Meanwhile, for readers who prefer to stick with
The weekly blog episodes, we will continues
To post chapters until the story is done.
And, now, here is this week's episode!
On one side was the Flame, separated from the ore train, which was floating slowly away. On the other side, a small vessel—a rescue craft, he guessed—was moving swiftly off, towing a short string of ore cars behind it.
And then Shaklin was on the line. “It’s all set, Sten,” he was saying. “Zheng and Rual are probably dead by now, and the crew so demoralized I doubt they’ll give you any trouble when board.”
“We had an agreement, Bishop,” Sten said through gritted.
“And I kept it,” Shaklin said. Then Sten heard something—was it a little laugh. “Well, most of it, anyway.”
“Where’s Gregor?” Sten demanded. “You agreed to keep him safe and deliver him to me.”
“Oh, Gregor, that’s right. You wanted Gregor. Hang on a second.”
And Sten saw vapor puff at the little vessel’s port, and a small cylinder slipped out of it. It looked like a lifeboat.
Another vapor puff, this time at the rear of the lifeboat and it started moving toward the Jo’l Cash.
Then Shaklin returned. “There you go,” he said. “One son of a bitch heading your way.”
Sten started to protest, but Shaklin kept going. “The thing is, Sten, there is only about two hours worth of oxygen in that thing. So, you’d better move fast if you want to pick Gregor up before he suffers a well-deserved, rather nasty death.”
Now Sten understood. Kilgour’s wee bishop had played his cards well. If Sten chased Shaklin down, Gregor would die. If he rescued Gregor first, Shaklin would be long gone.
Sten didn’t bother struggling for an answer. Mahoney had been quite clear. The Emperor wanted Gregor back. But he also wanted the ore train.
Sten looked over the little string following the Cairn. “How many cars are you taking with you?” he asked.
“Twenty nine,” Shaklin replied. “Enough to fund our church’s good works, but not so much that your boss will want to spend a lot of effort hunting us down.”
“I wouldn’t bet on that,” Sten said. “The Eternal Emperor isn’t known for his forgiving nature.”
“Let’s put it this way, then,” Shaklin said. “He was willing to spend enough credits to fund the operations of a small planet to get the ore train back. And I’m doing it for a whole clot of a lot less.”
Sten could see his point, but didn’t reply.
“Well, I suppose you’d better get to it, Sten,” Shaklin said. “Assuming you still want Gregor alive.”
Sten started to sigh, which turned into a laugh.
“Good luck to you, Bishop,” he said.
“And to you, Sten,” Shaklin replied.
Then the image that was the Cairn began shiver. It grew thinner and thinner.
And then simply vanished.
Shaklin had made the jump.
To where only the congregants of the Church of the Universal Location knew.
“Better pick Gregor up,” Sten instructed Ida.
He turned to Kilgour. “What do you think of your faithful bishop, now, Alex, old buddy, old pal?”
Kilgour grinned. “For him, a wee bit of circumcision worked a charm,” Kilgour said.
STEN OMNIBUS TRILOGY
MAKES ITS AMERICAN DEBUT
Well, my American publisher – Wildside Books – was listening and is issuing all three omnibus omnibus volumes on this side of the Atlantic. Sten Omnibus #1 was published
last month. Sten Omnibus #2 debuts this week. Stay tuned for the publication for Volume Three.
THE TIMURA TRILOGY: When The Gods Slept, Wolves Of The Gods and The Gods Awaken. This best selling fantasy series now available as trade paperbacks, e-books (in all varieties) and as audiobooks. Visit The Timura Trilogy page for links to all the editions.
NEWLY REVISED KINDLE EDITIONS OF THE TIMURA TRILOGY NOW AVAILABLE. (1) When The Gods Slept;(2) Wolves Of The Gods; (3) The Gods Awaken.
Tales Sometimes Tall, but always true, of Allan Cole's years in Hollywood with his late partner, Chris Bunch. How a naked lady almost became our first agent. How we survived La-La Land with only the loss of half our brain cells. How Bunch & Cole became the ultimate Fix-It Boys. How an alleged Mafia Don was very, very good to us. The guy who cornered the market on movie rocks. Andy Warhol's Fire Extinguisher. The Real Stars Of Hollywood. Why they don't make million dollar movies. See The Seven Pi$$ing Dwarfs. Learn: how to kill a "difficult" actor… And much, much more.
