Tag Archives: science fiction

New Story, Chapter two, first snippet.

 

Still looking for a name for this story.

A weapon needed honing, for that is what Azrael was now. The tanks merely grew a clone to the state of an adult person, one who had never developed consciousness for they had never been awakened until the essence of the original individual was infused. While electrical impulses forced the muscles to move, it wasn’t enough to build strength, particularly with the titanium shields on parts of her bones increasing her weight. She spent hours at the angel’s personal gym, dealing with replenishing the deficit. Not what she wanted to do, but as the others said, there wasn’t a choice. She found this out when she didn’t move fast enough. A wrenching pain pulsed through her head, bringing her to her knees. This wasn’t something a person ever wanted repeating, so she worked harder after that.

Weapons training also figured, both on how to aim properly and how to break down and care for weapons. They ranged from tiny lazars fitting in the palm of a hand to bulkier projectile weapons for a long-range kill. Azrael found her accuracy increased along with her strength, something she didn’t like, but had no choice to alter. Hand to hand combat began once she had mastered the perfect projectile shot over a distance and could run five leagues on a treadmill. She found herself facing guards armed with dull stone knives, like the one she wielded for practice. Strange she wasn’t matched with other angels, but they were never present when she worked out. What was it about her that the bankers wanted to keep separate from the others? Maybe the killing skills? Perhaps they didn’t trust their angels and so limited their abilities?

As hard as she tried to slow the process down, there came a day when she was judged ready for her first assignment. Clothed in camouflage gear, complete with an emergency medical kit and a communicator, but no weapons as yet, she was marched to meet a banker for the first time. He’d give her details of the kill.

greyling-deeps

Second snippet of new story

The snippet may well be as it is as I was using a large sander this morning. Power tools have all sorts of unintended consequences. Anyhow, part 2. I am wondering about a name for this. Suggestions are welcome.

Rumors swirled about the angels. Some said they were all machine with the consciousness of the culprit trapped inside the circuits. Othes said they had enhanced human bodies; that they were cyborgs. No one believed they were people any longer, for they had no free will. A black cloud of fear swirled around her, eating at her mind, for one thing all people agreed upon was that angels lived forever. How much of her personality would be left? Memories of family wouldn’t exist, but what of the rest? She hoped all would be gone for then she wouldn’t know any different.

The door whispered open to admit a guard in a black Banker uniform and carrying a force whip, they type used on harja beasts to make them do tricks for people. Freya tried to swallow in a suddenly dry throat. She wasn’t people; she was a beast.
“Designation number 666, remove all apparel and jewelry, put them in the waste bucket in the corner and then follow me.”

Stars have mercy on her, it had started. Not Freya Blackhome anymore. The name didn’t exist and soon she wouldn’t remember, either. She jumped up to comply when he cracked the force whip, aware the next time wouldn’t be a warning. Her smart clothes for her court appearance were now dirty and smelled of a mixture of sweat and fear. She peeled them off, along with the rings from her pierced ears, dying a little more inside, ashamed of her older body with its sagging breasts and stretch marks. Now she wished she’d let her graying hair grow longer to give her some cover, but no, she’d cropped it in a shoulder bob before the trial, if that travesty could be called a trial.

Head down, not meeting the guard’s eyes, she followed him along a corridor, up a stairwell and onto a roof, where she was crated in a cage for an airlift by a drone, a marked difference from her arrival in the detention center ground runner. Freya didn’t need to search for her location on the skyline. The obsidian Banker’s building towered above all the rest. While not politicians, elected for a set number of years, a Banker held his place in society for life. They held most of the real power, but not all. Now she belonged to them. Sure enough, the drone aimed for the landing pad on top of the ominous building.

Guards in black uniform waited, their force whips ready. Freya didn’t resist, for what was the point? The only place she could have run was off the edge of the building, but they would never let her near there. Her fate wasn’t to die. Her fate was to be a possession.

She walked between them, matching directions until they stopped in a room with a large, metallic bed in the center with a hooded arrangement poised over where a person’s head would rest. Trembling started then; she couldn’t stop it, nor could she make her limbs move when they ordered her onto that bed. Hands grabbed at her, throwing her into place, strapping down her arms and legs. A sharp pain seared the back of her neck and then all feeling died from her shoulders down. A scream began to build when she figured they had cut her spinal cord, but another savage pain in the front of her neck stopped the intention from becoming reality when they put a tracheotomy in her windpipe. She wasn’t going to make another sound, not now. The carapace joined together over her head and then the cutting started.

greyling-deeps

Wonderful new 5 star review of Shadow Over Avalon

Today must be my lucky day, particularly for this book. Happy dances will commence immediately.

