Wearing a simple flowing robe, the old man stared out from his wrought-iron balcony to the quaint buildings below. “Is everything in place?”
“Yes, Your Holiness,” replied an eager young man in far more splendid robes.
“Failure is not an option.”
“We will not fail. We have planned for every circumstance. Project Einstein will not succeed.”
“But it will not come back to us?”
“No, Your Eminence. No one will blame us for their demise.”
“How many back-up plans?”
“Not enough.” His ancient hand quivered as it rested upon the metalwork. “Fifteen. I want fifteen plans, each certain to succeed without the blame reaching my feet.”
“I will see it done.”
The old man turned and studied his devotee. “You have doubts, Thomas?”
“It is not my place to doubt God’s work.”
“Earth is about to fall into an ice-age of such duration and frigid temperatures that nothing is expected to survive. So you wonder why God would wish to destroy one of our chances to continue mankind on a different planet.”
The man fell to his knees and pressed his forehead to the floor. “Forgive me, Your Holiness.”
The old man walked around the prostrate body and returned to his red velvet chair with authentic gemstones cresting each upholstery tack. He sat with a heavy sigh. “It is better for the human race to die in its entirety than to survive without God.” He stared up to the arching ceiling painted with clouds and angels. “The time has come to choose eternal Heaven or Hell.”
The young man’s head rose. “Yes!” His face filled with joy and wonderment. “I understand now.”
The old man’s head wobbled, perhaps in a nod. “Then go, and see God’s will is done. Only Project Chosen can succeed. Project Einstein must be destroyed, at all costs.”
With Earth destined for a new ice-age, seven scientists and twenty-two brilliant teenagers are gathered in a compound deep within a mountain. There they struggle to come together as a group and complete the projects needed for their survival in the inhospitable environment of Titan, one of Saturn’s moons. However, certain factions on Earth have no intention of letting Project Einstein succeed. Keeping the group alive and productive is the hardest task Colonel Lancaster and his soldiers have ever had, but they are determined to succeed no matter how well the saboteurs have planned. The continuation of the human race depends upon it.
With a groan, Lancaster broke the kiss. “I really do have to get you to your medical exam.” Without further delay, he pulled her from the room and hurried her down the hall.
Now Tam was too confused to cry. In fact, Lancaster’s kiss had managed to completely dislodge Dr. Tong from her mind. “Do you do that often?”
“Kiss people I’m interrogating?” he asked with a grin.
She nodded and blushed.
“No. In fact, that was a first for me.”
She stared at him in surprise. “You won’t get in trouble for it, will you?”
“No. Weren’t you paying attention to the part where sex is allowed?”
Her face reddened again. “Yes, but I wasn’t certain if that included you. I thought perhaps you had to stay above it all so no one could claim you weren’t impartial.”
“We’ll need all the genetic possibilities we have. So I just have to make certain that I stay above the fray even while I enjoy the company of one or more of the women.”
One or more…
“It would help me if you stayed out of trouble and tried not to fight with Dr. Tong.”
Tam’s anger started to burn. “Maybe you should have kissed her instead and told her not to fight with me. I’ve already given my promise to Max to try to get along, but since I’m not the one planning to cause trouble, all this affection you so obligingly bestowed on me might be more efficiently used elsewhere.”
They arrived at the medical examination room, and Lancaster passed her off. Seeing no one to fight with except Dr. Bruce Willows, she gave up her anger. Just as well. She soon discovered Dr. Willows knew every joke ever written and told them to perfection.
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About the Author
Liza O’Connor lives in Denville, NJ with her dog Jess. They hike in fabulous woods every day, rain or shine, sleet or snow. Having an adventurous nature, she learned to fly small Cessnas in NJ, hang-glide in New Zealand, kayak in Pennsylvania, ski in New York, scuba dive with great white sharks in Australia, dig up dinosaur bones in Montana, sky dive in Indiana, and raft a class four river in Tasmania. She’s an avid gardener, amateur photographer, and dabbler in watercolors and graphic arts. Yet through her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels.
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