Saturday, October 21, 2017

Book Blitz ~ Other Worlds - A Limited Edition Collection of #SciFi Romance & #Paranormal #Romance


Other Worlds: A Limited Edition Collection of Science Fiction Romance and Paranormal Romance
Publication date: October 17th 2017
Genres: Adult, Paranormal, Romance, Science Fiction
Journey into a multiverse beyond the boundaries of your imagination…
21 award-winning and best-selling authors bring you the best of PARANORMAL and SCI-FI ROMANCE in this enticing boxed set of exclusive epic adventures.
Rogue spaceship captains, dark vampire lords, supernatural hunters, crafty hackers, uncompromising alien alphas, fearless shifters, and MORE await in this highly sought-after collection including BRAND NEW romantic, otherworldly tales!
Step into OTHER WORLDS as these fresh voices of SFR and PNR take you on a journey to immortal realms and extraterrestrial territories where your imagination takes flight and fantasies come to life.
PreOrder now to secure YOUR copy of this limited edition Sci-Fi Romance and Paranormal Romance collection!
INCLUDING STORIES FROM…

Allyson Lindt

Award-Winning author A.D. Trosper

Cheri Schmidt and Tristan Hunt

Akaria Gale

Award-Winning author R. A. Steffan

Jennifer Rose McMahon

Award-Winning author Amy L Gale

Shawnee Small

K. R. Fajardo

Award-Winning author Lea Kirk

Mychal Daniels

Laura Hysell

Shawna Romkey

Elizabeth Ryder

E.A. Weston

Award-Winning author Lindsay Avalon

LaVerne Thompson

Starla Night

Jayne Fury

Isadora Brown
Grab yours today for only 99¢!
Facebook Party & weekly prizes ~ From now until October 23 we are giving away weekly gift cards, ebooks, and other swag in the Other Worlds Facebook Party.
Check out Other Worlds online:

Website / Facebook / Instagram

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Book Blitz ~ Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them by Debra Goelz #YA #Fantasy


Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them
Debra Goelz
Published by: Hachette Audiobooks
Publication date: October 17th 2017
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Sixteen-year-old Waverly Fishwater believes that people who act suspicious are asking for her to spy on them. When she eavesdrops on one of her dad’s clandestine meetings, she learns that mermaids are being abducted. Fearing no one else will save them, Waverly swaps her tail for legs and heads to the site of the disappearances, but it doesn’t go as planned. After exposing mermaidkind to humanity, Waverly has to come to terms with leaving the home, friends, and school she loves. For her safety, she must go to a remote boarding school on the California coast.
Waverly discovers her new classmates are from a multitude of supernatural species, including werewolves, fairies, and minor Greek gods. But the bigger problem might be all the mermaid-blood loving vampires, and the fact that the most infuriating one has taken an interest in her already.
She must navigate this weird new world where her class schedule includes time-traveling history, fairy dance, interspecies biology, and sand-sculpting vain gods with rock-hard abs. The biggest letdown is that she still has to take algebra, even though polynomials are not her friends.
Just when she’s starting to fit in, she begins to unravel a dark plot that could destroy the bayside school and the oceans beyond. As she gets close to solving the mystery, the mernapper takes hold of her mind and hides the clues that will piece it together. Waverly is left with the knowledge of one thing: she’s next.
If Waverly is to expose the scheme and take out the mastermind, she’s going to have to rely on the most dubious kind of help-reckless gods, single-minded werewolves, and virtuous fairies. To avoid a supernatural catastrophe, Waverly must rally this eccentric band of heroes, learning to rely on the help of others in order to stay afloat.
Listen to an audio sample here!


Author Bio:
Debra Goelz is a refugee from Hollywood where she served for ten years as a financial executive for such companies as Universal Pictures, Dino de Laurentiis and Jim Henson Productions. Her performing career began and ended with her puppeteering a chicken during the closing scene in "Muppet Treasure Island." After garnering over 9 million on-line reads, her award-winning YA fantasy, "Mermaids and the Vampires Who Love Them," will be published by Hachette audio on October 17, 2017. She lives in a redwood forest in rural Marin County with her husband. Her two children have abandoned her to seek a college education in New York.

