Authors: Bianca D'Arc
Tags: #Romance, #Erotica, #Adult, #Fiction, #Science Fiction, #Human-Alien Encounters, #Adventure
Sons of Amber: Ezekiel
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This is a work of fiction. Names, places, characters and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to any actual persons, living or dead, organizations, events or locales is entirely coincidental.
eBook ISBN 1-59426-617-4
© 2006 by
All rights reserved under the International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher.
Cover art © 2006 by
Phaze is an imprint of Mundania Press, LLC.
Dr. Amber Waithe looked at her sons with pride. They were all the finest specimens of manhood, most of whom clearly exhibited the dominant and protective genes she'd labored over, and some showing signs of being risk-takers and pioneers. They were all physically strong, but were mentally superior as well. They had high-level intelligence and steady personalities, the best she could design.
And they all bred true.
Each and every one of them was totally immune from the Jit'suku virus that so cursed many others. The Jits thought they had struck the final blow in the Unwinnable War, but they were wrong. It was Amber and her sons who would prevail in the end. The Jits had not ended humanity within three generations, as they planned when they had been defeated at Markesh.
Their doomsday weapon—the virus intended to attack the human reproductive system—had ultimately failed. Not solely because of Amber, though her genetic research did have a lot to do with the recovery of the human race, and would well into the future.
No, it was their failure to really understand human reproduction in the first place that had been their downfall.
Amber's research revealed their grave miscalculation. Jit genetics, while closely resembling humans in other ways, actually defaulted to the male. By contrast,
generally defaulted to the female. The Jit virus, which had mutated through the human population to eventually infect the Jit'suku themselves, was designed to kill off all male humans—even those still in the womb. It was a point of Jit’suku honor that they did not make war upon women, but their bioweapon was more deadly than they’d thought and it did kill some women, sickening and scarring many others with the result that they became infertile as well.
Humans were just different enough from the Jits in the microscopic ways that counted, though the vast majority of human children born after the virus attack were female. With Amber's help, and the few males who were immune or otherwise able to avoid being infected, some male children were born to perpetuate the species, but not enough to keep it viable. Which is where Amber's sons had their purpose.
Designed in the lab, they were sex machines with high intelligence. Add dominant alpha male traits, killer physiques, and the skills to match, and they were all completely immune to the Jit virus. She had carefully planned the first generation of her boys so they would breed ninety-seven percent male offspring. Successive generations would equalize over time to the human norm of about fifty-fifty, but by her calculations, that would be well into the recovery of the species as a whole. They would have done their jobs by then, and the future generations' genetics would normalize.
All as she had planned.
Zeke looked about and grimaced. The dark earth beckoned to him, but he couldn't drop yet. He had to find shelter before the sun rose higher, or he would burn to a cinder on this godforsaken rock.
Zeke had more than his share of stamina. It was a gift of his genetics. Designed and raised by Dr. Amber Waithe and her team of geneticists, he knew he had a mission in life: to spread his seed far and wide, bringing his fertile offerings to every woman who would have him. By the Maker, he enjoyed his job.
But even his enormous strength was taxed by the huge binary stars that were just a little too close to this dry, arid planet. Too bad his Risker's nature had brought him here but he was usually able to roll with the punches. Riskers had to be able to deal with the results of their actions, and he was one of the best at making lemonade out of lemons.
This time, however, he might just die for his troubles. The suns were rising all too quickly, and he was caught out in the open. He took one last, long, weary look at the suns and kept on trekking. Minutes, or maybe hours later, he felt himself fading under the onslaught of oppressive heat and strong solar radiation. He saw the dusty ground rush up at him as if from a distance, then he knew no more.
* * *
Zeke woke hours later, feeling a cool wetness on his face. He had to be hallucinating, but he didn't feel the merciless suns pounding down on him anymore. No, instead he felt the coolness of earth, the scent of dirt and dampness in his nostrils, as if he were in a cavern. Cautiously, he cracked one eyelid just enough to see. There was a woman at his side, mopping his brow with a damp cloth. The suns were blessedly absent. He was in a chamber somewhere underground if he didn't miss his guess. He had no idea how long he'd been out or who had saved him. Somehow, they'd transported him to his present location—wherever that was. He searched his memory, but didn't remember anything after passing out in the heat of the twin suns.
"Sister, he wakes."
The treble voice came from somewhere off to his left as the cool hand abruptly lifted from his brow. He wanted that cool, wet cloth and gentle touch back. Badly.
"Are you well, brother traveler?"
The soft voice caressed his senses, and he opened his eyes to behold the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. His savior was an angel, he was sure, her face heart-shaped and lovely, even devoid of the usual cosmetic alterations women of the upper classes habitually made. No, her face was pure and natural, one hundred percent human female. She was soft, slightly rounded, and perfect.
Her delicate eyebrows drew together in concern as she studied him. Her hand touched his face once more with the cool cloth and it was bliss.
"Are you well, brother?"
"Just keep doing that." His voice was a deep rumble. "Your touch is comforting."
He looked up in time to see her slight blush, but she continued stroking his brow with the wet cloth. A hesitant smile lit her curvy lips. Lips he suddenly longed to kiss in passion.
But his body was telling him something was definitely wrong. He felt achy all over and weak. He had never felt so feeble before in his life.
His angel spoke as she tended to him. "I found you on the surface at midday. I don't know where you came from or how you came to be on the surface at such a dangerous time.""Ship crashed." His strength was waning and he damned the weakness that stole over him. His eyes drooped with weariness.
"You came from the stars?" He heard her hesitate and his eyes reopened. He read fear in her gaze now and he didn't like it. "Are you human?" She seemed to steel herself for his answer.
