Snippet 5: Exploration, Ghost Squadron #2

Exploration: Ghost Squadron, #2

Snippet 5

Julianna slammed the door to the interrogation room upon exiting. She had to get out of there before she did something she’d regret to the dumb Trid. He wasn’t talking, almost like he wanted her to rearrange his shark face. Ever since seeing those imprisoned by the Brotherhood, she had a new passion to stop them. Julianna had seen it all, but that didn’t mean seeing children starved or families separated and imprisoned was something that didn’t faze her. She was human after all.

Well, kind of.

Julianna pulled back her fist and launched it at the wall. The force of her punch should have hurt. Would have made a normal person flinch with pain. Julianna only considered doing it again to further relieve the frustration.

“Some things never change,” said a voice at her back.

Julianna straightened, tightening her jaw. She turned around, knowing full well who was speaking. “What’s that supposed to mean?” asked Julianna, running her eyes over Jack Renfro.

The spymaster for the Federation hadn’t changed a bit. Still the same muscular physique and discriminating expression covering his face.

He smirked. “It means, you’ve still got the same fire I remember.”

Julianna allowed herself to grin, her shoulders relaxing. “Some things never die, about like you.”

Jack chuckled, a warmth spreading over his features. How long had it been since she’d set eyes on him? A long while, no doubt. “The same could be said about you.”

“What brings you aboard the ArchAngel?” Julianna asked. One reason she hadn’t seen Jack for quite some time was that he had been sent on a series of unclassified missions. This was a guy who fixed things. Made shit happen. Everyone respected Jack, and those who didn’t never stuck around for long.

“I’ve taken on a new assignment,” he responded.

“Oh? General Reynolds hasn’t disclosed anything to us,” said Julianna, referring to her and Eddie. The ArchAngel was in their command and, therefore, anything happening on it should be of knowledge to them.

He nodded. “That’s why I’m here. I’m taking over for the general.”

Exploration Releases December 4th.

Nov 30, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 5: Exploration, Ghost Squadron #2

Snippet 3: Exploration, Ghost Squadron #2

Exploration: Ghost Squadron, #2

Snippet 3

 

Evidence Locker, QBS ArchAngel, Axiom System.

Eddie and Lars were back aboard the ArchAngel, stowing the weapons cache they’d collected from the warehouse.

There were at least two hundred small and medium arms, not to mention enough grenades to blow up a small city.

Eddie shoved one of the crates with his foot, pushing it into its designated spot. These still weren’t Federation grade weapons. Soon they’d have to steal some advanced guns off of a dumb pirate. It would be a win-win situation. Shiny new weapons taken from evil aliens. “You think any of these guys got into the whole gun trade thing because they just liked guns?”

“I’ve never found much success in trying to understand the criminal mind,” admitted Lars.

Eddie entered a security code on the crate’s lid, locking it down. Then he secured it with a large harness in order to ensure it wouldn’t budge later on. “I think most of them are in it for the money, but I bet there’s like one or two guys who just enjoy a good gun, you know? Just a couple of halfwits who like to blow shit up.”

“You’re talking about yourself, aren’t you?”

Eddie grinned. “Tell me you don’t like it.”

“Violence has never been something I take pleasure in,” Lars countered. “Though, I will say, there is a certain satisfaction in delivering justice.”

“Like today?”

“Especially so,” agreed Lars. “We confiscated enough weapons to wage a small war, arrested a dozen criminals, and—”

“And found our target,” finished Eddie. He glanced towards the door. “Which, if I’m not mistaken, Julianna is interrogating as we speak.”

Exploration releases December 4th

Nov 26, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 3: Exploration, Ghost Squadron #2

Snippet 1: Exploration, Ghost Squadron #2

General Lance Reynolds’ Office, Onyx Station, Paladin System.

“Chief? You there?” asked General Reynolds.

“I’m here. Comms out here aren’t secure, but I don’t have to tell you that,” said Chief Jack Renfro.

“I’ll keep it brief,” said General Reynolds. He stubbed his stogie out, a slight smile on his face. He’d taken to Jack early on. There were very few you could trust when everyone was out to serve themselves or have the Federation serve them. However, Jack Renfro didn’t do something to get something. He’d passed up many promotions because they didn’t make sense for his real ambition. This was a man who wanted to serve in the right position, not the one that got him a better title and more money. At the core, he had always been a servant to the cause.

“I’ve got a job for you,” said Lance.

“When and where do I need to be?” asked Jack.

