novels by rachel caine and ann aguirre
Launching February 11, 2020
"He’s running!” we shouted, and Lifekiller receded, the song of the Abyin Dommas burning bright as stars against the skin of a dread creature from the oldest stories.
Then the god-king attacked and cracked that fiery silver shell with a lash of a black tentacle. For the first time, we felt the full weight of Lifekiller’s psychic presence, and it carried the full mass of a universe, starless and heavy with hunger. Worse: it was beautiful. Even as it killed, it was gorgeous as a coiling snake, or so our combined senses insisted. As if it would be an honor to perish at Lifekiller’s wish.
Screw this, our Zara-self thought, and it stung. We’re not going out like this.
Our Leviathan-selves moved, circling in elegant spirals, slaughtering the disordered Phage with massive tail strikes as we fired the physical weapons, many parts moving in harmony. Suncross and his Bruqvisz mercenaries wove complex patterns of light between us and arrowed forward, dragging a net of shimmering light that sliced apart the Phage and then cut free to drift on to wrap around Lifekiller’s pulsing form. It tightened, and there was a burst of cold fury that shouted YOU DARE TO HURT ME, and the net exploded into a billion sparks that died in darkness.
Our Typhon-shard struck with the full force of an armored, barbed tail. It was enough to shatter a moon, that strike, and we felt the impact of it crack the core of our bond. One of us vanished. Yusuf. Another pulled at the link, fraying it, but the rest of us tugged back strongly. No. We must hold.
The bellow of dark fury from Lifekiller washed over us like a blast wave. Do you think you can hurt me, little ones? Lifekiller’s voice came in ripples of calm, and something in us stilled at the sound of it.
Then our Starcurrent-self shrieked, a discordant alarm that jolted us out of the spell. He lies! He is injured!