D.L. Mains
 
   
D.L. Mains, The Chosen One

The Chosen One

Jump to Excerpts: "Hero and Heroin Meet" | "Jesse Meets Gar"

Bonus Material

This edition includes a fifteen page sneak peak at Book 2, The Sovereign's Reign.

Blurb

The phoenix rises from its ashes to be reborn. So must the survivors of a malignant attack on the earth. Are they fighting the power hungry leader of an alien empire, or are they fighting fate?

Davros of Manderlay’s prophecy assures him victory over his enemies beside his chosen mate. Can he and his people accept a human?

Co-commander of the rebellion, Jesse Sullivan knows of pressure. But as her heart has known nothing but disappointment and fracture, can she admit to her love for the alien Crown Prince and step into the role of The Chosen One?

She's a commander of the rebellion.

He's crown prince of the alien nation.

Their enemies will do anything to keep them apart.

Can The Chosen One unite two cultures and bring peace to Earth?

 

"Hero and Heroine Meet."

Davros located the most recent medical report. Scanning it, Davros noticed Steffan’s comments were lengthy and contained very descriptive adjectives. Steffan considered most humans far too boring to waste his efforts on, yet this particular female had impressed him.

Pulling out the capture sheet, he discovered another interesting theory on the prisoner. “Thought to be a member of the resistance group known as The Phoenix.”

He approached the cell and peered in at the sleeping figure. She did appear young as Margaret had suggested and, Davros admitted, she was very pleasing to behold. The long golden plait looked as if it would feel as soft as her ivory skin, which was smooth and unblemished except for the patch of gauze over her right eye. The white cotton shirt she wore was torn open at the bottom revealing a medical dressing on her side and a patch of skin on her stomach.

Davros’s gaze ran the length of her, studying her feminine curves and the fullness of her lips. He was shocked at his thoughts. Had he been without female company for so long that the sight of an attractive human could spark his lust?

Regardless of his self-chastisement, Davros began to wonder if inter-racial mating would be possible or even pleasurable. He wondered, too, if normal offspring could be born of such a mating. Suddenly, he was a lot more interested in the latest research request than he had been twenty minutes ago.

The young woman stirred, jolting Davros from his shameful thoughts and he leaned into the shadow of the wall, watching as she regained consciousness.

Jesse groaned as she pushed herself to her knees and was relieved to find the pain minimal. After testing her limbs, she got to her feet, and nearly swooned. Leaning on the wall for support until the dizziness passed, she looked around and noticed her vision had cleared. In the dimness of the room, she could see a toilet, a sink, and the now empty mattress, resting on the tiled floor.

It looks pretty grim.

Her holster and revolver were gone. Jesse experienced a moment of regret that she would never see her father’s gun again. Her command jacket was also missing and Jesse sighed with relief. At least no one would recognize her attire for the uniform it really was.

Then Jesse spied the tray. Food! She nearly swooned again and dropped to her knees before the platter. Water, too. Only after Jesse drained the cup did she pause to consider her hasty actions. What if it was drugged? She eyed the rest of the tray’s contents. What the devil was it? She considered it, as her stomach growled. After a hesitant sniff, she bit her lip.

“I assure you, it is quite safe.”

Jesse dropped the cup and leapt to her feet with as much agility as her injuries allowed. When the resulting wave of dizziness subsided, she looked to the Venturian who had spoken.

He produced a set of keys, opened the cell door and leaned against its frame. His thick arms crossed over a clipboard, pinning it to his expansive chest. “It is also very tasty,” he added.

Jesse backed away. The door was open. Only this large Venturian blocked her exit. If they haven’t discovered my switchblade . . . She studied her captor with a glimmer of hope. He is a formidable enemy, but if I surprise him . . . his thick arms hinted at great strength, so she reconsidered. Maybe, I can con him.