"Be at ease, lady. I'm as human as you. I'm one of the Sons of Amber, designed to rebuild the human race."
Usually all he had to do was mention his illustrious mother and all doors were open to him. Males were that rare. Breeder males even more so. But this attractive little woman did not seem to understand what his words meant.
"You're not Jit'suku. That's good." She seemed to want to reassure herself. "It's just that we have not seen anyone from the stars in many, many years. Our Order selected this inhospitable planet as a retreat when the war came too near our home on Espia. Our elders cut off all communication with the outside so that we might hide from the Jit'suku."
"Then you don't know what happened?"
His angel shook her head, and he noticed the other women drawing near to listen in.
He had to tell them, but he was so damned tired. Still, he could give them the bare bones at least, before his strength gave out completely.
"We defeated the Jit'suku at Markesh, but they released a virus that infected just about everyone. It killed most males and caused what few babies that were born to be female. They intended to wipe out humanity within three generations," he paused to breathe through the fatigue that plagued him, "but Dr. Amber Waithe genetically engineered a group of male children that were immune to the Jit virus. I'm one of them."
The angel sat back, looking stunned.
"Did you hear, Sister Angela?" The other little nun was back now, moving closer on his other side. She was younger than his angel, but cute as a button.
For the first time in his life, he realized he was looking upon an eligible human female without any trace of lust. That thought had him rocking back on his heels, figuratively at least. Perhaps it had something to do with his illness, but no, he wanted his angel as much as he ever wanted any woman. Actually, more so. He didn't think he had ever wanted a particular woman this badly.
The realization confused him, but he was too weak to sort through it now. He decided to concentrate his energies on getting well first, then he would bed his angel and figure out why she was so irresistible.
"I heard, Sister. We must tell Mother Rachel."
"I know already, children. Be at ease." A new female voice floated through the chamber to him, coming closer. With it came a fragrance of flowers and earth, and a beautiful, slightly older woman stepped into his line of view. "Your arrival was foreseen.
Be welcome, Son of Amber. Can you tell us your name?"
He didn't know why, but he wanted to tell this lovely older woman whatever she wanted. He would reveal all his secret plans, if she but asked, but she only wanted his name. That he could give her before his strength failed.
"Be welcome, Ezekiel." She placed her hand on his forehead and he felt a peace he'd never experienced before wash over his senses. "Rest now and recover."
* * *
That was all he knew until he woke a full day later. The angel was gone but the cute little nun was at his side, watching him with wide, almost frightened eyes. He tried to sit up, but found himself in too much pain to move very far. "Oh please, do not move, brother."
"What's wrong with me?"
"'Tis the aftereffects of the
we gave you to deaden the pain. Your head will clear in a few moments, but you must lie still. It will take much longer to be free of the
if you do not." She moved back as he resettled, then went to the doorway, calling for someone before returning to his side. "Sister Angela will come shortly. She will want to see how you're feeling."
"Who is Sister Angela?"
The young girl giggled. "I'm sorry. The other woman who was here when you woke last. That is Sister Angela. She is one of our most talented healers. It was Sister Angela who set your leg."
"My leg?" He tried to lift up again but sat back abruptly as the room began to spin.
"Your leg was fractured." A new voice sounded from the doorway. Zeke swiveled his eyes up to see the angel who had tended him. She moved softly into the room, her strides brisk but feminine in a way that caused his gaze to linger. "But it is knit well now.
wears off, you should be ready to sit up for a bit."
"You're Angela?" She nodded, and he liked the blush that came over her pretty face as she moved closer. "Thank you for tending my injuries. You, too." He turned toward the younger girl with a small smile. "I didn't get your name."
"I'm Agatha." The younger girl blushed, too, though it didn't have quite the effect on him that Angela's blushes had.
"Thank you, Agatha. You both have been angels of mercy in my hour of need."
Angela moved closer. "It's part of our calling."
For a dreadful moment the pit of his stomach fell, as if he were in free fall. "Are you part of a religious community? Are you, uh, nuns or something?"
Both girls chuckled and it somehow reassured him. "We're part of a fellowship, but it's not religious in nature. Our ancestors banded together because of their shared abilities and left the homeworld as a group."
"Then you're not under any kind of vows or anything, right? You're not, uh, celibate?"
The blushes returned even fiercer than before, and both sets of feminine eyes darted away, but there was excitement in the air as Angela answered. "No. We're not bound by vows of celibacy, though I've read about those kinds of religious communities in the histories. As a healer-in-training I'm bound only by the ancient Oath of Hippocrates."
Relief zinging through him, Zeke waited a moment more, then tentatively tried for a sitting position. Surprise filled him when his head remained clear this time.
"So there are males in this settlement?" he asked, curious. He'd never met another human male who wasn't one of his genetically engineered brothers.
"Yes, of course," Agatha replied.
"Amazing." Zeke knew he'd have to get word back to Command about these people.
To his knowledge there were no other uninfected colonies anywhere.
His angel took a seat beside him, her cute little butt resting on the bed near his hip as she faced him. He thought he saw admiration in her eyes as she looked at his bare chest a moment before she shuttered her gaze.
"How do you feel now?" Her voice was low as she busied herself with the items on the tray she'd brought.
"Better, thank you." How he wished she'd look up at him, but he had to get his mind off her and onto business. There was a reason he crash-landed on this rock, and it had to come first. "Did any of your people have a chance to look at my ship?"
That got her gaze back to his. "Ship?"
"I suppose that answers my question." He pulled the covers down, ignoring the fact that he was naked, and examined his leg. It looked sound enough, but standing would be the real test. He shifted himself to the side of the bed and stood.