I’m continuing with snippets from Love thy Galactic Enemy, — which is now live!
I’m skipping ahead to an action scene. Returning from a clinic visit, a quartet of men attack Minta and Finn — aiming for her because of her enemy roots. Up to now, Finn has been ill and passive. He’s sweet, sure, but not the virile conqueror typical of sci fi romance.
But we suddenly learn something about him. Something about a Dervish implant . .
One attacker charged straight toward Finn, club held high. The young man, teenager really, moved like a fast robot, jerky and dead-eyed — high on one of the many designer drugs. If Finn knew what narcotic he was on, the knowledge might give a shred of an advantage, but there were too many to even guess.
So Finn reacted by picking up the only thing available on the flat surface of the grav sled: the bag of clothes, even though clothes hardly counted as a weapon. For an instant he worried he was still too ill for his Dervish to function.
But then his Dervish implants, may the supernovas bless them, kicked in with a physical whoosh that made him feel like a gas stove being lit from his toes to his nose —
— followed by a familiar instant of disorientation—
— and then a dreamlike detachment from reality.
He saw the scene in slow motion. It was fuzzy around the edges because his eyes focused on the center, leaving his peripheral vision hazy. In Dervish mode, his brain processed images not slowly like a thirty-eight-year-old, and not even with the greater speed of a five-year-old for whom time seemed to crawl — but faster than any normal human. That processing speed made time seem to drift on fairy wings. His reflexes improved too, partly because of the increased image-processing but also because the Dervish implant boosted his fight-flight response and adrenaline production.
He had plenty of time to assess the attack and his response.
Minta was pushing the grav sled with its rear handle. Sandrina Dukelsky walked at her side. They were partially protected by the sled…and by him, if he had enough strength to spring into action.
Love thy Galactic Enemy
Abandoned to the enemy’s tender mercy
Minta, the reserved secretary for a spy team that spread a man-made plague, leaves the planet too late — the team abandons her on the enemy’s space station. She’s forced to fend for herself until she can make contact with an elusive spy, Watcher, who can take her home. To avoid arrest, she nurses a plague victim — a gentle, whimsical man who spouts Lewis Carroll. But to know this enemy is to love him . . .
When Finn Shanwing falls ill, he doesn’t intend to hide that he’s a high-ranking commando. Neither does he intend to fall in love with the secretive nurse who saves his life . . . but by the time he reveals to Minta she saved an enemy commando, it’s too late for his heart. Or hers. Also too late to escape the wrath of Watcher — half-human, half-machine, and both halves obsessed with her.