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Roarke

Written By: Frances Pauli
Published by: Devine Destinies
ISBN #:978-1-55487-519-1
Word Count:20000
Page Count: 83
Heat Level:
Price: $3.99
Available in: Adobe Acrobat, Palm DOC/iSolo, Microsoft Reader, Hiebook, HTML, Mobipocket, Rocket, Epub, Sony PDF, Sony LRF

    "I'm afraid we'll have to brave a small crowd on the way out. News of your…return has been hard to keep quiet."

    "I should imagine." I smile congenially at him and allow myself to be led from the room. The crowd doesn't surprise me, though small is an understatement. I've sensed them building outside all along. I brace myself, grateful for the doctor's arm, and we emerge onto a long walkway. The floor drops away on both sides, and the spaces are filled with craning faces. I'm torn between scanning the assembly for some shred of recognition and shying from any contact with the eager expressions. In the end, I dart sparing glances at random people. Nothing stirs any memory.

    Halfway across the space I give up and choose to focus on the long strips of blue-tinted lights that line the walls. I think that nothing seems familiar here because this isn't where I belong. Perhaps, I think, this is a prison after all.

    I hate to consider the doctor as a participant in my capture, perhaps even directly responsible for removing my memory, but the possibility can't be ignored. It is, given the unbelievable alternative that is their story, quite likely closer to the truth. Yet I allow myself to be led toward another curving doorway. I have few options, few options for now.

    I concentrate, instead, on how playfully the blue light interacts with the metal of my dress. The fabric flashes and shoots refracted fire as I move in it. I let myself be mesmerized by the effect. The door is near, and Doctor Williams slows as we approach it. My irritation surges again. Another foreign hallway beyond this one? Another unfamiliar room? Suddenly, I have no wish to continue peaceably. I have no interest in allowing myself to be led to any destination they've selected. I scan sideways from the door, searching for a pathway of my own choosing, wherever it may lead.

    I'm struck dumb by a familiar face. He stands back from the others, aside from them, but near the door. Where I'm most likely to see him, I decide. He leans against the gray wall and looks at the ceiling. The strong muscle of his jaw tenses. Lines etch across his rugged face. My chest lurches at the sight of him. I search for a name to assign to the single familiar person in this crowded hall. The set shoulders and staggered legs ring through my mind looking for something to cling to.

    Exact memories, like the name I want to put to him, shy from my grip. The feeling sweeps through me of something just on the tip of my tongue, too elusive to pin down. I'm frantic to snare it, but it dances out of reach. I realize that I've stopped walking.

    His red hair crowns a complexion nowhere near pale. He shifts his gaze downward slowly, with great intention, and meets my gaze. The intensity in his eyes belies his casual pose. He knows me.

    In an instant, I'm lifted from the room, my mind trapped in darkness without a body to attach to. I drift without direction or purpose in a sea of warmth. Softly, the singing whispers, return, return to me. The persistent voice hovers near desperate, saturated with emotion. The words pull me down.

    I come back to myself. The doctor tugs gently at my arm. Concern scrawls across his face. I see the question there. "I'm fine," I say, stepping in line with him once more. "Get me out of here, okay?" And we pass through the second doorway together.

    They have to be lying when they tell her she was dead. With no memory of her past, and no idea who she actually is, Nora has little options. Alone, and at the mercy of the Mercenary Defense Conglomerate, she searches for clues into her past, and the truth

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