Meilin and The Challenger
Futuristic urban fantasy/fairy tale
April 11, 2014 from
Musa Publishing: http://musapublishing.com/
Meilin King has never believed in fairy tales. Happy ever afters might have happened in the old days—before zombies. But this is 2089. When her father promises riches to the one who can rid their city of zombies, Meilin and her sisters rush to develop a solution that won’t bankrupt Dad.
The war overseas left Will MacGregor disillusioned, but fighting zombies at home is a cause he can embrace. Meilin’s another. Tough but sweet, she might make him believe in life again, and maybe even love, if she doesn’t kick his ass first.
When zombies kidnap her family, Meilin must rescue them. But can she and Will save them from the worst fate of all?
A click sounded beside him. Meilin propped a rifle to her shoulder and sighted her aim toward the advancing zombies. “Let’s annihilate the party crashers, sisters.”
A lopsided smile quirked his lips. “Not all the party crashers, I hope.”
Her stance steady, she glanced over. “I might spare you.”
Oh hell, I’m in love. Gunfire erupted on either side, but he couldn’t tear his focus from her. Amazing, how she braced against the kick of the rifle—her slight frame absorbed it and she fired away. Like you should be doing.
As trained, he lifted the Uzi. Stunned, he could only watch as the girls split the zombies’ heads with one shot apiece, the most efficient kill he’d ever witnessed. The zombies at the front of the charge fell first. Those in the center scattered to either side. Hell, these women didn’t need his help. If only the soldiers in his platoon had been so deadly accurate.
Better at least try to be helpful. He let the bullets fly. Too bad the walking dead couldn’t run; soon they dropped to the forest floor with the others.
The tallest blonde held a strange set of binoculars to her face. “There, two more getting away.”
Hard to sight them in the dark. He swiveled one of the dance floor spotlights in their direction. Momentarily blinded, the walking dead stopped walking. Meilin and the tall blonde aimed, and their shots cracked the zombies’ heads in two.
Meilin tapped his shoulder. “Aim the light to three o’clock. I think I see a few more.”
She stood so close, he grew woozy. Cherry blossoms. He struggled to fight off her intoxicating scent. He did as she asked, but his acute awareness centered on her. Built the way he liked, petite but powerful. She moved with purpose and grace, surety and intense focus in every action. Like the others, she felled the three zombies with one shot each, in exactly the spot needed for the final kill: their heads. Oh yeah, a woman who knew what she wanted and went after it, a force to be reckoned with.
She rested the rifle butt against her hip. “What do you think, Lakshme? More hiding out there?”
The girl with almond eyes shrugged. “Probably.”
Yeah, most likely. Better make sure. “I’ll do a sweep and check.”
The tallest blonde winced. “By yourself?”
Lakshme smirked. “Aren’t we lucky? Superman’s here.”
Meilin’s gaze swept over him. “Oh, I thought he was the Green Hornet.”
The blonde’s lip curled. “Horn dog, more like.”
What the hell was their problem? “Hey, I’m only trying to help.”
“Good thing.” Lakshme’s voice turned breathy. “We’re helpless girls, after all.”
Oh, man. Great first impression. “No, I didn’t—”
Meilin raised her rifle and shot three times in quick succession. “Three more down. Now we need to find out how many we missed.”
A no-nonsense babe. Excellent.
The tall blonde jumped to the ground. “Pull up the truck so we can dump the bodies. Wouldn’t want to ruin the surprise for any latecomers.” She flashed a sardonic smile and headed for the nearest carcass.
One sister disappeared into the brush. An engine roared, and a delivery truck backed into the site, halted, and the doors flew open.
Once they’d loaded the last of the zombie bodies, Will blew out a breath. The tall blonde latched the door closed. How did they all still appear ready freshly showered and ready for a night of dancing? They had this routine down, to the last detail.
“What now?” he asked.
The tall blonde poked a finger into his chest. “Now you forget everything you saw here, and we won’t have to incinerate you with the rest of them.”
Forget? He glanced at Meilin. Not happening. “You might find me useful. And I want to learn more about your operation. It’s impressive. Mr. King’s looking to hire—”
The blonde grabbed his shirt, her grimace eye level with him. “Don’t ever mention him again.”
Not speak of their father? He studied Meilin for a clue.
She wrenched the blonde’s arm. “Back off, Zoe. He’s harmless.”
Zoe shoved Meilin, who stumbled backward and lost her balance.
His heart lurched. Hopefully, not sorry she met him. “For what?”
A hard thud to the back of his head came in answer. His knees hit the dance floor, and he toppled over.
Cate Masters has made beautiful central Pennsylvania her home, but she’ll always be a Jersey girl at heart. When not spending time with her dear hubby, she can be found in her lair, concocting a magical brew of contemporary, historical, and fantasy/paranormal stories with her cat Chairman Maiow and dog Lily as company.
Look for her at http://catemasters.blogspot.com and in strange nooks and far-flung corners of the web.
Catch up to Cate