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Promo Blitz ~ The Principle of Oneness by Russell Anthony Gibbs #Self-Help #Spirituality





Self-Help, Spirituality
Date Published: May 2017
Publisher: WaveCloud Corporation

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Winner of the 2017 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award for
Best Book in Spiritual Self Help

The Principle of Oneness expounds on the first principle from the award winning and bestselling book, The Six Principles of Enlightenment and Meaning of Life and is the second in this series of eight books on enlightenment.

Many have said "We are all one" but what does that really mean? This practical guide helps you understand and experience the profound unity of everyone and everything. Author Russell Anthony Gibbs explains the science behind the connections of everything both physical matter and nonphysical energy. Gibbs supports his points with quotes from scientists, enlightened beings, spiritual leaders, philosophers and others. Great minds like Albert Einstein, Buddha, Aristotle, Rumi and Jesus all understood the profound Oneness of the Universe. Gibbs further clarifies some of the misconception about the Universe/God as well as explains how to live and experience the Principle of Oneness.


Other Books by Russell Anthony Gibbs:


Publisher: Espresso Wisdom
Published: March 2016

All enlightened beings, most founders of religions and many renowned scientists knew and understood the six principles of enlightenment. These universal truths have been written about, taught and discussed for thousands of years yet remain shrouded in mystery and misinterpretation. This book seeks to remove that shroud.

The Six Principles of Enlightenment and Meaning of Life is an intellectual and spiritual work that explains the six significant universal truths woven throughout science, religion and philosophy. These principles draw upon thousands of years of wisdom and are presented in a concise, accessible format. Each principle is defined and has an explanation on its application to life; they are further supported by quotes of wisdom from enlightened beings, philosophers, artists and scientists like Buddha, Albert Einstein, Rumi, Stephen Hawking and Jesus. Understanding the six principles then unlocks the meaning of life which is explained in the final chapter.



About the Author





Award winning and bestselling author Russell Anthony Gibbs is a philosopher and spiritual seeker on a quest for enlightenment. His research into Baha’ism, Buddhism, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, Sufism and Taoism greatly influences his spiritual and philosophical perspective. He is also profoundly influenced by the information from two channeled entities, Seth and Abraham. He further incorporates quantum mechanics, physics and psychology as well as concepts from the works of Albert Einstein, Carl Jung, Sigmund Freud and Stephen Hawking.


Gibbs’s communication style is concise, intense and deep. He would rather express wisdom in brief, powerful quotes and concise paragraphs than in complicated, long-winded explanations. Espresso Wisdom is short, strong, rich insight. Like espresso coffee, it gives an intense jolt of enlightenment. Enlightenment is an awakening, and Espresso Wisdom is meant to help jumpstart you on your journey.


Espresso Wisdom Short, Strong, Rich Insight! ™


Contact Links

Purchase Links



Reading Addiction Blog Tours



Friday, October 20, 2017

Two Week Blog Tour ~ Branded By Fire by Danielle Annett #Urban #Fantasy #Paranormal #Romance


If you love Buffy the Vampire Slayer then you’ll love Aria Naveed. Kicking butt and saving people is kind of her thing.

Lovers of Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance do NOT want miss out on Danielle Annett’s BRANDED BY FIRE.  You must see why Cherry Adair calls BRANDED BY FIRE a novel with “[b]reakneck pacing, a strong fierce heroine, and a twist at every corner”!



Synopsis:



Aria Naveed can’t decide what’s worse—being mate-bonded to Declan Valkenaar, the Alpha of the Pacific Northwest Pack, or owning up to the fact that she’s developing feelings for him.
Her bond to Declan is the one thing keeping her grounded and preventing her new power from destroying everything and everyone around her.

If Aria doesn’t tread carefully, especially where her heart is concerned, she’ll learn the hard way that if you play with fire, you'll always get burned.






Available at:  Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iBooks | Kobo | Books2Read

Add Branded by Fire  to your GOODREADS TBR pile!

