at Eli in puzzlement, much like Selestine and Lawrence.
‘I know, I know… I should’ve told you sooner,’ said Eli. ‘I really should’ve told you when you asked me, Larry. Especially after being attacked; I mean, we could’ve disappeared as well. That was why every team was assigned a researcher; we were given the instructions to look for any trace of Gaston without telling the fieldworkers.
‘It was supposed to be just two of you. In this team, Selestine would’ve been the leader, and Lawrence would’ve been the assistant, but then they made me join. And really, McLean & Partners cannot afford to give up four of us, but they also can’t afford to compensate Gaston’s family, especially since our contracts promise that there is no threat to anyone’s safety during Project Holon.’
‘And if we knew that, all of us fieldworkers would have quit,’ said Lawrence, seeming deeper in thought than Selestine had ever seen him. ‘We would have refused to go into Mirage Forest. So McLean delayed this expedition just to sort this Gaston business out?’
‘Yes,’ said Eli. ‘They got their emergency team to try and find Gaston, but no luck. Currently, the company is saying that Gaston ran away to his family, but I don’t think they can hold out for much longer before they get sued.’
‘I didn’t even know McLean & Partners had an emergency team,’ said Selestine. ‘Did something like this happen before? Is that why they created an emergency team?’
‘I don’t know,’ said Eli. ‘And I swear that I’m not hiding anything else from you.’
They sat around the fire in silence, staring at the flames as Eli clutched her knees nervously, rocking back and forth on her log.
‘Guys, please say something,’ Eli pleaded. ‘I feel really bad for not telling you this before.’
‘It’s not your fault, Eli,’ said Lawrence. ‘We just have to be more careful when treading the forest.’
‘I saw Holda yelling at Dominic,’ said Selestine. ‘Do you think it had anything to do with it?’
‘Apparently, since Dominic was partnered with Holda as a replacement, she had been insisting on him to tell her what happened to Gaston,’ said Eli. ‘But he kept telling her it was confidential.’
‘Let’s just call it a night,’ said Lawrence. ‘We should wake up early tomorrow, and hopefully, get out of the forest before a week is up.’
‘I’m really sorry, guys,’ said Eli. ‘I should’ve told you sooner.’
‘Again, Eli, it’s not your fault,’ said Lawrence, giving a fake smile before going into his tent.
‘Good night, Selestine,’ said Eli. ‘I’ll put a jar with new pills in your tent; use it when you finish the one you have.’
And with that, she got up and walked away, followed closely by Lepi. Selestine sat staring at the flames, her dinner next to her in the container. She pried the lid open, and quickly ate the meal. She put out the fire, and went to her tent, where a new bottle of pills had been waiting on the mattress.
Selestine shoved it into her bag, and lay down once more on the soft surface. Even though Lawrence said it wasn’t Eli’s fault, Selestine was once again blaming the leader of the group. She didn’t know how, but had Eli told them of what happened to Gaston before they started this expedition, they might have avoided the Pinsir attack, they might have been more careful.
She couldn’t believe that, even if only for a moment, she had thought of apologising to Eli when it was her fault all of this had happened. Selestine’s anger returned to her, and that night, her dreams were violent.
§6: The Disturbance Begins
The dirt road ended abruptly after an hour’s walk, and the group was once again in an open area. The trees stood apart, and the sky was visible, shinning a bright light onto the ground. Lepi was cradled within Eli’s arms as the researcher took the lead, scanning the area with her machine for electromagnetic energy.
She was the first to get up, and she took the opportunity to set her watch, using the sunrise as a clue; she could’ve been a few minutes off, but her timing was roughly correct. Lawrence walked right behind her, still slouching, and observing the area around him. He had barely exchanged words with Eli, much less with Selestine, who was the last in the line.
‘Is it time for lunch?’ asked Lawrence.
‘No, not yet,’ said Eli after a quick glance at her watch. ‘Just ten more minutes, and then we’ll rest!’
