Launching Romance into the stars.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

The Space Service - From Celestial Seduction to Sudden Breakaway

I'm very excited about the release of my fifth 1Night Stand story, Sudden Breakaway, tomorrow. At the same time, I am a bit sad, as this story will be my last 1Night Stand that mentions the Space Service. 

Therefore, I am dedicating this post to the Space Service, and sharing excerpts to show how it has evolved over the course of my stories.


“What do you mean, you want to stay?”

Frey balled his fists and watched the Mission Commander’s face turn from blue to purple to red. But he refused to step onto the ship. “Exactly that. I don’t want to return to Ginnun. I’ve spent one rotation around the sun here, established myself in their culture, and lived like one of them. And I’ll continue to do so. This is my home now.”

“One rotation is hardly long enough to call this place home. Besides, you’ve sworn your life to the Space Service.” As his MC’s eyes hardened further, Frey noticed all the wrinkles in the man’s once again blue face. His white hair stood up straight on an oversized head. If he remained with the Space Service, the stress of the job would age him exactly the same way.

“This is my last mission. I’ll be discharged when I return.” Frey wouldn’t receive any compensation for this mission, but Space Service credits were of no use on Earth.

“The only way to get out of the Service is to apply for mating. Won’t Tandee be waiting for your return?”

His stomach clenched upon hearing her name. “On the day we left, she confessed to already mating with Brand, my supposed best friend.”

The Commander only raised his eyebrow. Frey didn’t expect any compassion from him. “Ouch! So that’s why you failed to keep your emotions in check on the trip to Earth.”

He looked away. Even after his time on this planet, the memory of that day still stung. She’d flaunted her admission without a hint of regret.

“There are many other females on Ginnun who would take you as a mate.”

Frey looked back to the Mission Commander and shook his head. “I don’t want an emotionless relationship. When I choose a mate, I need to want to be with her. I want a mate for more than just procreation. I want to love.”

“Emotions just get in the way of your life.” His MC slammed his fist against the ship. “You’re our best field informant! If you’re leaving the Service, you could easily find yourself on the High Council. You don’t want to throw away your future for the overly sensitive women here on Earth.”

“It’s not just the women. I have friends here, not just acquaintances, as everyone is to me on Ginnun.” Many people he’d trusted on Ginnun wound up stabbing him in the back, as in his best friend who slept with his intended without any guilt. Returning to a planet of long-dead emotions held no appeal after living on Earth. He refused to hide his feelings again, and there were so many more he wanted to experience.

The Mission Commander signaled to the pilot to start the engines. “Stop this nonsense and get on the ship.”
“No.” He grabbed his sack and without remorse, turned his back on his Ginnunian heritage.

~*~*~


V stared across the concourse, trying to spot her charges. She’d been told to expect three people through the portal from Earth, two Terran females and a Ginnunian male who might be disguised as a Terran. How would he look? The blue-skinned species had never needed to hide their identity on the space station. Would he still show a hint of his
natural color, or would he resemble his traveling mates?

They’d all be easy to spot. V was only one of five people from Earth who worked at Space Service Headquarters. Every day, she saw thousands of Phanties, a species with large ears and a trunk like an elephant; Pillites, who reminded her of a giant pill bug; Goopers, blue blobs with eight short tentacles as feet, and many other species from
around the universe. But Terrans could only make it out to the space station—perched on the far edge of the Milky Way from their home world—using a portal the government deemed classified.

She’d never dreamed of working off-planet back when she waitressed for a quaint
Italian restaurant in New York while putting herself through grad school. But one
unusually calm night, she’d served a man who’d reminded her of a character from Men in
Black. He’d appeared surprised when she’d understood his order—spoken in German.

While her other customers languished, he’d engaged her in friendly conversation.
Charmed by his witty repartee, she’d revealed she spoke five different languages and was
working two jobs to put herself through school. Along with a generous tip, he’d left his
card—containing only his name and number—with If you’re looking for a job that’s out
of this world, call me written on the back. Thinking he was some kind of quack, she’d
tossed the card in the trash before greeting a new table of customers.

