Driven

Driven

by Megan Hart
     
 

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Linna Fortense knows any woman would be happy to have Del Tennvic as a lover. The problem is, the burly Xanderran doesn't know she's a woman. Del thinks she's a Pleasurebot, a KMPN-Model, and Linna's not about to tell him the truth. In Newcity, being something other than what you claim to be can get you terminated. When Howard Adar and the Ruling Council crack down… See more details below

Overview

Linna Fortense knows any woman would be happy to have Del Tennvic as a lover. The problem is, the burly Xanderran doesn't know she's a woman. Del thinks she's a Pleasurebot, a KMPN-Model, and Linna's not about to tell him the truth. In Newcity, being something other than what you claim to be can get you terminated. When Howard Adar and the Ruling Council crack down hard on mechos, those citizens who aren't fully human and aren't quite machine, Linna has no choice but to tell Del the truth. Then the race is on to get them both out of Newcity before Adar's Security Operatives discover Linna's secret and Del's part in keeping it. Del has admired Linna for a long time. He knows she'd be more than happy to give him her body in return for his help in getting her Offworld. It's an offer Del desperately wants to accept. The trouble is, Xanderrans mate for life, and Del's not sure he's ready to make that choice. When an overly amorous space ship captain sets her sights on him, though, Del discovers he might not have a choice at all...

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781592798339
Publisher:
Amber Quill Press, LLC
Publication date:
08/28/2004
Pages:
216
Product dimensions:
5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.54(d)

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The metal of the railing was pitted and rough beneath her hands. Some sections of it were missing altogether. This trip would be hazardous under well-lit conditions, but in the dark she was risking a broken neck. With a conscious effort, Linna forced her pupils to dilate wider. Her night vision enhanced eyes now were able to distinguish between the subtle shadings of black that determined the stairs and the open space beside them.

How long had she been climbing? Forever. She laughed aloud and the sound echoed grotesquely. A monster's laugh. The noise, though she knew she'd made it, frightened her. She hung for a moment on the railing while her body quaked and shuddered. Were there monsters in here?

Her mind called up images of sharp teeth and claws, maniacal eyes and flashing blades. She shook her head again. Focus, Linna. Keep going. There's nobody in here but you.

She tried to breathe and coughed instead. Her fingers grew numb and even the sharp edge of metal on the railing didn't hurt on her skin, though she smelled her own blood and felt its warmth on her fingers. She was eating herself from the inside out. Her blood and tissue was being desiccated to provide energy to her heart and lungs. She'd gone too far, overworked herself. The medtechs at the surghosp had warned her about this, but since she had never expected to utilize her enhanced functions more than briefly, she hadn't imagined it happening to her.

She hadn't imagined how much it would hurt.

Light, blinding, shone in her dilated eyes. She screamed, or tried to, but only a hiss of air escaped her cracked and parched lips. She felt the bite of concrete on her knees and understood she hadfallen forward on the steps. Her hand groped for the railing and missed, swiping on open air. She teetered, her balance function failing. She felt the clean sweep of an updraft on her face and looked down, down through blackness, so far down, so black she couldn't even glimpse the bottom. She was going to fall.

Then strong arms swept her up. The light moved off her face and illuminated the stairwell. She caught a glimpse of dripping walls overgrown with slime and streaks of rust. Then she was lifted and carried up the stairs, through a door, into a hall as dank and nasty as the stairs, but lit by a series of dim emergency bulbs along the ceiling.

"You're all right now," said a voice so deep it thudded in her chest and belly. "I've got you."

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