If you like my work, buy me a virtual cup of coffee at Ko-Fi.
My personal copy of Spring Into SciFi, 2022 Edition arrived in the mail today. It features my science fiction short story “Tiamat Descending.”
The “blurb” for my story says:
“Tiamat Descending” is now appearing in the anthology “Spring into SciFi 2022”. Forty-five years ago, the Tiamat, the first of five sleeper colony ships, was launched from our dying Earth on a 300 year journey to a distant star in an attempt to save the human race from extinction. Now, it has come back and is not answering any attempts at communication. The ship is slowing down and seems to be heading back toward Earth. Marine Captain Elisha Rush and a team of five mission specialists have been sent to investigate the derelict spacecraft. What they find could mean mankind’s destruction or salvation.
Another wee sample to whet your appetite:
“I can’t fly this ship.”
He started running toward her. She was right. The Bel’s crew had been briefed on flight procedures, but the control systems on this shuttle were half a century out of date. Rush could fly the McAuliffe, which meant staying behind wouldn’t help either one of them. Leigh was the only one left to save.
At the hatchway, he tumbled forward as something hit his back and splattered inward. It was a glancing blow, enough to stagger him.
Leigh pressed the emergency outer door control. It closed and the airlock pressurized as Elisha peeled a meter-square section of ooze off of his armor’s back.
With the airlock pressurized, Hendricks opened the inner door. Elisha yelled at Leigh to get in and she ran onto the ship’s control deck. It was already pressurized with its systems on standby. He followed and shuddered as a bucket load of the muck writhed on the airlock floor, trying to chase him. Making sure his armor wasn’t compromised, he slammed the inner hatch shut sealing the thing inside, but how long would it hold?
In his armor, he’d never be able to use the controls so he ordered it to disgorge him. It always felt a little like being born when it decoupled in the back and poured him out.
“Get in an acceleration couch, now!” He trusted her to obey him. There were eight empty pods for her to choose from as he entered the couch at the pilot’s console. “Screw the pre-flight. Proceeding to emergency departure. SSV McAuliffe systems online, fuel priming, launch in…” he scanned the readouts, “…two minutes.”
He heard pounding from the airlock hatch. Less than ninety seconds until ignition. The pounding stopped and he heard the sound of bacon sizzling on the griddle. They’d be lucky to make it off in time.
Then there was a sound of restraints being coupled close behind him. “I told you to get secured Leigh. Engine ignition is in less than a minute.”
He activated the airlock interior camera as the countdown passed thirty seconds. He braced himself, even though the couch should shield him from most of the G-forces. “Give it up, damn you.”
A deafening roar accompanied a surge of acceleration. Elisha was slammed back into the pilot’s seat, his left cheek pressed against the cushion. The thing in the airlock didn’t scream, but there was a sickening splat as it was thrown back into the rear bulkhead.
It started to fight its way toward the inner airlock door again.
“Die you son of a…”
Spring Into SciFi, 2022 Edition is now available for your Kindle device or in paperback from Amazon.