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Stories from the Verse
In Verse Proportion
Chapter 17: Slade 173
Table of Contents
Previous chapter: Kondor 177
That afternoon the teaching assistant came to the Slade’s apartment with someone she introduced as a professor from the physical sciences department. Slade’s attempt to establish a language link with the assistant failed, but Shella succeeded and so acted as translator for the session. This made the communication more difficult, but it also enabled Slade to learn a few words in the process, which he repeated several times to ensure he had them right.
They had developed electrical generators and motors, which would certainly help. They had a battery which Slade decided was probably a rechargeable lead-acid battery of the sort with which he was familiar.
He suggested that there were at least three things he could create in the relatively short term. The easiest would be a device that carried sound through electrical wires and reproduced it at the other end. It would probably also be possible to create a glass globe that used electricity to produce light. The third would be the most complicated, but with a lot of work in several areas they could build a motor that converted a liquid fuel directly into rotary motion, small enough and powerful enough to drive a vehicle.
What he requested in return was that he get royalties on these inventions. The professor said that once they had a functional diagram, or better, a working model, he could probably get a patent, and license it. But they would probably want to talk with someone from the legal department about that.
The teaching assistant said that the legal department would have someone available in the morning.
The physical sciences professor was very excited at the ideas Slade had suggested, and particularly what Shella was calling the “explosion inside motor”, as she didn’t really understand it, either. Slade said that was a great idea to work toward, but it was going to require so many individual functioning parts that they should probably start with something simpler, and once they had an income stream and a proven track record they could work on putting together the parts for the engine.
They had dinner together, and again Slade slept on the floor of the small apartment.
There is a behind-the-writings look at the thoughts, influences, and ideas of this chapter, along with twenty other sequential chapters of this novel, in mark Joseph "young" web log entry #432: Whole New Worlds. Given a moment, this link should take you directly to the section relevant to this chapter. It may contain spoilers of upcoming chapters.
As to the old stories that have long been here: