Bright minds hide the darkest secrets.
On straitlaced planet Netron, failing your mental health tests means certain death. For Jerimin Icarii, barely passing them is a worse fate. His meager scores reduce him from an up-and-coming scientist to a homeless, desperate outcast.
Utterly dejected, he prepares to end it all...until he is stopped by a mysterious woman. Strange yet captivating, this alien queen offers him the one thing he desires most: a normal life. All he has to do is become her errand boy—and never speak of the arrangement to anyone else. Ever.
Jerimin’s new double life with the Queen seems like a dream come true. But the secrets she’s keeping will turn it into a nightmare that could tear him—and the galaxy—apart...
Harrowing yet hopeful, Steel City, Veiled Kingdom is an intimate tale of deception, belonging, and the nature of devotion. Fans of GATTACA and science fantasy won't want to miss it. Sign up for my mailing list to be notified when it releases!
I once tried to run into the sea to drown myself, but the water never rose higher than my skinny fourteen-year-old calves.
It didn’t take long before I found the end of the sea, a glass wall at the very edge of the tower. Jets pumped recirculated water through slots aimed at my ankles. I stared through the glass at the steel city before me. If climbed over, I could jump, and if I jumped, I’d fall. I’d close my eyes and pretend I was flying—at least, until the first autokinet smashed into me. It’d be a quick death—the machines never stopped in time—and a better one than the injection in store for me when I failed my final set of tests.
At least this way I get to choose.
My palm had just kissed the glass when my father grabbed me from behind.
I twisted, but he was too strong. He hauled me, his only son, through the water, back to where my mother screamed and people avoided looking at us. My escape had failed.READ MORE
I’d been paying for that day’s cowardice ever since.COLLAPSE