You're going to have fun with this one. I love hearing how stories come to be. Lyndi has a great tale for you SciFi fans, romance fans, action story fans.
For several years in the early 2000s, I played in an online RPG that was essentially live RP, just online. The players were all sci-fi nerds of one shape or another. We had B5 people playing against Trek characters, Star Wars, Stargate, and a decent number of characters people made up to share those worlds. Fox Mulder even made a guest appearance now and then.
Move ahead a dozen years, and the characters still appealed to me, even though the RPG was long gone. The question became how best to portray them. Val and Garrett could be reincarnated pretty much as-is; but what to do about the third party complicating their lives? And Nik was born.
Even though this is set in a science-fiction landscape, it is still very much a romance. Or two. Or three. And an action story. And a discovery of a new species story. And sibling rivalry. And so much more. I love that I can commemorate these characters and the love they once shared—and share it in a new form, fresh and new.
And who doesn’t love space cowboys?
Valeni Pascual wants to be free to make a living hauling cargo with her spaceship and to understand the shapeshifting alien who presents sometimes as the steamy male Nik and other times as the blonde bombshell Nikki.
As a rebel insurgence builds against the oppressive government known as the Agency, Valeni and Nik/Nikki encounter a sexy Terran cowboy named Garrett Rawls. Since being pulled into this region of space by another mysterious wormhole, Garrett has looked for a way to return to Earth. After meeting Valeni and Nikki, he might have found something worth staying for.
However, dark forces may have a much bigger picture in mind for all of them. Valeni, Nik/Nikki, and Garrett are pulled into a life and death fight that lays bare all of their secrets and their desires. Will they lose everything as the battle against the Agency rages around them or can love pull them through?
One man in particular caught Nik’s attention. He was long and lean, dressed in a simple blue work shirt and denim pants over hand-tooled boots. He wore a broad-brimmed hat, which he took off to speak. His speech was slow, his vowels drawled, and his grin both shy and genuine.
Rogers called on the man for his opinion. “Now here we have an import—a genuine cowboy from the old Terran system.”
“Cow boy?” Nik asked Valeni. “Is he part bovine, then? He looks human.”
Valeni chuckled. “I suspect he is human. Wait a minute.” She pulled out her handheld communication device and typed in the question. “Hmm. It is a old Terran term. A cowboy herds animals from horseback on a ranch.”
Nik then asked about the term “horse” and the term “ranch,” both of which were unfamiliar. “It seems unlikely such a person could exercise these pursuits in space.”
Lyndi Alexander always dreamed of faraway worlds and interesting alien contacts. She lives as a post-modern hippie in Asheville, North Carolina, a single mother of her last child of seven, a daughter on the autism spectrum, finding that every day feels a lot like first contact with a new species.