As he walked out, Sarah rushed to catch up with him and grabbed his arm.
"Don't do anything stupid, okay. I get off work at noon, meet me for lunch?" Sarah asked, pleadingly. Cal could tell she was worried.
"Of course. See you then, have fun at work." He said with a smile. It seemed to calm her down a bit, and she said goodbye and then went back in.
He walked to the bus stop, Josh should be getting off in about ten minutes. The sun hid behind a cloud, but it was still a pretty day out. Cal sat on the bench at the bus stop, looking at the flowers planted in the small areas of grass between the sidewalks.
The bus pulled up and stopped with a hiss, the doors opening and Josh stepping out. Cal stood up and met him.
"Hey! So who won the bet?" Josh asked him.
"Nobody, apparently." Cal said, still trying to figure out how to explain this to him.
"What do you mean? What is your element?" Josh asked him.
"I uhh... I can control the connections between atoms I guess. It's weird. I can make water into two hydrogen and an oxygen and if I have two molecules of water I can make is into a molecule of hydrogen peroxide and two hydrogen atoms, for example." Cal tried to explain.
"Dude, what the fuck? Are you serious? Like could you make a nuclear explosion?" Josh asked, looking a little scared.
"I don't know, I don't think so. So far I have just been messing with the atomic bonds I think. I am pretty sure nuclear reactions require you to do something weird with like neutrons and protons. Then again, it isn't like I am only seeing the electrons, so maybe. I really don't know, this whole thing is kind of a mess." He told Josh. "Do you mind keeping it quiet? Sarah was there for the test, but I know that she and the testers can't legally tell anyone anyway due to the privacy laws."
"Uh, yeah no problem. I don't know why you wouldn't want to tell people though, this seems pretty rad." Josh said.
"I'm just worried about what the United Elements will do about this. This is a whole new kind of element, and I think it is a very powerful one. I think I should be careful about how much I reveal. People could get resentful and I could become a lab rat." Cal said.
Johns eyes widened. "Shit. Good point."
Cal wanted to change the subject. "Sarah said that she wanted to meet us for lunch, she gets off work at noon."
John nodded. "Cool. Alright, I better get going, I have history in twenty minutes."
They said their goodbyes and went their separate ways. John didn't have any classes until four today, so he went to the library. He wanted to read up about atoms and everything as much as her could, mostly so that he wouldn't accidentally nuke anyone.
The first thing he found out was that this topic was confusing and complex. He spent two hours just trying to figure out what the differences between bonds are, and then trying to figure out if you could mess with the protons in an atom. If he could, he would be able to make new elements from other ones.
He then found out that that was the equivalent to a fusion reaction, so he was glad that he hadn't tried it. Maybe after more research.
He focused on trying to see the nodes and connections properly. He wanted to see the protons, neutrons, and electrons. It took him another hour of trying to see them from that perspective, but he eventually got it. Now he could see things in a way that made a bit more sense, he also had a fun idea.
When he exhaled, he was exhaling CO2. If he took it apart, he could release oxygen back into the air and then take the carbon for something else. He collected a bunch of carbon and put it together in a lattice shape. As he did so, it looked to anyone else like he was growing a diamond out of thin air.
Okay, this was pretty cool. He looked at the clock and saw that he had to get to lunch. He ran along to their normal spot to eat at the cafe near most of their classes.