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

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33 comments on “Keep Going Weekend Writing Warriors

  1. I love how her and Johnny were able to bond in this scene. This is such a great story! 🙂

  2. I love how the two of them have a connection and understand each other.

    Also, I started wondering this last week, and I’m sure it’s explained somewhere in the book, but if Shalira is blind, why did she have to close her eyes against the statue’s pull?

    • Fair question. This scene is very far into the book and I don’t want to reveal too much (or explain for pages LOL) but Shalira’s sight has gradually begun returning in fits and starts, due to various occurrences. She was left blind after the childhood assassination attempt so I took care to give her a medically sound path to recovery, NOT one of those “wave a magic wand and cure the condition” type things. Johnny’s a trained medic and at one point he discusses his theory about the situation. I hope that helps! Thanks for asking 🙂

    • Thanks! I know it’s confusing since we’re in the middle of the book at this point, but Johnny is the hero’s best friend, and he and Shalira are on the way to rescue the hero at this moment. No romantic involvement between Shalira and Johnny but they develop a strong platonic friendship during the course of the book, based in part on the experiences they share, as you said so well.

  3. I really appreciate and love the comments but note to self, I ought not to jump into the middle of a book to pick my excerpts. When the new book is ready to be shared, I’ll try to start at the beginning, I promise.

  4. “Let there be no accounting between us.” She understands the depth of their relationship better than he does and can’t even pretend to joke about it. This tells me so much about her. Great snippet!

  5. Congratulations on your win, Veronica! And I love the snippets of this tale. I’m gonna have to pick it up and read the whole thing. 🙂

    • Yes, when I started writing science fiction I made the deliberate decision to use the trusty blaster, which was a staple of the scifi I read as a kid, NOT to go with phasers or any other fancy title. I wanted blasters and I got them! (I do say pulse rifle on occasion though, as a nod to “Aliens”.)

      • Funny you should say that, Veronica, I made exactly the same decision. (And I believe the term ‘phaser’ is copyright to Startrek anyway!) 🙂 We’re obviously on the same wavelength!

  6. Nice scene, Jean! Smooth and filled with realistic camaraderie between two very likable characters.

  7. I’m a little confused. The male in the excerpt is Johnny, but the blurb about the story mentions Mike. Two love interests?

    • Just repeating what I said above: I know it’s confusing (and I apologize) since we’re in the middle of the book at this point, but Johnny is the hero’s best friend, and he and Shalira are on the way to rescue the hero at this moment. No romantic involvement between Shalira and Johnny but they develop a strong platonic friendship during the course of the book, based in part on the experiences they share. Thanks for visiting!

  8. There’s no reason to keep track of who saves who, once you get to a certain point. I admire her compassion for their suffering–so many people are dismissive of it!

  9. Great moment between them. It sounds like they may have a similar past–old wounds. Maybe she will help him through whatever haunts him.

  10. I too love the phrase “Let there be no accounting between us.” says a lot about their relationship. Really enjoying these excerpts and looking forward to reading the whole thing. (It’s gradually working it’s way up my tbr pile on my Kindle!)

  11. They seem like they’ve got a lot of common ground between them, just what each needs. When normal life is just a memory or something you never knew, it’s nice to have someone else to be abnormal with.

  12. They seem to be baring a bit of their selves to each other. I just went to Amazon to buy this book. I already have it. I am so hopelessly behind on my TBR, 🙂

    Incredible writing, as always! 😉

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