By Lea Kirk
This pining for what was past was beyond absurd. He had a job to do, and dwelling on what he could never have back served no purpose.
And now, for your reading enjoyment, here’s an excerpt of SPACE RANGER, my contribution to the out of this world PETS IN SPACE anthology. This short story is set in my Prophecy series universe, and it was a blast to write. Graig and Simone are two of my favorite characters, and Ranger the dog is based on my beloved, one-time writing companion, Indy. Enjoy!
Graig stepped out of the New Damon Beach community stable, his gear bag slung over one shoulder. The bright Terrian sunshine warmed his blue skin, but did nothing to ease the film of ice coating his heart. He rubbed his hand over his chest, but the action failed to ease the discomfort. Leaving Simone had been more difficult than he’d expected.
He set out in the direction of the port tarmac and Atlantis’s transport ship which would return him to his assignment as the senior security commander of the Guardian Fleet. This was his calling, his duty, no matter his personal feelings for Simone. Gryf needed his help to complete the fleet transition within the one Galactic Standard year allotted. And his duty was to stand by his commanding officer and childhood friend until the job was done and they were reassigned.
Alex needed him too, though she’d deny it. Sweet Mother above, who knew what kind of trouble his best friend’s wife could attract. As the first ever Terrian Ambassador to Matir, the list was long. He’d already saved her life from one assassination attempt, and all the heavens knew there were others in the galaxy that would benefit from the death of the Profeta. The peace she and Gryf had so recently established between Terr, Matir, and Anferthia was as fragile as spun glass.
The air cooled slightly as Graig ducked under the belly of the waiting shuttle. If the Holy Mother was merciful, he’d be able to slip into the craft before Gryf and Alex arrived. Simone and Alex were close, too close to even entertain the illusion that Alex remained ignorant of what had transpired. Since he was here and Simone was not, the very perceptive Profeta would figure it out in any case.
He froze. Apparently the Holy Mother was not feeling very merciful today. He turned, his gaze locking with that of the Terrian woman he called sora, ‘sister’. Hurt and accusation flitted in Alex’s brown and gold eyes. Wonderful. As if he wasn’t feeling like a big enough piece of shit already.
A very unambassador-like snort came out of her. “You are such a dumbass, Roble.”
Not that he’d asked for her opinion. Simone might be her best friend, but that didn’t give her the right to meddle. Of course, only a dumbass would have walked away from a woman like Simone Campbell.
I hope you enjoyed this excerpt from SPACE RANGER. It’s an honor to be part of the PETS IN SPACE anthology. 10% of the first month’s profits go to Hero-Dogs.org. This dedicated organization places trained dogs with US Veterans to help improve their quality of life and restore independence.
By Lea Kirk
Graig Roble is the Senior Commander of security for the Guardian Fleet. His expertise as a weapons specialist and combat master is his world, what he was born to do – or so he thought until he finds his resolve and focus inexplicably wavering. Even returning to his position aboard the Atlantis can’t save him; if anything, it has left him questioning his own motives. He never thought that could happen until he met Simone Campbell.
Simone’s focus is on her home world – Earth. She thought her life was full with her research as a botanist. After all, she always believed that helping the people of her world become self-sufficient should take all of her concentration – except it doesn’t. There is one man that keeps pulling her attention, and her heart, away from her job.
Graig’s gift of a puppy to keep her company does more than that, it keeps him in her dreams. How can such a simple gift bring her comfort and make her long for more? Graig and Simone are about to find out that sometimes love can blossom from the smallest, furriest ties.
Pets in Space blurb
Even an alien needs a pet…
Join the adventure as nine pet loving sci-fi romance authors take you out of this world and pull you into their action-packed stories filled with suspense, laughter, and romance. The alien pets have an agenda that will capture the hearts of those they touch. Follow along as they work side by side to help stop a genetically-engineered creature from destroying the Earth to finding a lost dragon; life is never the same after their pets decide to get involved. Can the animals win the day or will the stars shine just a little less brightly?
New York Times, USA TODAY, Award Winning, and Best selling authors have nine original, never-released stories that will capture your imagination and help a worthy charity. Come join us as we take you on nine amazing adventures that will change the way you look at your pet!
10% of the first month’s profits go to Hero-Dogs.org. Hero Dogs raises and trains service dogs and places them free of charge with US Veterans to improve quality of life and restore independence.