Weekend Writing Warriors Nightmares in Escape From Zulaire

better wewriwaOk, last excerpt from ESCAPE FROM ZULAIRE, must switch to Ancient Egypt next week, as the new book will be out.  This is further along in the ZULAIRE narrative, after the group has scavenged some things they need from a burned out village and, hours of marching later, set up camp on a plateau overlooking a lake. Nightmares of the events earlier in the journey keep Andi from sleeping so she’s gone to sit with Captain Deverane, who’s got the guard duty. Creative punctuation and a tiny bit of editing have occurred to meet the eight sentence rule.

Andi rewrapped her shawl more tightly as she said, “You’re surprised I’m having bad dreams after everything we saw today? What time is it?”

 Reaching over, he tucked the fabric more securely around her shoulder as he said, “Still middle of the night, I’m afraid – a long time to go until sunrise chases away the nightmares.”

“That’s what I was afraid of. I’m drowsy but scared to risk closing my eyes for more than a second. These kinds of things don’t affect soldiers, I suppose.” Leaning back, she tilted her head to look at him.

Deverane continued to gaze across the rippling water and said nothing for a long minute. When he did speak, his voice was low and measured. “I went into the military because the abuse and slaughter of innocent civilians does bother me – at least in the service, I can do something to prevent atrocities.”

I  love and appreciate your comments and feedback every week! Go here  to find all the other Weekend Writing Warriors and read  an amazing variety of  terrific excerpts…

bright color nebula

And the story blurb:

Andi Markriss hasn’t exactly enjoyed being the houseguest of the planetary high-lord, but her company sent her to represent them at a political wedding. When hotshot Sectors Special Forces Captain Tom Deverane barges in on the night of the biggest social event of the summer, Andi isn’t about to offend her high-ranking host on Deverane’s say-so—no matter how sexy he is, or how much he believes they need to leave now.

Deverane was thinking about how to spend his retirement bonus when HQ assigned him one last mission: rescue a civilian woman stranded on a planet on the verge of civil war. Someone has pulled some serious strings to get her plucked out of the hot zone. Deverane’s never met anyone so hard-headed—or so appealing. Suddenly his mission to protect this one woman has become more than just mere orders.

That mission proves more dangerous than he expected when rebel fighters attack the village and raze it to the ground. Deverane escapes with Andi, and on their hazardous journey through the wilderness, Andi finds herself fighting her uncomfortable attraction to the gallant and courageous captain. But Deverane’s not the type to settle down, and running for one’s life doesn’t leave much time to explore a romance.

Then Andi is captured by the rebel fighters, but Deverane has discovered that Zulaire’s so-called civil war is part of a terrifying alien race’s attempt to subjugate the entire Sector. If he pushes on to the capitol Andi will die. Deverane must decide whether to save the woman he loves, or sacrifice her to save Zulaire.

Amazon Best Seller ESCAPE FROM ZULAIRE is available now  on AMAZON for kindle and as POD paperback   Nook  Kobo All Romance eBooks   and iTunes      Smashwords

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41 comments on “Weekend Writing Warriors Nightmares in Escape From Zulaire

  1. Noble man.
    It will be interesting to see if events provide him the opportunity to prevent atrocities and how he handles it when the chips are down.

  2. Nice! Andi’s easy to connect with here, but her pal also shows himself to be sympathetic. He doesn’t come across as saying something just to placate her. I really like how your characters always seem realistic, no matter who they are.

  3. Your words captured me Veronica. Wonderful rich snippet. Thank you.

    I posted and forgot to sign up. So pls look at last weeks list , hit my name, move to this week and check out the further adventures of Before the Final Curtain.

  4. I’m liking this captain more and more. So many people don’t realize that soldiers aren’t battle-hardened robots. PTSD is a very real thing, and has been around for years. It’s been called by many different names, from “the thousand-yard stare” to “shellshock” to “nerves.” There’s still such a misconception about it, as though it’s a sign of weakness or an incompetent soldier, but the truth of the matter is that we are all humans, and no matter the conditioning we receive to combat it, there is only so much the human psyche can endure.

    I liked that both sides of this (the commonly held belief that soldiers don’t get affected the way civilians do, and the captain’s dismissal of this misconception) were reflected in this, and in such a simple, yet impactful way. Thank you for this great eight!

    • I don’t usually comment on a comment but, in this instance, I feel the need to…Nora really hits it. The PTSD has visited so many of our men and women that serve, whether it was from WWII or Vietnam or with Kuwait/Iran/Afghanistan. It’s real and it’s something we need to, as a Nation, address.
      You really did capture it, Veronica with the few, brief words of your character.
      Thanks for that. Sometimes I think we need to be reminded without the nationalism, without the fanfare, that war is HELL. And there isn’t a one of us that could come back from it without being affected in a major way.

      • Thank you both for the comments about PTSD, which is such an important issue for our men and women in uniform. Sadly, I do assume, projecting forward in time, soldiers of the far future will have the same or similar challenges. In my other published novel set in the Sectors, Wreck of the Nebula Dream, the hero refers to a technique his military uses to eradicate the very worst combat memories but he states that he still has nightmares about the things he’s seen, even if he can’t consciously remember them.

        Bottom line, because this is ultimately a romance novel, I don’t go too deeply into the horrors of war, or what my characters have been through. I always strive to write my military men as guys who I hope could walk into a present day bar full of SEALs or Marines or Rangers and be accepted…that they’ve “been there and done that”, paid their dues and paid the price for defending their people. Not supermen, just dedicated professionals doing the job.

        As the longtime widow of a Marine, I support the active duty military, their families and of course the veterans in any way I can.

  5. Deverane seems very honest and earthy… I’m curious how Andi reacts to his statement. 🙂 I felt her cold, too, and the fear of nightmares. Thanks for sharing! And looking forward to more Ancient Egypt next week 🙂

  6. Anyone who doesn’t have nightmares about the terrors of war has something wrong with them, probably. But I bet Deverane has experienced enough that he knows how to cope–and knowing he helped out probably lets him sleep better.

  7. I like how their vulnerability/emotion connects them in this snippet. And the physical signs of care add to it. Peaceful, but full of feelings. Nicely done!

  8. Nice excerpt. I love his last line because I think that’s true of many soldiers. They are not unaffected at all, and you’ve managed to convey that in a nice, simple way. Well written. 🙂

  9. Again, thank you to everyone for visiting the blog and commenting on the excerpt. It’s one of my favorite scenes in the novel even if we barely scratch the surface of the conversation here, in eight sentences. I’m glad my choice of snippet seems to have struck a chord today.

    • Thank you very much, I know they reviewed Warrior of the Nile and gave it four stars I believe, which was thrilling! I think the review is coming in the November issue? I only saw an advance copy of it so far, which is why I haven’t mentioned it!

  10. I really like Captain Deverane. He reminds me a bit of some action figure commercial from when I was younger, with the selling point, “They’re tough guys who are good guys.”

  11. Wonderful choice for excerpt. Veronica! I like these characters. You did a god job writing them! And, you have another 5 star review coming from me. Wonderful, just wonderful book! I’m leaving for vacation on Saturday morning, and scurrying to get things done before I go. It might take me a bit to get the review up. Its coming though. 🙂

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