(The link is here to find this week’s excerpts from novels or WIP written by Science Fiction Romance Brigade group members.)
I thought I’d keep going a bit longer with excerpts from my 2013 SFR Galaxy Award winning novel WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM, which is a loose retelling of the Titanic sinking, set in the far future on a spaceliner. Nick Jameson, Sector Special Forces operator, has been awakened in the middle of the night, thrown from his bed by some violent maneuver of the SMT Nebula Dream, which now seems badly damaged. Crew members are nowhere to be seen. He’s gotten a lifeboat loaded with passengers…then he and fellow passengers Mara and Khevan have gone to see if they can rescue some children trapped in a cabin near Mara’s. She’s an interstellar businesswoman, shipping cargo on the Nebula Dream. Khevan is a D’nvannae Brother (think sexy assassin/bodyguard/serves an alien goddess) returning home from an assignment:
Nick and Khevan managed to move some of the lightweight panels out of the way, only to be faced with a tangled pile of circuitry, luggage, clothes and, finally, when they dug far enough, the door to the bathroom, which had been blown inward and warped to block the entrance to the children’s room.
“Paolo, are you okay?” Mara called, as Nick and Khevan took a break to assess the best way to proceed.
“Yes.” There was a pause. “But Mommy’s not awake yet. Gianna’s frightened.”
“Well, she’s a very little girl,” Mara reminded the boy soothingly, exchanging glances with Nick and Khevan. “She’s lucky to have a big brother like you.”
“Did you – did you see my dad anywhere?”
Mara sighed. Taking a deep breath, she answered cheerfully, even while making a sad-faced grimace to Nick. “No, sweetheart, I didn’t find him, but I’ve got the next best thing out here – a Special Forces captain and a D’nvannae Brother. Exactly like in an adventure holo, you know? They came for you and Gianna.”
“And Mommy.” The boy’s voice wavered.
Hand to her mouth, Mara nodded. “Yes, they’re here to help your mother, too.”
Here’s the story:
Traveling unexpectedly aboard the luxury liner Nebula Dream on its maiden voyage across the galaxy, Sectors Special Forces Captain Nick Jameson is ready for ten relaxing days, and hoping to forget his last disastrous mission behind enemy lines. He figures he’ll gamble at the casino, take in the shows, maybe even have a shipboard fling with Mara Lyrae, the beautiful but reserved businesswoman he meets. All his vaporize when the ship suffers a wreck of Titanic proportions. Captain and crew abandon ship, leaving the 8000 passengers stranded without enough lifeboats and drifting unarmed in enemy territory. Aided by Mara, Nick must find a way off the doomed ship for himself and several other innocent people before deadly enemy forces reach them or the ship’s malfunctioning engines finish ticking down to self destruction.
But can Nick conquer the demons from his past that tell him he’ll fail these innocent people just as he failed to save his Special Forces team? Will he outpace his own doubts to win this vital race against time?