This round of words, I’d been intending to get some new words written every day, but it hasn’t happened, or at least only rarely. Instead, I’ve been spending most of my time editing: first, Chameleon in a Mirror; then “An Airship for Elise”; and now, the novella with Jay Lake, Recontact. But for the time being, I am happy to say that Recontact is finished. I’ve sent copies off to Jay and my daughter, who will be helping me make the cover.
I also continue to make consistent progress on the translation. Less than 100 pages to go now! I may actually be able to finish it before the end of the round, as I wanted.
Now On to WIPpet Wednesday. Since Recontact is what I’ve been working on this week, that is what you get again. My math for today, 2/26, goes like this: here is an excerpt of 26 lines from Chapter 2. Sharan and Nowrie are watching a scene on a beach that will become very important for Sharan’s future actions:
A handful of Adyanii followed the crew into the pale sunlight, officers of the Partenos legion. She’d learned to recognize the uniforms. Someone in the original colony must have had a library of ancient Greek and Roman militaria, because these guys could have marched right out of history.
They strode up to the blue-clad crew and surrounded them with hands on swords. What were they to the Adyanii soldiers? Prisoners? Informers? Collaborators? If Becca truly was one of them, Sharan couldn’t imagine that she was helping the Adyanii.
Then Arnoldson walked out of the tent. There was no mistaking his forward-leaning stride or lank blonde hair.
At Sharan’s sharp intake of breath, Nowrie glared, shaking her head, one finger raised to her lips.
Sharan mimed a pistol with her index finger and thumb. “Him,” she said, voiceless as night air.
They had no captured offworld weapons — Arnoldson seemed to have kept that much of the Smith-Ayapurtam expedition’s protocols intact, even in the wake of his enthusiastic outburst of king-making. The range was several hundred meters. Nothing the Edarans had could reach that with the remotest accuracy. Besides which, Nowrie would not betray their position.
Oh gods, Sharan thought, what I wouldn’t give for a good rifle right now.
She used to be so dismissive of violence as a clumsy and hurtful solution to life’s problems. Once Arnoldson had spaced Mistress Ayapurtam, along with seven other undesirables — including two of Sharan’s closest friends from the Planetary Sciences section — she’d found her views rapidly changing.
Now the bastard had aligned himself with the roughest bunch of bully boys down here dirtside. Talk about reigning in hell instead of serving in heaven.
An accusing female voice rang out over the sands of the beach to their hiding place. Sharan couldn’t pick out the words, but she recognized the timbre and tone. It was Becca. She clenched her hands together, feeling helpless and afraid.
Arnoldson argued with the crew for a few minutes, then turned to look out over the water. He gave a single, sharp nod. The swords stabbed downward and blood flowed dark as sin in sunlight.
Nowrie clapped her hand over Sharan’s mouth and wrapped her in her arms as she was wracked by soundless sobs.
That’s it for now from Recontact — next week I’ll be back to A Wasted Land. But if you want to find out what happens, I’m looking for beta readers! As stands, the novella is just under 30,000 words; the RTF file has about 100 pages.
WIPpet Wednesday is the brain child of K. L. Schwengel. If you’d like to participate, post an excerpt from your WIP on your blog, something that relates to the date in some way. Then add your link here — where you can also read the other excerpts. 🙂