“You haven’t even heard the details yet.” Lance laughed.

“When did that ever matter between the two of us? If you need my help, then I’m there.”

“I wouldn’t normally ask, but I have a squadron that needs some oversight. I was taking care of it, but I’ve been pulled away for more…pressing matters. I’m sure you know why and by whom,” said Lance.

“I believe I do,” responded Jack.

The cloud of smoke Lance blew out filled his office, making it appear gray. “Anyway, I wouldn’t trust anyone but you to handle this group. They have an incredibly important mission, and I’ve handpicked them myself. I’m sending over the details of the team right now, along with their previous mission assignments. You’ll find that they’ve been quite busy.”

“The report is just coming through. Give me a sec,” said Jack, a shuffling sounding over the comms. “Holy shit, General. You can’t be serious?”

Lance chuckled. “I’m completely serious. See, I thought you’d have fun with this.”

“Those two working together?” he asked. “I’m impressed, boss.”

“I’m glad you think so.”

“And you’ve given them the ArchAngel?” asked Jack.

“They have an important mission,” said Lance.

“Damn, and you even brought back Hatcherick, I see. Damn impressive, sir. Haven’t seen a team like this since…well, you know. It’s been a long time.”

“Just wait and see who else I have lined up for this crew,” said Lance.

“Don’t leave me hanging, boss. Send over the report.”

“Does that mean you’ll oversee them?” asked Lance.

“I already told you I was committed, and that was before you gave me the details,” said Jack.

“I knew I could count on you, Chief,” said Lance. “Sending you the rest of the report now. Good luck, Jack.”

“Thank you, sir,” said Chief Jack Renfro. “It’s always an honor to serve.”

Exploration releases December 4th! Get book one here.

Nov 17, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 1: Exploration, Ghost Squadron #2

Snippet 5: Formation, Ghost Squadron, #1

“Weren’t you on the ship with us?” asked Eddie. “How’d you make it back here so fast?”

Lance dabbed his cigar into an ashtray. “I took a shuttle before you docked. They make you wait too long when you bring a cruiser in. I had shit to do.”

“Perks of being the boss,” mused Eddie.

“Pretty much,” said Lance.

“Are the reports ready?” asked Julianna.

“Not yet,” said Lance. “I need to review the latest intel before I hand it off to you. I’m thinking tomorrow morning. We’ll be able to get you both situated soon.”

“Understood.”

Eddie scratched his chin. “Sir, if you don’t mind me saying so, I haven’t agreed to anything yet. I’m only here because you asked me to listen.”

The General chuckled. “Of course, you’re right, but let’s wait and talk about that tomorrow. I’ve got a presentation lined up that I think you’ll want to see. In the meantime, why don’t you two go and have some fun? You can show Julianna around the station.”

“How do you know I’ve been here before?” asked Eddie.

“Do you really need to ask that question?”

Eddie smirked. Of course, General Reynolds, because of his intelligence chief, Nathan Lowell, probably already knew everything there was to know about him. His parents, favorite foods, ex-girlfriends, former residence. “Right.”

“Anyway, you’ll be happy for the extra downtime, if you decide to sign on for this job. Trust me. You too, Julianna.”

“Yes, sir,” she answered.

“Yeah, I get the feeling she could use a break,” remarked Eddie, glancing back at Julianna, who was still standing at the door.

“I’m perfectly fine,” she said.

“Still, go have a drink,” suggested Lance. “Bond, for shit’s sake. You’re about to be partners.”

“If you insist,” said Julianna.

“I’ll be happy to drink,” grinned Eddie. “You covering the tab?”

“Why not?” asked Lance. “Enjoy yourself.”

Eddie strolled into the hall to wait.

Julianna drew closer to the desk. “Sir, is this really necessary? It might be a better use of my time to assist you with the reports.”

“Not this time, Commander Fregin. Try to enjoy yourself, for once.” Lance puffed on his cigar and dabbed it one more time on the tray. “That’s an order.”

Formation releases November 13th

Nov 9, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 5: Formation, Ghost Squadron, #1

Snippet 3: Formation, Ghost Squadron, #1

Passenger Lounge Six, QBS Atticus Finch, Lorialis System.

Eddie sat with his hands at his sides, watching as the QBS Atticus Finch—home to the Trill Mining Co. and the Five Trees Bar—departed the system.

