Keep Going Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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.”

The story:

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

Buy Links:

Amazon     Barnes & Noble   iTunes      KOBO

canva 99cent sale

Voices in Her Mind Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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 in a big scifi promo (on into July). The heroine Shalira and Johnny, a secondary character, are trying to escape a local temple when they find themselves in the inner sanctum. A reader recently told me the later scenes in the book involving the god Tlazomiccuhtli “seemed almost Lovecraftian” to him (WOW!!! what a compliment), so it was on my mind. I’ll excerpt something else, newer, next week. Edited from the published version.

Johnny seemed locked into position, literally transfixed, either by the dark powers Tlazomiccuhtli wielded or his own memories, or both. Frantic with the need to move, Shalira tugged harder on the paralyzed Johnny but couldn’t rouse him from the trance or traumatic state he was in. Unblinking, he stared straight at the effigy, his body rigid.

Dizziness was overtaking her senses, whether from the smoke or the influence of Tlazomiccuhtli she wasn’t sure. Reaching a decision, she closed her eyes and took off her protective amulet. The end of the chain slipped from her fingers as if pulled and she heard the locket clatter onto the stone floor. Kneeling, Shalira swept the floor with her hands. Frustrated, she risked opening one eye and immediately felt the pull to turn toward Tlazomiccuhtli and worship him. Fortunately she caught a glimpse of her locket, shining with a pale green glow, half-hidden under a table supporting a cage of hissing snakes. Forcing herself to move away from the statue, praying the snakes couldn’t escape the enclosure, she crawled to retrieve the locket and brought it back to Johnny. As soon as she fastened the chain around his neck, he jerked and blinked, rubbing his forehead.

 

She led him out of the chamber, counting the steps and listening to the echoes, although it was hard to hear over the voices in her head, calling her to return to Tlazomiccuhtli’s embrace.

MissionToM2-FJM_High_Res_1800x2700 (2)The story:

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

Buy Links for my book:

Amazon     Barnes & Noble   iTunes      KOBO

THE PROMO:

sf&f promo JULY2017

http://pattyjansen.com/promo/ 

Not Her Name Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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!)

Since I forgot to mention last week that I was done with excerpts from Star Cruise: Stowaway, here’s one more after all. I’ve skipped over quite a bit of drama with saving Tyrelle’s life right after Owen finds her. Next day Owen goes to visit her in sickbay, with the pets keeping her company. It’s a relatively peaceful moment before things heat up again as both the crime syndicate and the rather ruthless Sectors authorities come after Tyrelle, the stowaway. Next week, I’ll excerpt something else.

moby_and_midorri_pets_in-space_artwork_nyssa_juneauMidorri chirruped and slithered to the floor, going to the portal, where she scratched at the door with two of her six feet.

Owen rose to let her out.

Moby promptly entered, jumping to the bed and rubbing Tyrelle’s face, arching her spine and purring loudly.

“When one leaves, the other arrives. You’re the keeper of the animals?” she asked.

“Moby’s mine –  I rescued her from kids in a rough port town as a kitten a few years ago and brought her with me to the Zephyr. Midorri belongs to the entire ship, but she spends a lot of time in the cargo bay, with Moby, hunting vermin.” He sat, trapped in the small chair, “The Zephyr’s not  infested or anything, we run a tight ship, but there’s always a few space rats.” I can’t believe I’m talking to this beautiful woman about rats.

She laughed, scratching under Moby’s chin for a moment and staring into the cat’s green eyes, “Yes, this one likes you very much and the name you gifted her. Midorri is not the other one’s name, you know, but she told me she doesn’t mind answering to it.”

stowawayThe story:

I’m really excited to release three Sectors stories that have only been available previously in anthologies, none of which are available currently. I’ve bundled them ALL into one book with the lengthy title STAR CRUISE A NOVELLA: STOWAWAY WITH RESCUE AND GOLDEN TOKEN SHORT STORIES.

Here are the story descriptions:

Star Cruise: Stowaway: A novella of 22K words, previously in the ‘Pets In Space’ anthology.
Cargo Master Owen Embersson is shocked when the Nebula Zephyr’s ship’s cat and her alien sidekick, Midorri, alert him to the presence of a stowaway. He has no idea of the dangerous complications to come nor does he anticipate falling hard for the woman whose life he now holds in his hands. Life aboard the Nebula Zephyr has just become more interesting – and deadly.

