Serial Fiction

The Queen’s Advantage: Chapter 1

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Advantage

I walked through Arx, checking on my people and ensuring that everything was ready for my departure tomorrow. In every room, people stopped to wish me well and advised me to give Emperor Kos hell. They may have liked Valentin Kos as a person, but they still weren’t in love with the Kos Empire, despite full bellies and a return to work.

Arietta Mueller, my best friend and head of security, trailed along behind me, grumbling under her breath. Tall, with blond hair and pale skin, Ari was gorgeous. She was impossible to ignore even when she wasn’t audibly calling attention to herself.

Ari was still trying to get me to change my mind about leaving her behind. She had waged her campaign for the last two weeks with the ruthless determination that made her a terror on the battlefield. She’d even gotten her wife involved, and Dr. Stella Mueller had long ago perfected her intimidation tactics. Unruly patients didn’t stand a chance against her.

Despite everything, I held firm. I was going to be gone for at least two weeks, maybe longer. I owed Valentin four weeks. I was hoping to split it into two trips, but if things were going exceedingly well—or poorly—I might need to stay the whole month this trip. I needed Ari and Stella here to keep an eye on things. I had other advisors, but none I trusted as much as my closest friends.

The Queen’s Advantage Announcement

The Queen's Advantage

Your patience has been rewarded! The Queen’s Advantage, the sequel to The Queen’s Gambit, starts very, very soon. :)

Here’s the rough draft blurb:

When Queen Samara Rani decides to repay her debt to Emperor Valentin Kos by rooting out the traitors in his court, she knows his advisors will despise her presence. The unknown traitors hate her because she tricked them out of five million credits, but even his loyal advisors have no use for the queen of rogues and scoundrels.

True to form, Valentin’s advisors want Samara gone, and they aren’t picky about how. When their tactics turn violent, Samara and Valentin race to unravel the web of treachery and lies binding the court before the next attack ends in tragedy.

Finding traitors is not easy when courtiers learn to lie before they learn to walk. To track down the culprits, Samara must delve deep into the underbelly of a court who wants her dead. But the Rogue Queen isn’t so easy to kill…

Like The Queen’s Gambit, TQA will be posted in a rough draft, serial format for free, then edited and put up for sale as an e-novella. If you didn’t read the edited version of TQG, you may want to check it out.

You don’t have to read the edited version, but there were some changes in the second half that will impact TQA. It shouldn’t be too hard to follow along, but it things seem a bit different than you remember, that’s why.

If you didn’t read TQG at all, you’ll be missing a lot of backstory and world-building. You can probably follow along, but it’ll be more fun if you read TQG first.

I’m hoping to post a chapter a week, but if things get crazy with edits or other contracted stuff, some weeks may have to be half chapters because I write slowly. :)

Happy holidays! I hope you enjoy the story!

The Queen’s Gambit: What’s Next?

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Gambit

Thank you so much to everyone who joined me on this journey. As a new author, I didn’t know what to expect, but you all have been amazing. I loved reading your comments as the story unfolded. :)

Thank you once again to my volunteer betas: Regina Brandt, Alex Curran, Julie Ferm, Amanda Larson, and Liv W. These brave souls helped make the final chapters stronger, and I appreciate their help so, so much.

So, what’s next? Now the novella will go through several rounds of edits to polish it from rough draft to final draft. After that, it will be posted up as an e-novella at your favorite retailers. …

The Queen’s Gambit: Chapter 2, Part 2

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Gambit

I awoke to a cacophony of aches and pains. Commander Adams had worked me over, but he’d stopped short of inflicting debilitating damage.

My hands were still secured behind my back but now I was on my side on the floor. My left arm felt leaden, hopefully because I’d slept on it and not because my shoulder was dislocated or worse.

A soft sound nearby snapped me back to the situation at hand. I kept my eyes closed and feigned sleep. The air stirred as someone leaned over me. A hand touched my neck and I struck, lunging up head-first. My skull cracked against something hard and the person above me fell back with a deep groan.

I twisted around and kicked out with my bound legs. I hit something soft and the groan turned into a grunt of pain. Based on the timbre of the voice, it was likely a man, but all I could see were legs and feet outlined in greenish-gray. We were in a pitch black room but they hadn’t taken my contact lenses. I pulled back for another kick.

“Queen Rani, stop, I’m not your enemy,” the man snapped. He rolled away and sat up. “Your breathing changed. I was checking if you were still alive. Clearly you are.”

A dark smear of blood ran from his nose. His face was bruised even more than before, but Emperor Kos was easy to recognize. Clean away the blood and bruises and the man would be gorgeous—the result of a millennia-long dynasty and the best genetics money and power could buy. …

The Queen’s Gambit: Chapter 2, Part 1

Part of the serial story The Queen’s Gambit

Two Quint mercenaries picked me up by my upper arms. My body dangled uselessly between them, caught in the thrall of the stun bolts. I recovered faster than most, but it would still be too little, too late.

I attempted a neural link out, but without Jax’s intervention, all of my attempts at long-distance links failed. Even my ship’s signal flickered in and out, and it was hidden nearby. The only steady link options were a few people in the room, but no way was I initiating a link with an enemy soldier. I might as well broadcast all of my secrets on an open comm channel.

The soldiers dumped me in a chair. They cuffed my hands behind my back, then secured them to the chair. They also secured my legs to the chair legs.

I looked far more delicate than I was, which tended to make people underestimate me, but the Quint mercs weren’t taking any chances. Jax must have warned them about my augments.

That traitorous little shit was going to die slowly. …