Here’s a selection from Escapee, my recently released science fiction romance. Enemies from the Proxima star system have invaded the isolated mining moon where Catt Sayer is a civilian pilot. She picks up a lone survivor, Captain Dukelsky, who wants her to fly her airship to the far side of the moon to attack the enemy’s base.
Not wanting any part of such a suicide mission, Catt destroys the canon he’d hoped to use to attack the enemy’s base. Here’s part of his reaction. I apologize for the length, but there’s nowhere to break it.
“Always with the feelings, you women,” Hector said. “Helen. Sandrina. Now you. You just destroyed military weapons during wartime, a capital offense, and yet you want to talk about my emotions? Well I don’t have any, godsdamn it.”
“Hit you?” Didn’t she know by now he was one of the good guys? But when he realized he’d advanced most of the way to where she cowered, Hector stopped and shoved his fists into his pockets.
“If you kill me, you’re –”
“– stranded on this mountainside until you die.”
“I would never –”
“Yes, you would. Capital offense, you said, and you’re so furious at me—”
“I am not furious.”
“– that your face is all red.”
“I’m disappointed, that’s all.”
“Stop right there!”
Oh, damn, she was right — he’d raised his hand and stepped toward her. She was almost in grabbing distance, except the pilot’s seat was between them and she would just dash to the other side and he’d reach to his left and she’d dash to the right and the chase would degenerate into undignified slapstick.
“If you take one more step,” she said, “I’m going to scream.”
“You already did.” Hector came close to laughing, but this didn’t seem like an appropriate time. He kept his hands in his pocket and forced them to unclench. “If your female irrationality demands it, go ahead and scream. I’m curious, though. Who’s going to charge to your rescue?”
Catt stared into his eyes. The phrase she bored deep into his soul came to mind, but that was meaningless twaddle. His usual mask was down, perhaps. That was all. And yet something she saw made her stand a little straighter, a little less frightened. He had no idea why.
“You,” she said. Her voice sounded puzzled and surprised.
“Me? I’m going to charge to your rescue? But I’m the bad guy, according to you.”
“Yeah, you are.” She spoke so matter-of-factly he almost believed her. “But you have a soul in there, I think.” She relaxed her defensive posture. “Screaming might bring out the gentleman in you and you’d rescue me from yourself . . . I think.”
Maybe another female could understand her tangled logic. He couldn’t. And yet . . .
Her naive trust vibrated through all the reaches of his body. He was used to dealing with people at a superficial level. He was so used to being misunderstood he’d stopped resenting it. And yet at some cockeyed level, this hot-tempered woman understood him better than almost anyone, just from looking into his eyes.
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Book 2 in the Repelling the Invasion series
Catt Sayer just wants to survive. The working-class fugitive delivers military supplies on a decrepit airship, but her hard-won livelihood vanishes when invaders overrun her harsh moon. Even worse, an idealistic, upper-class officer wants her to risk her life on a hopeless trek to attack enemy headquarters – manned by 10,000 soldiers.