As the ship activated its FTL (Faster Than Light) drive, slipping into warp, the planet became an instant blur, fading into the void like a pebble into the sea. It had been several years since Eddie had been aboard an Etheric ship like this one. He’d been out of the service for almost a full decade, never spending much time on any of the core planets, and typically hitching rides on cargo ships. It was simply too difficult to be around these types of vessels and not be actively involved.

Even now, the memories flooded him, reminders of a better time, back when he was still useful.

Not the wandering exile he’d since become.

What could General Reynolds possibly need a man like Eddie for? Didn’t he have enough soldiers at his disposal to do the job? What could one guy with a drinking habit and a bad haircut do that no other person could?

He scoffed, rolling his eyes. Don’t be an idiot, Eddie. Your hair is fucking phenomenal.

Eddie had hitched a ride on this cruiser all because a man claiming to be the head of the Federation had asked him to.

Maybe this was all a giant mistake, but Eddie didn’t think so. He had a feeling that everything the old man had told him was true—that humanity was under attack and it needed to be protected. After traveling across the outer rim of the galaxy for the last decade, Eddie could tell there was a stink in the air, a certain level of unrest building against the original Empire and the rest of the core planets. Pirates and smugglers had appeared in larger numbers; raiders were becoming more prone to attacks. The people were afraid, and no one understood why.

But something told him that General Reynolds knew the answer to that question, and, right now, Eddie was willing to follow him to find out. Even if it was all bullshit, the truth was worth taking a chance on. It was worth uncovering, if only for his own curiosity’s sake.

The lights of the passing stars whipped by in a mesmerizing display, relaxing Eddie as he sank into his seat. He watched them fade in and out like falling raindrops, disappearing back into the darkness from which they came.

Formation releases November 13th.

Oct 31, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 3: Formation, Ghost Squadron, #1

Snippet 1: Formation (Ghost Squadron, #1)

Five Trees Bar. Trill Mining Colony, Lorialis System.

T’turk played with his drink. His four shipmates were rowdy and occasionally bumped him, so he had to be careful not to spill his alcohol.  He looked around Five Trees, the only damned bar worth visiting, in his opinion, for five systems.

That wasn’t saying much, of course, since the only people living out this far from the Etheric Empire’s territory were pirates, miners, and smugglers. Bastards, all of them.

“My kind of people,” he muttered to himself, smiling as his shipmate Fr’ling caught the eye of one of the girls.

Fr’ling wouldn’t be leaving this space station with much money. Hell, neither would the other three. By the time the night ended, they’d each spent most of their earnings.

Nursing his drink, he looked around the establishment, blinking with his yellow eyes. There were a lot of Kezzin in the bar tonight, including himself. Their red skin gave off a familiar glow in the artificial light. T’turk’s homeworld wasn’t far from here, so it was common to see his people on many of the stations in the neighboring systems. He liked it that way. The rest of the galaxy was far too crowded with non-Kezzin species, like humans and the other Etheric Empire scum. He couldn’t stand any of them.

It was unfortunate, then, that he saw a man sitting on a stool with his face planted on the table. A human male who didn’t belong here.

T’turk smirked. Perhaps he’d have a little fun today, after all.

“Hey, you,” grunted T’turk as he got up from his table and walking to where the man was sitting. “Human.”

The man had his face on the table—probably passed out from too much alcohol. “Look at this guy,” said T’turk. “Typical human. Can’t even handle his drink.”

The man moaned, shifting a little.

T’turk leaned over him and examined his equipment, hoping to find some money or possibly a key to a ship. The bastard wasn’t holding much except for a gray bag on the seat next to him. T’turk reached for it.

“Don’t,” said the human, slowly looking at him.

T’turk could never tell one human from the next. They all looked like a bunch of slugs to him, ugly and spongy. This one was no different.

“What are you trying to hide, human? Got yourself a secret stash?”

The man said nothing.

T’turk laughed. “That’s what I thought. Too bad you were stupid enough to come in here.” He reached for the bag.

A hand grabbed his wrist, surprising him. “I said don’t.”

T’turk paused, glancing at the man again. “Do you have a death wish, meat sack? Back off before I kick your ass.”

“No can do,” replied the stranger. “That’s my stuff. I need it more than you do.”

“It’s mine now, unless you want a bullet in your empty head.” T’turk shook his wrist free, then took the bag and began emptying it. A pad fell out, hitting the counter, along with a handful of unopened soda cans, one of which rolled and hit the floor, breaking and hissing.

T’turk stared at the contents of the bag, confused. “What’s all this trash?”

The stranger looked at the soda on the floor as it sprayed chaotically. “Mother fucker,” he muttered.