And silence fell over the group once more. Whatever semblance of connection the pair had had the day before seemed to be broken. As Selestine walked behind them, her mind once again raced with the thoughts of last night; that revelation only served to make her want to be the leader of the group, once again believing that they would only survive if they follow her lead.
She had once thought that she was wrong and incompetent, but after last night, she firmly believed that it was Eli’s fault for not telling them about the dangers of Mirage Forest. She had stopped taking her pills; her headache had lessened significantly since the day before, but it wasn’t gone. Two bottles, one full and one almost empty, rested in her bag. She had offered to carry the food, but Lawrence had insisted that she shouldn’t wear herself out.
‘Lunch?’ Lawrence asked once more, and Eli told him to wait again.
As they progressed, the area was starting to seem more and more like the entrance of Mirage Forest. Complete calm lingered around the forest, but no one in the group felt safe; if anything, the revelation had made them more intense. She would have offered to take the lead, but Selestine knew that the group wouldn’t listen to her yet; Lawrence still held the sense of team, while Eli was clutching Lepi to herself as close as she could.
She threw a glance at her watch, and announced that it was time for lunch, and Lawrence immediately dropped to the ground, producing three food containers from the blue bag. He was the first to start eating, and all the while Eli was watching him nervously.
‘I’m sorry I didn’t tell you,’ said Eli after they had all finished their food. ‘I should’ve told you sooner, I know. But I was under orders not to tell you! Please forgive me, you two!’
‘I have no qualms with you, it’s Larry that you should talk to,’ lied Selestine, casting a victorious glance at Lawrence.
He looked at her before directing his attention back to Eli.
‘I just think that it would have been informative, if you will,’ said Lawrence. ‘Maybe knowing that someone came into this forest, and disappeared, would have made us a little more careful.’
Selestine shifted slightly, pleased that Lawrence shared her thoughts. Eli let out a deep sigh, putting the half-finished food container on the floor for Lepi to eat.
‘Well, you know now,’ said Eli. ‘Which is more than what I’m supposed to tell you.’
‘Oh, yeah, the fact that our lives are in danger!’
‘That’s why I told you!’ shouted Eli. ‘Why can’t you just focus on the fact that I told you! It’s not like I was allowed to tell you but chose not to!’
‘Well, we’re a team,’ said Lawrence. ‘And you should’ve told us from the start!’
‘Again with that bullshit!’ Selestine almost exploded with rage. ‘We’re coworkers! This isn’t a team, Larry! It never will be a team! When will you understand that?!’
‘Oh, shut up, Sel!’ said Lawrence, standing up. ‘That’s exactly your problem! Do you even realise that this is real? We’re not in a university. You’re not on your own anymore, and you can’t hide your exam paper from us! There isn’t any benefit for being the one on top. If one of us fails, we all fail! We either get through this together or we don’t. Stop thinking you’re better than everyone else.’
Selestine wanted to respond, but no words came to her. She felt her face turning red, and her nails digging into her hand as she clenched them into fists. She got up, slung her backpack over her shoulder, and marched off.
‘Selestine, wait!’ Eli shouted after her, and soon, her hands were wrapped around Selestine’s arm. ‘You can’t go marching off to nowhere!’
Lawrence was still at the spot where they ate their food, looking intently at Selestine. She hated to think it, but there was some truth to his words. She let out a deep sigh and relaxed her body; only then did Eli feel sure enough that she let go of Selestine’s arm.
‘You won’t walk away, will you?’ said Eli in quite an uncharacteristic tone; she sounded firm.
Selestine let out another sigh. At that point, she realised that Lawrence should’ve been the assistant, and she should’ve been the fieldworker. Eli had trusted her enough to give a sterling recommendation, and Lawrence gave no objection as she ran the first day of this mission, yet she was convinced, without any evidence, that she would do a better job at this than either of them.
