Here’s the link to the Weekend Writing Warriors central page, so you can visit all the
participants sharing excerpts today…a fun way to sample new books and find new authors! (Also welcome to the Sunday Snippet visitors!)
I’m sharing a snippet from an older book, Misson to Mahjundar today as it’s on sale for $.99 on into July. I decided to share a bit more from it because my new book just came back from the Editor and I have some serious work to do on it. Not quite ready to start sharing.
Continuing on where I left off last week, after Shalira and Johnny escape the room with the giant statue of the alien god and the hypnotic voices…(apologies for the ‘interesting’ punctuation to meet the rules here). Slightly edited from published version. The Mawreg are the alien empire bent on totally eradicating humanity and the statue of the god here resembled a Mawreg closely enough to trigger a bad flashback for Johnny, which is why he was so easily mesmerized in the last snippet.
Once she knew she was out of the chamber, and the pull of the voices lessened, Shalira opened her eyes, and she and Johnny leaned side-by-side on the wall for a moment. Sweat was pouring off the sergeant and his hands were shaking.
“Are you all right?”
Cradling his blaster as if to anchor himself in reality, he nodded, swallowing hard, “Thanks – I owe you one.”
“I owe you more than one,” she answered, “Let there be no accounting between us.”
“The Mawreg held me prisoner briefly, initiated their interrogation, not long enough to do real damage. Mike and a squad of operators rescued me, took down the base.” He leaned his head back, closing his eyes, “It’s a hard thing to get over – I’ve had all the standard military treatment, but I still have nightmares sometimes, which is the real reason Mike and I are retiring – I can’t do the job any more.”
“You appear to be doing all right to me,” Shalira said, “I know what it’s like to have screaming nightmares, to not be able to remember what was done to you but knowing it was bad. You don’t owe me any explanations – the important thing is to keep going, and I have a feeling we’re both accomplished at that.”
An attempted assassination left Princess Shalira blind as a child and, now that she’s of marriageable age, her prospects are not good because of her disability. She’s resigned herself to an arranged marriage rather than face life under the thumb of her cold stepmother. But then she meets Mike Varone, a Sectors Special Forces officer sent to Mahjundar by the intergalactic government to retrieve a ship lost in her planet’s mountains. After Mike saves Shalira from another assassination attempt, she arranges for him to escort her across the planet to her future husband. She’s already falling hard for the deadly offworlder and knows she should deny herself the temptation he represents, but taking Mike along to protect her is the only way she’ll live long enough to escape her ruthless stepmother.
Mike, for his part, resists his growing attraction to the princess; he has a mission on this planet and rescuing the vulnerable but brave princess isn’t it. No matter how much he wishes it could be.
But what should have been an easy trek through Mahjundar’s peaceful lands swiftly turns into an ambush with danger around every turn. Shalira’s marriage begins to seem less like an arranged union and more like yet another planned assassination. The more they work together to survive, the harder it becomes to stop themselves from falling in love. Caught in a race against time, can they escape the hostile forces hunting them and make it off the planet?
A 2015 SFR Galaxy Award Winner