T’turk threw the empty bag down by his feet. “You better have something on you, human! I’ll rip you a new one right now. You know how many of your kind I’ve killed just this week? You’re all a bunch of mushy pieces of—”

“You killed humans?” interrupted the stranger, raising his brow.

“Over a dozen in four days!” bragged T’turk. “Ain’t that right, boys?”

His crew cheered. “We raided a ship on its way to Nexus Colony,” announced Fr’ling. “Killed half and saved the rest for later.”

T’turk grinned, revealing a set of razor sharp teeth. “That’s why we’re here celebrating.

The human let out a sigh. “All I wanted was a drink and some food, but you just had to go and bring that up like a fucking jackass.”

“What’s he saying, T’turk?” asked Fr’ling. “Tell him to speak up! It’s hard to hear humans. They’re too tiny.”

T’turk laughed. “He’s scared. He knows he’s about to die.”

The door to the Five Trees opened, and in walked another human. A woman, perhaps, but T’turk couldn’t be certain. They all looked the same to him, ugly and pathetic.

She took a seat at the bar beside the male, motioning to the barkeep. “Whiskey,” she requested, turning away from T’turk.

“You,” he said, puffing his chest at the female. “You’re interrupting us.”

She didn’t answer.

T’turk was about to raise his fist to the woman, when the male got to his feet. “Let’s leave the lady out of it. This is between you and me.”

“Between us?” grinned T’turk. “Finally.”

The man turned to the female. “Hey, wanna do me a favor?”

She shrugged. “Depends.”

“Just watch my drink while I take care of this idiot, would ya?” He slid his glass over to her. “I’m Eddie, by the way.”

“Whatever,” the female answered, still not bothering to look.

The human male turned back to face T’turk. “All right, then, big fella,” grinned the little man. “Let’s see what you can do.”

Formation releases November 13th.

Oct 30, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 1: Formation (Ghost Squadron, #1)

Someone Dropped Me Off Here… Oriceran Has Been Unlocked

People keep asking me what I’ve been up to. But it’s not the casual, “How are you?” It’s the one where they stare deep into my eyes with a bit of caution. “Sarah, where have you been?”

The short answer is that I got pulled away, figuratively and literally.

Man, I loathe when people say that and I just did it.

Anyway, I’m ready to really share what I’ve been up to. It’s not a secret as much as I’ve been too busy to tell you.

Several months ago a friend recommended an author to me. He said this author, who is incredibly talented and successful, was inviting other authors to write inside of his universe.

“I don’t write real sci-fi,” I had said. “I only write the soft stuff.”

“Doesn’t matter. There’s a new universe for you. It’s called Ori-something,” my friend said.

So I arranged a call. I spoke with a stranger. He told me of his plans. I told him I wanted in… and the rest is history.

Fast forward three months.

I’ve been working relentlessly, writing books in a brand new world. It’s the world of Oriceran. It’s a different planet full of magic and the gates between our world and that one only opens every several thousand years. But what happens in between is where the stories really take place.

I never thought I’d leave the Dream Traveler universe, but I’m kind of glad I have. It’s been crazy to stroll through the Dark Forest and happen upon a gnome in my imagination. Apparently a pixie lives there too, and a whole lot of other mythological creatures.

So now to answer the question honestly. What have I been doing? I heard about an opportunity and I took it. I jumped down a rabbit hole, hoping that the stories I weave on my way through are something incredible.

Welcome to the world of Oriceran. It’s connected to Earth, and nothing like it.

 

Sep 12, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Someone Dropped Me Off Here… Oriceran Has Been Unlocked

Teaser 5: Lone Wolf

“What was that commotion I heard the other night?” the woman with a head of fake auburn curls said. Women in their seventies didn’t have vibrant red hair or tight skin stretched over their cheekbones. However, Mrs. Wilson wasn’t a typical elderly lady.

“I don’t know what you mean,” Orion said, his chin down, eyes on the wood floors of the brownstone apartment building.

If her face could allow such things the old woman would probably have raised a disbelieving eyebrow at him. “I think you do know what I mean. That racket always comes from your room, usually on the weekends.”

What was he supposed to say, that she was right and it was the werewolf destroying the room he rented because he wanted out of the padlocked door? The dumb beast never knew where Orion hid the key because as far as he could tell it didn’t have a memory of his life, but the reverse wasn’t true. He always remembered what happened when he changed. He remembered the destruction. The way the animal stood looking out the three-story window, thinking of breaking it and taking the jump, the one that might kill Orion Murray. The wolf terrified him, but everything did, really.

