IGO: Sudden Snow
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by RaeLynn Blue
Category: Erotica/Multicultural-Interracial Erotica/Science Fiction
Description: Dr. Cricket Moore is running for her life. Her coworkers murdered and her research stolen, she has no one to turn to. When she's thrust into the hands of an Intergalactic Organization officer to be transported to headquarters for interrogation, her only hope is to trust her life to a stranger. It should have been one more assignment. Escort the last remaining research scientist to headquarters for debriefing. Sergeant Darryl Snow takes every mission seriously, but this one seems pretty routine. Cricket doesn't look all that dangerous. But she's in more trouble than even she realizes. And the instant attraction he feels for the dark-skinned beauty doesn't make the situation any easier. How can he win her trust -- and her heart -- without compromising the mission? Darryl will stop at nothing to protect Cricket from danger... even if the greatest danger he faces is losing himself in her.
eBook Publisher: Changeling Press LLC, 2010 2010
eBookwise Release Date: July 2010
12 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [160 KB]
Reading time: 94-132 min.
"I can't believe our luck," complained Mason Lars, brushing his stringy blond bangs from his eyes. He rubbed them as if they itched from fatigue and he swallowed a budding yawn before it blossomed to fruition. "It's three days out from leave and we ain't even on The Discovery. Who gives out freakin' missions this close to annual leave?"
"Capitan Reyes and the Intergalactic Organization, that's who," replied Sergeant Darryl Snow from the commander's slick ivory bucket chair. He ran his hand over his buzzed black hair and sighed. "Being tethered to The Discovery isn't always cheerful and relaxing, you know. Even during leave."
Darryl spied the stars zipping by the ship. Their parent ship, The Discovery, remained docked at Mars Outpost 1, prepping for the upcoming holiday and annual leave time. Theirs was the only team sent out this close to leave. There were four teams on board The Discovery spaceship. Alpha, Delta, Omega, and Sigma teams each had been assigned their own spacecraft, smaller vessels for the purposes of conducting independent, individualized missions that didn't require the entire mass of The Discovery.
Delta team was the scientific based team, a small group of about twenty-four people including Darryl. Many of their missions pertained to the purpose of science, which was how he found himself pulling the early morning shift command while trekking through the bogs on Europa's surface.
"My wife is doing what she can with our quarters, but, you know, those things are the size of shoeboxes on this spacecraft," continued Pilot Lars in a longsuffering drawl. "What are we looking for again? Solo shuttlepods can't get through this on their own? They need us?"
"No, they can't. So we have to escort the scientists through this murky soup to get readings and the like."
Private Kovacs, the pudgy comms soldier, snorted behind them. "I could go for some soup -- black bean."
"Anyway, so why's it got to be us, huh?" Lars inquired, stifling a chuckle at Kovacs.
Darryl switched his active listening to off as Lars continued his bellyaching and Kovacs recited his food cravings. He never understood how a man who had a beautiful, kind wife, two children, and a great job as pilot could complain about how terrible his life had become.
Darryl grimaced in the lowlights of the bridge and longed to be held once again. To feel the warmth of a lover wrapped around him, whispering soft words of love, devotion and joy made life worth living -- exciting, thrilling.
Mentally swatting the urge back into the abyss, Darryl sighed, looking around the 'shoe.
The 'shoe, as it was affectionately called, was the command station for The Inquiry. It occupied the nose of the ship. Laid out in a horseshoe, the open ends contained both the pilot and navigation seats pointing toward the nose of the craft. At the rear curve was where security sat and the communications station rested. A lone chair overlooked the sunken commander's chair and pilots' seats. Security's console lacked a corresponding chair. Darryl didn't know why, though as chief of security he couldn't sit when in the middle of engaging some threat. The entire 'shoe was awash in the IGO red, white and green colors. Oval insignias were emblazoned all over the place as if the crew required constant reminding.
Four ten in the morning and only four hours more to go.
With such a tiny crew, they had only one senior commander and one junior commander. Teams like Alpha had one senior and three junior commanders or jc's. Commander Taylor, the Delta team's leader, often referred to Darryl as his second jc, so the twenty-four hour day was broken into three eight-hour rotations to split between the commander, Darryl and the true junior commander, JC Lee.
No problem. Darryl didn't have anything -- or anyone -- to go bunk down with.
He glanced around to the usual suspects, Pilot Lars, Privates Kovacs and Henson Rojas. No one was at navigations. Commander Taylor had set those coordinates already.
"My wife broke our water conservatory last night. Can you believe it?" Lars rambled on.
At least you have a wife to tuck into a nice, soft bed and kiss beneath the cozy fireworks streaking by. Yeah, I could use the hologram and fake it, but that would be a waste of my energies and my time. Count yourself lucky, Lars.
"Don't complain about The Inquiry," Darryl said instead, without even really hearing what Lars' long-winded talk was about. Each shift they engaged in this boring dance of complaining about whatever met Lars' fancy. "Besides, this baby is as solid as they can be."
With his gloved hand, he stroked his chair's leather arm as affectionately as he would a woman, had he had one. Damn, he had a horrid case of lonely tonight.
"Yeah, uh-huh," Lars sniggered and pushed his bangs out of his dull sepia eyes once more as he gazed back to Darryl. "Anyway, I heard Commander Ashe is getting demoted to sergeant..."
Rojas laughed, a high-pitched chortle. "Yeah, whatever. No one can beat her record. She won't be demoted. Even after that crash at Titan, she still kept her rank. The poor pilot took the hit for it."
Tuning out Lars and Rojas once more, Darryl gazed down into the screen embedded into the chair's right arm. Shooting the feed from outside cameras, the murky muck of Europa's bogs held little relief from Darryl's latest bout of loneliness. Blame the holidays. Each year he spent his hour or two in the commons area on The Discovery before everyone retired with their families for more intimate celebrations.
Darryl would then return to an empty cabin. Sometimes he brought a pretty girl or an intensive simulation hologram to help fill the time, but none of it satisfied him. Initially, this life of commanding the early duty satisfied him, but holidays hastily deleted those feelings of contentment. It was like a ravaging hunger. The women only served a brief snack. Darryl longed for a more meaningful meal.
What woman would satisfy him on all levels -- would have the patience, beauty, and brains he wanted -- and, above all, love him?