About Danielle Annett:


 Danielle Annett is a reader, writer, designer, and the blogger behind Coffee and Characters. Born in the SF Bay area, she now resides in Spokane, WA, the primary location for her Blood & Magic series. Danielle writes about kick butt heroines in volatile settings and like her, most of them have some level of addiction to coffee.
When not writing, Danielle can be found hanging out with her two children whom she fondly refers to as her little monsters, or catching up on the latest episodes of Grey’s Anatomy and Game of Thrones.



Connect with Danielle: Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon

Book Tour & Giveaway ~ Leave the Pieces Behind by Shirley Anne Edwards #YA #Romance


Leave the Pieces Behind
by Shirley Anne Edwards
Genre: YA Romance

Bree
Apollo is an average fifteen-year-old girl: she loves chocolate,
baking cupcakes, and her neighbor, the hunky and all around popular
seventeen-year-old Foster Quinn. Except Foster is clueless about her
feelings for him, instead treating her like a kid sister and begging
for her homemade desserts. As a fellow chocolate lover, he should be
Bree’s for the taking, if it weren’t for his oh-so-perfect
girlfriend.
After
she overhears Foster making fun of her to his friends, she’s
devastated. And not even chocolate can take away the pain. She
intends to wallow in grief for a boy that was never hers to begin
with, but Austen, her eccentric new neighbor has other ideas.
The
strange boy down the street always wears a black fedora, walks
barefoot, and focuses all his energy on building a treehouse in his
backyard. For some reason, he’s elected Bree to help him. At first,
she turns him down because he acts too awkward and takes everything
she says literally. But after learning of his autism, she decides to
help with his construction (forgiving him for not being a chocolate
fan), even though she doesn’t know a think about power tools.
As
Bree and Austen grow closer, Foster notices Bree no longer worships
the ground he walks on. He wants her to go back to that doting
version of Bree, but Austen has become more important to her than
she’s ready to admit.
Austen
may just be the one to help her move on from Foster.
Like
two pieces of a puzzle, they fit together perfectly.



Shirley Anne Edwards is
a Northeast girl who first found her love for books when she read
Nancy Drew’s The Secret of the Old Clock Tower at
thirteen. Shirley found her love for writing at a very
young age, and since then has let her imagination run wild by
creating quirky characters and vast worlds in her head. Shirley is
also a brownie addict who loves to bake when she’s not busy
writing. Shirley lives in New Jersey and works in the
entertainment industry in New York City.






Follow
the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts and a giveaway!











Book Tour & Giveaway ~ Mental Damnation - Vol. II by Konn Lavery #Epic #Dark #Fantasy


Dream
Mental
Damnation Part 2
by
Konn Lavery
Genre:
Epic Dark Fantasy

Thought
to be banished to the underworld by the humans, Krista mysteriously
finds herself as the first of her kind to walk on the surface in
centuries. This was caused by one of the underworld’s corrupt
leaders, Danil, who uses her in an unholy ritual to set their people
free. Danil’s infectious touch gives Krista the nightmarish disease
known as Mental Damnation.





She
becomes the key interest of two men, Paladin and Dr. Alsroc, who
struggle to make sense of her sudden appearance and how it relates to
Mental Damnation. Her friend back in the underworld, Darkwing,
abandons his gang to begin his search for her.

Krista
finds herself torn between two worlds, gaining acceptance among the
humans while experiencing inner turmoil from hallucinations caused by
her disease. These visions paint a hellish dream world known as
Dreadweave Pass where the realm’s ruler, a corrupt god known as the
Weaver, is on the hunt for her. Krista’s blood is believed to be a
key component for the Weaver’s retribution against the Heavenly
Kingdoms that once banished him!










Reality
Mental
Damnation Part 1

Having
her family murdered by the humans during her people’s banishment
from the surface world, Krista and her only friend, Darkwing,
struggle to remain alive. The pair of reptilian street scum live in
their newfound home, the City of Renasence, dictated by a fascist
military known as the Renasence Guard. The two find themselves at
odds when Krista puts her faith in the Five Guardians’ goal of
unification, while Darkwing chooses to stand with a notorious gang,
the Blood Hounds, who are known for their anarchist views


This
divide in their friendship forces Krista to persist on her own as the
Five Guardians become crazed from an unknown disease - Mental
Damnation. After their infection, the Guardians develop a bizarre
interest in her, claiming they must reap her innocence for their
newfound master, the Weaver.


