Snippet 1: Investigation (Precious Galaxy, #2)

Chapter One

Monstre Corporation Headquarters, Planet Carina, Aurelis System, Precious Galaxy

            The sound of Solomon Vance’s shoe made a sharp clacking sound as he tapped it on the white tile floor. His mother used to tell him that patience was a virtue. She was constantly spouting clichés that were inherently false.

Currently, Solomon’s patience was at an all-time low, as he stared at the back of the head of the scientist who sat at the main control center.

“We’re going to try it again,” he ordered.

Susan turned, her loose bun nearly falling out from the movement. “But sir, don’t you think we should make some changes to the process first? We lost two consciousnesses with the current protocol.”

“You’re fired,” Solomon spat, his lips forming a hard line.

Susan’s mouth popped open with alarm. She would know he wasn’t kidding, but it had to be a hard reality for her to accept. Thirteen years she’d worked for Solomon; he’d recruited her right out of school. Maybe this snap judgement was a result of his low patience, but he wasn’t about to go back on it.

“But, but, but—”

Solomon cut her off with a curt shake of his head. “You know better than to argue with me.”

“Yes, sir, I just thought—”

“Maybe it is you who lost the consciousnesses,” Solomon interrupted.

Susan shook her head furiously, visibly shaking. “I only did what the protocol dictated.”

Solomon put his back to the scientist, his eyes on the distant corner of the all-white room. “Dean, prepare the memory wash chamber immediately. Susan Gibbons will be there very soon.”

“Yes, sir,” the AI answered overhead. “The chamber will be ready in two and a half minutes.”

When Solomon turned back, he was revolted by the sight before him. Susan was crying, her nose turning red and tears streaming from her eyes.

“Oh, and Dean?”

“Yes, sir?” the AI replied.

He ran his hand absentmindedly down the sleeve of his suit jacket, smoothing it out as if there were wrinkles. “Send in another level-four scientist to replace Susan.”

“I anticipated this and have already paged Bruce James,” the AI informed him.

Solomon released a steady breath. Why can’t everyone be as efficient, he wondered.

“Sir, please,” Susan begged. “Please give me another chance.”

He shook his head. “You know the rules.”

“But my memories,” she argued.

This only confirmed for Solomon that he had made the right call. Susan had forgotten her place at Monstre Corp. She thought her opinion mattered. That Solomon tolerated insubordination.

“Your memories are the property of Monstre Corp. You know that.”

“Please let me keep them,” Susan begged, more tears falling. “I promise I won’t talk. I won’t tell anyone what happens here.”

Solomon released a sadistic smile. “There’s only one way for me to ensure that.” He lifted his hand, his silver ring with the gnarly-headed monster catching the light as he pointed.  “The memory wash chamber is expecting you.”

A loud wail echoed from Susan as she turned, hurrying for the entrance with her head down. The glass door opened as she neared, and Bruce James, a thin, young man, held it open for her. If he was curious about why Susan was crying, his face didn’t show it.

Bruce strode over to Solomon, his chin even. “You wanted to see me, sir?”

Solomon pointed to the seat Susan had vacated. “I need you to run the consciousness transfer process.”

Not missing a beat, Bruce pulled out the chair, sat down and began typing. “Which consciousnesses should I use?”

Solomon turned toward the row of windows that overlooked the Chumash forest, a place that had been reported to have high levels of radiation and was therefore uninhabited and classified as a no-fly zone. Obviously the forest was safe; he’d planted the reports about the radiation levels. It was the perfect location for his headquarters, with views of endless forest and protected from spying eyes. The building, a flat structure, blended into the landscape, even at the top of one of the highest peaks.

“Use two level-one consciousnesses,” Solomon ordered, staring at his own reflection in the window.

His long forehead was lined with wrinkles, but his eyes were still youthful. His bald head reflected the light above. He ran his hand over his scalp, enjoying its smoothness.

Bruce typed on the keyboard, pulling up a file. “I have two miners from Phoenix Tech.”

“That will work.” Solomon turned, his eyes swiveling up to the large screen.

Bruce double-clicked the mouse, pulling up a 3D image of a face. It rotated, the man’s eyes widening, trying to look around.

“Hello! Is anyone there?” the man on the screen asked.

Solomon placed his hands behind his back and lowered his chin, giving Bruce a commanding glare.

The scientist cleared his throat. “Bob Howard, can you hear me?”

“Hello! Yes! Where am I?” the man yelled, his face showing his stress, as wrinkles sprang to his eyes.

“Hold on,” Bruce ordered, typing. The image of Bob Howard disappeared, replaced with the 3D graphic of another face, a man about the same age as the first.

“Tom Culver,” Bruce stated. “Can you hear me?”

The man blinked rapidly in astonishment before a grimace took over his face. “Let me out of here! What have you done?”

Solomon gave Bruce a forceful nod. The scientist agreed silently, pulling up both images on the screen. The faces rotated, looking around but not actually being able to see anything. A copy of their physical bodies was stored in the database, locked in their file with a sample of their DNA, should they ever need it. However, it wasn’t necessary to grant them a body in the database. It would only confuse things.

