(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 Laurel Wreath Award and 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. After a perilous trip to the ship’s hold to retrieve some critical items, they’re now (somewhere else) and getting ready to try a call for help. (Working hard to avoid giving spoilers here!) Lady Damais is an elderly member of a very advanced race who hasn’t managed to leave the Nebula Dream on a lifeboat either. Nick had met her earlier in the cruise, prior to the disaster.
…Nick prepared to carry out his attempt at communication.
Kneeling, he set the box on the deck. As soon as he locked its small grav clamps in place, a cone shape morphed silently up from the center of the black square. Nick discovered he had an interested audience. Even the Lady Damais and the children were staring at him now.
Compelled to say something, since they were all apparently transfixed by what he was doing, Nick cleared his throat. “Okay, in just a minute I’ll activate this and hook myself in. I gotta tell you, using fastlink with only a field generator screws a guy’s nervous system up pretty badly.”
“Then don’t use it,” Mara voiced her anxiety, eyes narrowed, lips compressed in a thin line. “We’ll find another way.”
Nick shook his head. “There is no other way. Not even the Lady Damais, with all her powers, can broadcast a specific evac call across the Sectors. Am I right?”
Her face serene as always, the elderly woman nodded. “You’re right, Nicholas. Even my people have our limits. I could perhaps share a sense of my own danger, of imminent peril, but nothing to solve our problem here. By the time they investigated to determine where I was, it would be far too late.”
Eyes wide, Twilka was staring at Lady Damais, mouth in an O of astonishment. “You weren’t with us on the bridge. How do you know how much trouble we’re in?”
VS sez: Lady Damais knows a lot of things…..
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?