Star Cruise: Rescue: A short story of 9K words, previously in the ‘Romancing the Stars’ anthology.
When a shore leave excursion goes terribly wrong for Mira Gage, a member of the Nebula Zephyr’s crew, Security Officer Clint Miltan races the clock to find her before the ship leaves orbit and abandons Mira to her fate. Clint’s got more than a professional interest in Mira, but will he be able to save her from the aliens holding her prisoner?

The Golden Token: A short story of 13K words, previously in the limited edition ‘Dealer’s Choice’ paperback anthology handed out at the 2016 RT Booklovers Convention Interstellar Bar & Grille event.
Sectors Special Forces operator Charlie McBrire had a few days to kill on a layover at Space Station 47. He never expected to find himself in the middle of a miners’ rebellion, fighting to save the life of a casino dancer he just met but can’t imagine living without.

Amazon    iBooks    B&N     Kobo

 

If I Could Call the Red Lady Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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 continuing on with my latest release, Star Survivor for another week or two. I’ll have a new release soon! (Blurb for Star Survivor below the excerpt.) Twilka and Khevan are on the run, trying to evade other assassins, since the Red Lady has a kill order out on Twilka. The couple are in a bad area of town, waiting for their friend Nick to arrive. Khevan continues to make light of his wound while Twilka worries.

“I’ll be fine – if I could call upon the Red Lady, I’d have been healed already.”

“Right, she’s the answer to all your problems. Except when she’s not. Or when she tries to kill you. But you persist in running back.” The room featured only a bed and the bare essentials of a bathroom behind a sliding panel. After discarding the bloody towel in the bathroom, Twilka picked a spot further down the wall from where he lay on the bed, sat on the floor, and pulled out her AI, reviewing her designs to take her mind off the situation.

“Pretty,” he said a few minutes later, “With an edge. They all remind me of you.”

She whisked the designs out of view, into the file, and set the AI aside. “You’re a fashion critic now?”

So excited, got a great review for the book from Dear Author!  SQUEE!

My new book is still with my editor so I’m not sure what I’ll excerpt next week. We’re going to start running into serious spoilers if I go too much further into Star Survivor. But we’ll see.

Star Survivor by Veronica ScottThe story:

The survivors of a terrible wreck meet again—but this time only one can survive.

They survived an iconic spaceship wreck together. She never expected to see him again … especially not armed to kill her.

Twilka Zabour is an interstellar celebrity. She built on her notoriety as a carefree Socialite who survived the terrible wreck of the Nebula Dream, and launched a successful design house. But now the man who gave meaning to her life, then left her, is back–this time for the worst of reasons. Will he kill her … or help her survive?

D’nvannae Brother Khevan survived the Nebula Dream in the company of a lovely, warm woman, only to be pulled away from her, back into his solitary life in the service of the Red Lady.  Now Twilka’s within his reach again–for all the wrong reasons. Khevan will do everything within his power to discover why Twilka has been targeted for assassination, and to save her.

But Khevan is not Twilka’s only pursuer. Will allies Nick and Mara Jameson arrive in time to aid the couple, or will Khevan and Twilka’s ingenuity be all that stands between them and death?

iBooks      Amazon    Kobo       Barnes & Noble

 

 

A Poisoned Blade? Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revised(If you’re here for the SFR Brigade Presents excerpt, please go HERE.)

Some fun awards news below the excerpt….

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 continuing on with my latest release, Star Survivor for another week or two. I’ll have a new release soon! (Blurb for Star Survivor below the excerpt.) Twilka and Khevan are on the run, trying to evade other assassins, since the Red Lady has a kill order out on Twilka. The couple are in a bad area of town, waiting for their friend Nick to arrive. Khevan has been talking to another D’nvannae Brother  while Twilka watches suspiciously from close by. The two men get into a knife fight, which Twilka breaks up, but Khevan is wounded. He says it’s a mere scratch. (Edited a bit from published version and some repunctuating):

He assessed the surrounding area, “We must go deeper into the slum, then obtain an automated rent-by-the-hour room and stay there for the night. I have fake ID we can use to secure the room.”

Arm in arm as if they were lovers, she and Khevan strolled through the trash-filled streets, rejecting the first few rent-a-room places before Twilka decided enough was enough and booked a chamber with his fake ID. The robo clerk delivered a card key and she led Khevan to the designated unit, breathing a deep sigh of relief as the door closed behind them and they were out of the public eye.

