QSFer Missy Welsh has a new MM sci fi book out:
A routine mission from the Moon Colony to Earth ends in the five-man crew of the Swallowtail being transported to the other side of the galaxy. Met with hostility, captured, and tortured simply for being Human, the three survivors hold little hope for their futures.
Captain Noah O’Keefe has lost his ship and his crew to alien forces he didn’t even know existed until a few hours ago. Chemically blinded and helpless, he can only rely on the kindness of strangers to escape a dungeon and try to recover what he’s lost.
Vivek Korraay has the fate of the universe in his hands, but around every corner is another crisis…or a blue-eyed Human whose needs he cannot ignore. Spying has lost its appeal and Vivek longs for a simpler life and someone to share it with.
Can Noah and Vivek survive pursuit on land and in space long enough to prevent a war?
And, if they do, might a true and binding love be their reward?
Destination Lost, Book 1
Noah kept an eye on Vivek through the flight away from the planet. He might not be able to see him very well, but he could tell Vivek was heading for a crash. Given the number of times he seemed to shake himself awake while they sat there, Noah was pretty sure Vivek was nearing complete exhaustion.
It worried him. He needed Vivek to lead for more reasons than just that Vivek could see better. Noah didn’t know the language that big blur of a guy had spoken, he didn’t have whatever it was in his hand that let Vivek pay for things, and he had absolutely no idea where to go or what to do from one minute to the next. Yes, by damn, he hated being so helpless and useless and beholden to another person, but Noah couldn’t do this on his own.
Sweat beaded on his upper lip. He swiped it away. When he realized his knee was bouncing, he tried to sit still. He’d been slowly freaking out since they’d sealed the hatch. Though the takeoff had been smoother than anything he had ever known, it was still heading back up into space inside a tiny can. He didn’t want to stay on that hell planet, but sweet Christ…
“It is a decent ship,” Vivek said beside him. “More bulky freighter than sleek passenger ship, but it looks well-maintained. One visible gun turret which makes me think it may be fast enough to avoid a fight. That is good.”
Noah knew what Vivek was trying to do for him. He gave their clasped hands a squeeze and tried to let Vivek’s low voice soothe him. But it was Vivek’s face, so close for the first time, that distracted Noah.
Vivek’s dove gray skin had an undertone of pale pink and slightly darker stripes accentuating his features. His head was rounded on top, but with a square jaw. This close up, Noah could see Vivek’s pupils were large and black, not his entire eye, because there was a thin ring of silver around them. And even as foreign as Vivek’s face was with barely any nose and those eyes so far apart, the plump bottom lip and how quick Vivek was to smile reassurance made him intriguingly handsome.
Noah jumped in his seat when the shuttle banged down, stopped moving. Along with a hiss of pressurization they regained gravity. Bile rose in Noah’s throat, making him swallow convulsively. He would not lose it. Not here. Not now.
“All is well.” Vivek stroked the back of his fingers against Noah’s cheek. “We have docked with the ship and will now find our berth for the remainder of our journey.”
Taking deep breaths, Noah nodded. After Vivek unstrapped him, he made himself stand up, put his arms out, and accept Bendel when Vivek offered him. Keep it together.
Noah concentrated on following Vivek’s black clothing through the dimly lit, gray corridors. The big guy Vivek had negotiated with babbled at them the whole way. There was something disturbingly familiar to the way the alien spoke. It made Noah even twitchier.
When they all stopped, the alien slid open a door of orange panels to reveal a golden-hued light inside a small room. As far as Noah could see, though, the room was empty.
Missy Welsh stares into space a lot, has conversations with cats, takes notes while people-watching, records conversations (not the ones with cats), named her laptop Norbert and her phone Pushkin, has backups of her backups’ backups, faints at the sight of a misused semi-colon, and will often ask socially unacceptable questions of strangers. Basically, she’s a writer.