First Chapter Spotlight: Storm of Arranon by R.E. Sheahan & Book Giveaway!
About the Book:
Title: Storm of Arranon
Author: R. E. Sheahan
Publisher: Rule of Three Press
Genre: YA Science Fiction/Fantasy
A forbidden birth. A remarkable young woman. A marauding alien society. The battle begins.
A brutal alien society invades Korin and Arranon, intent on destroying the two worlds that make up Cadet Erynn Yager’s home. Forced to expose her strange abilities and reveal her forbidden birth, a guarded web of secrets unravels.
Stranded on an unfamiliar planet of eternal winter and predatory wildlife, the mysterious living consciousness of Arranon intervenes, leading Erynn on a mystical journey.
Aware of Erynn’s potential, the alien enemy pursues her. She struggles to gain control of her growing powers while in a constant race to elude the invaders, and join the forces preparing to fight a mounting occupation.
Erynn’s secret may be her worlds’ only hope, but at the cost of her life. Swept up in a chain reaction of events, Erynn’s dedication extends far beyond service and duty. She learns the true meaning of sacrifice.
Along with courage and hope, Erynn finds something unexpected on her journey of awareness and growth.
For More Information
- Storm of Arranon is available at Amazon.
- Discuss this book at PUYB Virtual Book Club at Goodreads.
THE BEST PART IS WATCHING the eyes. The moment life leaves them. Death is such a fleeting climax. Pity.
Major Birk pressed Colonel Rennek against the thick wall inside the deserted parking garage. Birk’s head tilted and he smiled, quivering in anticipation, savoring Rennek’s plunge into panic.
Rennek thrashed and jerked under Birk’s powerful, unyielding hold. His struggle brief, Rennek shuddered, then stilled. A low, guttural moan escaped his twisted mouth. In the white glare from overhead lights, Rennek’s eyes widened beneath raised bushy eyebrows. His black pupils dilated, eclipsing blue irises.
Birk’s nostrils flared, drawing in the invigorating scent of Rennek’s fear as life slipped away. A tingle of pleasure shot through Birk and he released a breath in a long sigh, a smile stretching his lips. He drew his hand back, removing the needle from Rennek’s neck in a smooth fluid motion. A tiny drop of blood oozed from the minuscule hole at the base of Rennek’s skull, a red speck barely visible under short gray hair. “Your cooperation is appreciated, Colonel.” Birk straightened and released his grip on Rennek’s uniform jacket.
Rennek’s knees buckled and he slid down the smooth wall. His body toppled over, skull striking the hard surface of the tarmac with a resounding thud.
Sweat burned Birk eyes but he ignored the sting and stared at the dead man. He thumbed the tiny slide on the otherwise smooth cylinder, shutting down the laser and retracting the needle. Birk tugged off dark gloves, stuffing them and the cylinder into the pocket of his black jacket. “Tomorrow morning, thanks to your information Colonel, I will assassinate General Cale Athru of Arranon, removing this final obstruction to our invasion.” He shrugged, his tone animated. “His death won’t be achieved in a manner as enjoyable as yours, but gratifying nonetheless. Too bad you won’t be here to see the ruin of your worlds.”
From the shadows, a heavily muscled man in black emerged, his approach hesitant. He paused, staring wide-eyed at Rennek’s lifeless form, and took a tentative step forward, his tone submissive. “Major Birk, Rennek’s death wasn’t authorized. There will be inquiries. Our superiors will not cover up or defend this unsanctioned action against a high-ranking official. And, sir, what about the girl?”
This amusing diversion over, Birk glared at the man and pulled a deep breath through clenched teeth. “Unfortunately, Rennek didn’t know why Athru requested her presence, Captain Marris.”
“Yes, sir.” Marris took a wary step back and nodded.
Birk glanced at the body, relishing a last look. The tip of his tongue slid over parted lips and he smiled. “Rennek’s death will carry no consequence.” He searched the silent, empty space, his gaze locking on the exit. “Tomorrow, there will be no need for disguises, a tactful approach, or covert measures. If we have questions, we will get answers.” Birk chuckled softly. “The pretense of being citizens of these worlds will end. After Athru’s death, we’ll be one step closer to the domination of Korin.” He nodded, voice low. “And the real prize, Arranon.”
A rush of warm air turned icy, sending broad orange and red leaves swirling and skittering down the ramp that led outside.
Birk ignored the cold gust and clapped Marris’ shoulder. He squeezed, digging his fingers deep.
Marris jerked, tensing under Birk’s forceful grip.
Birk’s eyes narrowed. A smirk twisted his lips and colored his voice. “I am fully aware of my authority on these missions. And Captain, I got the information I needed.”
“Yes, sir. I didn’t mean to question—”
“Time to go,” Birk leaned in and whispered. He released his hold on Marris with a shove. Birk turned from Rennek’s body, and hurried toward the exit.
Their footsteps echoed with a hollow, staccato cadence between long thick walls and the low-hung ceiling. “Athru will be at security headquarters tomorrow morning. The girl too. Could Athru’s interest be because of her father?” Birk slowed and frowned, his attention on Marris.
