Beyond the Darkside: 32-9 to 12


“You know her?” Evan asked.

“Know her? Hell, wonder boy, she’s my wife,” Hanse said with a foolish grin.

“Wait, you’re married?”

“What? You think I spend all of my time keeping an eye on you?” He turned and smiled at his wife. “I have this lovely creature to come home too.”

“Not that you do,” Debra said. “You haven’t been home in three days.”

“Well I’ve been busy,” Hanse said.

“Obviously, but would it hurt to check in every now and then at least?” she asked.

Continue reading “Beyond the Darkside: 32-9 to 12”

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Beyond the DarkSide: 32-6 to 8


“Well I’ll be damned,” Hanse said.

“What? What is it?” Evan asked while frantically looking about.

“It looks like we’re saved.” Hanse picked up his pace, bounding forward with long strides that ate up the distance.

Evan chased after him, but he watched the distance between them grow. He worried that the revolutionary intended to ditch Evan and save himself. Then he saw the shuttle.

The dull mustard yellow shuttle sat between two craters and blended in with the surroundings. A white light blinked twice and went dark. It did so a few seconds later, but stopped once Evan turned in its direction. Hanse got to the shuttle and waved Evan forward. “Come on,” he shouted.

Evan’s breath came in panting gasps by the time he got to the shuttle door. He climbed inside the red lit interior and Hanse closed the hatch. A cheerful, masculine voice announced, “Please keep all safety gear in place.” Air rushed into the bay through a series of vents in the ceiling. After a minute the hissing stopped and the light changed from red to white.

Hanse unlatched his helmet and pulled it off. He sucked in a noisy breath and declared, “Still recycled, but the freshest air I’ve had in thirty minutes.” Evan followed his lead, but kept the helmet in his lap rather than tossing it to the ground.

The metal clank and hiss of an airlock opening turned both of their heads toward the front of the shuttle. A tall, thin woman in grey flights it stepped through the door and glared at the two of them. She opened her mouth to speak, but Hanse cut her off. “Debbie, baby, I’m so glad to see you.” His exuberant greeting and accompanying smile did not elicit the response he hoped for. Debra’s glare grew more pronounced and the silence more palpable.

Beyond the DarkSide: 32-4 to 5


They trudged on in silence, heading in the direction of the relay. After ten minutes, Evan stopped looking over his shoulder for the DarkSide security shuttle. After twenty, he wished it found them instead. The never ending sea of grey dust and rocks made estimating time and distance almost impossible. Despite what the oxygen gauge on Evan’s suit suggested, he was certain they would run out of air at any moment.

“We should turn back,” Evan said. “I’m sure security has left by now. We can break back in and call for a ride.”

“Shut up, idiot. There is no going back there, not if we want to live anyway,” Hanse said as he lumbered forward.

Evan bit back a response. He did not think Hanse was the type to leave him out in the wasteland to die, but he did not want to take that chance just yet. He followed in silence, keeping his eyes trained on the heavy backpack carried by the other man. He grumbled in his head that it could have held more oxygen, and he told Hanse as much while the big man emptied the original contents, but Hanse had his new gun and the other items they originally came for, and he was not about to leave such treasures behind.

Beyond the DarkSide: 31-12 to 13


Security
“CWAC” by Unknown photographerCredit: Canada. Dept. of National Defence/Library and Archives Canada/PA- – Found at http://www.junobeach.org/canada-in-wwii/articles/the-canadian-womens-army-corps/ – website for The Juno Beach Centre, Courseulles-sur-mer, Normandy. Accessed 1st May 2007. Photograph taken October 30th, 1943 by Canadian Crown employee and hence out of copyright.. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:CWAC.jpg#/media/File:CWAC.jpg

A tall, lanky woman in her early thirties, Debra Carter carried herself with a quiet confidence that Margaret instantly admired and hated. Alarms went off in her head. This woman was a threat to her, or at least her plans, but for the moment Margaret needed her, so she pushed down the warning and smiled.

