Useful Experience

“What, you solve it?” Hubert exclaimed. He rushed over from the other side of the lab, nearly tripping over a bench. “How in the hell?”

I held up the metallic cube, which was now glowing from several surfaces. “It wasn’t really that hard. I just don’t think you-”

“No, really,” Hubert said. He reached out to touch the glowing panels, which reflected oddly in his eyes. “We have had experts analyzing this thing for over a year. And you’ve been here like five minutes.”

“Hey, it took me nearly an hour.” I said. “Don’t downplay it too much. A lot of expertise and experience went into that.” I offered up the cube for Hubert to handle, and he nearly tore it from my grasp.

“We have had world experts on this technology. Literally the top of their field. And you are a college intern. I don’t think anyone’s going to be downplaying this.” Hubert turned the cube over and over, as if merely staring would unlock the rest of the puzzle box’s secrets.

“The real puzzle will be figuring out what to do with it now,” I said. “Since it just seems to be happy sitting there and glowing.” I reached my hand under the bench for another one, similar at first glance but with an entirely different symbol structure on the surface. “Should I look at some more?”

Hubert just nodded rapidly a few times, turning away with the cube. Probably to stick it into some instrument or another. He would be having a field day with that thing for the next few weeks, most likely.

I just turned my attention to the next and started fiddling with the buttons. Hopefully, a childhood growing up with games and puzzles would assist just as much with the rest.