Thursday, June 12, 2014

February 15

I woke with a scream when Oses jumped to his feet roaring.  The next instant he was down again, unconscious.

I saw Finiuld standing within our environment, only feet away.  He pointed something that looked like a garage door remote at me.  I had barely started to move when darkness closed in. 

I woke up all at once.  I was laying on something similar to a chaise lounge, what they used to call a ‘fainting couch’.  Fainting, my ass.  The Little Creep had knocked me out somehow.

Speaking of the tiny bastard, he sat nearby on this cushioned thing that reminded me of a toadstool.  It was even a poisonous sickly green color.  Finiuld had traded his usual waistcoat for something that looked like pajamas.  If I’m lying, I’m dying.  He looked like he wore cherry red satin pajamas.  It clashed horribly with his ruddy coloring and funky orange-red hair.  He wasn’t pretty to begin with, but he really took ugly to new lengths in that get-up.  He was barefoot too.  He had funny duck-like feet, which his tail curled around as he sat hugging his knees to his chest.

He watched me as he sat, waiting for me to wake up.  He had what looked like an incense stick clenched in his tombstone teeth and was apparently smoking it like a cigarette.  Wispy tendrils of smoke wafted from the lit end.  It smelled kind of peppery and stung my nostrils.

We were sitting on a kind of ledge that ran in a circle over a floor, which I came to call the Arena.  I’ll get to that part in a moment.  First the ledge.  It was this ring of blue marble-like floor on which was scattered various seating furniture.  Lounges like the one I reclined on, mushroom poufs like Finiuld’s, couches, cushions ... all kinds of arrangements.  There were the floating trays that served as tables as well.  Most were empty.  The one next to Finiuld had a cup of some brown liquid that I swear tiny things were swimming in, along with that garage door remote-looking device.

The hateful freak smiled at me around his stick of incense.  “So glad you could wake up in time for the entertainment, Shalia.  Sit up and get ready for the show.”

I did so, noting I was still clad only in Oses’ vest.  Finiuld took a big gulp of whatever it was in his cup.  Ew.  Then I saw his ‘entertainment’ on the Arena floor below us.

The surface of the thing had the same marbled look as the stone ledge where Finiuld and I sat.  Smooth and polished, it allowed for easy clean up, as I was to learn later.  The walls ringing it had what at first I took to be murals painted on it.  Later, I was to discover the art was more like frescos.  The scenes depicted what I imagined an intergalactic Roman coliseum might have put on for shows:  various species battling each other and animals from all reaches of the galaxy, fights to the death.  Beautiful and gory all at once, it was a stunning glimpse into hell.

That should have provided a clue about what I was about to view.  However, I barely noticed the artwork because of what was on the Arena’s floor.

In the middle was Oses, chained naked on all fours.  He, my big mighty Nobek friend, looked incredibly small like that.  I could never have imagined him seeming so helpless, not that brute of a Kalquorian.  But seeing the five cages around him, each containing a grunting or squealing hulk of a Tragoom, made Oses as vulnerable looking as a newborn baby.

My heart slammed into overdrive.  “What the fuck is this?” I demanded, standing up to confront Finiuld.

“This is your punishment for defying me,” the Little Creep sneered.  “I keep a group of Tragooms for such instances.  They get just enough food to keep them alive and nothing more. They stay hungry that way. I imagine they think Oses looks delicious right about now.  When I open their cages, they won’t bother killing him before they begin their meal. They like their flesh alive and kicking.  And screaming.”

I couldn’t believe he would do such a thing.  “You’re bluffing.  You said yourself it was rare to be able to keep a Kalquorian, especially a Nobek.”

Finiuld laughed.  “It’s even harder to get hold of an Earther female.  Even non-Kalquorians are doing all they can to keep your kind safe in the wake of your Armageddon.”  His grin was pure evil.  “I have no doubt this man would immediately capitulate to my demands to keep you alive.  I’m curious to see if you’ll do the same for him.”

“Don’t do it, Shalia!” Oses yelled from the floor.  “Don’t give in.  I have no fear of dying.  Once I’m gone, he’ll have no hold over you at all.”

That statement alone told me Finiuld wasn’t above sacrificing Oses to keep me in line.  Otherwise, the Nobek would have been telling me it really was a bluff.

