My Loving Enemy
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by Raquel Rodriquez
Category: Erotica/Erotic Science Fiction/Romance
Description: The experiment went terribly wrong--When Sarrah woke, she found herself in the lab--but not the lab she'd last seen before the experiment went terribly wrong. Everything had changed. All of her co-workers had vanished--and 'rescue' appeared in the form of Adam Templar. Until the moment he met Sarrah, Adam Templar had one goal--to find the answer to the dimensional instability and close the port forever. Rating: Carnal
eBook Publisher: New Concepts Publishing, 2007
eBookwise Release Date: August 2009
14 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats: OEBFF Format (IMP) [121 KB]
Reading time: 72-102 min.
"Sarrah ... Sarrah, can you hear me?"
"We're losing her.... "
Every cell in Sarrah Malone's body screamed with pain worthy of an axe-murder victim. Burning sensations sizzled down the nerves in her neck and through her back as she lay pressed against something hard, uneven, and too cold. She could barely breathe and didn't dare try to move. Even her damn hair hurt.
The research team's calculations had been wrong. The experiment on dimensional transfer hadn't occurred as predicted. No one had listened when she'd found the hostile variable. They'd all been too excited about the success of the project being ahead of schedule, too busy writing acceptance speeches and planning press conferences to promote the new method of transit.
Her mind drifted, and darkness threatened to close in. Sarrah fought for clarity. Again, the grim memory snaked into her conscious ... screams, fire licking up to the ceiling....
The research team scrambled to their stations.
"Power's surging through the conductors."
Sarrah blinked to focus in the semidarkness. Tears left wet tracks from her eyes down the sides of her face. How long had she lain here in silence? One hour? Two? Her stiff body ached like she hadn't moved in days.
The media would have a field day with these unexpected results from the experiment. Headlines all over the known system in two dimensions would broadcast the team's blunder. They'd lose their work contract. Private funding would be rescinded. Rabid reporters hungry for a top byline would ignore what was best for law-abiding citizens. The disaster would provide more fuel to the rebel group's demand to revoke sending criminal lifers on a one-way journey to hell.
Gathering courage, Sarrah inched her head up and frowned. Several of her colleagues appeared in the room around her, their bodies transparent. They stared wide-eyed and fearful, their faces pinched with concern, their white lab coats covered in burn marks and crimson splotches. Their mouths moved. Disconnected sounds echoed. Sarrah couldn't understand their words or why they reached toward her then backed away terrified. Her heart slammed against her breast, the pain stabbing into her awareness.
"Help." Her whisper cracked, and she labored to breathe. They had to hear her. She lifted a hand to the nearest man and dizziness spun her, churning her empty stomach. "Someone, please...."
"Containment levels are spiking. Shut it down now, or the new transfer unit will overload!"
"Protective shields are deteriorating."
The ghostly images wavered, faded, leaving nothing except dank, musty air.
"No, wait.... "Sarrah groaned and dropped her head back to the floor, staring up at a damaged fluorescent tube light that would never shine again.
Sarrah turned, but an explosion hurled her to the floor.
She blinked. "Caroline?"
No monitors beeped. No computers hummed.
No updated reading flashed on the main system screen every thirty seconds. No interns rushed to do the project head's bidding. Where was everyone?
"Dr. Louin?" Suspicion nibbled at the corner of her mind. "Is anyone here?"
Rising panic threatened to strangle her. Slowly her mind processed the information. She forced down the thick knot in her throat and blinked back welling tears. "Oh, god, no...."
She couldn't be the only one left. Her team--the people she'd known and worked with for years, sharing ribald jokes, birthdays, the pictures from last week's vacation--were all gone. Closing her eyes a moment, she thought she heard Caroline's faint laugh. But quiet overrode the unearthly sound.
Sarrah ignored the pain of loss squeezing her heart and inhaled deeply. Main backup power had failed. The elevator would be useless, programmed to lock down in emergencies to maintain control and restrain any aggressive elements. She was trapped two stories underground with no electricity.
Carefully she turned her head toward the only light source. A single, dim, yellowish shard stole in through a small recessed shaft up near the ceiling that allowed ventilation into the room, lending an eerie ambiance. Dust motes skied along the slender ray to the floor. A glow, she knew, from the vintage WW-III street lamp outside that she passed to and from the government building where she worked. Only for a few minutes each day with the sun just past its zenith, light reflected through the lamp and bounced downward to her level through the long aluminum shaft.
But that couldn't be right. This room only looked like her lab. It was a bad dream, and she'd wake up soon. She had to. The alternative was unthinkable.
She rolled to her side, shuddering at the extreme possibility of what might have occurred. The muscles in her arms cramped when she pushed up to stand. Tears streamed down her cheeks. Her hands gripped the back of a chair for support, slipping on patches of greenish slime. Everywhere, failure pressed in, and destruction mocked her. Dr. Louin shouldn't have accepted the less than perfect prediction. She should've insisted he listen to her findings. The team's enthusiasm had made them careless.
Her gaze wandered further. Tarnish covered metal tables and tall filing cabinets. Streaks of rust stained the lab equipment. Cabinet doors displayed shattered, jagged glass panes. Once in neat rows where Henry had always diligently maintained them, broken bottles and beakers now sat on the storage shelves.
How was this possible? Had the variable she'd found caused an accident? Though this looked like the room where she'd worked for five years, past experiences with dimensional travel had taught her things weren't always as they seemed.
Gritting her teeth then biting her bottom lip to keep it from quivering, she eased to sit at her computer and pressed the power button. She couldn't bury the knowledge that her discovery might have prevented her team's downfall. If her research was intact, she could retrieve the figures and solve the problem.
The computer remained silent.
She leaned back, staring at the blank screen. All her findings were locked up, the evidence stuck on a hard drive of the inoperable machine.
What could she do without her research notes? Speculations without facts didn't fly with authorities. They'd never listen to her.
Sarrah dropped her head back against her chair and covered her face a moment with her hands. Exhaustion tugged at her eyelids. What had happened was just a prelude to a greater problem if another experiment was attempted. This disaster couldn't be allowed to be repeated. Somehow, she had to find the strength to continue, to understand for certain why the accident had occurred and tell someone. But from the evidence, she was afraid she was too late.
A noise outside the only door in the room roused her attention. Rusty metal creaked as the door jostled, trying to open.
The rescuers had found her!
Excitement shot adrenaline through her, and she tried to stand. Instead, a coughing fit seized her, forcing her to bend over her lap. When the heavy door swung wide, she glimpsed a flash of white, like the bottom of a long lab coat.
"Doctor..." she started in between spasms, pushing herself up so her saviors could more easily find her.
A dark-haired man stepped inside the room, and he was nothing like she expected. In mud-caked combat boots, he strode in as if he owned the world, stopping a moment in the single light shaft.
Blinking away tears, her eyes traveled up over jungle-print camo pants hugging his well-developed thighs and cradling an impressive bulge she tried to ignore, to his naked, flat, tight stomach. She pressed the back of her hand to her mouth, fighting to stifle her coughs. The man's extreme vitality reached out to her, and even fatigued, Sarrah's body tingled with excitement. Her eyes tracked up further over a sleeveless lab coat that had seen better days and gapped open, hanging over an old flack vest he'd hadn't bothered to close and that framed the most perfectly muscled chest with six-pack abs she'd ever seen.