I have a guest here to take over Whiskey With My Book today. Welcome Veronica Scott! With a recently released book, Star Survivor, Veronica has a lot to talk about.
Thanks for having me as your guest!
As a very newly published author in 2012, I was really flattered when readers began asking me for the sequel to Wreck of the Nebula Dream, which was my “Titanic in space” scifi novel with romantic elements. ( Big luxury interstellar spaceliner suffers catastrophic wreck in space, not enough lifeboats and the adventures piled on from there as my characters struggled to survive and help each other…..) The readers were curious to know what happened next to the two secondary characters Twilka – a rich, entitled society girl – and Khevan – a sexy bodyguard-assassin sworn to serve a very jealous alien goddess. Twilka and Khevan were together at the end of Wreck, last seen taking a spaceship to the mysterious planet of Temple Home, where the Red Lady of the D’nvannae Brotherhood waited. She also had a very powerful sister, the Lady in White, and Khevan and Twika were hoping to get her advice and assistance.
But after their departure from the book toward the end, my focus shifted right back to completing the story of the two main characters, Nick and Mara, and giving them their Happily Ever After.
And…whatever happened next for Twilka and Khevan? Was the path of true love smooth? Was it true love?
I came up with the rudiments of a plot fairly quickly and then never wrote the follow-on book, because it wasn’t satisfying to me, so how could my readers accept it? The whole thing was too simple and settled. Earlier this year I took a different, fresh tack and thought about how these two survivors of the wreck of the Nebula Dream certainly went through a life changing event, but life has a way of wanting to keep you in the already established ruts and roads. Even after an astounding experience and barely escaping death. There’s the job and the bills and…oh, the blood oath Khevan had sworn to the Red Lady when he joined her Order….and Twilka’s fame (notoriety?) as a Socialite party girl…
Once I got my Muse thinking along those lines, the story came to me in a rush. It’s no spoiler to say that since I write romance there’s always a Happily Ever After, but I hope the readers will enjoy the journey that Twilka and Khevan still had to complete. The book can be read as a standalone novel.
The survivors of a terrible wreck meet again—but this time only one can survive.
The long-awaited sequel to The Wreck of the Nebula Dream…
They survived an iconic spaceship wreck together. She never expected to see him again … especially not armed to kill her.
Twilka Zabour is an interstellar celebrity. She built on her notoriety as a carefree Socialite who survived the terrible wreck of the Nebula Dream, and launched a successful design house. But now the man who gave meaning to her life, then left her, is back–this time for the worst of reasons. Will he kill her … or help her survive?
D’nvannae Brother Khevan survived the Nebula Dream in the company of a lovely, warm woman, only to be pulled away from her, back into his solitary life in the service of the Red Lady. Now Twilka’s within his reach again–for all the wrong reasons. Khevan will do everything within his power to discover why Twilka has been targeted for assassination, and to save her.
But Khevan is not Twilka’s only pursuer. Will allies Nick and Mara Jameson arrive in time to aid the couple, or will Khevan and Twilka’s ingenuity be all that stands between them and death?
She’d known it was a mistake to agree to venture out of her cabin, much less to go to the casino, but her companions had been begging her to join them on this final night of the cruise. A woman couldn’t concentrate on business all the time, could she? Not even to avoid unpleasant realities. A migraine nagged above her eye, threatening to become full blown, and the loud thumping music in the casino aggravated the pain. Twilka Zabour paused at the entrance to the private, high stakes gaming area and froze.
Oh, yes, a major flashback was inevitable now. Not just because the lights and the music and the crowd were reminding her so forcibly of the last night on board the Nebula Dream, but because of the man standing in the center of a largely female, laughing group of passengers. He stood with his back to her, thank the lords, and all she could see were his broad shoulders and that glossy, unbound mane of hair, but the high roller running the table was a D’nvannae Brother.
The memories were a physical pain in her gut as the room spun around her.
“Drink. I need a drink,” she said, grabbing at the glasses balanced on the tray of a passing server. She didn’t care what they were, nor was she displeased to find the goblets contained two completely different feelgoods. Even as the waiter exclaimed in annoyance and her own companions exchanged astonished glances, she shoved the now empty glasses at the man, snatched a third from his tray, swirls of orange and green froth, and sauntered forward. Twilka headed to the table with a casualness she in no way felt, her nerves taut as a bowstring, her pulse pounding. The migraine took hold with a vengeance now, fueled by tension and the feelgoods. At least she’d worn a killer dress.
“Twenty thousand on the red,” she said, having seen his bet and choosing the opposite. “I’ll spin.” Sipping the abominable, too sweet concoction, she leaned over to spin the retro wheel, giving the room a full view of her cleavage, accented with perfume dust and temporary diamond-studded tattoos.
There was a growing silence around the table. She didn’t think the onlookers knew who he was—had been—to her. She was famous, her face appearing everywhere as the embodiment of her brand, but he was just a D’nvannae. In reality, Khevan could never be dismissed as “just” anything, could he? Her companions had caught up to her, Lissa and Jord standing at her side, slightly behind. Tossing her hair, she raised her glass as the croupier proclaimed her win. “Again.” She leaned over and licked Jord’s ear, caressing the outline with her tongue as sensuously as she could manage in her highly fraught state of mind. She’d taken him by surprise, but he played along, putting his arm around her waist and pulling her close, turning so her hip curved into his crotch, spilling the drink a bit as he nuzzled her neck.
“The lady wins again,” said the dealer.
“Your lucky night,” Khevan said, inclining his head to her slightly.
Lords, his voice was as deep and sensuous as ever. Twilka grabbed the table rail with her free hand. Did he know who she was? Of course he did, but the bastard was pretending not to recognize her. “Available for contract, I see.”
“Technically true, but traveling to an outlying temple for a required ritual,” he said. His handsome, tattooed face gave nothing away. “There would have to be an emergency for me to take a contract tonight.”
“Did you want to let the bet ride?” asked the croupier.
“No,” she said abruptly. “I don’t tempt fate too far any more. Cash me out.” Sick of the game, barely able to see for the lightning flashes in her field of vision caused by the migraine, she abandoned her drink and took Jord’s arm. “I think we’ve wasted enough time here, don’t you?” Beaming at Lissa, she added, “Let’s go to the cabin and start the party again.”
She stumbled ever so slightly as she spun around. Jord kept her upright and they walked away. “What the seven hells were you doing?” he asked in a low voice. “Did you know that guy?”
“It was him, wasn’t it?” High pitched and excited, Lissa’s tone betrayed her fascination.
“Not mine, never mine,” she said, biting her lip as too much of the truth slipped out.
Best Selling Science Fiction & Paranormal Romance author and “SciFi Encounters” columnist for the USA Today Happily Ever After blog, Veronica Scott grew up in a house with a library as its heart. Dad loved science fiction, Mom loved ancient history and Veronica thought there needed to be more romance in everything. When she ran out of books to read, she started writing her own stories.
Three time winner of the SFR Galaxy Award, as well as a National Excellence in Romance Fiction Award, Veronica is also the proud recipient of a NASA Exceptional Service Medal relating to her former day job, not her romances! She recently was honored to read the part of Star Trek Crew Member in the audiobook production of Harlan Ellison’s “The City On the Edge of Forever.”