Fiora Books is pleased to announce that The Genesis Saga continues this fall with Book Two: TREACHERY & TRIUMPH!
Sneak Peek: PROLOGUE
Just yesterday, a spring storm had pounded the Newfoundland coast, and left debris strewn across the stony shoreline. A lonely figure made its way gingerly along the beach, carefully planting each foot, in turn, between the stones and bits of branches. His progress was slow, and the strong, relentless wind slowed his unsteady gait even more. Stopping to catch his breath and steady himself, Marco Rossini looked upwards to the overcast grey sky and took in a deep breath of fresh, salty air. The rhythmic sound of Atlantic waves slapping the rocky shore quieted his anxious spirit.
Redirecting his gaze away from the ocean, the young Vice President from Genesis spotted a downed tree trunk near the edge of the beach. He carefully made his way to the resting spot and sat down slowly to maintain his balance. A grimace of pain crossed his face, silently voicing his spine’s protest at the change in posture. The discomfort passed quickly, and he leaned forward, his elbows resting on his knees, his open hands cupping his face. Heaving a sigh, Marco wrestled with his loneliness.
It had been just one week since the Earther Sloop ENS Flame had departed for Genesis carrying his companions: ArcGeneral Pat Conroy, his oldest and closest friend; Marie Brooklynn, his new-found love and ace investigative reporter for the Genesis Free Press; as well as Annie Pinto, Marie’s media partner and wife of his friend, Gian Pinto. He knew it had been the right decision to send Marie home, but his heart said otherwise. He sorely missed the warm embrace of the only woman who had touched his heart in years.
It had been just over two weeks since the accident which almost cost him his life, and Marco closed his brown eyes now, trying to banish the images – that had tormented him ever since – of the horrific explosion aboard the hybrid Battlecruiser Harbinger Bishop II. He and Pat had been standing together just inside the Carronade Three control room, when the explosion had sheared the Carronade turret off the outer hull, buckling the bulkhead and depressurizing the room. Marco had been thrown violently around the room, finally landing against the edge of the control desk, shattering his spine.
Fortunately, the Earther Sloop, ENS Flame had been close by, observing the test firing of the Battlecruiser’s new weapons. Its crew had provided the emergency medical aid which had saved his life, and then transported him to Earth, along with Pat, Marie and Annie, into the care of Doctor Elandra Caine. Earther medical technology had advanced far beyond the capabilities of human medicine on Genesis. Doctor Caine was a distinguished wolf researcher and practitioner at Fengate Hospital in Sydney, Australia. In only one week, using Marco’s DNA, she had been able to grow a replacement spine, and had then performed the transplant surgery. Now, Marco was a guest of Elandra and her husband, First Lord of the Admiralty Setter Caine, on their estate in Newfoundland where the doctor was personally supervising Marco’s month-long physiotherapy. Without this Earther miracle, Rossini would have died, and Genesis would have lost its brilliant, young, Vice President.
“Enough moping, Mr. Vice President,” Marco chided himself aloud. He chuckled in response to his own order. “Gods! Things are bad when you start ordering yourself around!” Gingerly he brought himself to a standing position and turned toward the well-worn path that began at the tree line a dozen meters away. Taking him back to the Caine estate, its well-packed ground would afford him less treacherous footing.
Marco enjoyed these moments, walking alone among the fragrant pines. He was reminded of his childhood in Darymanis City, on Genesis, where he’d often explored the nearby rainforest with Pat Conroy’s older brothers. Noticing a family of wolves who frequented the property, he recognized them as the Caines’ distant relatives. Identifying the human figure as friend, not foe, the wolves formed an escort for Marco as he made his way through the pines.
Rossini made eye contact and smiled at each wolf, in turn, while remembering the fear he’d experienced at their first meeting, a few days earlier. Seeing another fallen log, he decided to rest once more and enjoyed the pungent pine aroma carried on the gentler breeze among the trees. The wolves stopped, too, and arranged themselves on the ground nearby – like his personal guard. Smiling, he thought about his personal security detail – his three Alpha Corps agents. His Lead Agent, Ted Gallo, had remained with him on Earth, while James Drury and Ben Grafton had accompanied Marie, Annie and Pat back to Genesis aboard Flame. Ted had gone to London, for a few days, to confer with leaders of the Guards – the elite Earther marines who were the equivalent of the Genesis Alpha Corps. The smallest cub leapt onto his lap, bringing another smile to his face. Today, these Alpha Wolves guarded him.
At home in this beautiful and peaceful place, Marco let the simple moment of joy chase away some of his loneliness. The songs and the chirping of birds, nesting in the surrounding trees, serenaded the young politician as he reflected on his hosts, the Caines, and all Earthers. Humans had originated here on Earth, and, over several millennia, had developed great civilizations. Unlike the Earthers, humans had always been in conflict with one another, and many destructive wars marred their history until the twenty-first century. It was in the year 2053 that the final war between the great religions had erupted, ultimately ending human history on Earth.
Before becoming Vice President, Marco Rossini had been an academic – professor of History and Department Chair at the University of Genesis City (UGC). He had also been the beneficiary of a set of ancient human history texts from Earth – a gift from Setter Caine to Pat Conroy. Professor Rossini had mastered the texts and designed new courses about human history and political science on Earth. His expertise had attracted the attention of High Chancellor Harvey Bingham who’d asked him to create a constitution whereby a new democratic civilian government would govern Genesis in partnership with The Chancellery – the incumbent, religious, governing body.
Bingham had then chosen ArcGeneral Liz Hastings, the Navy CO, to run as his candidate for President, and he’d chosen Marco as her running mate for Vice President. During the campaign, Marco had become a target for the religious extremists who called themselves the Holy Rouge. Their attempt to smear his reputation had failed and resulted in the defrocking of their clandestine founder and leader, Chancellor Thomas Paine. Marco, himself, had thwarted their scheme to assassinate Liz Hastings at the Inauguration, and he was inclined to believe that the explosion aboard Bishop, that had almost cost him his life, had been a third Rouge plot to end the new administration. It was a sobering thought, and he clenched his hands into fists. Marco Rossini would not run from thugs!
The wolf cub leaped from his lap as Marco moved to get to his feet. The wolf pack roused itself too – their charge was moving again. The young Vice President relaxed and chuckled, watching his guards move with him, down the path, to the Estate. Their loyalty reminded him how fortunate he was to have friends like the Caines. Just as they had stood by their new human friends against the Kroggs, now Elandra and Setter were, literally, standing him back on his feet, helping him regain his health and strength. They are wonderful friends, he mused.
Now he understood the reverent regard for the Earthers held by Liz Hastings and Harvey Bingham.
Please check out this promotional video of Newfoundland & Labrador to get startling visuals of the scene depicted in my Prologue above!
(If you click on the YouTube logo under the video, you can “like” it there!)