What happens if bees go extinct?
In the not so distant future, scientifically modified Emlyn and Ace find themselves thrown into the role of saviors on a perilous mission where their tenuous relationship could save or destroy mankind. As the war between rebels and the corrupt government reaches a fever pitch, Ace is bent on self-sacrifice and revenge, while Emlyn must choose between her heart and the future of mankind.
14+ due to adult situations and sexuality
“Would you like me to enlighten you?”
The gruff man combed his greasy beard with his fingers. A smile lit up his features due to her question. The kind of smile when one thought something was so cute and helpless but had fake bravado. A kitten. He stared at Emlyn how one would a domesticated kitten, but she was more like the feral kind, the kind that came up to someone with sad little eyes and when his or her guard was down, pounced.
“First, you guys always underestimate me. I get away every time.” She spoke in a condescending tone as one would a child.
“You always have help.” He amended quite incorrectly.
“Once, I did, but the other two times I escaped myself. I fully intend to do it again.”
He laughed wholeheartedly at her comment.
“Pretty dumb of you to camp so close to MICE headquarters.” He changed the subject. She agreed. She was going to strangle Huck, but really, it was the elusive Ace’s fault. He had to be found and he was somewhere in this building, she hoped.
“Pretty dumb of you to walk into my trap as well,” she fired back.
“What trap is that?” He suddenly lost his commandeering gaze. Worry flitted across his features. It should. She had her hands free now. The man was right. Something on a huge level was done by her mother and it was done to Emlyn herself. Her blood had eaten through the titanester fibers enough to make it brittle and break in her last attempt to free them.
“You just told me where I am, and I do know how to get out of here.”
He swallowed hard, so Emlyn knew she was right. She was in the MICE’s northeast headquarters. The worst possible place. The smell of ammunition meant she was in the basement of the building, much harder to get out of.
“Yes, but you have to get through me first and then you probably already know how many are waiting between this door and freedom. You’re ours this time.”
“I belong to no one,” Emlyn said with restrained anger and then let the wild kitten in her pounce. She gripped the chair, jumped up, and folded it closed. She swung the chair all before the man could even move. All he could do was flinch as she made sure the metal edge came smashing into the side of his head. His hands shot up protectively just as it was too late and a nauseating crack echoed in the tiny room. The man slouched over and moaned, so she knew he wasn’t dead. She searched his pockets for a key because it was one of those old locks. Finding a chain of swipe cards with two old-fashioned keys on it, she smiled ruefully. So stupid, these MICE agents. Well, he could’ve been kinder and had a better weapon on him than a set of fingernail pliers. She tried the first key and it worked. Racing into the poorly lit hallway, she heard people talking in rushed whispers. She ducked into the shadow of a doorway and tried the knob behind her. It was locked. Out of options, she froze, listening.
The two voices continued. “You sure she’s down here?”
“I’d rather just get you out of here to safety first.”
“We need her, Ace.”
Emlyn froze, her mind whirling. The man they had been looking for for over ten years was suddenly here and most likely trying to find her? She wasn’t sure what he wanted with her or if he was safe. Part of her wanted to make herself known and the other wanted to eliminate any threat. She had to make her decision fast because they were approaching. Then, as they drew near, she smelled it. Honey, grass, and all that was Huck, but it was tainted with something, the smell of death. Her heart lurched and her fury peaked. Ace killed Huck, her guardian, her protector, her teacher, her friend, her crush, her world. She leaped out and tackled the closest man with an unquenchable bloodlust.
Suddenly, someone launched themselves at him. His hyper-perceptive senses realized this a beat before contact and he braced himself for the impact. What he wasn’t ready for was the buzzing sensation when said assailant came into contact with him. It was a pleasing oscillation under his flesh that made him think of his childhood on the farm with his grandparents, mother, and sister when they were all alive and well. He had been so young he hardly remembered the farm, but knew that only his father, he, and his sister survived the plague and famine. They lost his sister six years ago, which spurned on their desire to defy MICE.
When they hit the ground with a thud, him on top, he was yanked back to the present and out of his reveries. He was pinning down the wrists of his assailant when he realized she was female and that in the fall, the way their bodies splayed out was a bit intimate, to say the least. She was a hell-cat, as Huck foretold. Ace knew from her menacing stare and her writhing that she wouldn’t go with them easily. But goodness, even in the dim light he could see she was beautiful. All he could discern were intense eyes, light hair and skin, and a supple chest that pressed against him and made his mind muddled.
“Where’s Huck? What have you done to him?” She writhed and began to buck, trying to knock him off. It gave him the opposite desire than her intentions. He wanted to stay this way forever, holding her as close as possible.
“Shhhh!” His father warned him to silence her.
“Emlyn, listen. We’re trying to get you out of here. Just stop fighting,” he whispered. She stopped moving. “Huck is meeting us in the infirmary.”
They heard the guard moan in the cell. Ace looked at his father, who rushed into the cell to silence him. After leaping up, Ace felt utterly bereft when no longer in contact with her. He didn’t know how he could feel this way right away. He clutched her hand and the pleasant buzzing resumed. Bees, he thought, like when he was little and he’d go into the hive barn to collect honey and they’d circle him and land on him as if he were part of the colony.