With
a military dictatorship, politically-driven gangs and their guardians
infected and on a hunt for her, Krista has limited options for
survival: Does she fend for her life in the City of Renascence,
against menacing forces, or risk leaving everything behind and enter
the uncharted realm of the underworld?






Konn
Lavery is a Canadian horror and dark fantasy writer who is known for
his Mental Damnation series. The second book, Dream, reached the
Edmonton Journal’s top five selling fictional books list. He
started writing fantasy stories at a very young age while being home
schooled. It wasn’t until graduating college that he began
professionally pursuing his work with his first release, Reality.
Since then he has continued to write works of fiction ranging from
fantasy to horror.





His
literary work is done in the long hours of the night. By day, Konn
runs his own graphic design and website development business under
the title Reveal Design. These skills have been transcribed into the
formatting and artwork found within his publications supporting his
fascination of transmedia storytelling.



Follow
the tour HERE
for exclusive excerpts, guest posts and a giveaway!






Book Tour ~ The Keeper of her Heart by Stacy Henrie #Inspriational #Historical #Romance

On Tour with Prism Book Tours.

The Keeper of her Heart
by Stacy Henrie
Inspirational Historical Romance
ebook, 271 pages
September 26th 2017 by Beyond the Page Publishing


If you like the novels of Deanne Gist and Lauraine Snelling, you’ll love USA Today bestselling author Stacy Henrie’s inspirational romance set against the backdrop of World War One!



Even at a young age, Ada Thorne knew that she would marry only for love, never money. So when she finds herself irrevocably drawn to Ned Henley, the lowly gamekeeper on a neighboring estate, she defies her parents and society by eloping with him to London to build a new life.



Without her family’s support, life in the city is far more difficult than the one of ease and privilege Ada has always known. She’ll find herself relentlessly tested in ways she never imagined—especially when Ned, answering the call of duty, enlists to serve his country in World War One.



Alone and near poverty with a child to raise, Ada’s resolve will be strained at every turn. And as she struggles to remain true to her convictions and live life on her own terms, Ada will embark on a journey of courage, faith, and love that will surpass even her own humble dreams . . .



Advanced Praise for the Book



“Stacy Henrie possesses superior storytelling skills, her historical accuracy and attention to detail are unsurpassed, and she knows how to create characters we can identify with and whom we really care for.” —Fresh Fiction





Excerpt:

“You won’t . . . starve . . . in London, will you, miss?” Hetty shut the trunk lid and climbed to her feet.
Forcing a light laugh, Ada slipped her coat on over her gown. “No, I don’t believe we’ll starve.”
Deep down, though, a germ of fear attempted to sprout inside her. She’d never known deprivation or difficulty or hard work. But she was determined to see her decision through—she would prove that marrying for love wasn’t the swift path to misery and regret that her parents believed it to be. She loved Ned. And she trusted that his current employer, Hugh Whittington, would follow through on his promise to help find Ned a new job.
A move to London would hopefully bring them more opportunities and independence. At the very least, it would put needed distance between her and her parents and the way Ada had been brought up. She would raise her family differently. Her sons and daughters would be encouraged to marry for love and to lead lives of compassion and goodness rather than ones motivated by appearances, position, and wealth.
“We’ll be fine, Hetty,” she said as she quieted her momentary panic. “Now help me carry this trunk downstairs.” She didn’t wish to wake their butler. He would surely alert her parents of her departure, and Ada wanted to be long gone before they rang for their breakfast.

About the Author


USA Today bestselling author Stacy Henrie is the author of western romances and the Of Love and War series, which includes Hope at Dawn, a 2015 RITA Award finalist for excellence in romance. She was born and raised in the West, where she currently resides with her family. She enjoys reading, road trips, interior decorating, chocolate, and most of all, laughing with her husband and kids.


