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Trinity on Tylos [MultiFormat]
eBook by Pamela J Dodd

eBook Category: Science Fiction/Romance Fallen Angel Reviews Recommended Read
eBook Description: Enamored with her lover, yet governed by her sense of duty, Venice Dylenski, security chief of the colonization vessel Excalibur, has a fascinating, satisfying life. But the Excalibur is about to encounter Azareel, an alien captain with superior firepower and a hidden agenda. While seeking a home for human colonists, the crew of the Excalibur meets the Archeons, who take Venice and a companion captive. In short order, Azareel informs his prisoners that they will play a critical role in revitalizing his dying race, that of surrogate mothers to genetically-engineered Archeon offspring. Venice, reluctant "to be the next Archeon soccer mom," strives to escape, but her companion seems all too willing to cooperate with their captor. Trinity on Tylos has complex characters faced with myriad problems to solve, set in a future where man may have escaped the bounds of his solar system, but not the bonds of human emotions.

eBook Publisher: Whiskey Creek Press, Published: 2006
Fictionwise Release Date: April 2006

7 Reader Ratings:
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"...I will say that it starts out like a typical science fiction novel, and then, suddenly, takes off into undiscovered country. The author has a great talent for putting emotions into words; I truly felt what the characters were feeling throughout the story. To make things more interesting, the characterizations are so complex that there are no 'good' guys, nor 'bad' guys, only complex people doing what they must to survive. Also, while this is a romance in the sense that the plot includes relationships between people, it is primarily a science fiction novel. The scenes involving sex are more sensual than graphic, and fairly brief. This is a great book for fans of science fiction and futuristic romance. I'm giving this story 5 angels and a Recommended Read, because it is so well written that it grabbed me at the beginning and kept me enthralled until the very last page. 5 Angels! Recommended Read!"--Jean, Fallen Angel Reviews

Chapter 1

Venice Dylenski had measured the possibility of losing hold on that transient state that human beings call life more than once, but at the moment she couldn't recall a more painful experience. She struggled, her chest heaving, to find a hand or foot hold on a sheer cliff of orange-red rock. One hand grasped a thin, multi-fiber relay cord, while the other searched the smooth rock for a crevice or bump to use as a handhold. Finding none, she quickly returned it to help hold onto the thin cord that cut painfully into the flesh of her hands. Glancing up to the top of the cliff, she caught sight of Corporal Lynn Washington, who was ineffectually bending over an outcropping, watching her superior officer's struggles. Venice had no time to be annoyed at the young corporal, despite her inaction.

Trying to keep the desperation and fear out of her voice, Venice called out, "Corporal, someone must be close by, get on your com-link and get some help." Keeping control was necessary, because at any moment Washington might panic and make her already precarious situation even worse. "You'll need to tell them we need a rope or something to help me to climb."

"Washington to any unit, Washington to any unit..." As the sound of her voice trailed off, Venice once again turned her attention to her seemingly hopeless position. The pain in her fingers was becoming so excruciating that she feared she would not only be unable to climb, but that she would lose her hold altogether. The geographical sensor banged into the cliff below her as she swung to and fro, still hoping for a foot or handhold.

"Major," Washington called as she approached the brink of the cliff, "I've raised the XO. He's coming."

"Good." Venice prayed for the strength to hold on. "Look for a good anchor. He'll have to come down for me. My hands are too numb for me to climb up." Venice glanced upward again, and saw the girl's blonde head move obediently away from the edge of the cliff.

* * * *

After receiving the slightly garbled message, Lt. Commander Steve Dylenski set off at a run, leaving his men trailing at his heels. The Lt. Commander and Executive Officer of the Excalibur was just over six-foot and slender, but his broad shoulders promised strength. At thirty, he was a man in his prime--still young, yet experienced.

Just now his fear made him fleet; he wasn't sure that his wife could hold on for long, and he was unsure of her position. He ran on, following his com-link's directional finder, at a pace that Lt. Andrew Redwine and Sergeant Rich Weber had trouble matching.

He sighted Washington's blue jacket and pocketed the miniature com-unit. As he turned to his men, he saw that Weber was tearing a climbing rope from his gear-pack. At Steve's direction, Weber wrapped the rope around a large boulder which rested close to the edge. He looked down to check Venice's position.

"Hold on, Venice," he called as he realized the hopelessness of her situation. "I'll have to climb down to you."

Turning to Redwine, Steve planned aloud. "I'm going to rappel down to her, and you'll have to haul both of us up. There is no handhold at all, and I don't think she can help herself if we try to climb. I hope that the two of you can pull us up, but if you can't, secure the rope, and I'll hold her until you get some more help." At Redwine's nod Lt. Commander Dylenski ordered, "Let's go."

Steve descended the cliff about five feet further down from Venice's position and bounced over to his dark-haired wife. Venice relaxed her hold on the narrow sensor cord as she felt his arms come around her waist. Steve felt the strain of the harness around his waist as it took all of their combined weight.

"Take it easy, Venice. I've got you, but you've got to take some of the strain. Put your arms around my neck and try to hold your weight."

Venice clumsily released the cord and clung with numb fingers to her husband. He shifted his hands to the rope and looked up at the waiting crewmen.

"Okay, let's go up.

Face to face with him, Venice noted the lines on either side of his mouth as he grimaced with the strain of holding her weight. The three crewmen above struggled and fought, pulling the rope in a series of jerks until Steve was able to boost Venice over into Washington's waiting arms. Then Redwine pulled his XO over the edge as well.

"Well done, all." Steve glanced around at his crew members, who were still panting after having expended so much effort. He knelt beside his wife and asked in a voice pitched for her ears alone, "What happened?"

"We were lowering the geo-sensor over the cliff, and it snagged on something." Looking just a bit sheepish, Venice continued, "I leaned over, bracing myself on a rock as I looked for any obstructions. The rock gave way and I fell. I'm sorry."

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