Escape

 

Yup thought I would put up an excerpt from my current work in progress. Now generally I put up a page over on Wattpad but that is from the beginning of the book.  Here is the most recent bit I am working on from chapter eighteen!…Yup I am that far into this attempt at space opera!

***

If you asked the Hunter later just what made him duck and swing about, he would toss off a remark about being the best of the best, but it was really a slight tingle along the back of his neck as if the hairs there were lifting. With the grace of a panther he slide under the swing of a long bone blade as it swept over his head. Spinning about, he narrowed his eyes, calculating before he pulled a hilt from behind his back. With a flick of his thumb the telescoping mono-serrated vibra-blade snapped out and he spun, aiming at a slice that should have opened the belly of whatever it was that attacked him.

Flickering between invisibility and solid form was a rare creature. Known only as Shades, they were one of three phase shifting humanoids that occupied this section of space. Hired generally as assassins, it was surprising to see one working as a guard for the pirate king. Easily seven feet of bone and muscle, they had natural weapons in the long bones of their forearms. Rumored to be stronger than the steel used to make starships, the bones could cut through flesh like a hot knife through butter. With their native ability to phase in and out, they tended to not register on any sensor technology currently in use. Even the most advanced technology that the Hunters kept under wraps had difficulty detecting these aliens.

Each Hunter goes through training that most soldiers and assassins would find themselves washing out of in the first few months. Quirin had specialized for a time in hand-to-hand combat before moving onto the various forms of bladed weapons that could be wielded by the human form. His additional connection to Babe, gave him faster reflex times than any flesh and blood creature should have and that was what saved him this time. Like when he synced with the ship and became the ship, the place he went was intensely focused. He was no longer the amusing Quirin, he was the blade and death incarnate.

When the Shade managed to suck what little gut it had in and avoid the first slash, Quirin brought the blade back. Spinning the hilt in his hand and facing the blade once more at the creature. What followed was a series of slashes, leaps and flying drops of blood. The fight was nearly silent, the only sounds were the occasional grunt from Quirin and then an almost too high pitched to be heard shearing sound as his blade removed the Shade’s head from its shoulders.

He stood panting, looking down at his opponent. Pulling his mind back from the intense focus of the fight was taking him longer now than it did in his training days. The rush of endorphins and the hypersensitivity was addicting and the more a Hunter fought that way the more they had a chance to be lost to it. Babe’s voice filled his mind with soft, almost chants, soothing nonsense syllables that she had found would relax her mind partner and let him drop out of that fighter’s trance. “Come back to me, Quirin. We have a job to finish.”

A slow, lung expanding breath and his eyes closed briefly. Quirin nodded and hit the button, collapsing the blade back into the hilt. “Damn,” he sub-vocalized, “Babe, you seeing this?”

The body became solid when the head bounced across the hall, but as Quirin watched it slowly went to powder, sinking into itself till all that was left was a vaguely humanoid shaped pile of ash on the floor. He looked over to the head and watched as it did the same. “This would explain why there have been no studies done of these aliens, Quirin. Can you scoop up some of the ash?”

***

Quirin is becoming an interesting character for one that is not the hero of the piece right? Trying to do an older style of science fiction here.  This is a part of a series but the hero/heroine of each book does not move onto the next.  No, that is what Quirin does. He moves through space and books!  I like him and Babe, his AI computer with attitude.  Hopefully you readers will like him too!  Back to rescuing…yes that is what he is up to right now…saving the heroine…can’t believe I am making a more traditional heroine who needs to be saved but that happens right?

Advertisements