Marris stiffened and positioned himself a pace behind Birk. “Yes, sir. That must be the reason, Major.” They emerged onto a quiet street. Both men scanned the lower levels of cut stone buildings shrouded in pre-dawn shadows. Wide, high windows wrapped exterior walls reaching up several stories, reflecting faint images of surrounding structures. “Like you said, Major, why else would someone of Athru’s position bother with her?”
Birk’s scowl deepened. “I’m not so sure.”
A mild breeze stirred the open flaps of Birk’s jacket. Stars shimmered high above in the early-morning sky—unfamiliar stars and foreign worlds. Worlds filled with resources his nomadic society needed to survive.
Birk’s gaze drifted from the twinkling points of light. He glanced left, down the empty street, and then swung to the right, walking with a quick pace up the gentle slope. “There has to be a reason.” An underlying urgency wound through his words. “Why her?”
“A gesture of courtesy toward the girl’s father?” Marris offered. “Protocol?”
A delivery transport whirred past. Brilliant white light from the headlamps arced through what remained of the night, glinting off dark windows in the lower levels of the towering structures. Tires hummed over smooth pavement, the black body shimmered, reflecting the soft amber glow of streetlights. Birk read the words printed in an ornate style onto the side of the transport’s cargo panels, ‘Dalthar Daily News’.
Dawn approached. The flow of vehicles would soon increase.
Birk shook his head. “Athru has never exhibited a politically correct nature. If he wants something he coerces, or takes.” They reached an intersection under pale yellow light. “Athru’s aggressive, powerful. That’s what makes him a problem to our operation.” He stepped back into the concealing shadows of a building’s alcove.
Marris joined him.
“There’s more to Athru’s visit than he revealed to the authorities granting this trip. His interest in the girl is not merely diplomatic niceties.” Birk’s lips disappeared in a sneer, and his body tensed. “Tomorrow, I will put an end to Athru’s meddling.” Birk relaxed at the pleasant image that flashed in his mind.
“Yes, sir. But what about the girl?” Marris’s gaze remained fixed down the street at an approaching transport. The whirring of the engine slowed. A sleek, dark vehicle lurched quietly to a stop at the curb in front of them. The side door to the transport slid open with a whoosh.
“I’ll take care of her.” Birk’s smile returned. “After Athru.”
“You’ll kill her, too?”
An amber streetlight on the corner flickered, buzzed, and flared a harsh orange glare before resuming its soft steady glow.
“Not yet. I want to find out more about her. I’m curious why Athru’s interested. And,” Birk smirked, “I think she’s pretty, for an alien I mean.” He turned to Marris, taking in a breath, slow and deep, savoring the aroma of fresh-baked goods carried on a balmy breeze from the bakery up the street. “Would you consider her attractive, Captain?”
Marris shrugged. “Not my type. She’s high ordnance in a small package.” He stepped out of the shadows, his tone shaded with resentment. “She’s willful, opinionated, and stubborn. She’s lived a life of privilege under the protection of her father. Her kind are dangerous. A handful.” Marris shot a quick glance at Birk, and shook his head. “Not for you though, Major.” Dark hair flitted across Marris’s broad brow, aided by a sudden gust of frosty wind. His breath fogged, and icy crystals formed, drifting in the air. He frowned, hunched his shoulders, and glanced up at the sky.
A cold hand wrapped Birk in a frozen grip. He shivered, studying the night, searching the shadows. Unease prickled across his nerves, the abrupt chill from the once warm night adding concern. Just as swiftly, the breeze softened, warmed, and his disquiet passed. He dismissed the brief change as a weather phenomenon common to this world, nothing else.
“I’ve never found any woman dangerous. This one just needs to learn her place.” Birk’s lips curved, more snarl than grin. “And I will teach her.” He laughed in anticipation of the next morning’s carnage and devastation, the sound rumbling from deep in his chest.
About the Author
I have always been a reader. I love books. When I’m not able to read, I listen to audio books. I started writing while working as a Paramedic/Firefighter in Northern California. Trust me, it’s not like it appears on TV. There was plenty of time for books, mostly reading them. I didn’t seriously start writing until I moved to my ranch in Oregon. While waiting for lambs to be born in the middle of the night, I would head back to the house for an hour or two and sit down at the computer. Before I knew it, I had a manuscript. Not a good one, but a start.I joined critique groups and attended writer’s conferences. I was on the fast track to learning.
In 2013, I received an honorable mention in Writer’s Digest’s Self Published book awards for MG/YA. I guess I am learning something!
Ideas from dreams follow me into warm sunny days or the quiet of falling snow. “What ifs” feed a vivid imagination. Even mistyped phrases may lead to an “aha” moment. Brain storming sessions standing in windy, dark parking lots with fellow writers release thoughts that pry at the corners of my mind, grasping for purchase. Sometimes the ideas pursue me, with persistence.
For More Information
R. E. Sheahan is giving away a paperback copy of Book Two (Storm of Arranon Fire) and Book Three (Storm of Arranon Allies and Enemies)!
Terms & Conditions:
- By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
- One winner will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive both books
- This giveaway ends midnight October 28.
- Winner will be contacted via email on October 29.
- Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!
ENTER TO WIN!
a Rafflecopter giveaway