“Are you playing one of those video games? The ones with werewolves?” Mrs. Wilson said.

“No!” Orion said, backing up suddenly toward his door, where safety could be found away from the nosy woman.

“Well, the howling came from your room the other night. I would have asked you about it sooner, but you never come out of that room,” she said, disapproval heavy in her voice.

What did she expect? Was he supposed to power walk down the streets of Hartford, like she did every morning? He could tell what time it was by glancing out his window to find Mrs. Wilson bouncing down the stoop in her jogging suit. Then he would watch the regimented woman until she power walked down several blocks thanks to his telescopic vision. The power had first come on right after the breakout from the lab. It was strange to look out at the city, honing in on things miles away, seeing that the world was really as chaotic as he thought it was. Why he, an already anxious person, was given the ability to see farther eluded him.

“Yes, sorry. It’s a video game. Quite compelling, which is why I don’t leave often,” he said, glad that the antique artifact of a woman had given him an excuse for the howling.

Preorder Lone Wolf here.

Jun 10, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Teaser 5: Lone Wolf

Teaser 4: Lone Wolf

The paint was peeling off the walls in the break room of the Lizard Lounge. It had probably been peeling off the pale green walls for a while. And Rio Hernandez had no idea why he was even slouching in the corner of the room. It wasn’t like he needed a break. All he did was stand around, and his job as a bouncer for the shady club was easy enough. He’d never had such an easy job. Usually he just growled at a patron being rejected entry and they ran for the streets. And fights were never a problem for him to break up. He’d always been strong, with wide biceps and a barrel chest, but whatever they did to him in that lab made him incredibly powerful. He’d punched through concrete walls to escape that prison. And since the breakout from the lab he’d tested that strength. For an hour he practiced his superpower by throwing cars in a junkyard. The homeless men who watched and cheered him on had found the whole show funny. Good thing the bourbon later made them forget what they saw.

Rio’s time on the police force had educated him to the troublesome types. He could spot them from ten yards away, standing in the line for the club. And although the job as the bouncer only reminded him of why he’d quit the force, it was one of the few jobs he could find where they’d pay him under the table. He knew better than to use his old bank accounts or return to his old house, which had been inherited by his sister.

Preorder Lone Wolf here.

Jun 10, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Teaser 4: Lone Wolf

Teaser 3: Lone Wolf

“So what’s the goal here?” Kaleb said, watching the silver ballpoint pen as Adelaide had ordered.

“I’m trying to make you pass out,” she said, spinning the pen over her thumb and catching it in her fingers. It was a gesture her father had taught her. A seemingly simple movement, but employing the right focus, it could cause hypnosis. However, Adelaide didn’t know how to practice her mind control using this method. She had only been successful when pairing it with words, not movements.

“Oh, is that all?” Kaleb said with an undeterred laugh. He’d merely been at the Institute for a couple of days, but already his easy attitude and casual nature made him seem like a Lucidite.

“Would you shut your bloody mouth and concentrate?” Adelaide said, knowing that was actually not how this attempt at hypnosis should work. Ren’s book of secrets said that a successful hypnotic gesture should catch the attention of a distracted person and hold it. This was only Adelaide’s first attempt, though, and she’d work on perfecting it later.

“So what happens after I pass out? You write on my face and take pictures?” Kaleb said, not having heeded Adelaide’s request to be quiet.

“Actually, before you pass out, you’ll be subject to any of my requests. With a simple demand I can make you do a whole list of horrid things. I’ll also have access to your memories, thoughts, and pretty much whatever other rubbish resides in your tiny brain,” she said, spinning the pen around and around, knowing the more fluid the motion, the more compelling it was to the observer.

“Are all British people as insulting as you?” Kaleb said, blinking his eyes from the act of watching the pen.

“No, I take insults to an exemplary level. But British people aren’t as fake as Americans,” she said, hearing the interruption at her back. Someone had just entered the strategic department conference space. Two somebodies, by the sound of their footsteps.

Adelaide turned to find her two least favorite people. “Oh good, the meatheads are here,” she said as Zephyr and Rox entered the space.

“I don’t think you mean that. You’re not actually happy to see us,” Rox said, walking into the room like a trucker, wearing her cowboy boots and a short jean skirt.

Preorder Lone Wolf here.

Jun 10, 2017 | Posted by in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Teaser 3: Lone Wolf