Shifting Tides: Prologue

This entry is part 1 of 13 in the series Shifting Tides

I would like to warn that the beginning of this draft will likely be far different than the final version that will be published on Amazon.  I was not happy with it as I was writing it.  I felt it was a bit drawn out, didn’t have enough action, etc.



Jessie stood at the base on the ramp at the back of their ship as Cass and Kou walked down.  Cass, wearing a kickass jacket of brown leather, immediately engulfed Jessie in her arms, practically squeezing the life out of her.  She was torn, simultaneously wanting to escape the suffocating grip and never wanting it to end.  

This had been a hard decision for her.  She loved her sister.  They had been everything to each other for as long as she could remember, but Jessie was an adult now and every day held a new reminder of why she no longer belonged.  She needed to find her own place.  Cass had finally moved on from the betrayal of their parents abandoning them and found love, but that left Jessie feeling like a third wheel, like a constant voyeur to their great romance and adventures.

She wanted that, too.  She wanted love and passion, adventure and mischief, joy and peace.  And maybe she would never find that, but she knew she would never find that attached to Cass’s hip with only the three of them for weeks at a time.  She needed this.

So, she pulled back, looking at the agonized face of her sister.  Cass took a shaky breath while Kou rested his metallic cyborg hand on her shoulder in comfort.  Jessie looked over at him and smiled at his stoic visage.  He was an Ateles warrior and half metal after a battle that almost took his life.  His glowing blue eye was a bit jarring at times, but she’d always thought him a hunk.  She smiled, remembering the time she tried to hit on him.  He’d instantly turned her down, bruising her teenage heart, but he’d seen her as a child at the time, and she couldn’t really blame him.  Now, it was just an amusing memory, one of many they used to tease each other during their travels.

Jessie took a deep breath, nodding to Kou.  She knew he would take care of her sister.  Cass would always say she could take care of herself, but she was a den mother, not content unless she had her chicks under her wing.  It would be hard to lose yet another one to distance.  Both Ellie and Victoria, people Cass had taken under her wing years ago, lived on other ships, living their own lives.  Jessie, however, had always been by Cass’s side.

This would be hard for her sister, but Kou was her perfect complement, stoic strength to Cass’s chaos and passion.  “Everything’s gonna be fine.”  She smiled, trying to force what she didn’t really feel.  Victoria was right, though.  She needed to find her own place in the universe.  The ship was far too small for the three of them.

“I’m going to miss you,” Cass said, holding back tears with sheer willpower as the moisture glistened for all to see.

“Me, too, but I need this.”

Cass sighed.  “I know.  God damn it, but I know.”  She shook her head, then pointed a finger at Jessie menacingly.  “Call me constantly.  I want daily updates.”


“I’m serious.  Daily.”

“Fine.”  Jessie rolled her eyes.

“Shall we get her moved in?” Kou asked, an arm reaching out toward the horizon.

Jessie looked out toward the city at the edge of the shipyard.  It was an Ateles colony.  The architecture was filled with curving lines and colors that blended in with the natural environment.  She didn’t understand the purpose, but there was a subtle beauty to it.  In the distance, tall, thin trees set the city in partial shadow in the low evening light.  The light was warm, a golden orange tinge that made her want to pull out her drawing tablet.

Unfortunately, they had other plans for the day.  She smiled as she set out behind Cass and Kou.

I’m finally starting my life.

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