He appeared younger than many aliens she had seen from a distance. The velvety covering on his face was smooth and even, but having no idea of their longevity or their aging process, she couldn’t begin to guess his age. His dominant coloring was silver, she noticed as the thick pale silver brows arched over his steel gray eyes. His features were wide and distinctive and Jesse found him neither frightening nor hideous. In all honesty, he was magnificent. He was perfectly proportioned except for the large wings, partially opened, framing his powerful figure. Those white and silver wings protruded through an opening in the back of a white lab coat, which fell to about the middle of his thigh.

Beneath the coat was a pale gray shirt, which crisscrossed the front of his chest, revealing traces of silver there too. The shirt appeared to wrap around his waist, under his wings and knot in the front. His trousers were black and made from suede-like material. The form-fitting trousers, hugging his narrow hips and thick thighs, tapered to his calves where they were stuffed into high sturdy boots.

He was a majestic creature, standing before her with no fear, and, Jesse noted, no weapon. True, his strength was weapon enough, especially since Jesse wasn’t in top form. However, there was always the element of surprise -- The Phoenix’s favorite tactic.

She met his gray gaze, finding patient curiosity in his expression. He didn’t move as she circled the cell. His eyes unnerved her as they followed her progress with a turn of his proud head.

Davros admired the careful way she sidestepped the perimeter of the cell. He found her ginger movements graceful. One small hand lay over her bandaged side while the other brushed the wall as she moved, leg over leg, considering him. Her dark blue eyes narrowed, suggesting deep thought--Davros wondered if she would respond to him. He realized that she was summing him up, as one appraises an adversary, and taking her time to reach a conclusion. Perhaps, this female possesses a great deal more intelligence than the others do.

She came to the end of her circle to stand in line with him beside the bars. Her golden brows rose and she asked, “Who are you?” Her voice was soft, inquisitive, and untainted by hatred or fear.

“My name is Davros,” he said, matching her unthreatening tone. “I am in charge of this facility.”

Practically trembling, Jesse fought to compose herself. He appears so relaxed. I can easily surprise him. Sinking to one knee, in a bogus effort to tie her shoe, she felt the sheath still strapped to her ankle. She prayed the knife was still within it. The Venturian still watched her.

“What are you going to do with me?” she asked, surprised at how controlled her voice sounded.

“I have not decided,” he said, glancing down at his clipboard. “For now, may I ask you some questions?”

Jesse settled on one foot, her weight heavy on the other leg, ready to jump. She shrugged, crossing her arms over her bent knee.

The Venturian eyed her tensed position. “What is your full name?”

“Jesse Francis Sullivan.”

“Sullivan,” he echoed. “That is the name of your family line?”

Jesse nodded.

“You are not married?”

“No.”

“Age?”

“29.”

“Any recurrent health problems?”

“Does that include getting shot at?”

He smirked at her. “No.”

“Then, no.”

“Have you ever heard of The Phoenix?”

Jesse tensed. It was time to act. “Yes,” she said, shifting her weight forward. “Hasn’t everyone?” He noticed her movement. Damned steel eyes don’t miss anything.

“Are you involved with them?”

“No,” Jesse lied.

The Venturian took a step toward her. “That is untrue,” he said. “You were heavily armed and the communication device you wore was set to a known Phoenix frequency.”

Jesse blinked at him and was about to insist her case when he turned away.

“It matters not,” he dismissed with a wave of his hand. “I am a scientist not a strategist.”

As Davros headed out the door, Jesse sprang at him while pulling the knife from its sheath beneath her high-top sneaker. It was amazing how quickly the Venturian reacted. Grasping her upheld wrist, he crushed her bones in a vice-like grip. The knife clattered to the floor as Jesse struggled to free herself from his hold.

Too stunned to think, Davros could only react. Pinning both arms behind her back, he pulled her thrashing form against him, grabbed a fist full of hair, and yanked it back until she was still. She’s a tall female, for a human, and curvaceous, he thought as he felt her form press against him, yet she is fragile in form. Fortunately, those were the extent of her physical attributes.