“Let me see your injury,” she said, as he sank onto the none too generous bed.

The slash looked dangerous to her, the edges red and puffy, “Do D’nvannae ever coat their blades with poison?” She asked the question over her shoulder as she went into the tiny bathroom to search for something to wash the wound with.

“A treachery against our code of honor – such an act would only be done at the Lady’s express command, and the Brother I met in the street wasn’t part of a compliance squad sent by her. I taught his class at the local temple in the afternoon before the kill order arrived, so he recognized me,” Khevan removed his shirt as she approached with cloths, “I think he overestimated his own abilities and hoped to earn renown by being the one to turn me in – a smarter move would have been to stay out of sight, call for assistance, and attempt to follow us.”

Star Survivor by Veronica ScottThe story:

The survivors of a terrible wreck meet again—but this time only one can survive.

They survived an iconic spaceship wreck together. She never expected to see him again … especially not armed to kill her.

Twilka Zabour is an interstellar celebrity. She built on her notoriety as a carefree Socialite who survived the terrible wreck of the Nebula Dream, and launched a successful design house. But now the man who gave meaning to her life, then left her, is back–this time for the worst of reasons. Will he kill her … or help her survive?

D’nvannae Brother Khevan survived the Nebula Dream in the company of a lovely, warm woman, only to be pulled away from her, back into his solitary life in the service of the Red Lady.  Now Twilka’s within his reach again–for all the wrong reasons. Khevan will do everything within his power to discover why Twilka has been targeted for assassination, and to save her.

But Khevan is not Twilka’s only pursuer. Will allies Nick and Mara Jameson arrive in time to aid the couple, or will Khevan and Twilka’s ingenuity be all that stands between them and death?

iBooks      Amazon    Kobo       Barnes & Noble

And in other news, the SFR Galaxy Awards were announced this week (I’m squeeing because Star Cruise Outbreak got two awards and Hostage to the Stars got one, plus the Pets In Space anthology got two.)! Be sure to take a moment or two to check out all the listed books! Lots of great reads by excellent authors…

sfr-galay-award-2016

 

I’m Here To Get You Out Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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 excerpting Hostage To The Stars, which was released in June. Edited from published version. This is the last excerpt (the book is available, the author said with a smile) as next week I need to move on to snippets from Star Cruise: Stowaway, my story in the upcoming Pets In Space anthology, out October 11th.

I thought I should end by giving you the first meeting between Johnny and the woman he’s determined to rescue. (And yes, the much reviled Captain Scortun and the military shuttle are long gone but Johnny has a plan – of course! The challenges of escaping the planet together and in one piece fill the rest of the book LOL.) He’s found Sara at the warlord’s small spaceport, awaiting delivery to the Shemdylann who are alien pirates and slavers. She’s been held captive close to two months.

The interior of the dimly lit building was mostly taken up with a large holding cell, currently caging only one occupant. Staring at him wide eyed, a gaunt woman in ragged clothing was rising from the floor, bracing herself on the wall. Chains at her ankles clinked as she moved.

He held one finger to his lips and moved to the door of the cell, blasting it open with a single low intensity pulse from his blaster, “Sara Bridges?”

Hands to her mouth, eyes wide, she gave him a jerky nod.

“I’m here to get you out, Ms. Bridges, Sectors Special Forces.”

He thought she might collapse but instead she straightened her spine with an effort. Moistening her cracked lips with her tongue, she stared at him, tears in her eyes, but said nothing until he removed the chains with care.

“We’re going out the back, into the hills – can you walk?”

Swallowing hard, closing her eyes, Sara whispered, “Yes.”

Hostage ToTheStarsFinal-FJM_High_Res_1800x2700The story:

He rescued her from space pirates … but can he keep them both safe from the far greater evil stalking a deserted planet?

Space travel without Kidnap & Ransom insurance? Not a good idea. University instructor and researcher Sara Bridges can’t afford it, so when pirates board her cruise liner, she’s taken captive along with the mistress of a wealthy man, and brought to a deserted planet. When a military extraction team sent to rescue the mistress refuses to take Sara too, she’s left to the mercies of a retired Special Forces soldier, along as consultant.

Reluctantly reactivated and coerced into signing up for the rescue operation to the planet Farduccir where he once was deployed,  Sgt. Johnny Danver just wants to get the job done. But when the team leader leaves one captured woman behind, he breaks away to rescue her himself.

