(The link is here to find this week’s excerpts from novels or WIP written by other Science Fiction Romance Brigade group members. A fun way to sample new books!)
Here’s the next excerpt from my 2013 SFR Galaxy Award winning WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM. The small party of survivors has discovered some really bad things about events surrounding the wreck and are now in the cargo hold, searching for something they need for their escape attempt. (Trying very hard to avoid giving spoilers here!) We’re in the hero, Nick Jameson’s POV. He looks up from his labors to find Mara staring at him. I’ve done a bit of editing:
He paused, wiping his own brow. The air isn’t circulating any too efficiently here on Level Ten. “What?”
“I wish we’d had dinner,” she answered simply.
“But you had another date that evening.”
“No, a previous engagement.” She corrected him crisply. “It was a business dinner. I was fact-finding a deal, discussing the possibility of Loxton doing some work for a major manufacturing company in Sector Fourteen. A working dinner with their vice presidents of logistics and manufacturing.”
“A business dinner wearing a strapless blue dress?” Nick said, before he could stop himself.
She sighed, tapping her toe on the deck. “Jealous, much? No, it was a business dinner, Nick. In one of the Dream’s conference rooms, not my cabin or theirs. We had the basics of the contract worked out, in fact.” Biting her lip, she rolled her eyes. “Why am I explaining this to you?”
“I’m not sure.” He stood for a moment, staring at her until she turned her head, making a show of sifting through more debris. Where is this conversation going? I know where I’d take it if we weren’t on a dying ship, trying to save our skins. Why couldn’t I have met her in another time and place?
He thought maybe she blushed. She laughed again, but somewhat ruefully. “I left the working documents and all my equipment in my cabin on Level Two. Shut the door and walked away. Not important in the grand scale of things tonight.”
“Well, I’m glad to hear someone in this group has their priorities straight,” Nick said. “Unlike Twilka and her jewelry box hunt.”
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?