“Gondida,” he swore, glaring down at her flushed and panicked face. “Foolish female. You will not attempt anything like that again.”

Despite the frightening fury he felt, the human was undaunted. “Don’t count on it, Venturian,” she shot back and renewed her struggles.

Davros tightened his hold around her but released her hair to close his hand around her throat. “Do not defy me, woman,” he warned. “I could break your neck in an instant.”

“Break away,” she challenged, raising her chin in sacrifice. “I’m not afraid to die.” She glared at him and waited breathless minutes to learn her fate.

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"Jesse Meets Gar"

The set up: Jesse is still in Venturian captivity and she and Davros have argued.

Davros did not go to the lab the next day. He had to sort out a few things. In the rooms where he had set up his household, he spent the day mulling over his notes.

He had found a staggering number of people at the lab still faithful to the throne, were the rightful heir present to claim it. Through casual conversation, he had discovered many people loathed Gar and all he stood for. Many were sorry that more hadn’t been done to keep him out of the power he had assigned himself.

His thoughts of Jesse were more troubling. He had tried to dismiss his original thoughts but could not deny the recurrent memory of her face nor his own jealousy. In an attempt to forget both, he had thought about taking Dachel to his bed and although she never failed to provoke any man’s desire, Davros found himself thinking again of Jesse. Ultimately, he denied himself any carnal pleasures.

Everything about Jesse pleased him. Even her differences appealed to him. Her skin, uncovered by soft fleece, was as lovely and as smooth as any young female; and her hair, flowing around her like a golden waterfall, was as silken as any feathery mane.

He longed to touch her, to please her, as much as she would please him, and he could. She was not unaware of him as a male. Of that, he was sure. There were times when he had caught her watching him so intently that she hadn’t heard his words. Her cheeks had turned bright red on those occasions, a tendency he also found most becoming. She had also not argued over the proposition of mating. Her concern had been for the life of the child that could result. Davros admitted he must confront her again.

When he entered the facility in the morning, he found it in a state of chaos. People scurried through the halls in animated awe. He found Rankin in his office. His confused young squire was searching his desk.

“What is going on?” Davros demanded.

Rankin froze and looked up at the prince, relief washing over his features. “Thank Bramdor you’re here, my lord,” he announced. “Gar is here. He is demanding your notes on Jesse.”

“Gar?” Davros’s gaze narrowed with hatred. “Why?”

“He heard she was involved with The Phoenix. He and his commander are interrogating her. He’s furious that he wasn’t informed of her presence here and even more enraged by her silence.”

“Where?” Davros turned and quickly left the room. Rankin hurried after him.

Sensing Davros’s concern, the squire added more gently, “They arrived late last night. He and Lord Riker--”

“Riker?” Davros cut him off, alarmed. At Rankin’s nod, the young prince paused. He could be recognized. Davros had not seen Gar since his fourth stage, but Riker would know him. Was the human worth losing his cover?

“They have been with her for hours, but she refuses to answer even the simplest of questions.” Rankin swallowed. “No matter what they do.”

Davros hesitated at the door. Was it time? If not, all would be lost and Gar could easily kill him. Again, the image of Jesse’s face surfaced in his mind, tainted with the blood of his promised fate. If she was The Chosen One, he had to save her.

Jesse licked her bleeding lip and glared at the Venturian standing over her. If her legs were free, she would kick him so hard. . . .

After twenty-four hours in that stinking solitary confinement where she sat curled in a ball, fighting a stubborn rat for the measly five feet of black, cold space, she was dragged out, only to be tied to a chair and beaten. Was this more of Davros’s punishment?

A sharp blow across her already black and blue brow interrupted her thoughts. Again, she rasped, “I don’t know what you’re talking about.” She didn’t recognize her own voice. In fact, she felt removed from her entire body. How long could this go on? How many times would they ask her about The Phoenix? Maybe she would pass out. Jesse couldn’t summon that much hope.

