“I have two years worth of allowance to spend.”
Unlike his brother, Grayson had never spent much time or energy on accumulating money. He had always found his (not insubstantial) allowance to be plenty for him to buy the various materials and simple instruments, and although his parents did supply him with an allowance during term, he usually wound up spending most of it over the summer, usually on things that he didn’t bring to RMI with him. Now that he thought about it though, he suspected he probably could ask his father a few things about finance and make himself a bit of money to spend on some more sophisticated things. He’d store that away for a bit later, though.
Elliot was asking Grayson where he wanted to go first though, even though he had most certainly not found a map of Pearl Street Mall in the past fifteen seconds. Grayson assumed this meant Elliot had either discarded or postponed his plans for a speedrun of the mall, which meant they could approach the trip (tomorrow!) much more casually. Elliot often shifted details implicitly like this, and over the past two years Grayson had gotten pretty good at following along. He even admired Elliot’s ability to do this. Grayson could not get his own brain to work that way.
Grayson also found himself surprisingly pleased that they could explore Pearl street with Elliot (tomorrow!) more casually than a finely coordinated speedrun (although that did still sound fun). A small part of Elliot’s mind tried to point out the frequency with which he was experiencing unexpected personal reactions relating to Elliot and urged him to examine that phenomenon, but Elliot decided, rather uncharacteristically for him (which only added to the pile, hm) to ignore that particular revelation for now. He would have to consider talking to Hunter about it, which would have to be done very carefully. Grayson was learning that although Hunter often had valuable experience to share, he should not attempt to emulate the results. His interest was typically… different than his older brother’s.
After all of this, Grayson finally brought his mind around to the question of where he wanted to go first. Another small part of his mind (different from the previous small part, though nearby) suggested that the answer to the question was “their room”, but Grayson pushed that reaction aside (though only with a very great deal of effort, hm). Instead he dragged his mind towards a hypothesis that he’d been chewing on since he first arrived at RMI two years ago.
Electronics did not work at RMI without some specific (but unspecified, hm) magical intervention. Grayson knew electromagnetic pulses could disable electronics, although he’d never actually tried it himself. That would probably have to wait until Grayson was back home. Maybe he’d invite Elliot over? (This thought sent Grayson’s mind into another brief tailspin, from which he once again had to recover. Grayson was going to have to figure out some solution to this.) But he didn’t want to wait that long before exploring the phenomenon, and he could only really test it at RMI anyway.
Electromagnetic pulses could be blocked by Faraday shields. Faraday shields could be built out of any conductive material and (optionally, although it would be easier) any insulator. Aluminum foil is cheap and conductive, and balsa wood is cheap and a decent insulator. They could build a small Faraday chamber and test an unmodified, cheap electronic device to see if it would work.
Almost none of which they would actually be able to get at Pearl street, hm. Reviewing the list of places again in his head Grayson realized it was mostly restaurants and speciality shops. There was no hardware store or grocery store or general electronics store or even a convenience store. Which was… inconvenient.
He was still excited to try out this project with Elliot, he’d just have to get ahold of the materials some other way. Which still left the question of where he wanted to go first. At this point a couple of seconds had passed in real life and Grayson panicked mildly, not wanting to look externally as though the question were a difficult one.
“Dunno,” he finally said, wincing internally. That was… very out of character for him, but it would do for now. “We could just walk around and see what grabs our attention?”