I stared down at Oses, meeting his eyes.  Maybe he wasn’t afraid to be eaten alive by five monstrous Tragooms, but I sure as hell couldn’t handle it.  Even if I wasn’t forced to watch it, I wouldn’t have been able to sign his death warrant.  Oses was not going to die this horrible death because of me.  I and my child needed him alive.

Little Creep tittered.  “You will obey my every order from now on, or this is the Nobek’s fate.  You will watch him get torn apart by starving Tragooms who don’t give a fuck about anything but filling their bellies.  Do you understand, Shalia?”

My lips were numb.  Finiuld had me.  “I understand.”

“Will you obey me?”

“No!” Oses shouted.

“Yes,” I said.

“Damn it, you swore!  You promised me, Shalia!”  Oses actually sounded livid that I would spare his life.

Finiuld ignored him.  “No matter what I tell you to do, you will do it?  Because one slip-up, and he dies like this.”

“I’ll do whatever you want,” I said.

I had an instant to see Oses turn his head away so he didn’t have to look at me.  Then Finiuld raised his device, and everything went black once more.


  1. Uuhgs love your writing Tracy really do, and man you really insight emotional response. I was livid by the end of this post. Sooo want this little fu... Grrrrrrs loud hell even little fuck is not good enough for him. He needs to suffer big time, words truly can't express how painfully I want him to die, He has me fuming as much as The twisted shit prince Geofry in game of thrones.

    1. I'm right there with you, Kathy, this little fuck needs to die, slowly and painfully.

  2. Tracy your photo to the left shows you looking So So sweet, but you are not, you really know how to make us all grip our e- readers and want to kill little fucker ourselves and then you make us wait ( not sweet) if this was in book form, I would not put it down for Anything, I'd read until my eyes crossed. I sure wish Monday diden't seem so far away.

  3. Please, please, please tell me that the little f**ker is going to get his soon and painfully! You weren't kidding that things were getting dark. Eaten by Tragooms, Yikes!

  4. No way, you can't just stop here! Grrrrr, I hate waiting.
    By the way I'm a hugh fan. Read every thing I could find about Kalquorians in about two weeks ;) .
    I'm really looking forward to the next book. Will you write a Clans and Beginnings book about Clan Ospar? I love reading about the backgrounds of the different clans

    1. Clan Ospar will get their book, but they are a little ways back in the line-up. Clan Clajak is the next bunch to get their Beginnings.

  5. Arrrgh! You have to put us out of our misery soon and let someone (or someTHING) wipe the floor with that little asshole!! I think he's one of the most aggravating protagonists you could have put in your story. I think Shalia should have rushed him and shoved him off that ledge. Can hardly wait till Monday!

  6. P.S. How long before # 9 comes out? Looking forward to reading how Diltan redeems himself. Lol. Didn't like him in alien rule at all

    1. No date is set for CofK 9. I'm hoping for the end of the year, but there are a lot of re-releases and Michaela ahead of it.

  7. Wow! Beautiful! You've got me right in the grip of your writing hand. Edge of my seat. Wonderful!

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  9. OMG! Everybody elses post say their mad at the little creep, but with each post I get more apprhensive about whats going to happen next. That promise Shalia gave is very worrisome. Who knows what he's going to make do now. In one of the earlier posts she mentioned all the things Oses had to endure for her. I think thats cause if this promise.

  10. Wow, Tracy. I'm not sure if I should be mad with you for leaving us hanging or freaking out because I am so in love with your writings and find myself dreaming about Oses and what he and Shalia should do.
    You're killing me with this blog. When I re-read the books I growl at friends and family when they interrupt. ;•) its all your fault Tracy for being a great writer.

    1. :D LOL, thank you and my apologies to your friends and family.

  11. I literally can't wait until Monday. That post was so good. I just wanted to kill the Little Creep myself. I hope Oses doesn't act like the sulky hurt male after Shalia saved him. I hope he is smart enough to understand Shalia can't escape on her own.

    1. I agree cmarchese. Hope he realizes though she is getting stronger They right now are each others life lines. I do not think she would have the strength of will to go on with out him she needs him at this point, I do nto think she would be able to cope alone.