A small movement drew her attention to the door and Jesse was the first to witness Davros’s entrance. The abject horror on his face when he saw her told her he had not arranged this interrogation. His expression cleared as the two other Venturians turned to him. After that, he made a point of avoiding her gaze.

A string of Venturian followed Davros’s entrance but Jesse, in her present condition, recognized few words save his name. The one asking the questions seemed to be the one in charge, even though Davros seemed reluctant to acknowledge his supremacy.

The other, the one inflicting the “persuasion,” was younger than the first and larger. He was taller, broader, better formed and his wing coloring was midnight black. His ebony mane was longer than any she’d seen on a Venturian male. Also, unlike any others, it wasn’t slicked back over his head but fell in a wild, reckless fashion past his shoulders. The blackness of that mane and of his brows, which furrowed in an angry scowl due to Jesse’s empty answers, enhanced his white, defined features.

His pale gray uniform was simply a wraparound shirt, similar to the one Davros always wore, and his trousers were stuffed into high black boots. An insignia bar of crosses dangled from four chain hoops pinned over his left breast, which Jesse assumed designated his rank. The simplicity of his attire didn’t detract from his forbidding presence nor did it disguise the potential strength behind his thick arms and broad shoulders. If not for the maniacal look of pleasure whenever he hit her, Jesse would have thought him good looking, even attractive.

He had that twisted grin across his lips now and sheer hatred in his black eyes. Jesse wondered if it was hatred for her entire race or just her. She had never been the recipient of such hate nor of such probing scrutiny. Those eyes, so black you could scarcely pinpoint the irises, were sharp, cunning. Jesse hated them already.

“Faga lo jinto,” she rasped out the only insult she knew in Venturian, her eyes leveled with her disgust of him. His smile faded and his expression filled with ominous anger. As Jesse knew, calling any Venturian male a bastard of his line would certainly upset them.

He raised his fist to strike her but he would not receive the pleasure.

“That’s enough, Commander,” the older one said before he turned back to the new presence.

The commander muttered something to her and Jesse searched her mind for a translation. It was a threat of sorts, a painful one. “You’re all charm,” she retorted and looked, as he did, to study the by-play between Davros and the older Venturian.

Davros thanked Bramdor that his coloring had darkened to its current pale silver since the last time he had seen his father’s war advisor. Even now, Gar was studying him with puzzlement. He prayed his eye color and his glasses masked his father’s image otherwise suggested in his features. He ignored Riker all together.

After his perusal, Gar chastised him on his failure to report Jesse’s capture.

“Her connection to The Phoenix is purely speculation, Sovereign,” Davros defended. “My job is simply to research.”

Gar seemed satisfied with his answer and turned his attention back to Jesse. Davros’s seethed as Gar pushed past Riker and grasped her chin, jerking it up. Jesse met his gaze with a bold glare of sapphire ice that concealed her pain.

“I will ask you one last time before I kill you,” Gar said, his English perfect and articulate. He pressed the blade of a knife to her throat, looking as if he would derive great satisfaction in opening her jugular with it. “Where is The Phoenix base?”

“Go to hell,” Jesse snarled back. The dagger flashed its sharp edge as he swung.

Davros caught Gar’s arm in midair and Gar glared at him with annoyance. “I have learned much about this particular female,” Davros informed. “May I try a different means of persuasion?”

The simple inclination of the leader’s head granted Davros permission and Jesse fumed. Why didn’t he just let them kill her? If he thinks he can get me to talk, then he can go to hell, too.

His method surprised her. Leaning both hands on the chair on either side of her head, he looked her squarely in the face. “Jesse,” he said and she couldn’t help but look at him. “The Lord Sovereign, Gar of Kamarkes, has asked you a question.” His voice was untainted but the conspiratorial look he gave her, hidden from the others, spoke measures.