5.0 out of 5 stars
Brilliant!
By
Amazon Customer on September 22, 2016
Format: Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase

I wouldn’t be surprised to see this story on the big screen, as a major blockbuster, one of these days. “Shadows over Avalon”, Book 1 of the Shadows series, has all the ingredients to make a captivating high concept movie.
Arthur, an incredibly gifted young citizen of the underwater city of Avalon, is so special that he’s under constant scrutiny. Arthur won’t accept the life programmed for him by Avalon’s powers to be, and decides to escape and fight above water with Terrans, against their oppressors, the repulsive and all-powerful Nestines.
In order to prepare for his escape on the surface, Arthur secretly accesses the all-knowing Archive system, and discovers the story of Ashira, the beautiful and fierce War Maid, princess of the surface-world, betrayed by her father, and then by her peers. Ashira’s life is tied to the story of Avalon. But how does Ashira’s life relate to his? Why does he have dreams of a previous life? And what is his real purpose?
C.N. Lesley’s imagination has no limits. The worlds she created are so vivid and well thought out, that the reader’s gets completely immersed in this brilliant tale of lost love, mind games, and science fiction. Very impressive!

Death’s Angel. Last snippet of this section

The centurion didn’t help her with learning to read and write their language as he had promised. He sent Nyka in his place. Azriel still wanted to please the centurion above everything, despite her constant attempts to neutralize his venom. His absence robbed her of the ability to judge her progress.
Nyka had set the portable unit up for her and showed her how to key the screen; activate the voice mode and how to interact with it. Aside from this, she was left completely on her own. Buzzing from the food hatch, to announce a meal break at regular intervals, became her way of marking time. Notably, the food was the same as had been given out to the captive women in the holding pens. At least the centurion’s task gave her something to occupy her attention. She wanted to master the skill since it would be easier to navigate her way through the ship if she could read the directions, if that is what they were, posted at the intersection of corridors.
The worst part of her isolation was increasingly vivid dreams. They always started in an Angel holding cell where all her kind were gathered; a rare event in itself. She could see them but not make them hear her or see her. This was the point when she started awake, still screaming at them to notice her. And then came the last, most horrific dream of all. She had watched what the Angels were doing this time, instead of trying to make them notice her.
Azriel woke shaking, covered with a cold sweat. Only once had an Angel died without having an immediate body replacement. Uriel had been more than a friend to her when they got a chance to spend rare time together. Like her, he was an assassin, although no-one would guess from looking at him. His curling blond hair cascaded to his shoulders, framing a face of classical proportions. Deep-set blue eyes sparkled with mischief when he was around her. Added to the good looks, in her opinion, was the fact that no one supplied the Angels with a means to shave during non-working times. His beard came through about four shades darker than his hair, making him look like a charming rogue.
Both Coda and Azriel had been with Uriel on his last mission. It should have been an easy break-in for Coda to access the mainframe data base. Something had gone wrong. They were expected. Heavy duty weapons fired at them without warning. Azriel found a way for them to get clear when a shell blew a hole in a security perimeter wall. She turned to call to the others and saw Uriel’s body drop to the ground. His handsome head had been blown clean away: gone into a million pieces of mush and bone. He couldn’t be regenerated without his memories. He was really dead; forever. It was Coda who got them clear that day. Azriel didn’t remember how; everything was a blur from that moment on.
Back at base, she turned her face to the wall in their underground cell, ignoring Coda’s attempts to reach her mind. One by one all the Angels had been thrust into the cold, dimly lit rock cavern. They gathered around her in silence, all withdrawn from assignments while the controllers searched for the breach of security. When the last Angel arrived they began making a marker for the fallen.
Grieving together, the Angels carved Uriel’s name in the rock floor, taking turns to pound it with a hand-sized piece of harder stone someone had managed to smuggle in past the guards. No one investigated the noise. No one came near to give them food or water beyond what was already in the holding cell. Not one of them spoke. The sound of the stone pounding echoed for days and nights until they had finished. They did this for the one who was never coming home to them.
In her dream, she had seen them pounding with the stone again, heard the sharp beat going on and on until they all gathered around in silence, looking down. When they moved aside, she saw another name under Uriel’s . . . Her own.

Death’s Angel, next segment of the new snippet.

Things are moving faster now and in a new direction. 

The centurion was at her side, sitting on her bed, when she awoke, refreshed. He smiled, causing her heart to jump. The dark, curling lashes around his beautiful green eyes did things to her insides. His wavy dark hair looked slightly damp as if he had just finished ablutions, and he was wearing casual, light gray pants and a loose top. Azriel guessed he must be off duty.
“I have set out a meal for us. Will you join me?” He offered her his hand, the claws well retracted into his finger pads.
She thrilled to his touch, grateful for his aid as the edges of her wound didn’t stretch as much when she stood up. His hand was warm and hard; the hand of a warrior. He led her to the glass-topped metal table now covered with dishes. The Sidhe even slid the chair into place for her when she sat down, something she vaguely remembered from a distant lost lifetime and the occasional glimpse of how the rich people behaved at social gatherings.
The food was familiar by sight if not flavor. Both plates held a dressed kiki bird in citrus sauce, accompanied by a salad of dates, nanga nuts and succulent cactus flesh topped with a drizzle of oma seeds. A rich man’s repast; the choice of the Controllers. Angels only ate recognizable food if they caught it for themselves when they were out on a job and could get a campfire going in the open. Of course, the fire would depend on whether the campsite was near any of the black rock deposits that burned slow when ignited with a laz gun.
He intercepted her surprise with a grin. “We stocked up on provisions when we visited your world. Enjoy. We will be on ship’s rations again soon enough.”
“Are those on my world aware you acquired produce?”

