Mistakes Made: Act 1, Scene 3
Arly proved to be a determined young woman when she had her mind set on something, which Kyran and Tom came to learn in the days following the trial’s conclusion. Every day, they found her in the courtyard researching the newest update in the case. They appreciated that Arly did not seem interested in dragging them into the mess with her. Instead, they focused on the impact that the trial had on Benny. He withdrew from their little group and missed two class periods in the past week, but the professor didn’t seem to care much. Some of the class reported her to the department’s head with little success.
The department claimed there was nothing they could do. Every professor had the right to teach the class in whatever manner they wanted. Without Benny, there was no evidence that the professor had offended him or went too far. This was just another injustice that Arly found herself worrying over in every spare moment she was granted. It was not fair that Benny took the blame from their professor. However, during lunch at a nearby cafe, Tom made her promise to stay off the soap box about it.
“Do you think Benny is coming to class today?” Kyran questioned between bites of an overpriced and unappetizing sandwich. He hated this cafe, but it was better than anything they served on the campus itself. “He needs to come back eventually.”
Tom shrugged. He was too focused on his computer to really care about their conversation. “Supposedly, he has the flu.”
It was too early for the flu to be an actual problem, so Arly recognized a cheap excuse to miss class when she saw one. She hated this helpless feeling that surrounded her every time she considered what Johnson United Manufacturing did to those people and what Dr. Roswell did to Benny because of his relation to the CEO. She hated bullies and made a point: “It isn’t right. He shouldn’t have to deal with Roswell’s shit.”
“There’s not a lot you or me or anyone can do. She’s tenured. Unless she really screws up, Benny’s stuck with her,” Kyran told her. He wiped his hands clean before looking back to the young woman. She did not seem impressed with what he had to say. He hated it as much as she did, but there was only so much anyone could do. “I thought you were leaving your soap box at the dorms.”
Arly grumbled under her breath as she looked between the two men. How was anyone supposed to make a difference when everyone stood in their way? She waited for Tom to chime in and remind her that she did promise they could have a normal lunch, but he was still too focused on his computer screen. Briefly distracted for the moment, she peered over his shoulder to glimpse complex coding work that he was doing for some extra money.
He hadn’t been listening to their conversation at all, which didn’t really surprise Arly much. However, seeing the ease at which he did the work made her curious. Maybe there was something that they could do to make things right after all. “How long have you been coding, Tom?”
Tom blinked when he heard his name, recognizing that Arly was saying something to him, and he didn’t hear it. His dumbfounded look made her repeat the question while Kyran chuckled. It was always nice to see someone under Arly’s determined gaze. “Middle school, I guess. It’s something to keep me occupied,” Tom explained cautiously. He did not share that fact about himself often and wondered why it mattered to her.
However, Arly offered no explanation as she started considering the skills between them. Tom had experience in computer coding, which would almost certainly be transferable to a security system, no matter how complex. Kyran looked strong and spent several years volunteering with the Peace Corps, which meant that he was strong. She could offer several long years of gymnastics. Together, Arly could build a passable heist team if she wanted to give her idea any serious thought. Of course, who on Earth would be crazy enough to steal money from Johnson United Manufacturing?