Tour Giveaway

- 1 winner will receive a $40 Amazon e-gift card and an e-book copy of any of Stacy's books (winner's choice)
- Open internationally

- Ends October 25th

Book Blitz ~ The Funeral Flower by Michelle Jester #NA #Contemporary #Fiction

Promo Blitz ~ The Devil's Dragon by Jason F. Boggs #SciFi






Space Opera, Science Fiction
Date Published: January 2017

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Set 80 years into the future, Nelson Jones, a young military cadet full of optimism and hope is enlisted into the New Era - a fascist regime that arises to rule the world after a horrifying attack from an alien species known as the Great Tribe.

Under the leadership of Earth's dictator, President Jacob Freeman with his ruthless enforcer, Major Ira Bilis, Nelson witnesses horrible abuses of power and is forced to confront his values and his world view to make difficult choices. When he happens across a small faction of resistance against this tyranny, Nelson must consider whether to risk his life to do what he feels is right.

Praise for The Devil's Dragon:

Choosing to persevere had been one of my better decisions as of late. As I read on, the tale improved vastly and almost before I realized it, I was hooked. It wasn't love at first sight, but the diverse cast of characters and the intriguing story line eventually drew me in. I'm glad this is a trilogy and I will be eagerly awaiting news of the next two releases. Well worth the read! 4/5 stars. - Bookplex

First in a trilogy, THE DEVIL'S DRAGON is a fascinating futuristic first contact story that challenges ideas about government, humanity and the fine line we walk between right and wrong. - IndieReader