This is Gar? Jesse’s gaze swung to the Venturian to study him with new attention. His features were so plain it was almost an insult that the entity responsible for their dying world was so ordinary. His eyes were a light brown and his coloring was the same medium shade of brown as most Venturians, neither dark nor light. He stood taller than Davros but not as tall or as intimidating as his commander did. Jesse would almost call him overweight, or unfit, as he appeared thicker and softer in face and stature. A series of layered, shiny robes of assorted colors covered him from his neck to his ankles and the only adornments on him were a wide, gold-colored armband and a large medallion of intertwined star-shapes, which hung from a thick chain.

The wear of the down on his face betrayed an age between forty and fifty Earth years based on a time line Davros had once explained, and Jesse was unimpressed. Only the keenness of his gaze revealed a forcefulness and intensity that unnerved her. He seemed to note her sudden interest and he smiled, returning her attention, as if he, too, was committing the scene to memory.

She remembered everything Davros had told her about Gar as she held his disturbing gaze. This is the one responsible! She realized. Hatred gripped her heart.

Davros leaned closer and she felt his warm breath on her ear. “Make something up, Jesse. Tell them anything. We need time.” As he lifted his head, Jesse’s gaze moved back to his face. His expression filled her with confidence and she hung her head. Whether or not she should trust him never crossed her mind, she simply reacted.

She named a town, one as far away from the base as she could, her voice imitating helpless betrayal. Davros straightened in front of her and turned toward the others.

Davros turned a triumphant grin to the Sovereign. “You see what the right motivation can accomplish.”

With a satisfied nod, Gar took his arm and ushered Davros out of the room so they could speak in private.

“What did you say to her?” Gar asked.

“This one,” Davros chose his words with care, “has little regard for her own life. I merely threatened the life of one more valuable to her.”

“Who?”

“Her mate.”

“Clever.”

Davros inclined his head. “Thank you.”

“One more thing, Professor; you look very familiar. Where are you from?”

“Websis County, Sovereign.”

“What line?”

“Cerasius.”

“I thought that line had expired in the Paridakus War?”

Davros didn’t miss the suspicion in Gar’s voice, but he was ready. “I was too young for the honor of fighting in that war, but it did claim the lives of my father and my older brother.” Without waiting for Gar’s reply, he stopped Thayer in the hall. “Put Jesse in my office for now and keep her there.”

Gar blinked at Davros’s presumptuous order and suggested in a superior tone, probably to remind Davros of his station, “She may be lying, you know?”

Davros refused to acknowledge the reminder. “I would count on it, my lord.”

“It will take several hours to find out. I suggest you leave her where she is and let her watch as her mate is slain.”

“It is too late for that. Her mate was terminated last night,” Davros lied. He had rescinded the order soon after he had calmed down. After all, he had been trained all his life to judge and rule by law. Insult and jealousy were not acceptable reasons for an execution.

“Ah.” Gar smiled. “And the cuts on her face?”

“She has given me trouble before,” Davros said.

“If that is case,” he suggested. “You should kill her and be done with it.”

“If you are correct, Lord Gar, then she is far too valuable to kill.” Davros tried to keep the derision from his tone.

Gar looked amused. “But not if she will not talk.”

“There are ways.”

“Ha! I think I like you, Professor. Very well. I will leave it to you. But, if she has lied about the location of The Phoenix’s base, I want something, a name, anything, within twenty-four hours. Understand?”

“As you say, Lord Sovereign.” Davros forced himself to salute and snarled as he watched Gar continue toward the exit to join the guarded transport. Then he ran back up the corridor to his office.

Thayer followed him inside and Davros went straight to his desk. Jesse struggled to her feet as they entered, but he didn’t speak to her, yet.

“Where is Riker?” he asked, scribbling a message on a piece of paper.

“He met the Sovereign at the transport, my lord,” Thayer replied. “They are gone.”

“Good,” Davros said and put the paper into Thayer’s hand. “Send someone to headquarters and have them deliver this to the baron. To him, only. Then signal your men. Start at the rear and work forward. Follow the plan then await my orders.”

“Yes, my lord. Is it time?”

“Yes, Thayer. It is time. Do not fail me.”

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