He relaxed into the dirt, it was all right, he was infantry and the dirt was home. He felt warm liquid all over his left thigh and wondered if he’d peed himself, it didn’t matter, none of it mattered, the stars were out in the blackness overhead and that was where he was going.
That’s the difference between good military commanders and good politicians, John Geary. You’ve shown me that a good military commander spends the lives of their people reluctantly and with regret, but does spend them when necessary. The good politician does the same thing with principles. There aren’t any fine burials for sacrificed principles, though.
Nisi flashed his charismatic, mysterious smile. “Now, with this in mind, are you ready to take the next step?”Despite Caleb’s attempts at caution—at circumspection and even suspicion—the man’s words stirred his blood. They teased the possibilities of the power within his reach, real power extending far beyond parlor tricks and personal protection to a place where the course of life itself could be changed.“I am.
Caleb shoved back from the table and stood to retreat to the kitchen. “No. Find another plan.”“There is no other plan. This isn’t even a plan, merely a nugget of an idea for the start of a plan that’s certain to fail and end in your deaths.
Sergeant Tin said it would be easier to just call you Corporal. She said you go back and forth, promoted one day and busted the next.
Laches faded away, leaving Miriam standing facing Hyperion, the Metigen who had orchestrated the slaughter of over fifty million people a short year ago.There were limits to even deals with the devil, lines which should never be crossed…but she was beginning to wonder when she might find one.
In that moment, she hated his quiet patient tone, hated the stench of the incense, and hated the beauteous pity painted on the faces of the women on the walls. Their expressions contained serene understanding; their eyes seemed able to peer into her soul. She found their forgiveness suffocating. And above all, she hated the tiny niggling thing in her that wanted to know more.
This is a Spartacan fighting knife. Heard of the Spartacan Scouts? Rough boys. This knife belonged to one of them. He died saving my life.
She returned his salute with a sly smile—a rare enough event that he eyed her suspiciously.“Admiral Solovy, are you wearing a shit-eating grin because we won here today, or is there something else I should know?”“There’s something else you should know.
Chaos that closely resembled panic awaited. Shuttles raced to the presumed safety of the planet below while fighters crisscrossed the perimeter of the station. Platoon-sized formations of frigates and several cruisers formed up and accelerated away. To where the approaching attackers were located?She didn’t give a damn what her mother said in public. This was a bona fide insurrection.
Any Earth Alliance military personnel who, whether through affirmative acts or by inaction, assist these seditionists are guilty of treason and will be held accountable. To all present military personnel: you have five minutes to respond accordingly.”She chuckled. “Bet more than one scuffle just broke out on board those ships.”“Any second thoughts?”Her head shook tersely. “We’re all traitors now.”“It’s not traitorous to want to be free.
Food’s the killer. The clock starts as soon as the troops are on the ground. You wouldn’t believe how fast they consume what they’re carrying, and then … if I don’t get them more, if I don’t find them more … they die.
I,” he said, a faint note of derision in his voice, “am the least favored scion of our ruling house, House Mara Sant.” He was from Brontes, then. Which might explain the eyes…she thought again of certain differences, and suppressed a shudder. “I am a Prince of the Blood,” he continued, sounding both embittered and proud, “third in line for the Dragon Throne, and grand nephew to the Emperor. Owing to a…political dispute, I am now also an exile. Presented with a choice between resigning my commission in the na-vy and leaving to become governor of a mining planet and staying to face my uncle’s as-sassins….” He shrugged slightly, as if the choice were of no consequence.“A…political dispute?”“I gambled,” he said bluntly. “I lost.”“You seem…sanguine,” she remarked, surprise blunting the instinct to guard her tongue.“He shouldn’t have let me live.” That anyone could discuss their own murder with such cold calculation horrified her. He horrified her. She chewed her lip, digesting all that he’d told her: not merely a naval officer, but a prince—and a maverick one at that. She wondered what he could have done.“So you see,” he finished, “I’m no more free than you.” He laughed, then, but without humor. “We can be prisoners together. I am en route to a wretched planet called Tarsonis to assume governorship and as you have no other, more pressing engagement, you are coming with me.