Saturday, June 11, 2022

An Unusual Combination - Excerpt from the Cobra for #WeWriWa and #SnippetSunday


Welcome to Weekend Writing Warriors and Snippet Sunday. Sample the work of a new author. Read snippets of stories in different genres.

I’m continuing with my new SciFi story. It is coming up for pre-order and release at the end of this month.

In last week’s excerpt, Shan Zennia had coolly negotiated spaceport security on the planet of Harappi. You can read the excerpt at -

In this weeks’ excerpt, I’m skipping a few lines. Zennia has met her hosts, Ghandry and Pittiprati, and they have walked out of the terminal. Here, Zennia discovers a local curiosity.

A sleek flitter zipped overhead, carrying the elite to the mansions of the new city. Beside the road, a line of animals and carts waited for less eminent travelers. The carts had four large wheels and wooden sides with poles at the corners to support a fabric cover. One of the animals, some species of horned cattle, was yoked to each cart. This unusual combination of technologically advanced flitters with primitive animal-drawn transport met with Zennia’s approval. She enjoyed this type of variety in her research expeditions.

Walking along the row of carts, Ghandry examined each in turn. He halted by one animal harnessed to a vehicle with a blue cover, and spoke to the youth standing nearby. The bare-chested youth wore a knee-length sarong knotted around his waist.

Nine lines and a few more.

Pittiprati touched the animal’s cheek and explained, “Sabu is this ox’s name. He often gives us a ride. Sabu cannot speak, but he understands what we say.” She patted the ox’s neck. “Curator Shan Zennia is our guest for the festival. Please look after her if she needs a ride.”

Murmuring, “Hello, Sabu,” Zennia stared in interest at the sturdy animal yoked to the cart. It had a humped back and white spots dappled its chestnut brown flanks. Its head, on level with hers, bore two long curved horns with the tips wrapped in blue cloth. Despite those formidable weapons, it returned her gaze though mild brown eyes.

After a short exchange with Ghandry, the youth stepped to the animal and whispered in its ear. Then, he pulled down the side of the cart and beckoned to her. “Please to climb in, Curator.”

She complied, choosing the wooden seat at the front. Her host joined her, while his wife sat behind.

The youth raised the side of the cart and tapped the animal’s flank. The ox grunted and plodded along the road toward the city.

Surprised at the absence of reins or a human guide, Zennia glanced back at the line of carts. The youth, instead of walking beside the animal with their cart, had moved on to another customer. She looked at her host and arched her eyebrows in a question. “Does Sabu know where you live?”

His eyes crinkled in amusement. “Sabu knows our house. Our cattle are well-trained and familiar with the city streets.” 

SciFi mystery. Interstellar spy befriends enemy commander in a tragic tale with a happy ending.

Shan Zennia, Senior Curator of the Archives of Galactic Culture on Lumos, plays a dangerous double role as a researcher and a spy for Solarian Intelligence. She embarks on a new mission to observe the spring festival on Harappi, a planet recently conquered by the ambitious Emperor and now governed by his niece, Domina Allia.

Zennia finds unexpected mysteries on the planet, including the enigmatic Nagari. Once a victorious commander in the Emperor’s space fleet and nicknamed the Cobra, he was forced to abandon his military career when Allia claimed him as her consort. Her abusive treatment has driven him to the brink of madness.

Intrigued by the ex-commander and aware of his value as a source of information on the enemy, Zennia agrees to meet him during the festival of rebirth. Opposing forces clash at the height of the celebrations, catalyzing deadly violence. Can Nagari and Zennia survive the chaos and win a new and happier life? 

The ebook is available for pre-order at:  Amazon   Apple   B&N 

In the next couple of weeks, I’ll set it up at the other retailers and on my direct store.

I’ll be happy to reply to your comments.

Please return to to sample the works of the other writers.

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