“Welcome, Debra,” Margaret said as she stood up. “It is a pleasure to finally meet you.” Continue reading “Beyond the DarkSide: 31-12 to 13”

Beyond the DarkSide: 31-6 to 9


Secret

Margaret watched the man leave and enjoyed the stink of his fear in the air. Men of power were so easy to cow; they all had something they were afraid of losing, so showing them how easy it was to take away their something special usually put them in line. Not Aldric though. No, that man kept nothing close enough to use against him. Margaret thought she might be his weakness, and she certainly could influence him, but he would sacrifice nothing for her. His only love was for himself, and she suspected that even that love was fleeting.

She sat at the desk and pulled up her terminal. A quick flick series of motions brought up the latest satellite imagery of DarkSide’s research facility. It looked like they were building a new warehouse, but why? What did they need more storage space for? She thought for a moment, plumbing her knowledge of the company and the man that ran it. It was not for storage and it was not a warehouse she decided. Aldric was building something, and it was probably something big. What was it?

A tap on the monitor brought up a video image of her secretary. “Cathy, tell Carl that I want that information on my desk in an hour.”

“Yes, ma’am,” Cathy said. “Is there anything else?”

Margaret pursed her lips and thought for a second before saying, “Yes, have Kraven come here in two.” She closed the window and returned to looking at the satellite feeds. “There is a secret hiding in there, Aldric. What do you think you’re doing?”

A red light blinked in the corner of her screen, so Margaret touched it. A live video feed popped open showing the entrance to one of Aldric’s many supposedly hidden warehouses. A full squad of security guards rushed in through the airlock with their rifles pointed forward. Margaret paused the feed and zoomed in on one of the rifles. “Set to kill, I see,” she whispered. “Someone must have found something you wanted to stay hidden.”

Another tap on the screen and Cathy popped back into view. “Cathy, tell Kraven to get here as fast as he can, and I want the security captain for Lunar Paveways here immediately. Send a shuttle if you have to, but I want him in my office by the time Kraven arrives.” She closed the window again, not feeling the need to say anything further.

Beyond the Darkside: 30-17 through 20


Fire

A staccato burst of cobalt bolts flew down the aisle with a high pitched whine. They struck a car sized container at the end of the rack, evaporated the steel exterior and struck the contents with the force of speeding tank concentrated into the head of a pin. The jellied fuel inside the container reacted to the sudden intrusion with violence. The normally stable and inert fuel reacted with the bolts and exploded. The container contained the blast for less than a fraction of a second. Fire and steel erupted outward bathing the racks in destruction and killing the security guards in before they even understood the danger they were in.

“Oh yeah!” Hanse shouted as he lifted the rifle up and rested the barrel on his shoulder. “I love this thing.” Continue reading “Beyond the Darkside: 30-17 through 20”

Not Going Epic


Epic

Not Going Epic…Yet

Lately I’ve been spending a lot of time cruising through Tumblr. I’m not going to get into the weirdness that Tumblr is or how the place leaves me feeling conflicted over political and social issues, but I will say that I’ve been enjoying a number of science fiction and fantasy pictures that have left me feeling a little inspired. At least I’m going to call it inspiration, because to say they left me feeling desirous sounds a little creepy and somewhat inappropriate for this blog.

Epic shots of mammoth space ships have left me wanting to write science fiction in a bad way. But it would not be enough to write science fiction by itself, no, there must be an epic space battle included or my desire to write epic science fiction will be left unresolved. I’m sure my repeated watching of the new Star Wars trailer has influenced this urge in me, but I have always loved the idea of capital ships slugging it out in the void of space.  I can only think of a handful of books that I have read where such battles are described, and there are some movies out there, but all so often the space battle is given short shrift as the action focuses on the characters involved.

As much as I want to write that perfect scene of mammoth starships striking each other with blinding streams of solid light and missiles designed to lay way to planets while hordes of starfighters zip between the ships like clouds of violence made manifest, now is not the time.  Alas, I have some urban fantasy to finish and I know that straying too far from the series I am working on will only drive me crazy.  I know it sounds a little weird for a guy who routinely juggles too many writing projects all at once, but I’ve started to get a little OCD with my writing. I tried to do something else for NaNoWriMo, but I couldn’t make myself focus on another story no matter how much I wanted to.

In the meantime, I’ll have to settle for talking about epic space combat. So tell me, what are your favorite books and movies for scenes of ship to ship combat? What made them special in your mind?