I was excited to share with them that I’d just purchased a new drone. I mean, being friends with Paula and Kyle had its perks, I couldn’t count the number of times I’d been gifted with one cool tech or the other from the duo, courtesy of Skye tech. But I was especially elated at buying this drone myself.
“So I completely reconfigured the whole thing, guys. I uploaded software to Drone’s database that allows me to amplify the drone’s range and capabilities as well as also have access to any machine or tech within a seven hundred mile radius of the drone. Isn’t that great?”
“It would be. If I could speak nerd.” Kyle groaned, and Layla rolled their eyes.
It was stunning how perfect they were for each other.
“I think what Sekani is trying to say is, he has somehow managed to make his drone a hacking drone.”
“Thank you, Paula.”
Our conversation is cut short by the broadcast on TV. The newscaster was saying they were getting information that an inbound flight for Florida from New York was likely to crash with an ETA of twenty minutes to impact.
Paula froze and held my hand. Her grip was vice iron tight.
“My Dad’s on that plane.”
“Honey calm down. I’m sure it would be fine.” Layla cooed.
The reports kept coming in. Customers were on their phones, the channels changed and it was the same news everywhere. It was all live.
“Guys if the crew is not able to get control of the plane and it crashes, a lot of people are going to die.” Mike pointed out.
The restaurant was almost empty, people panicking and fleeing to save their lives.
“We need to go now!” Kyle barked.
“Forget it, Kyle, there’s nowhere to run. If that Plane crashes, wherever we are, it’s gonna hit us. The blast radius…I can’t even imagine the impact.”
“So what do we do?” Layla asked.
“We control it.”
I dig into Mike’s backpack and pull out his laptop. I place it next to my tablet.
“Paula turn the volume up. Layla, I need real-time reports of what measures are being taken to salvage this by the government.”
They did as I instructed.
“What are you doing?” Mike asked.
I click away at the keyboard, at the same time I punched in some codes on my tablet. It was my drone tab.
“Oh my God.” Kyle was dumbstruck. “He’s gonna hack the plane.”
“And guide it to the airport. Safely. Hopefully.”
“Will one drone be enough?” Paula asked as she came back to my side.
“I don’t think so, which is why I’ll need both of yours.”
Mike and Kyle were beside me in an instant.
“Our drones can’t do that crazy stuff yours can.”
A few seconds later the screen on the computer split into three, each displaying the schematics and properties of a drone.
“It can now. Guys I just uploaded the software on my private server, and I’ve linked your drones to it. All you have to do is follow my lead and race with me. Each of them has got to be above a direct point of navigation. I’ll take the cockpit; you two take the wings. Are you ready?”
They nod, but Layla stops us.
“How are you all going to see? We’ve got no VR glasses or what the heck is it called?”
“Sekani?” Paula asks.
I punch a few strokes on the keyboard, and every television in the restaurant synchronizes our drone feeds. Luckily there were three.
“Paula, you’re the quarterback.” I nod to her, and she slides into the booth and sits before my computer. The boys and I take our positions facing each television screen.
“Ok guys, let’s roll.”
We launch our drones, and in two minutes we were high up in the air, on the same trajectory as the failing plane.
“Guys you need to hurry. Satellite images report that the plane is starting to head down. I mean, beeline down. That can’t be good.” Layla called out.
We kick the speed a couple of notches, and the plane was within our sight, just a couple of feet away, and it was descending.
“Paula, get ready. Once we’re properly aligned, the system will signify. You need to punch in the code: Alphadexter845. It’ll enable the software to mirror the controls of the plane which will show on a window on the screen. Then I’ll take it from there.”
“Ok, guys you need to hurry the hell up. Ten minutes till impact. The city is already on a massive evacuation mode. And I am not going to die wearing bargain shopping mitts and my sister’s blouse that she got at Ruthers that I don’t even like.”
“Ruthers? Layla, you said it was from Dash Miami!” Paula lashed out.
“Of course I did. It’s more sophisticated.”
“Come on guys. Let’s do this. We are not the drone kids for nothing.” I cheered.
“Did he just call us kids?” Kyle asks.
“We could be dead in a few minutes, so it doesn’t matter.” Mike countered.
We were almost aligned with the diving plane.
“Five minutes guys!” Layla yelled.
I spare a look at Mike and Kyle. They return it. It was all we needed. We pushed forward and were exactly on course. The system beeped, and Paula hurriedly entered the code.
“We’re in!” I scream. “Ok guys, follow my lead.”
They nod, and I tap a few letters on my tablet, punching in a code. The screen on the television was giving us the exterior of the city from a cockpit and every other screen and monitor inside the plane.
I guide the plane back up at the exact moment of impact, and the girls cheer. Minutes later, the plane lands safely at the airport, my hands are raw from the controls, and my legs are wobbly. I stagger into Paula’s arms.
“Easy there, hero.”
“Thanks for breaking my fall.”
“You’re welcome. My Dad just called. He saw the drones. He knows.”
“So does every agency in the state. It seems they’re following the drones to our location.” Layla told Kyle.
“Well, there’s no such thing as being too famous,” Kyle smiled and ruffled his hair with his hands.
We could hear sirens and cars outside. And our drones too. They all flew in through the open window by our booth.
“Thank you. You saved my Dad. You saved them all.”
Paula hugged me, and Mike gave me a thumbs up from behind. Kyle and Layla were smiling.
I drew back and looked into her eyes.
“No Paula. We did. We saved them all.”
We walked out of the restaurant together, hand in hand, our drones hovering above us, to receive cheers and applause and the media, en masse.
It was the beginning of a new chapter in our lives.