Sunday, December 28, 2008

Contract in Blood 2: Finale in Blood (Collection)
by Madeleine Oh

Cover art by Bryan Keller
ISBN (13): 978-1-60521-139-8
Genre(s): Futuristic, Paranormal, Action/Adventure, Sci-Fi
Theme(s): Ménage, Bisexual and More, Vampires
Series: Contract in Blood
Length: Collection


Ferda’s never opposed to a three way, but vampires tend to be a jealous lot.
While her vampire smugglers search for a permanent replacement crew member, Ferda discovers Zadde, the only lead to the origins of their mysterious cryogenic stowaway, has been tortured and killed. Ferda proves she’s not beyond a few galactic felonies herself -- if it means finding the truth.
With the authorities as well as bounty hunters hot on their tails, our crew sets out for Frannin, Zadde’s home base, hoping to unlock the secrets of his illicit trade before they share his fate! Together, they have one last chance to set the record straight…


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A loud crackle on the com and a visual appearing on the holoscreen signaled they’d made contact with Damphir IV. Adlet stepped away from the console and let Drake take over negotiations.
He actually stepped wide away, deciding it was time he got a cup of javabrew from the service hatch. Adlet had always been in awe of Drake, an ancient vampire by any calculations, and a couple of incidents in the past forty-eight hours had added to his caution.
“How do things look?” Rand asked, as he walked onto the space ship’s bridge. “Any luck?”
“Drake’s talking to them now.”
“I hope to the heavens they agree. The pirates got in several hard hits. We need repairs and we can’t go a-roving the heavens with a cryogenically preserved person in the hold.”
That was the big problem that overshadowed all Adlet’s petty anxieties. If the Galactic Police ever got wind that they carried an undeclared cryonic chamber, they’d all end up on some penal planet. That would postpone his returning to university -- but that alternative didn’t hold much appeal.
“Think they’ll let us land?” Adlet asked. Not that Adlet quite got what Drake thought the inhabitants of Damphir IV might do, but if Drake and Ferda saw it as their best option, Adlet was not about to argue.
Still, he had rather mixed feelings about landing on a planet inhabited by vampires. Living with two he could handle. Having one as a lover and offering his blood he definitely enjoyed, but several hundred thousand of them? The thought made his neck itch.
Rand shrugged. “I hope so. If not, we’re in deep shit. Seen Ferda?”
“She went down to check on the… um… passenger.”
The off-ship comlink crackled into life. Not that Adlet could understand a word. “What’s he saying?”
“It’s an old dead language from Terra. Latin. Don’t know it myself. Drake keeps on at me to start learning.”
“Vamps speak it?”
“So it seems. Some always have. Drake says he learned it as a boy. Something to do with an ancient Terran religion.”
Whatever it was, it was unintelligible to Adlet. Which was probably the whole idea. Mind you, he might not understand the words, but he got the gist of it. Drake was arguing with the vamp down on the planet. After a pause, a question was pretty much barked at Drake. Would the unseen speaker talk like that if he was face to face with Drake?
Another pause and Drake replied, in a casual, even voice, then said, “Rand Farrar, Adlet Wirram --” generous pause, apparently for dramatic effect, “-- Ferda Wallace.”
The other end all but exploded, repeating Ferda’s name and then letting out a string of excited gibberish. Okay, it was Latin but sounded like gibberish to Adlet.
Taking his finger off the mike button, Drake threw his head back and laughed, a real whoop and cackle. Adlet had never even seen him let out so much as a smile and now he was roaring his head off?
When Drake got it back together, they exchanged a couple more sentences, brief and agreeable sounding, and ended the transmission.
“Adlet.” Drake swiveled his chair. “Go help Ferda load the canister on the transport pod. We have clearance to land.”
Excerpt from Committment in Blood

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