Thursday, December 8, 2016
Mission: A Venus Affair (Mission, Book 6) by V.A. Jeffrey
Release date: November 9, 2016
Subgenre: Space opera
Bob and his family are going on a much-needed vacation towards the hottest destination in the solar system: Vepaja City, Venus! But as soon as they reach Venus someone from his past makes an inconvenient request: make a secret deal that promises to benefit Bob, U-net and the Boss. Who is this mysterious character? Does this person really care about helping him or is there a darker agenda? Is this side mission really in Bob's best interest? If he agrees to the deal U-net could reap an advantage in the coming war. But is this mission legitimate or is it a trap?
I glanced around nervously. The gazelle was long gone. As I turned I heard a terrifying sound that explained why the gazelle had been fleeing in the first place. A creature, about nearly as tall as me, and lizard-like, darted through the brush toward me. Through the swirling wall of butterflies I saw the brown and green blur grow more distinct. Its upper hide was brown and its underbelly green as dark jade and it had green and shimmering gold markings on its face. It was a raptor.
With my heart in my throat I jumped on my speeder bike and tried to escape only for the creature to leap up and come down right on top of me, biting at my head. One of its teeth slashed my scalp but the force of the creature’s weight was so powerful and its speed so great that it knocked me from the speeder and went tumbling over the speeder and down what had remained hidden to me until now – an unseen cliff into a narrow ravine below, housing a hidden river. The creature nearly took me with it. I glanced over the edge.
Now dangerously close to hanging over the cliff I grabbed hold of some green vines, climbing up the cliff. The bike was tangled in the vines right underneath me, with my leg caught up in the vines as well. The lizard was hanging onto the bike, its sharp and deadly toe talons scraping off the metal from the speeder into curly spirals that flew off and floated down. Whipping its long snake-like tail in agitation it roared and bared its teeth, looking very much like a hungry and very irritated velociraptor I’d seen in one of my son’s books.
Reaching for my pistol I shot it twice as it quickly reoriented itself right side up, getting ready to position itself to rip a chunk out of my leg. All the shifting and moving caused the bike to slide and fall on top of the beast and they both dislodged from the carpet of vines and plunged into the blue-black waters of the river below. I quickly fastened my pistol back to my belt, fearing I would fumble and lose it forever. I felt my own sweaty arms and hands slide down and the smaller vines snapped under my weight and then I, too, fell into the waters of the hidden river below.
Victoria A. Jeffrey grew up in Portland, Oregon, attended Portland Community College and studied graphic design. She is an author and an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy. She also enjoys reading historical fiction and non-fiction. She has written four collections of poetry and some short stories. She is a content developer for the Middle-Earth Network, the author of the Red World myth-fantasy trilogy. She has two upcoming series for this year, the Mission space opera series and a steampunk science fiction series.