An Excerpt from The Tomorrow Paradox (Book Two in The Adventures of Mackenzie Mortimer):
Alex turned off his headlights, as he approached the Simulacrum Institute. He parked under a large oak tree about 50 yards from the entrance. “I’ll wait here. Don’t waste time; find Brandy and bring her to the car. I brought a more powerful version of the scrambler I gave you before; it has a wide enough range to scramble their cameras and recording devices, so we won’t be leaving behind any evidence of our visit. Be sure to wipe off any fingerprints.”
The boys nodded. They dashed from the car to the entrance of the Simulacrum Institute, stopping at its cast-iron gates. Mackenzie tugged on the gate. “That’s solid. We could climb it, but those spikes along the top look sharp as knives. One slip and we’ll be sliced open.”
“I’ve got this.” Zack pulled two hairpins from his pocket. “It’s a simple pin and tumbler lock.” Zack bent one hairpin open at a 90° angle, bit off the rubber tip, and slightly bent the end of the hairpin. He twisted the other end into a makeshift handle. Zach took the second one and bent the entire hairpin a third of the way from the top. He stuck it into the lock to use as a lever to hold down the barrel, and inserted the first hairpin above it, using it to force the movable lock pins inside the cylinder upward.
Moments later, Mackenzie heard a click and Zack gently pushed the cast-iron gate open. Mackenzie was grudgingly impressed by how easily Zack had broken into the institute, bypassing its security. “You’ve done this before, haven’t you?”
Zack’s face betrayed a coy smile. “Once or twice.” He repeated the process, picking the lock on a glass door leading to the lobby. “When I get the door open, there will probably be an infrared beam about six inches from the floor in the doorway. Make sure you step over it, otherwise it will trigger an alarm.”
“Once or twice, huh?” Mackenzie saw the beam Zack had warned him about and carefully stepped over it.
Time is running out… fortunately, Mackenzie Mortimer has a few more minutes than anyone else!