Wednesday, February 15, 2012

February Secret Agent #19


The launch ship tore through the upper cloud level and downwards, a silver line against the swirling purples and reds of Rem’s greatest storm. Ahead of them, the enemy was just a dot against the next layer of clouds, some thousand feet down. Through the slim strip of his windshield, Akita could catch only the barest glimpse of their exhaust plumes, but he knew he could catch them. He adjusted the thrust with one flick of the burn switch. Beneath him, the launch came alive from out of its sleeping dive. The vents roared. The burners rumbled. The cockpit jolted and jounced like it was ready to come apart, but like any Dog of War worth his contract price, he knew his ship. Noreaster fell like a comet from the sky. The enemy plunged into the next strip of cloud and Akita plunged with them.

“Shiba, what have we got?”

“They’re four lengths ahead of us,” said his Shepherd, priming the charge cannons with a flex of her hands. She sat in the rear Shepherd’s seat. In the mirror set up beside his console, Akita could see the distant look in her eyes and the gleam of her psychic dampeners as she gazed out past the walls of the cockpit and into the skies beyond. It was said that a well-bred Shepherd at their peak could see a stretch of sky ten miles out from their starting point. “Three and a half lengths. Akita, we’re not maxed. Put on some thrust. We can take them.”


  1. The title! The dog names! A futuristic war story! This is right up my alley. Are the dogs or people? I suppose we don't know yet...

    Either way, I'm 100% hooked. Please let us know when this one gets published. ;)

  2. Very good writing, but I always caution people in sci-fi and fantasy about proper noun overload. It can overwhelm the action sometimes. Definitely hooked, though! :)

  3. Love the dog names. I'm a sucker for sci-fi, so I'd keep reading to see exactly what they're up against. I do suggest you consider cutting up the first paragraph, since all of it is action and sometimes that's a bit hard to get into without knowing anything about the characters. :)

  4. I like this premise. My one suggestion would be to put in a strong opening line about Akita seeing the ship. I think this is a very "YA thing" to focus more on the character experiencing things, since the ship sounds cool and all, but I want to know who is seeing it.

    This is totally just my opinion, feel free to disagree! I just want this to leap out at me and I think a stronger opening line would do that.

    Best wishes in editing!

  5. I think this looks pretty good so far! I agree with Steph about the opening line though.

  6. On first read, I'm confused which direction we're going- up or down- because of the terminology "launch ship". While I know 'launches' are small ships sent out from larger ships, 'launch' immediately sends my mind to 'take off'. Can you give us a different name there, maybe the name of the ship? The scene is otherwise tight and intense with nice imagery.

    I'd definitely keep reading.

  7. This just isn’t for me as I’m not a science fiction reader. But the writing feels strong, you’ve conveyed the action well and the dog names are interesting.

    Perhaps you could convey more of what the story might be about.

  8. I think opening with this kind of action is awesome but beefing it up at the start would add to the tension and set the scene.