(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!)
Today’s selection is from WRECK OF THE NEBULA DREAM, my SFR Galaxy Award winning novel, loosely based on the Titanic, but set in the far future, on a luxury spaceliner. I’m switching off to excerpts from this book for a while, because April 14th marks the 102nd anniversary of Titanic’s tragic encounter with the ice berg, leading to the sinking.
This excerpt is from early in the cruise, the first time the Nebula Dream experiences some difficulties. We’re in the POV of Nick Jameson, the main character, a passenger aboard the ship:
Moving seamlessly from the depths of a dream into alert awareness, he came awake in the middle of the night. He lay in the center of the bed for a second, trying to assess what had changed in the environment, triggering his reflexes.
“The engines are off,” Nick realized, sitting up and throwing off the covers. He raised his voice to a conversational tone. “Ship, what happened to the engines?”
“Ship, I want to know what’s going on.” Nick strode to the direct interface console in the bulkhead, keying in a quick inquiry.
“There is nothing to be concerned about, Passenger Jameson. We apologize for disturbing your sleep. Please resume your slumbers now, with no further care.” The AI’s voice was smooth, glib as always. “Do you require a sleep inject, Passenger Jameson?”
“No, I do not.” Nick allowed his considerable annoyance to creep into his tone. “Why are the engines off?”
“Merely some required maintenance, sir.”
“Yeah, right. And I’m a Bengaz silk trader.” Nick glared at the interface. “No one does engine maintenance in the middle of the shipping lanes.”
Silence from the AI.
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 plans 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?
Audiobook, narrated by Actor Michael Riffle – Available Now at Amazon and iTunes