Hobbits got in the way of flashing this Friday, lol, so here’s a snippet from the latest wip being prepped for submission. Oh and there’s a naughty word in the mix. You have been warned…
(c) 2008 Kim Knox
“And we have about thirty minutes of air.”
“Yes.” He unstrapped from the chair and climbed down. Gripping the ladder, he balanced on the exposed struts of the floor. “Or maybe less. Can you hear hissing?”
I held down a groan. Yes, I could. “How inept are we?”
“I refuse to answer questions that may incriminate me.”
My lips pressed down on a grin. The man was crazy… and some part of me liked that. I was obviously as insane as he was. Humour left me as I realised what we had to do next. “The only option left is the Sky Rail.”
“I know.” He grabbed his jacket and shrugged into it. “So you get to be the one with the insane idea this time.”
“It’s not accessible from here is it?” His wry sideways glance told me everything. I expelled a slow breath. “No, of course it’s not.” I pulled the straps free and edged across the thin supporting struts. The air grew warm and the first trickle of sweat ran from my brow. Yes, there was definitely less than thirty minutes of air left. “How the hell did I get myself into his situation? I was happy in my tube, no cares, no worries, no running out of oxygen. Lovely.”
James snorted. “I’m sure that’s what you want me to believe.”
“Can we not have the ‘I set you up’ moan again, please? Losing oxygen? Drones? Maybe a working Sky Rail? We have other priorities.” Standing at the sealed door, I the shuddering of the surrounding metal ran though my bones. Something battered the outer walls. “They’re breaking in.”
I could only state the obvious. My brain had tipped into meltdown. In a way, James was right, too many things were going wrong. It did look deliberate. “There’ll be no air once we open this door.” A laugh broke from me, strained, edged with panic. “Though that probably won’t matter too much, as the drones will cut us down in seconds.”
“Relax.” James dropped heavy hands on my shoulders and their warmth bled through the fabric of my suit. “Relax and when I tell you, breathe out as much as you can. This platform is fixed to Deimos’ southern pole. The Sky Rail terminal is across the corridor. I’ll deal with the drones, you concentrate on getting the door open. It’s a DNA entry system.”
I stared up at him, not wanting to admit that his touch had calmed me. “There’s air in the terminal?”
“And you know this how?”
“Katya…” He leaned in close and his breath stirred my skin. “We need each other to stay alive.” I caught his sinful smile from the corner of my eye and it had heat pooling low in my belly, my flesh growing tight with fresh need. “And I still have to have my revenge.”
Arousal fought with fear, my nipples pushing hard against the soft fabric of my suit. Damn, this man made me crazy.
His hands slid down my arms, his light touch teasing. Yes, his monster had slid back into the shadows again. “Are you ready?” I nodded. The door shuddered and the lights surged lower. “Just in time.
“But it’s a vacuum, we’ll only have about—“
“We have a different design. Trust me.”
“About as far as I can throw you.”
“Very sensible. Now breathe out.”
I exhaled until my chest ached. I was trusting him. Something had pumped the air out of the rest of mining platform, but to breathe in as I entered a vacuum—my memory kicked in—would rupture my lungs. I had about fifteen seconds before my lungs started to pull oxygen out of my blood and I passed out.
James looked at me. I nodded. Then he opened the door.