‘I won’t walk away,’ said Selestine, walking back towards Lawrence, Eli following her closely. ‘Okay, Larry, you’re right. I admit it, I was wrong.’
‘Does that mean we can finally work together as one?’ said Lawrence in quite a hopeful tone, obviously avoiding the word ‘Team’.
As soon as Selestine gave her one word reply, Eli threw her arms around the pair, and pulled them into a hug, squealing with delight.
‘Finally! This will be the best! We will be Team Mighty West!’ said Eli, and both Selestine and Lawrence gave a wince, followed by a forced smile. ‘It’s all water under the bridge, guys! It doesn’t matter because we have a bridge! And that’s what truly connects us!’
Eli gave a final squeeze before letting go of the pair. Lawrence rubbed his neck awkwardly, while Selestine gave a faint smile.
‘Shall we move on, then?’ said Lawrence. ‘The less time we spend in this forest, the quicker we can get out.’
‘Yeah, just grab Lepi,’ said Selestine, quite pleased with the fact that she was once again giving some orders. ‘Where do we go from here?’
‘We’re just going to keep walking, and Eli will keep doing what it is that she does,’ said Lawrence. ‘Then we’ll stop for dinner and sleep.’
Eli returned to their side after a few moments of absence with Lepi between her arms. The Pokémon had been listening to the group, and it seemed that the conversation revived his trust in Selestine, as he happily jumped onto her shoulder.
As before, silence fell over the group as they marched on through the forest, Eli tapping at her machinery, and Lawrence and Selestine following behind her. But unlike before, there was finally a sense of comfort and trust between them. Selestine flashed back to Lawrence’s words, and they were true. This wasn’t a simulation. This wasn’t an exam. From being the most confident member of the team, Selestine suddenly felt the weakest, and the most vulnerable; a sentiment that was echoed in a distant wailing.
‘What is that?’ said Eli, taking a few steps back.
‘I don’t know,’ said Selestine, having at first believed the sound to be only in her head. ‘But Lepi here is terrified.’
‘We should go investigate,’ said Lawrence. ‘You two stay right here, and I’ll check the area.’
The wailing continued; it was faint, but slowly growing.
‘It doesn’t sound human,’ said Selestine. ‘It must be another Pokémon in the forest.’
‘I don’t imagine anything being this terrified,’ said Lawrence. ‘Do you think something crossed that Pinsir’s path?’
‘Not the Pinsir again,’ said Eli. ‘For some reason, I don’t imagine he’ll run away this time…’
‘Whatever it is, it’s approaching us,’ said Lawrence. ‘Get behind me.’
‘We should’ve brought Pokémon with us…’ said Eli.
Lawrence picked up a stick off of the ground as the sound grew louder, approaching them from everywhere at first, then closing onto one direction. As it got closer, it turned from a wailing to a faint scream, and then a loud one.
‘It doesn’t sound like we’re being attacked,’ said Selestine. ‘Whatever that thing is, it’s running from something.’
The grass broke apart to reveal a small Pokémon that ran into Eli. He stumbled onto the ground, and panicking, was not able to get back up. The Pokémon was completely covered in blue vines, and the only thing beside his red feet that could be seen was the pair of frightened eyes that darted around the group. Lawrence calmed down at the sight of the Pokémon.
‘It’s just a Tangela,’ he said. ‘Nothing to be frightened of.’
‘Well, it was running from something,’ said Selestine. ‘Maybe we need to be afraid.’
Eli got down on her knees and tried comforting the Tangela, but the Pokémon appeared too frightened. It squirmed and tried to get away in vain.
‘It must be a baby,’ said Lawrence. ‘He’s so small.’
‘We’re not going to hurt you,’ said Eli. ‘Calm down and tell us what’s wrong?’
Selestine and Lawrence shared a look; did Eli honestly think that the Tangela would tell them what was wrong?