As Johnny and Sara traverse the barren landscape, heading for an abandoned base where they hope to call Sectors Command for help, they find villages destroyed by battle and stripped of all inhabitants. A lone survivor tells a horrific tale of the Sectors’ alien enemy, the Mawreg, returning after being pushed out …

Searching for evidence to give the military, Johnny is captured. He regains consciousness in a Mawreg cage–with Sara next to him. Death is preferable to what the aliens will do to them… And even if they do escape their captors, can they alert the military in time to prevent another invasion of the Sectors?

Buy Links:     Amazon    Kobo     Apple iBooks     Barnes & Noble

We Don’t Leave People Behind Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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 excerpting Hostage To The Stars, which was released in June. Edited from published version. I’ll do one more snippet from it next week, probably Johnny’s first meeting with Sara, and then move on.

Since so many people were concerned what Johnny would do next, once he learned of the existence of the other kidnap victim, he guides the squad of soldiers he’s with, and Ms. Immer safely to the pickup point in the hills, which was his formal assignment. Then he goes to find everyone’s most hated captain. Here’s that snippet.

  “Just fyi, I’m goin’ for the other woman,” Johnny said.

                “Who the hell do you think you are, sergeant? You don’t get to change mission parameters to suit yourself – I don’t care if you’re in the goddamn Special Forces or not, I gave you a direct order. We’re not going after any other civilians this trip.”

                “No, you’re not, I see that,” Johnny couldn’t keep the contempt out of his voice, “In my branch of the service, we don’t leave people behind. In case it’s escaped your notice, I’m not under your command – Special Forces operates independently.”

                Holding his pulse rifle where it could conveniently be considered a threat by Captain Scortun if he was feeling paranoid, Johnny backed away.

                “We’re not waiting for you,” Scortun yelled, “When our shuttle lands, we’re gone.”

                “Good riddance,” Johnny said under his breath, as he faded into the underbrush and slipped away down the steep hillside.

Hostage ToTheStarsFinal-FJM_High_Res_1800x2700The story:

He rescued her from space pirates … but can he keep them both safe from the far greater evil stalking a deserted planet?

Space travel without Kidnap & Ransom insurance? Not a good idea. University instructor and researcher Sara Bridges can’t afford it, so when pirates board her cruise liner, she’s taken captive along with the mistress of a wealthy man, and brought to a deserted planet. When a military extraction team sent to rescue the mistress refuses to take Sara too, she’s left to the mercies of a retired Special Forces soldier, along as consultant.

Reluctantly reactivated and coerced into signing up for the rescue operation to the planet Farduccir where he once was deployed,  Sgt. Johnny Danver just wants to get the job done. But when the team leader leaves one captured woman behind, he breaks away to rescue her himself.

As Johnny and Sara traverse the barren landscape, heading for an abandoned base where they hope to call Sectors Command for help, they find villages destroyed by battle and stripped of all inhabitants. A lone survivor tells a horrific tale of the Sectors’ alien enemy, the Mawreg, returning after being pushed out …

Searching for evidence to give the military, Johnny is captured. He regains consciousness in a Mawreg cage–with Sara next to him. Death is preferable to what the aliens will do to them… And even if they do escape their captors, can they alert the military in time to prevent another invasion of the Sectors?

Buy Links:     Amazon    Kobo     Apple iBooks     Barnes & Noble

 

What About the Other Hostage? Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revisedHere’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 excerpting Hostage To The Stars, which released in June. Edited from published version. I’ll do a few more snippets from it and then move on to my NEW book, Trapped on Talonque.

Johnny Danver has volunteered (under duress) to return to active duty in the Sectors Special Forces, to participate with local troops in a rescue mission for the other woman, Tresha Immer, who was taken by the pirates. She’s the mistress of a high ranking government official and the pirates were paid to kidnap her despite her K&R insurance. As the rescue mission is planned and executed, no one knows Sara exists…

  “What about Sara Bridges?” Ms. Immer whispered, “Aren’t you going to get her too?”

                Captain Scortun leaned closer, “Who?”

                “The other woman taken off the Star Swan with me.”  

                 “We’re here for you, ma’am, no intel on anyone else.” Scortun’s answer was crisp and disinterested.

                “Do you know where she’s being held?” Johnny asked.

