QSFer Gina A. Pond has a new queer sci-fi book out, Survey book 3: Colony.
Jenny needs time to heal – but she’n not going to get it.
After her near destruction on New Harmony, Jenny Frasier retreats to Musashi. She submerges herself in training and meditation, trying to find her balance again. Once more, she is unexpectedly catapulted to the front lines of a war of hatred – one she is uniquely qualified to win, with some help.
As a deep-cover espionage specialist, Lulu uses her sociopathic tendencies for the greater good, but she never expects love, connection – or loss.
Jenny, Lulu and the others are just pawns in a galactic game, which twist and changes in response to their every move.
They need to track down the omniscient game master before it destroys two civilisations.
The formalities complete, the instructors came to congratulate me.
Some just bowed, some shook my hand, and others patted me on the shoulder. Then they began to leave the room. Still in awe of what just happened, with my new weapon cradled in my hands, I didn’t realize that the others had all left the room. Only the Admiral remained.
I bowed to him again and said, “Thank you, Admiral. I’m honored that you came to my test.”
He shook his head. “You have no need to thank me. It was Miya and your instructors who knew you were ready for this test. Isn’t that right, Miya?”
“Yes, Admiral,” Musashi-sensei said. “Jenny, you have shown incredible progress both in your martial arts training and in your spiritual training. There is nothing more you could learn in training that you can’t learn on your own.” The Admiral smiled at this and I blushed.
“I—thank you,” I said.
“Well, it does show that you did deserve your martial arts medal when you graduated from Unity Fleet Academy. You have a talent, Jenny, and one that we haven’t seen much of in many years. What will you do now?
As you know, now that you are of dan rank, you are free to come and go as you please, unless you are assigned a specific mission.” He had a twinkle in his eye that let me know he knew what I wanted to do, but he wanted me to say it out loud.
“I would like to go to New York Colony, sir. I need… I need to know what happened. To my family.”
“I see,” he clasped his hands behind his back and started walking around the room. I stayed where I was, since you only walked with the Admiral if you were invited. “What do you think, Miya?” “Yes, Admiral. The arrangements could be made. I think we should arrange for someone to go with her, though.”
“No!” I blurted out.
The Admiral stopped walking. “No? You object to the wisdom of your Elders?”
“It’s just that… I need to go alone, sir.”
“Why? For revenge against your father?” he asked.
“No. I just took a vow against that,” I replied.
“So you did. Why do you wish to go to a place of pain for you? Are you punishing yourself for things you did in the past?”
“I—” I paused. Was I? “I don’t think so, sir. But there are others in my family who were innocent of what my father did. I need to know what happened to them.”
The Admiral stopped pacing, standing in front of me. His dark eyes stared into mine for several minutes as he seemed to be weighing something.
I stared back at him and let myself relax. Then he said,
“The reasoning is acceptable. I have made the arrangements.”
“Thank you, Miya. I wish you a safe journey and a safe return, Jenny-san.
Come see me when you return. I would like to hear about what happens to you.”
“Thank you, Admiral,” I said, as the Admiral walked out of the room.
“Jenny-san, we will be rendezvousing with the Ares in a month. They will take you to New York Station. You will have the usual stipend all warriors receive in Unity space. Additional information on the colony’s status will be sent to your tablet. You must bring a uniform with you, but
I do not recommend wearing it while traveling through Unity. As you know, Survey is not well liked right now. I will inform you when Ares arrives. Until then, your time is your own. Rei and the others are waiting for you. They have made sweets in anticipation of the outcome.”
I smiled. “Thank you, Musashi-sensei. I am honored that you recognized my work.”
“You’re welcome,” Musashi-sensei said. I belted my sword on and left the dojo.
Rev. Gina A. Pond is a writer, an ordained Christian pastor, and Wiccan priest. She currently lives in Switzerland with her Wife, likes to cook, weave and spin yarn, game a bit, has many fountain pens, and is a gadget geek.