Chapter 23

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EJ tried to smile naturally up at the camera monitoring the cell he'd been locked in.  Or at least he did until it occurred to him that smiling may not be the facial expression of choice for the newly captured leader of an invaded country.  He decided to go for statesman-like instead, and frowned up at the camera with what he imagined was gracious dignity and heroic defiance.  He even threw in his new arched eyebrow trick, as this PM guy had great eyebrows.  But then he started to worry that if he looked too defiant, the Rigellians might come and try to inflict bodily harm on him, which given his lack of a body, would probably give the game away.  This left the option of abject submission, so he tried that for a while but then decided that he didn't want to give the Rigellians the impression that humans were wimps, given that he practically was one by now.  A human that is, not a wimp.  So he settled for stoic acceptance.  With a just a hint of sexy thrown in.

The Rigellian monitoring the feed coming from the camera watched this rapid succession of facial expressions and wondered briefly whether the Australian prime minister was having a seizure.  And when the image of the PM started to flicker a little, he tapped his screen a few times and made a mental note to ask a technician to have a look at it.  Then he went back to browsing the latest issue of Which Hat.

  Then he went back to browsing the latest issue of Which Hat

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Mel and Cora stood in the rain and got wet.  They looked around the desolate, usually dry, but now thoroughly drenched landscape.  They looked at each other.  They got wetter.

"Any ideas?" said Mel.

"What's that?" replied Cora.

"Any ideas?" repeated Mel, raising her voice to be heard over the rain.

"Um.  I guess we just wander around and see if we can find an entrance.  Marilyn said her sensors indicate we're right on top of the bunker, so there must be a door somewhere."

"Right.  You go that way and I'll go this way."

After five minutes of fruitless trudging and further drenching, they reconvened where they'd started.

"Any luck?" shouted Cora.

"Nope.  You?"

Cora shook her head.  They stood in silent, soggy contemplation for a few seconds.

"Hey!" exclaimed Mel, excitedly.  "Maybe we've got X-ray vision now.  Let's try to see through the ground and into the bunker!"

Cora looked dubious, but shrugged and started staring at the ground.  Why not? she thought.

Thirty seconds, several drowned ants and an amorous frog later, they discovered they didn't have X-ray vision.

"Well, this sucks," announced Mel.  "What the hell are the use of superpowers if we can't even find a stinking hole in the ground?"

Cora smiled mischieviously at her.  "Maybe you can punch your way in."  The look on Mel's face instantly convinced her that this had been entirely unwise thing to say.

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