                Tresha shook her head, “We were separated the first day, when we got here – nice little thing, no insurance.”

                “Forget it, Danver, we’ve got our high value package and we’re out of here,” Scortun’s voice was low and stern. “Check the corridor – we need to move.”

                Johnny gave him a considering look but took point and led the team from the palace and safely into the foothills.

But of course Johnny isn’t going to give up on the other hostage so easily….next week I’ll give you a bit more on that.

Hostage ToTheStarsFinal-FJM_High_Res_1800x2700The story:

He rescued her from space pirates … but can he keep them both safe from the far greater evil stalking a deserted planet?

Space travel without Kidnap & Ransom insurance? Not a good idea. University instructor and researcher Sara Bridges can’t afford it, so when pirates board her cruise liner, she’s taken captive along with the mistress of a wealthy man, and brought to a deserted planet. When a military extraction team sent to rescue the mistress refuses to take Sara too, she’s left to the mercies of a retired Special Forces soldier, along as consultant.

Reluctantly reactivated and coerced into signing up for the rescue operation to the planet Farduccir where he once was deployed,  Sgt. Johnny Danver just wants to get the job done. But when the team leader leaves one captured woman behind, he breaks away to rescue her himself.

As Johnny and Sara traverse the barren landscape, heading for an abandoned base where they hope to call Sectors Command for help, they find villages destroyed by battle and stripped of all inhabitants. A lone survivor tells a horrific tale of the Sectors’ alien enemy, the Mawreg, returning after being pushed out …

Searching for evidence to give the military, Johnny is captured. He regains consciousness in a Mawreg cage–with Sara next to him. Death is preferable to what the aliens will do to them… And even if they do escape their captors, can they alert the military in time to prevent another invasion of the Sectors?

Buy Links:     Amazon    Kobo     Apple iBooks     Barnes & Noble

Any Last Messages? Weekend Writing Warriors

Warriors logo revised(If you’re here for my SFR Brigade Presents post from the new book, go to this link.)

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 excerpting Hostage To The Stars, which released in June. Edited from published version. I’ll do a few more snippets from it and then move on to my NEW book, Trapped on Talonque.

As the excerpt begins, Sara sits with the other passengers, waiting for the pirates.

 “Did you bring your kidnap and ransom insurance certificate?” asked the Hostage ToTheStarsFinal-FJM_High_Res_1800x2700Tregon Inc. trader sitting across from her. “Do you have good coverage? These Farduccir pirates are greedy bastards.”

                “I-I don’t have any insurance – I’ve never even heard of it before today.”

                The man shoved his chair away from the table, saying, “The government shouldn’t allow people like you to travel in these parts.” He shook his head. “My sympathies – any last messages you want us to send to your family?”

                Chest tightening, ears ringing as she grew light-headed, Sara couldn’t believe what the passenger was inferring, “Are you joking?”

                “Honey, these pirates are all about the credits and they’ll get ‘em out of you one way or the other,” said the man seated next to her.

The story:

He rescued her from space pirates … but can he keep them both safe from the far greater evil stalking a deserted planet?

Space travel without Kidnap & Ransom insurance? Not a good idea. University instructor and researcher Sara Bridges can’t afford it, so when pirates board her cruise liner, she’s taken captive along with the mistress of a wealthy man, and brought to a deserted planet. When a military extraction team sent to rescue the mistress refuses to take Sara too, she’s left to the mercies of a retired Special Forces soldier, along as consultant.

Reluctantly reactivated and coerced into signing up for the rescue operation to the planet Farduccir where he once was deployed,  Sgt. Johnny Danver just wants to get the job done. But when the team leader leaves one captured woman behind, he breaks away to rescue her himself.

As Johnny and Sara traverse the barren landscape, heading for an abandoned base where they hope to call Sectors Command for help, they find villages destroyed by battle and stripped of all inhabitants. A lone survivor tells a horrific tale of the Sectors’ alien enemy, the Mawreg, returning after being pushed out …

Searching for evidence to give the military, Johnny is captured. He regains consciousness in a Mawreg cage–with Sara next to him. Death is preferable to what the aliens will do to them… And even if they do escape their captors, can they alert the military in time to prevent another invasion of the Sectors?

