- N. N. Light
Celtan Dilemma by @EileenTroemel is a Love and Romance Festival pick #romance #spaceopera #giveaway
Title: Celtan Dilemma
Author: Eileen Troemel
Genre: Scifi Space Opera Romance
Traitor or criminal?
Lieutenant Lillian Buckner receives orders to take her squad of women pilots out to specific coordinates and destroy an unarmed transport. Lilly must decide whether to be a war criminal by firing on an unarmed vessel or to be a traitor and disobey her orders. Her life and those of her six pilots depends on her decision. No matter her decision, the punishment may kill her if she returns to the human forces.
Trust or Punish?
Lord Hugh Korol fights against the humans. They invaded the Celtan’s territory and took sectors of space from them. The humans attacked their home world. When human women aid one of their unarmed transports, he must decide what to do to them. Can he trust the one he desires or will she break more than the fragile trust growing between them?
Usually, command shoved them out as the battle cruiser retreated. Generally, female fighters covered the retreat. In the last six month, command retreated more than they advanced. Lilly wasn’t valued in her position. Commander Harris’ actions demonstrated what the higher ups thought she was good for. Cannon fodder and fucking. The flight took longer than any they flew in the last six months.
You’ll be ordered to do many things her mother told her as she prepared to go to the military six years ago at the age of fifteen. When you’re given an order, consider whether you’re following it because it’s an order or because it’s the right thing to do.
Lilly shoved her mother’s advice away through her training and through most of her career. She flew missions she was ashamed to have participated in. Many missions she found questionable but she followed orders. Recently, as the war dragged on and her squad was used as cannon fodder, she questioned her purpose, her morals reared the more time she had to think.
“Traitor or criminal,” she shook her head as she talked to herself. “If I destroy the transport, I’m a war criminal for killing innocents. If I don’t follow my orders, I’m a traitor.” She shuddered at the thought of facing the punishment from the admiral. He was particularly harsh with the females who didn’t follow orders. “What about my squad,” she considered. “If I keep them back, they’re as derelict as I am.” She heard the click, realized they were far enough away from the battle cruiser their transmissions wouldn’t be heard until they returned to the battle cruiser.
“What’s the problem,” Andy called from her port side.
“We’re hunting a transport,” Lilly checked her heading and scanner.
“Military or civilian,” Andy maintained her distance and trajectory.
“Uncertain but from what they didn’t tell me, I think civilian,” Lilly said.
“Will it even have weapons,” Andy asked.
“Depends on them,” Lilly sighed as she considered. “You know we don’t know much about the Celtans.”
“Unless you want to believe they’re shifters and vampires and monsters,” Finola Lincoln chimed in.
“Oh my,” Jena chuckled.
This type of chatter got them through and got them in trouble.
“We’ve got them on sensors,” Andy informed.
“We do,” Lilly glanced at her sensors to confirm Andy’s statement. “I could send you all back. You know they put the trackers on us. I could hold you close enough so they know you got there but not have you do anything. I could then take this on.”
“Shit, we got your back.”
“We work as one.”
“There’s your answer,” Andy quipped tartly. “You know we all live or die by sticking together.”
“If we let them go or help them, we’ll be traitors,” Lilly spelled out the situation so they were all clear on the consequences. “Are you all willing to deal with the punishment the admiral will rain down on us?”
Silence met her question. They had all been through the punishments. Sometimes it didn’t matter if you did everything right. Sometimes the admiral wanted to watch someone be punished.
“You all could go back, tell them I went rogue,” Lilly suggested the easy road for them.
“Where would you go,” Andy demanded.
“Doesn’t matter,” Lilly realized she already made her decision. “I can’t fire on an unarmed transport. You know it will be filled with women and children. I can’t… I won’t fire on them. The warriors yes. Unarmed. No.”
“Are you ordering us back,” Jena asked.
“I think each of us has to make a choice,” Lilly said. “Picking up something on my sensors.”
“Let it be fucking fighters,” Finola muttered.
“Shit. No such luck,” Andy said. “I’m reading civilian transport. Fuckers. I’m reading no weapons and very little in the way of defenses. It’s a fucking old transport.”
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What’s your favorite part about being a romance author?
I love to explore different worlds, to answer the what if question in my stories. I also love to see how people come together.
Here’s my tip to add romance to your love life:
Appreciate the little things. Even if it only takes two minutes, appreciate when your lover does something just because they know you like it.
One lucky reader will win a $75 Amazon US or Canada gift card.
Open internationally. You must have a valid Amazon US or Amazon CA account to win.
Runs February 1 – 28, 2023.
Drawing will be held on March 1, 2023.
USA Today Bestseller Author Eileen Troemel writes action packed and emotionally powerful fantasy, scifi, romance. She’ll try almost any genre if it means she can tell a good story. In addition to her writing, she loves to read, crochet, and research genealogy. Her best days are spent with her family of three adult daughters and her husband or writing.
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