Excerpt
Chapter 21: The Devil's Dragon

Ira Bilis stepped up to an awaiting shuttle, a lieutenant saluted her at the base of the landing ramp, she ignored this and walked past him to the top of the ramp, the loud clacking of her jack boots on the steel seemed to contradict her demure figure, she turned to regard the camp one last time, it was swarming with Aesini warriors, a small contingent of Paladins in defence formation were picking off any of the aliens who dared shoot at or make a rush toward their position.
She breathed in the carnage for a short time before regarding her junior officer with a smirk as he walked up to join her "It makes you feel alive doesn't it"? "Uh, yes ma'am".
"Is the shuttle loaded with what I ordered"?
"Yes ma'am, the storage containers have the trinkets that you selected from the local villages".
"I know what there are"! She tightened her grip on her riding crop, the familiar ominous leather on leather sound made him flinch. He knew that these cases of plunder was everything she had stolen from the Aesini, bracelets, earrings, fine fabrics, jewels, even some gold. He guessed that these spoils of war would fund her retirement.
"Give the order". She nodded to him who saluted, turned and barked to the small group of soldiers below. "Move out, go go go"! He made a wind up signal. "Yes LT"! They clamoured up the ramp and as it was closing, enemy bullets hit the steel door making a loud pinging sound. The shuttle took off with two dragonfly escorts, the last of the fighters that remained, the roar of its engines punctuated the tumult below, Nadija heard the turbulence and looked up to see the spectacle of the three ships taking off and shook her head with dismay. "She escaped didn't she"? Horx shared her conclusion.
"There are other ways to exact justice, the Gods will see to that". Seric sought to offer some comforting words, Nadija gave him a sinister grin "No, not the Gods, we will".
Seric gave her a look of displeasure and cleared his throat for a rebuttal; however, Nadija felt the need to supplement her thoughts.
"We don't have time to discuss the finer points of faith and philosophy my friend but suffice it to say, we are all made of stars and both of us are tiny insignificant life forms scuttling around under the same sun like microbes in a Petri dish, that makes us more or less the same under any God or Gods that you nominate, whether there is a God or Gods or not, whether we're here because of evolution only or evolution assisted by intelligent design from a higher power, it doesn't really matter in the end, I just do what I do because it makes me feel good".
"Doesn't really matter? Creation is not purely by chance look around you! We are the instruments of the Gods, some are called upon to carry out their will, others work against it merely to benefit themselves, most do nothing overall, I most certainly disagree with your simplistic assessment". Seric coughed with incredulity.
"That's your right, let's just keep moving". Horx wasn't inclined toward profound conversation at this point. "Wow Nadija that's kinda deep, here I was thinking you were just a soldier".
"No one's just anything Evan, what we are isn't nearly as important as who we are". Her eyes had a sparkle in them whenever she looked at him lately and it made his heart skip a beat. "To be continued over some noodles". He smiled, hoping she understood that noodles was a euphemism for so much more.
They ran down an embankment until they arrived at the main entrance to the camp, Seric took his temporary blanket robe off "I think we'll be safe here". He declared as he waved to a group of about a hundred Aesini, clearly this area at least was secure and although gun shots could still be heard in the distance, Nadija gestured for Horx to put his weapon away.
There were at least fifty Paladins squatted with their hands on their heads. As Seric was greeted by his fellow warriors, Nadija asked "You guys are taking prisoners?"
Seric glanced at the POWs and nodded "They can be used at the negotiating table, they will be treated with more kindness then you humans afforded us".
"Present company excluded, don't paint us all with the same brush". Nadija protested.
"Right, of course, I'm sorry it's just that whatever the outcome, prejudices will remain, so much damage has already been done".
An elderly warrior rode up atop a strider and peered down with a smile "Seric, the fact that you’re still alive proves that the Gods have a sense of humour".
"Chief Naid, the convert Nelson Jones is at the base hospital with Meaghan, we have to go rescue them". Nadija looked up to regard him.
"Lead the way then". Naid let out a whistle to summon a mank, when one appeared Alene's face was already on its belly.
"Nelson's at the infirmary with Meaghan". Naid reported.
"That area is in the middle, still unsecured, gather up your troops, I'll head in from the West, you take the south and we'll meet up there, the dragonflies have retreated to their mother ship for now, probably to resupply so we must act fast".
Naid saluted his daughter. "Alright, you heard your queen, move out"! And enthusiastic roar of approval erupted from the warriors as they swarmed up the alley that Seric and his entourage had just come from.
Nadija held out her hand to Horx to stop him and shook her head. "We've done enough fighting, let's find a safe area and see if your little experiment worked".
Horx nodded and turned on his tablet, scrolling through some menus, Wong's concerned face appeared on the screen. "Report Evan".
"Mission failed but I think we still have an outcome that may be to our advantage".
"I have heard that the Aesini have overrun the camp yes"?
