The only vampire on the crew of the long-haul exploration ship Lightning Girl, Trev has learned to make his own entertainment. Or make entertainment with somebody else, like Ash, the sexy human navigator Trev's had his eye on.
But when the entire crew of Lightning Girl is killed except for Ash and Trev, the stakes of the men's growing relationship go from a quick fling to life and death. With the hyperdrive down and the oxygen running out, Trev is determined to save his lover's life -- no matter the cost.
Praise for Crimson Star (Solar Flare 2)
"Multi-talented author Elizabeth Jewell pens an edgy tale filled with drama, hot sex and thought provoking questions. Crimson Star is raw, hot and sometimes sad. I look forward to seeing what happens next with these two 'lost' souls in their next story."
-- Lisa, Joyfully Reviewed
"If you like short stories with life-changing dilemmas, if you think that a human and a vampire can manage to agree on a course of action that might just save them both, and if you’re looking for a read that is as hot as it is thought provoking, then you will probably like this short story."
-- Serena Yates, Rainbow Book Reviews
This e-book file contains sexually explicit scenes and adult language which some may find offensive and which is not appropriate for a young audience. Changeling Press E-Books are for sale to adults, only, as defined by the laws of the country in which you made your purchase. Please store your files wisely, where they cannot be accessed by under-aged readers.
Crimson Star (Solar Flare 2)
All rights reserved.
Copyright ©2018 Elizabeth Jewell
Trev gave the readouts one last check, recording all the readings in the logbook. Everything sat within normal ranges, including the oxygen scrubbers he'd had to pull apart and reassemble before launch. Damn things wore out so fast it was hard to keep them fresh and shiny. On the other hand, a little stale air never hurt anybody. As long as the cycling worked correctly, the scrubbers could go a few days past prime usage without any harmful side effects. And the cycling was working perfectly -- kicking in a little early on each pass, in fact, which gave them even more leeway.
Satisfied, Trev pushed back from his console and turned around to face the door just as Martinez strode in. She gave him a grin, her dark eyes flashing. "Everything good?"
Trev nodded. "Looks good to me." He handed her the logbook.
She flipped it back on and glanced over the notations with a thoughtful nod. "Excellent," she said.
He stood, relinquishing his post with a formal salute, and slipped out of the engineering room, leaving his formal self behind.
His non-formal self wasn't much different -- mostly he just took off his hat. He ran a hand through his hair, feeling the short-cropped strands sticking straight up under his meddling fingers, and grinned to himself. He stuffed the hat into his hip pocket and headed for the rec bay.
The rec bay on Lightning Girl was disproportionately large, making up nearly a fifth of the full size of the small ship. Necessary, her captain and designer had said, for a crew that could be off-planet as long as a year at a time. It was true that the Girl's crews came back happier, healthier, and with less muscle atrophy than any other long-haul ship in the fleet. It was also true that it was hard to play a really solid game of basketball with only seven people. They did all right, though. Trev currently held the record for most consecutive three-pointers, though nobody gave him credit for it, since his vampire-ness gave him an advantage. He didn't really care. As long as he was allowed to slam-dunk over the captain's head, he was happy. This wasn't a crew where he was told to hold back, and for that he was grateful.
Right now a man and a woman were playing one-on-one. The man was Ash, as Trev had hoped. He sprawled across a bench to watch.
Ash was tall and lean, with dark hair cropped close in the back, per regulation, but flopping into his eyes in the front, which wasn't regulation at all. His eyes were gray, lighter than any gray eyes Trev had ever seen, and there was a swarthy tone to his skin that even the months in space hadn't leeched to paleness. He glanced in Trev's direction, but just as quickly returned his attention to the game.
"That's right," said the woman. The ship's medic, Candace, was nearly as tall as Ash, wiry and quick. "Keep your head in the game."
Ash gave her a toothy smirk and dribbled around her, and Trev settled in to watch them duel.
It was a close battle, but Candace edged by Ash at the last minute, sinking a neat, swishing basket over Ash's head. She snickered and smacked him companionably in the back of the head.
"Next time." A half-chuckle undermined the threat in his voice. He slid a sideways look at Trev, and Trev crossed his arms over his chest and quirked an eyebrow. Ash's responding smirk told him everything he needed to know. Candace glanced from one to the other, shook her head a little, and sauntered off to the ladies' changing room.
Ash waited until the door had closed behind her before he turned to Trev. "So," he said, and the very cadence of his voice made Trev's cock hard.
"So?" Trev replied. He sat up straighter, trying, probably unsuccessfully, to hide the bulge in his pants.
"I need a shower."
Trev nodded. He could wait. But Ash just looked at him, at first amused, then looking more and more like he thought Trev was mentally deficient. Finally getting it, Trev came to his feet. "All right, then."