Monday, November 23, 2015

#ScienceFiction Grand Master's Mate - Excerpt

Grand Master's Mate
Grand Master's Mate

Young empath, Violet Hunter, and her cunning Grand Master, Athanor Griffin, tackle the villains threatening civilization.

Their worst enemy, the Red Queen, rampages across the galaxy evading capture, while blocked portals restrict normal commerce among planets. Adding to their problems, half the Grand Masters on the Council fear Violet is the agent of their destruction as prophesied by her father. To restore peace, Violet and Athanor embark on a dangerous quest for a weapon hidden by the ancient psychic masters on one of four planets. Yet, the weapon proves elusive, and forging new alliances with bizarre lifeforms may not help Violet to save the galaxy and achieve her true destiny.

If you enjoy stories with rollercoaster adventures, bizarre lifeforms on diverse planets, and battles of powerful psychics, read the exciting conclusion of the Trilogy.   

Book 1 of the Grand Master's Trilogy is 99c for December: Grand Master’s Pawn:
Book 3 of the Trilogy will be released on 9th December. Pre-Order here:

Read a long excerpt here:

The doors swung open and they stepped into the light-filled atrium of the Center for Life Science. The wedding audience sat in rows of chairs on either side of the aisle. The gray uniforms of Space Corps were visible among the wedding guests.

Pausing inside the door, Violet scanned the atrium for familiar faces. Her pawn friends, Srini and Lira sat together in one row. Professor Gullish scurried down the aisle and crouched awkwardly in a seat on the opposite side. The Brululian had difficulty fitting his fan shaped tail in the chairs intended for human anatomy. 

Leading Athanor to the seats, Violet joined Lira and Srini. Athanor collared the seat at the end of the row, stretching his long legs down the aisle. Violet grinned at her friends. She had not seen them for several weeks, well before the battle with Morrigu on Haven.

Lira patted Violet’s forearm with her soft furry fingers in the Aman-ellan greeting. She mewed, “You were away for ages, Violet. Kondric told us you were staying on Avalon.”

Srini had a strained look on his dark face and his voice had lost its normal cheeriness.  “I’m glad to see you’re both recovered after the battle.” Compressing his lips, he asked, “Do you know what happened to my Grand Master Hanuman? I haven’t heard from him since our expedition to guard the black barrier on the Planet of Destiny.” He tiled his head and his black eyes pleaded for a positive response.

Violet explained, “Hanuman survived the battle on Haven. But, he was grievously injured and lost his psi powers. We have not heard from him since then. My Grand Master was weak for days, and we couldn’t travel until he regained his powers.”

Shaking his head in disappointment, Srini sighed, “I wish I could visit my Grand Master. He was always kind to me and we had great conversations on my missions. Will I ever see him again?”  

“It may be possible to arrange a visit,” Athanor growled. “Without his psi power, Hanuman cannot easily make contact with you through your pawn’s collar.”

“Hush!” Violet whispered. “The ceremony is beginning.”

The band played the wedding march and the bride, groom and ritual mediator entered. They walked in a solemn procession to the center of the atrium. 

Tessa Brown and Phineas Wilmot stood a pace apart, smiling at each other. Professor Wilmot wore a straw colored suit matching his hair and mustache. He looked nervous. The bride was the star of the party. Her white lace gown with gold trim highlighted her delicate complexion and golden tresses. Joy illuminated her beautiful face.

Feeling a twinge of envy, Violet tightened her lips and lowered her gaze to the floor.

Squeezing her hand, Athanor sent, “I desire no other woman. Where else could I find a loyal companion who enjoys my psi power? You have expressive green eyes and a beautiful psychic aura.”

Thank you.” Violet smiled and glanced up at his plain Taranis face.

The Director of the Center for Life Science opened the ceremony. He had taught biology to Tessa and Violet in their first year at the Academy. His slow, sonorous voice tended to send his listeners to sleep and today was no exception. He began with a long winded introduction to the bride and groom and their excellent qualities.

Bored by the lecture, Athanor leaned back in his chair and closed his eyes. In contrast, Violet’s green eyes gleamed with delight as she gazed at the wedding couple. She had never attended a marriage rite and Tessa was her special friend. Concealing her thoughts from Athanor, Violet suppressed her worries. How could she ever get married when she loved a Grand Master? Lira purred beside her, untroubled by the shadows of the Grand Masters.