"True enough, it's safe for you to meet up with us now, we'll be in guard post...". Horx looked up and saw some large numbers emblazoned on the side of a white tower, a single Aesini warrior was in position at the window. "... Sixteen".
"What will you be doing up there"? Wong cocked an eyebrow.
He glanced at Nadija who blushed. "Watching some TV" Horx smilled.
The atmosphere inside the shuttle was sombre, Resen had fallen to the enemy and the soldiers had their heads bowed with the shock and disappointment of defeat, except Bilis who strode up and down between them with her head held high, she gently tapped each of their knees with her riding crop to get their attention.
"Ladies and gentlemen". They all regarded her, including Botany who sat silently between the crates at the back of the cabin, almost unseen like he was part of her loot.
"We are now in space, about to dock with the command ship, despite appearances, we have not lost, this is part of a greater plan that the President has foreseen". She smiled menacingly.
"There is a moment of truth that is about to occur, a moment of reckoning that will determine the outcome of this struggle against the alien menace, I'm taking overall command of this mission to ensure final victory and I need to know if you are with me or against me, right now".
She peered into each of their eyes, one by one and in turn they answered "with you ma'am", "loyal and true", yes sir", "to the end", "now and forever".
She didn't bother with Botany; he sat there expressionless, silent in the shadows.
"Good, when the moment comes, I will give you the codeword "downfall", at that moment you will not hesitate to open fire on Admiral Reece, he has refused a direct order from the Central to fire upon the enemy which has now taken over the camp, once we take command
of the Gilly, we bomb the shit out of them, we do not tolerate weakness in the new era do you get me"?!
"We get you sir"!
When the shuttle landed in the main docking bay, Reece was there with a ceremonial compliment of troops to greet her, she was obviously outnumbered, now was not the right time.
"Major Ira Bilis, it's good to see that you made it out, I've been in contact with the President and have given him an update of the situation". She saluted Reece who returned in kind.
"Admiral, it was by the skin of my teeth that I escaped and the bravery of my Paladins shall not be forgotten, by the way it's General Bilis now". She turned to look at her troops and gave them a small smile.
"I didn't hear of this promotion, congratulations". His face had a sceptical expression.
"May we meet in private"?
"Of course, there is much to discuss". Reece gave a junior officer a nod who gave the order to dismiss the honour guard, as they marched off, Reece held out his hand for her to walk toward another exit which would eventually lead them to the ship's meeting room.
"You may dismiss your troops General; they've fought well and must be eager for R&R".
"They will have earned it before this day is over". She agreed, her pace was slow as they walked, it didn't occur to him that she was stalling for time, waiting until his troops had entirely left the docking bay before confronting him.
"Are you injured"? He feigned concern.
"Just fatigued sir, a little battered and bruised too". This was the truth.
When they got to the exit door, Reece's troops were finally gone but Bilis's contingent remained in formation behind her, Reece's face had a growing look of concern. "Dismiss your troops General or I will for you".
"Not yet".
Reece went to grab his cylinder but Bilis put her hand on his wrist to stop him, the concerned expression now turned to alarm. "What the hell's going on Ira"?
Her troops now cocked their rifles and trained them on him.
"Oh my God".
"Admiral, I am taking over this mission, I would much prefer that you remain in command of the Gilgamesh and we'll pretend that this little awkward moment never happened as long as you acknowledge that I'm in charge overall".
"The president's in charge overall". He scowled at her. "And he has deemed me fit for command of the expeditionary forces, I am the Admiral you silly little girl"!
He regarded the soldiers behind her. "When you put on that uniform, you took a sacred oath to follow the proper chain of command put forth by the leader himself, put down your weapons, that's an order or you'll be in front of a firing squad"! He barked at them but they remained unmoved.
Bilis walked a circle around Reece, her riding crop twisting between her leather gloves at her back. "Reece, this is an opportunity for you to make things right, this is the turning point of this war, all you have to do is resume your post as fleet Admiral and follow my orders, the first being to bomb the crap out of the camp below and then Apolinya, is that understood"?
"I only follow orders from two people Ira, Jessie and Jacob, we've known each other for a long time, from the start, you know I can't change that, you know there is no compromise"!
"They're not here, they will never be here, this system belongs to us now and the only way we can rule it is with an iron fist, the outcast colonies will be a shinning beacon, an unreachable
outpost of the new era, an impregnable fortress, a utopia of strength and order defying a universe of chaos, I'm giving you the chance to be a part of that Adam, to revel in its glory!"
Her eyes sparkled with a maniacal intensity as she made a fist, Reece grimaced, she'd never called him by his first name before. "President Freeman ordered that I do not bomb the camp and withdraw the fighters, unlike you he values his personnel still down there". He looked at the troops in her entourage. "You are only here to forward her agenda, she's addicted to power, that's why Freeman held her back on a short leash, he knew she'd turn out like this, don't you see that"?
