Tuesday, April 7, 2015

There are times when a man must put aside his anger.

A teaser from Forged in Fire:


The former Boderian pilot was staring out the window at the purple moon when Gin found him.

"I need to know where he'd take her." Gin said without preamble. The dark-haired man turned to Gin and put his hands behind his back. He looked like a monk, Gin thought, instead of the man responsible for fourteen million deaths. He studied Gin's face for a moment before he spoke.

"There are several possibilities." He nodded to Gin, and they walked side by side. "The Prince has at least three camps off-world that he regularly visits."

"Do you have contacts? Anyone who could tell us where he is?"

The man pursed his lips thoughtfully. "Perhaps. I've already reached out to someone who may know."

Gin stopped the man in mid-step. "Why would you help us?"

Ben smiled. "I liked your wife. She's courageous and strong. The Prince is a bastard and a virus that has sickened all of Boderia. Also, you would kill me if I refused."

Gin didn't deny it, but walked in silence beside the man. He looked up when the Boderian put a hand on his arm.

"You can't hope to rescue her with this anger that clouds your judgment." Ben raised an eyebrow as he looked at Gin. "You'll get yourself killed, and your daughter will be an orphan."

Gin took a deep breath, reminding himself that the man was trying to help him. In truth, he'd had to keep a tight lid on the churning fury that filled his gut. It wanted to spill out and lay waste to everything and everyone in his path. Apparently, he wasn't hiding it as well as he thought.

"I was once as angry as you." Ben waved to the sky outside Prioni. The devastated Likyra was the dimmest celestial body in the sky. "I thought that if I could destroy the thing that had hurt me that I would feel that anger begin to dissipate. The truth is, when I destroyed the thing that had hurt me, I destroyed myself."

"How did Likyra hurt you?" Gin asked. As the philosophical seat of the galaxy, Likyra had been home to the artists, thinkers and scholars. He couldn't imagine that the peace-loving world had ever harmed Boderia.

"That's just it." Ben looked at Gin. "Likyra never harmed me at all. My family was killed on a routine scouting mission by an asteroid storm that no one could have predicted. Likyra never did a damned thing to me. By the time I'd discovered the lie, it was too late. All of Likyra was gone." Ben put a hand on Gin's arm, his face clear and serious. "Go into this mission with one goal. Save your wife. Whether or not you kill the Prince, saving her will be a win. If you go after her with a goal of destroying them all you're setting yourself up for failure."

Gin turned away and looked out the windows at the waving grass. "You're telling me that if I can get her I should cut and run. Don't stick around to kick ass."

Ben's smile was wry. "Yes, Sword Guardian, that's exactly what I was trying to say."


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