“Okay, I’ve only got to erase the physical composition of the first subject,” Bruce said, leaning over the keyboard and typing. A cursor ran over the image of Bob Howard, erasing him one line at a time.

“What’s going on?” Bob asked, his voice frantic.

Bruce turned to Solomon, a proud smile on his face. “Don’t worry. I have them muted.”

“I’m not worried,” Solomon said flatly.

Aggghhh!” Bob yelled. “Something is happening to me!”

Bruce shook his head, tapping his fingers on the desk, his eyes intent on the smaller screen in front of him. “You’re not feeling anything. I’ve only deleted your physical composition files.” Bruce looked up at Solomon with a laugh. “Maybe he feels a little naked.”

Solomon’s face remained stony. “Now copy his consciousness into the second subject.”

Bruce’s smile dropped as he looked back at the screen. “No problem.” He jabbed at a few keys. “That should do it.”

A progress bar popped up on the screen, starting at ten percent. Solomon watched as it increased, everything in Bob Howard’s consciousness downloading into Tom Culver’s.

That had been a part of the plan from the beginning, besides having a database of brilliant minds. The end goal was always to have all the minds compressed into one; the single smartest mind of all time at Solomon’s disposal.

A red box popped up on the screen. Just like before.

The white words were a bold contrast against the red of the box. ‘Transfer failed’.

Solomon let out a sigh. Again, they’d lost two more consciousness. The transfer of one mind seemed to overload the other, killing them both.

“Let’s try it again,” he ordered, turning again to look out at the serene forest, where the trees towered, the giants of this land.

Investigation releases July 25!

Jul 11, 2018 | Posted by in Blog, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 1: Investigation (Precious Galaxy, #2)

The New Series is Almost Here!

Tomorrow is the big release of the new series! It’s packed full of action, laughter and some of your favorite characters.

Here’s what it’s all about:


A new evil lurks in the darkness.

After an explosion, the crew of a battlecruiser mysteriously disappears.

Bailey and Lewis, complete strangers, find themselves suddenly onboard the damaged ship. Lewis hasn’t worked a case in years, not since the final one broke his spirit and his bank account. The last thing Bailey remembers is preparing to take down a fugitive on Onyx Station.

Mysteries are harder to solve when there’s no evidence left behind.

Bailey and Lewis don’t know how they got onboard Ricky Bobby or why. However, they quickly learn that whatever was responsible for the explosion and disappearance of the crew is still on the ship.

Monsters are real and what this one can do changes everything.

The new team bands together to discover what happened and how to fight the monster lurking in the bottom of the battlecruiser.

Will they find the missing crew? Or will the monster end them all?

Experience this exciting mystery sci-fi saga and the latest addition to the expanded Kurtherian Gambit Universe. If you’re a fan of Dark Matter, Alter Carbon, or Star Wars, you’ll love this riveting new space opera.

Corruption releases June 28!

Jun 27, 2018 | Posted by in Blog, Uncategorized | Comments Off on The New Series is Almost Here!

Snippet 1: Corruption, Precious Galaxy (Book 1)


Bridge, Ricky Bobby, Tangki System

Lights flickered overhead as the howling siren blared louder. The battlecruiser had passed through a strange mist that had set off the alarms. The vapor hadn’t appeared to be anything out of the ordinary, or thrown up any cautions from the navigation crew.

“What the hell is going on?” Commander Julianna Fregin demanded, staring wide-eyed at the radar.

“It appears to be a storm of sorts,” Ricky Bobby, the ship’s AI, stated overhead. “I’ve encountered these before, and they usually pass without incident. I hypothesize that it’s blocking sensors, which is what triggered the alarms.”

“So we have no reason to distrust the individuals from Phoenix Tech?” Captain Eddie Teach asked, referring to the ship they were scheduled to meet.

“I think that your level of trust with these representatives should be a separate consideration from any weather patterns you experience before the meeting,” Ricky Bobby said, that familiar clinical tone to his voice.

Eddie shook his head at Julianna. “Has he always been so pedantic?”

“Always,” she yelled as the sirens shut off, her voice loud in the sudden quiet.

Everyone on the bridge looked up, briefly distracted, then the crew took a collective deep breath, as the rush triggered by the emergency sirens died away.

“Can I get a systems update?” Julianna asked, hands pressed behind her back, and gaze eagerly pinned on the radar.

“Everything appears to be normal,” Ricky Bobby stated. “I’m running a full system diagnostic now.”

The good news didn’t put Julianna at ease. Instead her eyes swiveled back and forth as she watched their battlecruiser near the Phoenix Tech ship.

“Relax, Jules,” Eddie encouraged. “Everything is going according to plan. This is a straightforward meeting. No funny business.”

She dropped her gaze, not looking convinced. “Ricky Bobby, does your scan include the defense network?”

