Something Wicked

I’ve started work on Tyche’s Demons, the first of the Tyche’s Progeny series. Here’s a real, real, like fucking real rough start. First draft, usual caveats apply: this is brain to page, and the brain is based on a fifty-million year old design. Be kind. Something Wicked Five minutes. That’s all it took from we’re having a good time to we’re going to die, horribly. El entered the bridge, swagger dialed up to eleven, and gave her second a practiced glare. “Price. Report.” “Captain on the bridge.” Price, for his part no stranger to the Captain of the Skyguard wanting a little bridge time, stood from the command couch and slipped sideways into Tactical. “Captain Roussel, sir. We’re about to jump into Paloma. Still nothing on scan.” Not that nothing on scan was a surprise. The Troy floated in the hard black, somewhere Read More …

The fate of us all

Today’s #RichardWrites comes from Tyche’s Deceit. The Tyche has uncovered an alien nest … on the moon, yo. There’s a lot of bugs. I mean a lot of bugs. As the Tyche stalked across the hard black towards the moon, leaving mother Earth and the Torrington behind her, eyes looked out from the flight deck. The holo stage brought up hostile action, a storm of rocks leaving the moon’s crust. These were unlike those the Tyche had dodged back on Absalom Delta, dumb missiles thrown into the dark. These were guided, agile like fighter craft. They moved towards the Tyche, accelerating as they came, but without the telltale drive plumes of human craft. The Torrington appeared to take this in, and then the ship shivered and blinked away, an Endless Drive whisking her to safer waters. The aliens on the moon took in Read More …

Difficult Life Choices

Today’s #RichardWrites features October Kohl, right after he’s jumped out of a perfectly good spacecraft (the Tyche) and landed in the middle of a warehouse that is on fire. Let me know what you think 🙂 It’s from the second book in Tyche’s Journey: Tyche’s Deceit. The side of the warehouse had been carved in with what looked like God’s own baseball bat, a nice straight line bored right through the middle. Plasma burn, looked like, or a couple of ‘em. Roof was off, hole in the side: not much of a warehouse anymore. He jogged into it anyway, carbine held low and ready, taking in the sights. There, one of the guys that looked like Abel, but with his arms cut off, which looked like Gracie had been through here and hadn’t been happy about the process. Next layer deep, there were Read More …

The Truth Never Hurt Nobody

This week’s #RichardWrites brings us another snippet from Tyche’s Flight. Here, we have Nate and Grace, uh, I guess you could say, “Getting to know each other better.” It’s not all full sales over smooth seas when the Republic is on your heels. Usual disclaimers apply: first draft and all that. “Captain, I’m going to change your definition of ‘smooth.’” Grace let a little anger into her voice. Not a lot, but enough, just enough to salt the water, let it boil at a lower temperature. “This is about trust.” “You’re right—” “I haven’t finished,” she said. “Trust, it’s a two-way street. Where have I given you cause to think I can’t be trusted?” “There’s—” “That’s right,” she said, walking closer to him. Face to face. “Never. Here’s the thing. I’ve saved your ass twice now. Once, when a soldier was Read More …

Shore Leave

Not everything in Tyche’s Journey is about death insects. Sometimes there’s a little R&R; time on a crust to unwind. When you’re the best goddamn Helm in the universe, shore leave needs to be a little more … special. This week’s #RichardWrites nets us a scene from Tyche’s Crown. Enjoy! When El woke, it was with a man’s warm arms around her. Warm, strong arms. Connected to a chest that, even in sleep, looked purpose-built. The smell of sweat and sex and after alcohol was around her, holding her tighter than his embrace. What the fuck was his name again? Johnson. Davison. Mendleson. Something-son. She was sure of it. El gave a lazy blink, taking in the room. Nice enough as far as these things went. Rented by the night rather than by the hour. Not attached to a bar — Read More …

A Wanted Woman

With the release of Tyche’s Flight just around the corner, I thought I’d share the start of the book. You get to meet Grace for the first time, even though you probably already know the cut of jib already. I’d love to know what you think, so face your fears and drop me an email ? Grace had less than a day to live. Oh, sure. She might be able to stretch it to a day and a half. But what’s twelve hours against your lifetime? Not a lot. Her room at the hotel was burned. The only thing she had left was her stash with her sword and a few Republic coins for emergencies. She hadn’t expected to be on this particular crust for this long. She hadn’t expected to be here at all. When Grace got caught, she’d die. Simple Read More …

When Good Drinking Goes Bad

In today’s #RichardWrites, we’ve got Elspeth trying to track down Hope in a scene from Tyche’s Deceit. Hope is off doing … something important that I’m not going to tell you about because, you know, spoilers. El’s tracking her in the best way she knows how: spacer bars that serve hard liquor. Moses snapped his fingers. “Altman Razor.” El looked between Moses and the autobar. “That a drink?” “It’s a dude,” said Moses. “I mean, it might be a drink as well. But it’s a dude. Sells shit. Parts, machinery, that kind of thing.” “Sounds like the right kind of match,” said El. She twirled her empty glass, initially curious about how it got so empty, so fast. “Hell, Moses. My glass is empty.” “They do that,” said Moses. “One of the annoying things about the universe.” He shifted his Read More …

When you’re out of options

I try and put my people into tricky situations. Not just the guns-and-lasers-and-swords situations, because that kind of goes without saying. No, the type where they’ve got to make a choice where the first path is shit, and the second path is also shit. I especially like it when the actors do it to each other. Here’s a piece of Tyche’s Crown, the third of the Tyche’s Journey trilogy. The story so far is that … spoilers, so I’ll just say that Kohl is not having a great time, and Nate and Grace need to rescue a couple of their friends from the clutches of evil scientists. Oh, it’ll be fun. “Hey,” said Nate, then, “Hey.” He moved across the ready room to grab her, and Grace slumped into his arms. “Grace? Are you okay? Grace?” “I’m … fine,” said Grace. “You Read More …

FTL

Trying to create FTL was a tricky problem. How do you deal with humans and their concept of linear time? How do you deal with the pesky laws of physics? Well, like most of the things I do: I cheat. I’ve created two types of FTL for Tyche’s Journey — one using the the Alcubierre drive, the other using wormholes (because, reasons — the Guild owns wormhole tech, which is safer, but those on free traders still like to chart their own course…). The Tyche has an Alcubierre drive — in the future, they call them Endless Drives. Here’s what happens when a ship jumps. “Clear for jump,” he said. He felt the thrill. He’d jumped a hundred, a thousand times before, but it never got old. He’d been on a rollercoaster on some frontier world, an attraction with mag sleds and high G. Read More …

Meet Hope Baedeker

Got another piece of Tyche’s Flight for you today. In last week’s piece you saw a glimmer of Hope; this week, you get full and unfiltered Hope. She’s the Tyche’s Engineer, and she’s the best there is — even with the price on her head. Yeah yeah, first draft, but let me know what you think. “Nate—” “Captain.” “Nate, you said two weeks—” “I said a week, maybe two—” “It’s been two days!” She jerked an angry arm at the exposed machinery on one of the fusion drives, the cowl stacked up against the opposite wall. Wires. Pipes. A little smoke — now where the hell was that coming from, that wasn’t supposed to happen — and above it all, the status panel. Not enough lights green, too many red. “I took her apart because I had two weeks!” “A week!” “It’s been two days!” Read More …