“No doubt the knowledge will come to them in time.” His smile deepened. The tips of his brilliant white fangs showed.
Azriel wondered who would be screaming their loss. The thought was good. The food was even better, matched only by a well-aged wine. She guessed this had also been ‘acquired’. It was a long time since she had tasted a potent beverage. Her internal processors made the necessary adjustments to neutralize the effects.
“I think we will be tweaking your enhancements to allow for the full enjoyment of potent brews. A good wine must be savored without the effects being neutralized.”
“You would have me at your mercy?” The thought sent waves of pleasure thrilling through her.
“My venom is far more potent than any potable beverage.” His eyes took on a dangerous glint. “However, I prefer willing bedmates.”
A small voice of reason stirred within her. She didn’t do ‘nice’. This wasn’t her Angel assassin function, but the centurion seduced her from her role. She could not deny him and yet he chose not to take advantage of her vulnerability. Her prime directive to kill these people fuzzed into a tiny gray zone. This was not the enemy, as the pregnant girl had not been the enemy. She didn’t have to kill anymore, since her refusal would not result in punishment.
“Fight it, Azriel.” He raised his glass to her. “I offer you a life with the freedom to make your own choices and live with the consequences.”
She fought both her directive from the controllers and his venom. Her processors hadn’t honed in on his venom because he had been in her mind. Now she needed control over her life back from all those bent on leeching it away. Her head started pounding from the effort. What the controllers demanded of her faded into an unreasonable request to be ignored. No, she would not attack the Outworlders, or try to destroy their ship. The Sidhe needed her to ignore the controllers. Yes, she could do this for him. What he asked was fair and reasonable. She could see this now.
He cleared away their dishes, placing them in a service hatch, and retrieved sweet fruit sorbets in tall, frosted glasses. “Here. Live for the enjoyment of the moment while you decide how you will spend your life.”

Death’s Angel newest snippet.

The tingling of the venom rushing through her blood stopped when it reached her extremities, but the euphoria remained. A great weight lifted from Azriel, and it wasn’t just from the centurion easing off her. She didn’t stir when he raised her loose blue garment, stopping before he exposed her breasts. His intention seemed merely to check her wound. How kind he was. Why hadn’t she realized this before? She was so lucky to have been taken by the Outworlders.
The centurion grinned. The tips of his fangs showed, still stained with her blood. He was in her mind again and yet she didn’t care anymore.
“Good girl. Lie still while I get more bio packing. You want to get well, don’t you? I want you healed.”
Yes, she would do whatever he asked of her just because he asked. She needed to please him. Somewhere, buried deep within, a tic of wrongness died. Long forgotten happiness surged into life.
He looked up at her from a crouched position. “You don’t want to die, do you? I don’t want you to die.”
The Sidhe retrieved a med kit and returned to her. He gently removed the old dressing to clean the wound. The edges were much closer together, and it looked as healthy as a wound could look. Did she want to die? No, she didn’t. Not if he wished her to live.
“When you are healed would you like to work out with me? I’d prefer you kept your battle edge.”
She would adore more time with him. He was so gentle as he tended to her. She could barely remember how ‘gentle’ felt until he touched her.
He paused, looking up at her. “We are searching for a new home, one that has no sentient lifeforms and is able to sustain us. It will be hard at first, building a new beginning from what is available. I need someone who is used to living off the land to instruct us all. This is why I took an Angel . . . My beautiful Angel.”
She melted under his green gaze. Without thinking, Azriel reached out to touch his face. He caught her wrist, arresting her movement.
“No. Those are decisions best made when my venom wears off, and it will. Beginnings are a delicate path to tread.” He returned her hand to rest by her side and then finished dressing her wound, pulling down her clothing to its former modest position.
Disappointment flared. She wanted him.
“Later, if you still feel the same way.” He packed away the med kit and returned it to storage in the side cabinet by her bed. He then sat down on the bed, close but not touching her. “Nyka thinks you are bored, and I agree. I would like you to learn to write in our language. Do you think you can do this for me?”
Of course she could.
“When you have mastered this skill, I want you to write about everything you learned of survival skills from your experiences in the wilderness on your homeworld. Now I want you to sleep. When you wake, I will return to show you how to operate a portable console, and then we can begin.”
Her eyelids grew heavy. She drifted into sleep.