Meet Dr. Sue Grammar, she is Captain Mona Ann Lisa’s best friend. She has several titles not the least of which is Doctor of Antiquities.
The crashed World Alliance All-Purpose Rescue Craft, Sue is trapped on board
Excerpts from the book
Dr. Sue Grammar, professor of antiquities and World Alliance War Planning Committee member, was balled up in a tight fetal position in the shower stall of her private apartment, considering thoughts of suicide.
Sue screamed to herself, “What the hell did I do? Sure, be a patriot! Step up and be the mother of a new civilization. Save humankind from extinction. I believed my own trite propaganda. I volunteered for this—first in line to be permanently modified … God, this sucks!”
Sue was having menstrual cramps, the scourge of woman every month since the great global war some thirty-two thousand years ago. Before the genetically engineered change, women had one ovulation per year; now, of course, in the twenty-first century, women ovulate once a month.
Sue was now and had been in an underground shelter for five months. This shelter was designed for the leaders of the World Alliance to maintain communication with the assumed surviving assets of the dwindling Alliance. It was coincidence she was there at all. Sue was simply on a tour with other War Planning Committee members when the first Atlantis strike literally obliterated SpaceJump City. She was a lucky woman, though she was presently in much mental and internal agony. Over three million people had died on the surface in a matter of seconds.
The floor in the front portion of the storage hold had peeled back on itself like the sole of an old shoe ripped from its threads and creased, the front half lying under the back half. Sue, seeing Mankiller’s eyes through a wide crack, could hear the pack digging in the hard earth to get under the metal bulkhead in the front of the compartment. The only thing between them and Sue was a few feet of earth and about twenty feet of cluttered space between the front of the hold and where Sue was barricaded up against the wall in the back.
Sue’s mind was racing. The door behind her had been jammed shut in the crash, and there was no way out. She would eventually have to use the flare gun or allow the wolves a free meal. A flash came to Sue’s demented mind: “’Professor of Antiquities Found Half-Baked in Makeshift Dutch Oven; Was Delightful Meal for Passing Pack of Hungry Wolves.’ God! Where do I get these ideas!”
Sue watched in horror as several paws became visible, digging frantically under the metal bulkhead in the front of the hold.
Sue had to react quickly. “Well, guess I need to time this perfectly. Once the canister is fired, there is a pause between the launch and the ignition of the flare. I can either try to target one animal with the canister or just fire before the group gets in and hope the heat from the flare will discourage them. Maybe, just maybe, I can reload and get another round off.”
Sue could see Mankiller getting closer to the craft, his eyes staring into hers, looking through the wide breach. He was enjoying the thought of ripping this human female apart while she was still alive and screaming.
Sue picked up the flare gun with both hands and aimed at the area where the paws were digging. She thought, At least I don’t have to experience any more of those infernal cramps every month! She then suddenly turned and fired through the large fissure in the bulkhead, hitting Mankiller square in the chest. He fell back as the canister’s propellant drove the flare casing deep into his body.
Sue immediately reloaded and fired toward the paws under the front bulkhead. The last thing she experienced was the flash of the flare and the intense heat from the phosphorus.
Sue was smiling to herself, thinking she had gotten the last laugh on the ancient Mankiller. Was she dead? Where was the tunnel of light? She had a list of things to do when she died; one was to look up her old boyfriend from the Atlantis Alliance. She had been told when young that one got a perfect body after one died. She couldn’t wait to see if her tattoo was missing.