He returned the next night and every evening for a week until she consented to sit
down to listen to his job offer. Six months later, after completing rigorous training, she’d
walked through the portal to serve as a concierge for the space station’s interstellar hotel.
She hadn’t returned to Earth since then, her position so top secret she’d been unable to so
much as tell her boss why she’d quit with no notice. Other than spending a few familiar
holidays with her fellow Terrans, she almost never crossed paths with anyone from home.

She continued her education as well, overwhelmed and fascinated by ancient space
history consisting of much more information than that of Earth. Still, she missed her own
kind. Terrans were seen as inferior to those from other planets, governed by cowards who
hid the idea of other life in space, yet took full advantage of the technology. Thankfully,
no one held her accountable for Earth’s deficiencies.

She was drawn back to the present as the crowd parted in front of her, like the Red Sea
to reveal her charges. They walked along with the other new arrivals, oblivious to the
multitude of curious looks they received. The blue, lanky Ginnunian male led his very
pregnant terran wife toward her. Peering past the pair, V caught a glimpse of a darkhaired
woman tucked closely behind them before the crowd closed in once again,
grunting, squeaking, and clicking in communication.

~*~*~


As she spied the first star in the sky, her phone chimed. Should I even look?

But her curiosity got the better of her.

Tamara again.

If you happen to visit the Space Service space station, be sure to say hello to Carrie for me. I wish you all the best.

Space? How had she known? But a space station? Was that why Tamara’s best friend had been absent from the wedding? She had so much to learn. And the message cleared away any remaining guilt she’d held onto.

~*~*~


Ms. Brown. Everyone knew her by that name, or at least those she tried to recruit for the Space Service did. For once, though, she wanted to be someone else, maybe herself. If she could shed the black designer suit and lose the title, she could simply be Paige.

The moment she’d signed the contract with the top-secret organization, she’d left Paige and the life she knew behind. Living in the shadows had been easy with her husband by her side, until agents destroyed the portal to the space station to keep terrorists from getting their hands on alien technology. Her husband—her only link to her old life—remained trapped there until the powers-that-be deemed it safe to repair the link.

She regretted agreeing to his traveling there for training while she remained on Earth, anxious about his welfare and resentful of the separation.

She continued to recruit for the Space Service, her work all she had to distract her from thinking of her faraway husband and empty bed. It wasn’t until the divorce papers had been forwarded to her communicator, from space, that she’d regretted signing the lifetime contract. Her husband hadn’t waited for her, choosing to bed some extraterrestrial bitch light years away.

She scanned her thumb across the ignition of her luxury sedan—only the best for members of the Space Service. None of it mattered anymore. She’d lost her enthusiasm for fostering relationships between Earth and the many worlds in the universe sustaining intelligent life. No, she wanted to stay on her home planet and find the love and happiness she’d thought she once had with her ex-husband.

She smirked, considering the possibility of her dream if she didn’t find any new recruits soon. The Space Service would revoke her contract. Her last three prospects had turned down her offer of an “out of this world” work environment, not once, but repeatedly. Why hadn’t she found the same strength, all those years ago to turn down the man in black who’d visited her and her husband? Though if she didn’t recruit, what would she do for a living?

~*~*~
And you'll also see the Space Service mentioned in my newly contracted story, Alien Lover, which will release as part of Decadent Publishing's The Edge erotica line.

Connect with Jessica here:

5 comments:

Diane Burton said...

Leaving a series is hard. I'm almost finished with a series and I don't want it to end. The characters are so real--like friends you don't want to say good-by to.

Jessica Subject said...

You're right, Diane. It is hard. I say I won't be writing anymore stories of these characters, but one never knows what the future will bring. ;)

Alicia Dean said...

Very nicely done. I haven't left a series yet, but I can see that it would be difficult. I'm writing a few series, but I'm only a couple of books into each, so it will be a bit before I say goodbye. Thanks for sharing a great post...good luck with whatever comes next!

Renald said...

I have to love the characters to stay with a series. The only series I have read is Lydia Dare's ,all five books,so far.
r.d1@myfairpoint.net

Jessica Subject said...

Thanks, Alicia! It is very hard, but I know I can read the stories over and over again. LOL

Renald, series are so much fun! And sometimes the characters become like friends. :)

There was an error in this gadget