“Currently, I’m halfway through checking the engines,” Ricky Bobby informed her. “A full scan of the defense network will take a little while, but I’ll prioritize it next.”

Eddie gave Julianna a skeptical look. “What’s up?”

She shook her head. “I don’t know, but something doesn’t feel right.”

“Aren’t you the one who says this isn’t a ‘feeling’ business?” Eddie teased, a sideways smile on his long face.

Julianna nodded absentmindedly. “It’s just that there’s something we’re missing, or so it seems.”

“The shields do appear to have intermittent failure,” Ricky Bobby informed them.

Julianna cut her eyes at Eddie, a heavy expression on her face.

“What’s going on with them?” Eddie asked.

“I’m not certain,” Ricky Bobby said. “I’ll have to have Liesel check them out manually.”

Liesel, the ship’s engineer, was currently off the ship, which meant that the shields would have to wait. Julianna shook her head again, trying to dispel the worry.

“We’re receiving a communication from the Phoenix Tech ship,” one of the comms officers stated, gaining the attention of the other crew members.

“Patch them through,” Eddie requested, mimicking Julianna’s stance and standing at attention.

“Ghost Squadron, this is Mariah Riley with Phoenix Tech,” a bodiless voice said overhead. “We’re requesting permission to dock and board.”

The shuttle was nearing Ricky Bobby’s port side at an even pace.

“Phoenix Tech, we’re experiencing some technical difficulties at the moment,” Julianna stated, staring straight at Eddie. He nodded, sensing what she was thinking.

A loud sigh fell over the speaker. “Good, I’m glad it wasn’t just our shuttle,” Mariah said. “Alarms went berserk when we flew through that mist, and now our shields are down, and all our weapons disabled.”

Julianna purposely walked over to the communications officer who’d patched through the call, and pressed a button on the workstation, pausing the line. “Ricky Bobby, how are our weapons?”

“They are all online. The shields are still down, but only sporadically,” Ricky Bobby answered.

Julianna gave Eddie a long look and then nodded, seeming to have read his mind. She switched back on the transmission. “Phoenix Tech, you’ve been granted permission to dock and board.”

“Great, thanks,” Mariah said, relief in her voice. “See you soon.”

Julianna didn’t reply, only ended the transmission.

Eddie smiled wide, trying to disarm her. He waved a large hand at her, dismissing the skeptical expression on her face. “It’s probably some dense fog that throws off the gyroscope sensors in charge of regulating the vapor pressure connected with the shields.”

She gave him a long, cold stare. “You made all that up.”

“I sure did,” he said proudly. “How did it sound?”

“When Liesel returns from checking the shields, I’m having her school you on ship technology,” Julianna said, seeming to let go of some of her tension. She watched as the Phoenix Tech ship neared their battlecruiser, the visitors dwarfed by the cruiser’s gigantic size.

“Do you think they’re going to talk?” Julianna asked.

“I think having allies in this big, lonesome galaxy is incredibly important, and I don’t know of any better friends than us,” Eddie stated proudly.

The ship lurched, knocking both the captain and commander forward.

Julianna stumbled, hitting her head on the edge of the strategy table in the center of the bridge. “What’s going on?” she asked.

“We’ve hit another pocket of the fog,” Ricky Bobby stated. “I’m working on classifying the weather pattern and taking a sample to scan for pollutants.”

The overhead lights flickered twice before shutting off completely, sending the bridge into complete darkness. The sirens blared once more, the red emergency lights strobing.

Eddie’s eyes darted up to the radar. The Phoenix Tech shuttle had docked with their ship. “Lockdown the corridor our visitors are in.”

Behind them, the crew worked in the darkened area, scrambling to get the systems back online.

“Ricky Bobby, did you hear me?” Eddie asked.

There was no answer.

“Ricky Bobby, we need a systems report,” Julianna stated, running her hand over her forehead. She pulled her hand away and realized it was streaked with blood. In the reddish glow of the bridge, she gave Eddie a look of alarm.

“Are you all right?” he asked, realizing she’d been hurt.

“I’m fine!” she yelled, her eyes going wide, as black smoke seeped up from the floor. “But what’s that?”

Eddie encouraged her back with one arm, shaking his head. “Ricky Bobby! Do you read me? What’s going on?”

The black vapor blanketed the entire bridge. No one coughed or tried to flee as the gaseous substance engulfed them; instead, they remained transfixed on the tendrils of smoke stretching through the air.

A moment later, the sirens stopped. The emergency lights faded, once again casting the bridge in total blackness. When the lights flickered back on, not a single crew member remained. The bridge was empty.

Overhead, the speaker crackled, static filling the empty space.

“Captain? Commander?” Ricky Bobby called overhead. “Something took me offline. The ship’s system has been compromised.”


“Captain? Commander?” Ricky Bobby asked again. “Is anyone there?”

Corruption releases June 28th.


Jun 19, 2018 | Posted by in Blog, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Snippet 1: Corruption, Precious Galaxy (Book 1)