Wild Child Publishing
Kallie is a Human, returning to Earth after four years away. She’s done her best—like her neutral homeworld—to stay out of the spreading Crynon-Colony War. But Kallie’s heroics in an attack on the passenger shuttle taking her home push her into the public eye. While most people would not mind the attention, Kallie has secrets that she wants to remain hidden. In order to escape those who would exploit her, Kallie drops out of sight.
The ones looking for Kallie are not giving up so easily. They send out the best bounty hunter in the galaxy and his crew to track her down. With some help from friends, new and old, Kallie’s journey begins.
This novella is the first in a science fiction series chronicling the adventures of pilot Kaltrin Milock and her friends.
The shuttle rocked sideways by a blast. Kaltrin’s eyes narrowed, “Everyone, hold on!”
Kaltrin maneuvered, avoiding the next hit.
“Computer, weapons systems.” The computer beeped a loud negative in her ears and she realized with a curse that the shuttle had no weapons.
Kaltrin immersed herself fully into the ship. No longer were pilot and ship separate entities. Now the cold metal and circuitry merged with a vibrant consciousness. Visuals from outside the shuttle surrounded her. All the information gathered by the ship’s sensors flooded her brain directing her moves before she could think about them.
The Crynonian ship pursued, firing its main cannons. The laser blasts seemed to be in slow motion as she watched them approach. She pulled the shuttle into a barrel roll. From far away she could hear yells, thumps and screams of the unsuspecting passengers feeling the effects of the roll. Then she saw it, a blue-colored dot to her right as she brought the ship out of the roll. It magnified in her vision. First a dot, then a ball, and finally a planet.
Kaltrin almost cried out in relief. The shuttle shot forward making a beeline for the safe port, but the Crynonian fighter followed. Earth loomed before the shuttle and with it the Neo-Mir space station. Kaltrin pulled herself from the ship’s computer only to contact the station,
“Mayday! We’re under attack from a Crynonian vessel. Our shuttle is damaged. We are unarmed. We need help!”
She let loose an involuntary yelp as the shuttle took another hit from behind and her head smacked the panel in front of her. More strands of her hair came loose and flew around her face.
The radio crackled. “Acknowledged.”
Then, like twin beams of light, the space station’s cannons fired on the Crynonian fighter. When the beams hit, the fighter lost all engine power and became trapped in the Earth’s gravitational pull. The fighter began to rotate away like one of the Earth’s many satellites, disabled at last.
Such a shame that the fighter didn’t blow up.
But they weren’t out of danger yet. Kaltrin immersed herself back into the ship. She still had to land and a quick check of the damage confirmed her worst fear. They couldn’t land at the station safely. The last hit had disabled the front thrusters. Without them, the shuttle couldn’t slow down to a safe speed. They’d crash into the station and take it down with them.
Kaltrin bit her lip and made a quick decision. She turned the damaged shuttle away from the Neo-Mir and toward the planet.
She heard the voice of the station’s personnel blaring in her ears. “Pilot, identify yourself. Your bio-readings are off the chart.”
“I don’t have time,” she shot back. Then the radio transmission screech with static as they hit the atmosphere too fast. The shuttle rattled and shook violently with the dangerous speed. Thankfully, the shuttle’s cooling systems had been undamaged in the attack, or they’d have been fried.
Thick fog-like clouds surrounded them, making it impossible to see. In desperation, Kaltrin checked one scanner after another and all of them showed nil. Suddenly, a shape loomed up out of the obscuring haze. Her eyes widened in shock and she grabbed the controls, jerking them to the right, avoiding a glass and steel skyscraper by mere feet. The clouds thinned at that moment and she yanked the controls the other way to avoid the line of flying cars that blared their horns at her.
She was piloting a space shuttle over a city.
A malfunctioning space shuttle.