Buy Links:     Amazon    Kobo     Apple iBooks     Barnes & Noble

 

SFR Brigade Presents Fallen From the Sky TRAPPED ON TALONQUE

SFRB ShowcaseOnce a month the Science Fiction Romance Brigade authors showcase snippets from new work, WIPs, cover reveals or other fun things. The link is here for all  the participants.

I’m sharing an excerpt from my latest release TRAPPED ON TALONQUE.

Trapped on TalonqueThe Story:

Will an alien sleeping beauty awaken to save him, or destroy everyone around her?

When a Sectors Special Forces soldier and his team crash land on an alien planet, they’re taken captive and given a challenge–win at the violent ball game of sapiche and live. Lose, and they die, sending a mysterious, alien beauty to an even uglier fate. To survive, these soldiers must win the game and find a way to free the dangerous prisoner from her locked chamber.

Nate Reilly and his team are in deep trouble. Prisoners on a backward alien planet, they’re brought before an alien ‘goddess’, sleeping in her high tech seclusion. Nate is astonished when she awakes and establishes a psychic link with him. But her news is not good–he and his men must win a brutal challenge set by their captors, or they will die. She’ll give her aid, but in the end their courage and strength must win the contest.

Bithia sleeps in her chamber, as she has for thousands of years, since her own people unaccountably left her there. Viewed as a goddess by her captors, she must hide her ancient secrets to survive. But only the bravest of men may free her. Can she use her psychic powers to keep Nate and his men alive long enough to help her escape, or will her only hope of freedom die with them?

The Excerpt:

He stood wreathed in gray-green mists coiling around him like the ghosts of snakes before falling away to reveal the mysterious subterranean room deep under the palace. He faced the sleeping woman. Finding himself unrestrained, Nate descended the three stairs and walked across the chamber until he stubbed his toe against an invisible but potent barrier. Trying to reach through or past this obstacle, Nate saw his hands outlined in pale green light. He shoved harder. If he could just reach her, wake her, ask her a few pointed questions… As if sensing his efforts, she moved her head on the mattress and opened her eyes, revealing dark lavender irises flecked with gold.

“I am sorry,” she said, clear as day, in Basic.

But no, Nate realized, he heard the words in his mind, not with his ears. Her lips moved, but not to shape the syllables he heard.

“Sarbordon thinks you and I are of the same people. Therefore, what he wants lies outside your power to provide,” she said, as if the piece of confusing information would help him navigate the perilous situation.

“Why are you sorry?” Nate stayed with her first words to him. “You’ve done nothing to harm us.”

“I pity anyone trapped here on this cursed planet. The king will sacrifice you to his hungry gods when you don’t produce the miracles he expects. Demands. I—I didn’t tell him the truth when he asked.” Brow furrowed, she studied Nate’s face. Biting her lower lip, she said, “Honesty on my part would have brought instant death for you. He believes you’re my father’s warriors, come to rescue me, so I agreed with his conclusion. I said you were also sent to retrieve certain possessions. He’s desperate to acquire the marvels my father wielded. My deception may give you time, perhaps a chance to save yourselves.” She studied him from head to toe, and her lips curved into a slight smile. “You have the attitude of a warrior, one able to survive. You must play the game.” After a moment, she averted her gaze, but Nate still heard her next words. “Sarbordon will bring you here again if you earn the privilege. If you can survive to that point, I may have a plan, a chance for you to seize freedom. I can’t promise.”

He was woozy, possibly an aftereffect of the wine with dinner. Maybe the drink had been laced with a primitive drug. His powers of concentration were affected, and frustration with his uncharacteristic lack of focus built. “What’s your name?”

This vision he was having was dangerously fascinating, and he wished it were real. No one had ever even seen a representation of a living Ancient Observer, much less conversed with one. He accepted Haranda’s educated assessment that she wasn’t a member of the mysterious race of galactic forerunners from a million years ago, but the way her chamber was encapsulated deep in the palace, as if the building had grown organically to house her, spoke of centuries, if not millennia, passing since she was placed in her high-tech prison. The equipment must have kept her alive, but why was she here in the first place?

The incongruity of trying to solve her puzzle while his life and the lives of his men hung in the balance made him shake his head. This was one hell of a dream, built on his fascination with her earlier in the day.

“We’re not dreaming.” Seizing on his unspoken thought, she denied his conclusion scornfully, staring at him with wide-eyed contempt. “I dream only of death. We’re communicating. Perhaps your people are too primitive for the concept, fallen from the sky or not.”

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