The Secret of the Tzaritsa Moon by C. Litka
“I signed aboard the Tzaritsa Moon as her second engineer. I ended up a toaster repairman. I was very lucky.” – Rafe d’Mere. The Alantzia system is known for its many little worlds, moons, and rocks that are reputed to be more like the “lawless” drift worlds than the staid worlds of the Unity. Old spaceers convinced Rafe d’Mere that to fully appreciate the exotic romance of the Alantzian experience, he needed to ship out on one of the small planet traders which call on the eccentric little worlds. He did, signing aboard the Tzaritsa Moon, as her second engineer. On the passage to Fairwaine, Rafe’s swift response to a critical engine failure saved the Tzaritsa Moon. And his life. However, that failure was deliberate, part of a pirate prince’s plan to keep the Tzaritsa Moon from arriving in Fairwaine orbit. And when it did, the pirate prince was not happy. At best, Rafe might expect his memory of the incident to be erased. Erasing Rafe would, however, work just as well. In Rafe effort to get clear of the Tzaritsa Moon and get very lost on Fairwaine, he crossed orbits with a thief – a girl with a pretty face, who may, or may not, have been a covert agent of the Patrol. She was rather evasive on that point. But she was determined to discover why the pirate prince wanted the Tzaritsa Moon destroyed. And Rafe found that he couldn’t resist helping her. She had a pretty face. The Secret of the Tzaritsa Moon is a SF mystery adventure featuring Rafe d’Mere, ex-Patrol contraband suppression and repair tech, and Vaun Di Ai, Patrol Lieutenant JG, Intelligence Analyst 2, who had, somehow, escaped her desk job to be an acting covert agent. The story is set on the moon of Fairwaine, in one of its old fashioned, nonconforming societies. One that uses toasters to make toast.
Submitted by SKaeth on 2023-08-31T19:20:08Z