‘Here, here,’ said Eli, placing her hands around the small Pokémon and lifting him up to his feet. ‘What are you running from?’
One vine extended to grab Eli around the waist, and the other pointed the direction from which the Pokémon came. He gave a frightened squeal, and started pulling the young woman. Selestine and Lawrence wanted to protest, but Eli was too far ahead to care.
She followed the Tangela, almost running with the Pokémon had his feet not been too tiny for his run to be anything more than a fast walk. Lepi was starting to feel nervous, and Selestine could feel his shivering through her entire body. The group walked for a few minutes, led by the Tangela, before they came across a tree.
It seemed like the tallest tree in the forest, as well as the bulkiest. Its branches extended and almost looked like they were pulling the other trees into a hug. Below it was a dead body much like the Tangela, who was crying hysterically.
‘Oh no, I’m so sorry,’ said Eli, bending to hug the sobbing Tangela. ‘I’m so sorry.’
Once again, Selestine and Lawrence shared a look. It was sadness that time, as opposed to skepticism. The dead Tangela was larger in size. Her eyes were wide open, and the grass around her was red.
‘What do you think killed it?’ Selestine asked.
‘I have no idea,’ said Lawrence. ‘That Pinsir wouldn’t have left her in one piece. It must have been something else.’
‘There’s nothing we can do, anyway,’ said Selestine. ‘Let’s just go back.’
Eli shot a look towards Selestine, before going back to comfort the baby Tangela. Lawrence was studying the tree, circling the trunk, and slowly disappearing behind it.
‘I found something,’ he said. ‘Come over here.’
Upon command, Selestine circled the tree as well, and gazed upon the hole that rested in the trunk of the tree. It was at the base, and was shaped like a half circle. Some dead grass was inside, arranged into piles.
‘It must have been their home,’ said Lawrence, covering his forehead with his hand. ‘This is horrible.’
‘Yeah, it is, but we don’t have time to waste,’ said Selestine, careful to speak in whispers so that Eli won’t hear her. ‘We have to finish our section of the forest, and go back to Holon.’
‘It won’t be that simple,’ said Lawrence. ‘That Pinsir, what Eli told us, and now this? It’s not going to be easy; there are things in this forest that want to kill us.’
‘So you want us to help the Tangela?’ said Selestine. ‘It’s not going to do us any good!’
‘Sel, this isn’t a normal forest,’ said Lawrence. ‘Just look at this tree! Why would it be so expansive and large if it wasn’t because of some unnatural cause?’
‘Like the electromagnetism?’
‘I doubt that’s even possible,’ said Lawrence before thinking about it again. ‘Is it possible?’
‘Ask Eli; she’s the scientist.’
When the pair went back around the tree, they saw that Tangela had fallen asleep in Eli’s arms. Selestine tried to avert her eyes and avoid glancing at the dead body.
‘Can you check if there is any electromagnetism here?’ said Lawrence. ‘We have reason to believe there might be.’
At his words, Eli produced her machine and started tapping away at it. After a few minutes she gave a nod.
‘There is,’ said Eli. ‘How did you guess?’
‘The tree was unusually large,’ said Lawrence. ‘Electromagnetism probably caused it.’
‘That can’t be,’ said Eli. ‘Electromagnetism stunts growth in plants. That tree shouldn’t even be standing.’
‘I see,’ Selestine let out an exasperated gasp. ‘Then it would be safe to assume that the electromagnetic properties of Holon only started recently.’
‘That would be the safest bet,’ said Eli. ‘But still, it shouldn’t be this intense, this fast.’
‘Unless it’s manmade,’ said Lawrence, glancing at the Tangela. ‘After all, all electromagnetism is in some way a result of humans.’
‘That’s why Holon is researching this area,’ said Eli. ‘They want to figure out what caused the electromagnetism. But what are you two suggesting?’
‘This is just a thought,’ said Selestine. ‘But maybe Holon is responsible for this.’