While she watched the ceremony, Violet kept her senses tuned to Athanor. She feared he would fall asleep and inadvertently expose everyone to his raw power when he woke. His mind hazed and she sent him a mental pinch.

Suppressing a yawn, he sent unconvincingly, “I’m awake.” His thoughts sharpened and he griped, “Next time, remind me not to accept an invitation to a wedding.”

You weren’t invited,” she snickered mentally and squeezed his hand. He groaned under his breath.  

After the Director finished his introduction, the wedding rite was short and simple. The mediator offered a blessing and Phineas slid the ring over Tessa’s slender finger. Violet’s eyes misted, anticipating their happiness.


A red explosion shattered the glass panes in the curved wall of the atrium. Screams mingled with the tinkle of glass shards on the stone-tiled floor. Menacing psi pressure vibrated around the room.

Eyes flaring ruby light, Morrigu dropped into the central space. Her long blonde braids and four red arms were a nightmarish hybrid of Celtic and Hindu myths.

Tessa crumpled in a dead faint. Phineas caught her in his arms and backed away from the horrid scarlet beams of the Red Queen. She had violated the critical ban against exposing normal people to her raw psi energy.

Violet swept her gaze around the atrium, startled by the devastating effects of Morrigu’s raw power. Half of the wedding guests had collapsed in psychic trauma and the rest were rigid with shock. His face blanched, Srini clutched at the back of the chair in front of him. As Violet watched, his eyes shut and he slid to the floor. Ears flattened and trembling, Lira bared sharp teeth and spat at the terrible apparition. The shelly carapace of Professor Gullish sprawled on the floor, thin legs twitching in the air and pink underbelly exposed.

Crackling with blue psi, Athanor leaped to his feet and raised his arms high above his head. Psi flared. Sheets of blue light rippled around the terrified wedding party, creating a protective enclosure. Shedding his public disguise, his black locks tumbled to his shoulders and his right eye blazed with blue light.

His mind merged with Violet’s and he griped, “She looks more devilish than ever.

Let me help.” Pressing her hand on his shoulder, Violet augmented his energy. Athanor concentrated on protecting the innocent attendees of the ceremony from Morrigu. He couldn’t easily attack Morrigu at the same time.

Athanor commented to Violet, “Her fourth arm’s a fake. You severed it in the battle and she cannot generate a new one.”

Swinging towards Athanor, Morrigu yelled, “Griffin, you voidal, half-blind fool, defending the unpowered norms. By Ragnar’s fire, I’ll blast your remaining eye and slaughter your puny pawn.” 

A tsunami of red psi energy smashed against Athanor.

His hatred congealing into icy steel, Athanor stood firm, holding the psychic screen over the wedding attendees. Grimacing in fury, the Red Queen zapped red rays at Athanor, again and again. Her attacks were futile. She was unable to penetrate his shield, strengthened by his link with Violet. Ruby lasers reflected from the blue envelope around Athanor and the people he shielded.

An impasse.

Morrigu roared in frustration.

Raising her red arms to the ceiling, Morrigu blasted the intact windows. Glass panes crashed down and Athanor solidified his screen over the helpless people. The roof trusses creaked and snapped, tumbling onto the blue bubble of Athanor’s shield. Pumping energy into the defensive screen, he had little for a thrust at their devilish red attacker. 

Steeling to enter the combat, Violet called to Athanor, “Fetch my sword. I’ll divert her attention.” Sensing him teleport the Sword of Tyr, she opened her hand to clasp the hilt. Purple fire swept from the pommel to the tip of the blade. Jumping out of Athanor’s protective balloon, Violet pointed the sword at the Red Queen.

Fierce hatred beat into her mind and Violet staggered under the impact of Morrigu’s fury. Firming her mental shield, she took a step forward and thrust the blade at the Red Queen. A psi stroke drove her back, her legs slammed into a chair and she fell. Holding the sword upright in one hand, Violet twisted aside and landed on the flattened palm of her other hand. She bounced back onto her feet, facing her adversary. Morrigu’s next blast of psi pressure knocked Violet to her knees.

Athanor speared blue psi at their enemy. Whirling to face his threat, Morrigu flung a curtain of red psi to block the blue ray. The two Grand Masters were matched in strength, but Athanor was expending his energy to protect the unpowered people.

Shaken and helpless, Violet bit her lip. Who would weaken first? 

Buy Links:
Book 1, Grand Master's Pawn is 99c for November

Grand Master’s Pawn:

Grand Master’s Game:

Grand Master’s Mate:

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