Here's where you can buy it worldwide in both paperback and Kindle editions:
A NATION AT WAR WITH ITSELF: In Book Three Of The Shannon Trilogy, young Patrick Shannon is the heir-apparent to the Shannon fortune, but murder and betrayal at a family gathering send him fleeing into the American frontier, with only the last words of a wise old woman to arm him against what would come. And when the outbreak of the Civil War comes he finds himself fighting on the opposite side of those he loves the most. In The Wars Of The Shannons we see the conflict, both on the battlefield and the homefront, through the eyes of Patrick and the members of his extended Irish-American family as they struggle to survive the conflict that ripped the new nation apart, and yet, offered a dim beacon of hope.
LUCKY IN CYPRUS:
A True Story About A Boy,
A Teacher, And Earthquake,
Some Terrorists And The CIA
LUCKY IN CYPRUS is a coming-of-age story set in the Middle East during the height of the Cold War. An American teenager – son of a CIA operative – is inspired by grand events and a Greek Cypriot teacher.
He witnesses earthquakes and riots and terrorist attacks, but in the end it is his teacher’s gentle lessons that keep him whole.
Here's where to get the paperback & Kindle editions worldwide:
Here's what readers say about Lucky In Cyprus:
- "Bravo, Allan! When I finished Lucky In Cyprus I wept." - Julie Mitchell, Hot Springs, Texas
- "Lucky In Cyprus brought back many memories... A wonderful book. So many shadows blown away!" - Freddy & Maureen Smart, Episkopi,Cyprus.
- "... (Reading) Lucky In Cyprus has been a humbling, haunting, sobering and enlightening experience..." - J.A. Locke, Bookloons.com
NEW: THE AUDIOBOOK VERSION OF
THE HATE PARALLAX
What if the Cold War never ended -- but continued for a thousand years? Best-selling authors Allan Cole (an American) and Nick Perumov (a Russian) spin a mesmerizing "what if?" tale set a thousand years in the future, as an American and a Russian super-soldier -- together with a beautiful American detective working for the United Worlds Police -- must combine forces to defeat a secret cabal ... and prevent a galactic disaster! This is the first - and only - collaboration between American and Russian novelists. Narrated by John Hough. Click the title links below for the trade paperback and kindle editions. (Also available at iTunes.)
THE SPYMASTER'S DAUGHTER:
A novel by Allan and his daughter, Susan
After laboring as a Doctors Without Borders physician in the teaming refugee camps and minefields of South Asia, Dr. Ann Donovan thought she'd seen Hell as close up as you can get. And as a fifth generation CIA brat, she thought she knew all there was to know about corruption and betrayal. But then her father - a legendary spymaster - shows up, with a ten-year-old boy in tow. A brother she never knew existed. Then in a few violent hours, her whole world is shattered, her father killed and she and her kid brother are one the run with hell hounds on their heels. They finally corner her in a clinic in Hawaii and then all the lies and treachery are revealed on one terrible, bloody storm- ravaged night.
BASED ON THE CLASSIC STEN SERIES by Allan Cole & Chris Bunch: Fresh from their mission to pacify the Wolf Worlds, Sten and his Mantis Team encounter a mysterious ship that has been lost among the stars for thousands of years. At first, everyone aboard appears to be long dead. Then a strange Being beckons, pleading for help. More disturbing: the presence of AM2, a strategically vital fuel tightly controlled by their boss - The Eternal Emperor. They are ordered to retrieve the remaining AM2 "at all costs." But once Sten and his heavy worlder sidekick, Alex Kilgour, board the ship they must dare an out of control defense system that attacks without warning as they move through dark warrens filled with unimaginable horrors. When they reach their goal they find that in the midst of all that death are the "seeds" of a lost civilization.
TALES OF THE BLUE MEANIE
NOW AN AUDIOBOOK!
Venice Boardwalk Circa 1969
In the depths of the Sixties and The Days Of Rage, a young newsman, accompanied by his pregnant wife and orphaned teenage brother, creates a Paradise of sorts in a sprawling Venice Beach community of apartments, populated by students, artists, budding scientists and engineers lifeguards, poets, bikers with a few junkies thrown in for good measure. The inhabitants come to call the place “Pepperland,” after the Beatles movie, “Yellow Submarine.” Threatening this paradise is "The Blue Meanie," a crazy giant of a man so frightening that he eventually even scares himself.