"He lies, last chance Reece, join me". She stared into his eyes at close range and for a moment he could see something he couldn't reconcile with his mind, it was fire blazing in her eyes, was it his fear playing tricks with his eyes?
"Never". He whispered.
Her troops raised their guns, ready to fire on her orders.
"Downfall".
Reece slumped under a hail of bullets, dying in a pool of his blood he looked up at her standing over him.
"You're the devil". He managed to spit out before he closed his eyes and ceased to exist.
"No, I am the devil's dragon". She whispered to herself as she walked out of the hangar, her troops marching in formation behind her. "I am what the universe has made me". The doors closed behind her, only Botany remained, standing in the middle of the bay, alone, forgotten.
Meaghan lay on the operating table, coughing meekly and wheezing she stared into his eyes. "I love you Nelson".
"That's twice I've heard that today but you're the only one I wanted to hear it from". He held her cool hand tightly as the doctor applied anesthetic over her mouth and hooked her up to various machines.
"She's haemorrhaging; I've got to go in now". He muttered. The doctor was soaked in the blood of patients he'd worked on before her, his expression was frazzled.
"Save her doc".
"I can only play with the cards I'm dealt, the less you talk from now on the better so shut up".
Her eyes closed under the effect of the anaesthesia and the doctor proceeded to cut her open, he didn't even bother cleaning the equipment first.
Some minutes of silence passed as he worked furiously over her, the doctors face was obscured by his mask so Nelson watched his eyes, he didn't like what he saw, the eyes betrayed him, they looked increasingly less confident and Nelson's heart sank, tears welled in his eyes.
"Please doc, please save her, she's pregnant".
"You don't think I know that"?!
They heard shouting and shots being fired from outside the operating theatre and for a moment they looked at each other with trepidation, the doctor then returned to Meaghan and shook his head. "Looks like your war found its way here". He grumbled.
The doors swang open to the theatre, a few Aesini walked in and raised their weapons at them, Nelson stood up, his hands raised. "I'm done fighting".
A female stepped forward adorned in a purple cape. "Are you Nelson Jones"? To his surprise she could speak English.
He nodded, his hands still raised.
"Do you mind? I'm trying to save a life here"! The doctor bellowed.
"Two lives". Nelson tilted his head toward the doctor who shook his head regretfully, one of the machines made a flat line sound.
"No, just one now".
Nelson lowered his hands and turned to look over Meaghan, she was gone.
"Oh Jesus no, no no no, why God why"? His tears now flowed down his face as he sobbed over her, his expression grew dark. "Bring her back"!
The doctor shook his head, Nelson pulled out his pistol and raised it to the doctor "Bring her back, at least try, why don't you at least try"?!
Naid leaned over and grabbed his gun, wrenching it off him, Alene held him as he cried, he wasn't even aware that he was embracing the alien. Seric walked over and put a sympathetic hand on his shoulder. "Too much death has been seen today". Naid whispered.
The doctor continued to operate "I can save the child but she will need an incubator to survive, she's premature".
"Tell me where to find this incubator". Alene said.
"There's none on this mound of shit you call Resen, the only ones we have are on the capital ships, the Gilgamesh has one.
Nelson wiped his eyes and looked at the doctor "I'm sorry about my reaction doctor".
"I've seen worse, now, can you get me on that ship"?
He thought for a moment and shook his head regretfully. "No, I don't see how".
Alene stepped in front of him and looked into his eyes "Never lose hope Nelson, the Gods have determined that we meet for a reason".
"Who are you"?
"I am Alene, first Empress of the Great Tribe and I will lead all of us, human and Aesini alike to the path of righteousness".
Naid and Seric looked at each other and said in bemused unison "Empress"?
"This is my father Chief Naid and my good friend Seric".
They nodded and Nelson let out a slow exhale. "So, what now"?
"Now you need to name this child". A small cry could be heard behind them and they all turned to see a new born baby girl being cradled in the doctor’s arms, so tiny and fragile and Nelson let out a gasp, he couldn't believe his eyes. He walked over and held out his little finger, the baby's hand could feel it and grasped at it.
"Liana".
"Why this name"? Alene asked.
"That was the name of Meaghan's grandmother, she told me about her once, right about the time my daughter was conceived in fact". He smiled, recalling the moment of his short lived intimacy with Meaghan; it seemed so long ago now. "She lived in a better time, a better world, far from perfect but better".
"Then the birth of this child shall herald better times again". Alene declared.
"Touching, but she's only got a few hours to enjoy these better times unless we get her to an incubator and a proper hospital". The doctor growled.

About the Author




After completing two degrees, Jason F Boggs has spent over 25 years in the hotel industry where he experiences peoples' true natures - both good and bad, fertile ground for these stories. Jason currently lives on the Gold Coast in Australia with his wife SueEllen who patiently endures his imagination and their two cats, who do not.

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