Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A Serial Story

I am writing a serialized novel. You can catch the serial at

Here is the first installment. For the rest of the story, stop by my blog or stop by


A Rose By Any Other Name

“I hear you. I hear you,” Zna slammed her hand onto the annoying alarm.
“Zna Menita, hunt commences in 45 ticks. Report to hunt initiation site in 45 ticks.”
Zna grit her teeth against a growl rising in her throat. She hated the mechanical voice that naggedat her every time she was scheduled for a hunt.
And she was scheduled almost every day. By her choice. But still, it was tiring and irritating to hear the computerized voice call out her name.
Zna stepped from her bed and into the shower. Water was scarce on Dyad. Zna couldn’t remember when she last had a water bath. Pressing the button to start the cleansing cycle, Zna let the sonic pulses tap over her body. The sound waves were at a range she could not hear. The waves pushed dirt, sweat, dead skin off her body and left her fur silky smooth and shining. She twitched her ears and wiggled her whiskers. The sonic pulses tickled. She heard the computerized voice calling her again. Flicking her tail, Zna punched the off switch and went to her closet. She pulled out a skin-tight jumpsuit. It fit her like a glove, and moved with her. It did not hinder her in any way. It was the perfect outfit to wear for a hunt.
She liked at her image in the mirror. She was desired in the hunt. Her curvaceous body was covered with the tawny colored fur of the lionesses. Her hip-length red hair framed her face and the pert ears that sat on top of her head. Her whiskers were sensitive and strong. The claws on her hands were sharp and retractable. Likewise she had human feet instead of the clawed feet of the less desirable lionesses.
Zna slipped the tools of the hunt into specially made pockets in her suit. A small compact phaser. It was set always on stun. It was the desire of the Ministry that lionesses have an equal chance against the hunters, not kill them. A knife that would slice through metal. Her claws were effective against cloth, flesh, wood, and most other substances other than metal. Some hunters used metal nets to trap lionesses. The knife gave the lionesses equal footing. The whole idea of the hunt was not only to give the hunters access to the best of the lionesses as mates, but to give the Viewers a show.
Zna sighed. She had run and won seventeen hunts. Each hunt she won gave her greater prestige, kept her out of the mating market, and kept her daughter safe. She had to win. If she lost her daughter would lose her life. She only had to complete three more hunts to win her daughter’s freedom.
“Zna Menita, please report to the hunt staging area,” the mechanical voice intoned.
Zna took another deep breath.
Only three more.
Charlene Leatherman
Author of Adventurous Romances
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