Part of me wanted to argue with him, but I couldn’t persuade myself that it would be worth it. He could go look up information on the Xiniti if he wanted. There wasn’t much information, but you could find out that they were around.
You could even find out information about the hyperspace jumpgate if you wanted to.
There weren’t many details, but it was in Wikipedia.
Of course, it wasn’t as if we were allowed to use it. The Xiniti were there to stop us from trying, and to prevent hostile groups from coming through.
Someday we’d be allowed to use it, and then maybe familiarity would kill all the stupid conspiracy theories.
It wouldn’t happen today.
“I’m sure we’ll talk about this later,” I said.
Any chance of saying more ended with a light knock on the door.
Simultaneously Daniel and Izzy both said, “It’s Haley,” leaving me to muse on what it might be like to have better than human senses.
Izzy stepped back, and opened the door.
Haley stepped inside, followed by Courtney and Cassie.
Courtney had thrown on an over-sized Dr. Who sweatshirt and jeans. She smiled weakly as she saw me. I wasn’t sure whether that meant that she was tired or nervous.
Whatever she felt, she was here, and that’s what mattered.
I raised my hand and gave her a wave. “Hey Courtney, could you come over here?”
We had seven people in the room by then, all of us between the bunk bed, and the wall.
Courtney had to move past Haley, between Izzy and the bed, and squeeze past where Jeremy sat on the lower bunk before she could stand next to Daniel and I.
The room felt warm, and possibly even a little stuffy.
I moved, backing into my own desk, and standing between the end of the bunk and the stereo.
Daniel had backed up too, and sat on Jeremy’s desk. “Courtney, I’m Daniel. I’m a friend of Nick’s. You’ve just guessed who else I am, and you’re right. I’m a telepath.”
Courtney blushed, managing a “Hi,” and reminding me of something I normally didn’t think about. Daniel was literally tall, dark and handsome. His skin tone was naturally the color of a light tan, and his face was more on the baby-faced than square-jawed end of the “handsome” spectrum, but it got him attention.
More than he wanted, in fact.
I’d sometimes suspected that Daniel’s telepathy influenced people in some way because I’d never thought of him as that good looking. When I mentioned that to Haley, she’d told me I was “such a guy.”
Whatever that meant.
Even if telepathy didn’t have a direct effect on people’s opinions of him, it had to have an effect on his treatment of them.
When I started paying attention to what was going on, I became aware that he’d already started talking to Courtney.
He leaned forward a little, looking thoughtful.
“—I know you’ve had a rough night, but this is important. You know secrets some people would kill for. What I need is for you to hear me out—”
Then he described the block, and how it would work, answering her questions, and a few more questions from Jeremy.
A few minutes later she said, “I’ll do it. I don’t want to be the weak link that gets all of you killed.”
She glanced in Cassie’s direction.
In that moment, as much as she’d modified herself, she sounded like she had in high school.
Daniel nodded. “Great. I’d like both of you to close your eyes, and I’ll make some changes. It won’t hurt, and it’ll take less time than you think.”
They did, Courtney sitting on the bed with Jeremy—though not right next to him. She tried to sit as close to the edge as possible too.
I could understand if she didn’t want to touch his bed linens. I didn’t know how long it had been since he washed them either.
It took less than ten minutes for each of them.
I checked my alarm clock. It was five in the morning. The sun would rise in an hour, and I had class. I tried not to think about that, and hoped I wouldn’t have a quiz in anything.
We left in groups. Cassie and Courtney left for the girls side of the dorm.
Izzy, Daniel, and Haley left a little later. I left with them. I still had to get the car back to my parents, and I planned to drop Haley off while I was at it.
We didn’t say anything as we walked. After everything else that had happened, the last thing I needed was to get caught by the RA.