Stronger Than Dirt
Since returning to from their trans-global undertaking, Constance must indoctrinate Ace in the ways of The Libby Affair, Chicago style. This means he must be taken on an introductory tour, beginning with the subject and the subject’s subject.
Willard Libby is both grateful and gracious in Constance’s presence and he gladly does a breakdown of his research for the newcomer. He covers things that Constance could only skim through in the course of their travels. He lays out the cold hard facts concerning the real age of mankind and its connection to carbon dating.
“Originally, I found evidence that science could not accurately formulate the age of the universe, or even the planet; which is true but we have had to modify that, because of certain Creation facts. Currently, I am prepared to put the earliest existence of life on Earth at 20,000 B.C.”
“That’s not what I’ve been taught,” comments Ace.
“No it is not, but every day, all around the world, in 100 languages children are reading that mans’ ancestors began emerging a million years ago. That is hogwash.”
“Well I am not going to argue the point. Too many good people support you.”
Libby grabs Martin Kamen by the shoulder, “Like this guy!” The time they have spent in sequestered isolation has created an unbreakable bond between them. If it had not been for Martin’s proactive pursuit of independent investigation, Willard Libby may well have withered into hopeless obscurity.
“And how about that girl of yours; she has been a real treat.”
“Like cotton candy in a cavity,” Ace attempts to head off her reaction to the scientist’s possessive pronoun.
Too late, “I belong to no one, certainly not to someone who disrespects me.”
“Hey kids, it is my fault for making a false assumption. But I would be thrilled for you Connie, if it were true.”
She softens her knee-jerk reaction, “Ace and I have had some good times.”
“Then let’s raise a toast to more good times,” the sound of clanking glasses to the brim with Italian Nebbiolo fills the University basement hideaway.
“To good times,” Martin, Constance and Ace respond in unison. The newcomer is blending in quite well; the men are taken by his dynamic presence.
“Ace: That is quite a name. Is that your given name, inquiring scientists need to know?
“No my mother named me Ajax Aidan Bannion. Can you blame me for changing it?”
“Did she name you after the muscular mythical hero of the Trojan war,” educated people ask smart questions?
“No, mom was a big fan of that new cleanser AJAX.”
“STRONGER THAN DIRT!!!!!!” Constance makes an arm muscle, while singing the familiar advertising slogan. “Hey buddy, you really did need another syllable anyway; ‘Ajax Bannion, he can clean up the mess you make’.
“Boy, I am going to regret letting that cat out of the bag,” he takes it like a man. “But can we not use that name in public?”
“Sure, but if you misbehave I’m going to say, ‘Ajax Aidan Bannion stop what you are doing.”
His secret is safe.
“You really didn’t think that “Ace” Bannion was his given name did you. A friend of mine said it sounds like Ace Bandage (chuckle). To have your Mother name you after a cleaning product is so 20th Century.
“I really modeled him after Roger “Race” Bannon from the JONNY QUEST television cartoon from the 1960s.”