Out Of This World Series
Sylvestine Amera is the manager of the Mars Best-Tycho Basin Hotel. When her first alien visitors arrive on planet, Syl is faced with solving numerous challenges. Not the least of having Dedare Sath rubbing her cheeks in a gesture she is curious to understand. Irion customs are different than what she is used to, but when Dedare who owns a hotel on Irion asks her to leave Mars and manage his flagship hotel, she is more than ready to leave her home planet behind.
Once on the alien planet Syl is subjected to new customs, more alien encounters, adventures, not to mention romance. The only problem is now she has three aliens interested in her. But before Syl is able to choose a mate, a former girlfriend of Dedare's and several other nemeses attempt to take her out of the equation—permanently. She can't help but wonder if her out of the world experience is worth dying for.
The light made my head hurt so I closed my eyes. Wait a minute, where am I? My mushy brain had no information.
“I know you are awake. Respond,” said a deep voice.
My heart stuttered after hearing those words, so I opened my eyes again only to recognize Master Tyre leering over me. Then Simon and Tareera grabbed my arms and pulled me to a sitting position. Thankfully the dizziness quickly cleared, but my heart continued to beat irregularly. The trio walked away and conferred, so I studied my surroundings. I kept an eye on them while doing so. The room included rough gray stone walls, black shuttered windows, a single bed, and not much else.
“Why am I here? Why did you abduct me?” I asked, but no one responded.
I needed information. “Why are you here, Tareera? Why did you poison me at the hotel?” Not particularly appropriate, but the words spilled out. My brain had yet to catch up with my surroundings.
“No questions. You will remain,” said the Skuttem.
“Where is Sain? Did you hurt him?” I started to shake thinking about what they could have done to him and Branson.
“Master Tyre said no questions. If necessary, we’ll tie you up and cover your mouth,” said Simon. The Skuttem and Tareera walked to the door—Simon did so backward, keeping an eye on me.
Should I jump up and attack? Then I got a grip on reality—three to one weren’t great odds.
After they left, I waited a minute, and then tried the door and window. No luck in either case. Then I noticed another door hidden in a corner. I tried the handle. Not a getaway portal, but I had washroom facilities. A few moments in the restroom refreshed me, and then I went back to the bed. I had no other place to sit. Still affected by whatever I’d been injected with, I lay down on the bed to rest and promptly fell asleep.
I woke and sat up after I heard the door open. Dial Deen entered with a tray.
“Your lunch.” She put the food beside me. “Eat up, or Master Tyre will be upset.” Dial backed away.
“Why are you with the Skuttem?” I hadn’t known Dial Deen long enough to understand her personal motivations.
“I believe in his ideals.” One of her hands rubbed the back of her neck, and I couldn’t catch her eye.
“What ideals are those?” Maybe I’d learn something new about the Skuttem, or even Dial, with my questions.
She walked toward me. “You are a criminal, and the situation must be resolved,” said Dial, with the Irion equivalent of a smirk.
“Criminal, really? More likely you don’t like me working with Dedare.”
Much to my surprise, she smacked my face. I raised my hand to retaliate, but thought better of doing so. Instead, I rubbed my cheek, and asked, “Why did you hit me?”
“Dedare is too good for you,” she said. Her blue-tinged skin paled.
Her reaction made sense with her being Dedare’s ex-girlfriend. No matter what planet you lived on jealously reared its ugly head.