Cassie's Troubles 3
The SkyRyders are no longer the best-skilled fliers in the sky, and MAC is determined to rectify the situation by breeding better fliers. However, the introduction of an exceptional flier into the project brings an underlying cancer to light. Convinced the Corp removed a maneuver so a female could pass the flight exam, the male cadets in the Academy revolt. Sensing chaos and mutiny at the Fort, the enemy cartel gathers a force to annihilate the entire West Coast forces.
Twelve months later, Cassie glared at the grey walls of General Adams’ waiting room. Of all the betrayals in her life, this was the hardest slam, and because of her twenty-year contract she signed, she didn’t see how she’d get out of it.
What angered her most was she hadn’t even seen it coming. Yet, she should have. The signs were there. She had noticed the absence of women captains, yet she let her captains distract her with lectures to focus on herself: “Apply yourself and you’ll go far.”
Well, she applied herself, and look where it got her, in some Ryder’s version of a medieval harem. She had flown herself right into the Corp’s dirty secret that no female recruit ever heard about.
Dare to exceed and the Corp turns you into a breeding cow to make future fliers.
“Cadet Brown, the general will see you now,” the male admin announced.
Cassie stood up and tugged at the ridiculous short skirt she wore. She longed for her fly-suit.
General Adams surprised her. He was both younger and better-looking than the general at Dix, and the expression on his face, she had never seen on a general’s face before. He looked at her with an expression of kindness. It still didn’t change her resolution not to be part of this breeding program. She had not signed up for harem duty.
“Sit down, Cadet Brown,” the general ordered.
Cassie sat in the chair on the other side of his desk and tugged at her skirt.
He smiled at her sympathetically. “It’s just a uniform, cadet. I find all this braid about the neck quite irritating, myself.”
“If you want to trade uniforms, sir, I’m game,” she replied.
He gave her a slight smile and walked around the desk. Leaning against its edge, he studied her. “You aren’t particularly pleased with your new assignment.”
“No, sir, I’m not,” she replied curtly.
“I remember when I first became general here. My supply chain was an absolute disaster. Everyone I put in the job hated it. Each flier I tried to put in the role was worse than the one before. Finally, a wise old general suggested I appoint someone to the job who actually liked logistics. I did, and I’ve never had a supply problem again.”
“That is a very inspiring story, sir.”
“What did you find inspiring about it, Cassie?”
The change in his voice and the use of her first name in such a familiar manner threw her off-guard for a moment, but she rallied.
“It inspires me to inform you I find my new assignment insulting and belittling, and I will be extraordinarily bad at it.”
The general laughed softly. “Everyone feels that way at first. Come back in six months and if you still hate it, I’ll get you transferred into a regular Corp unit.”
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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, skydive 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 throughout her entire life, her first love has and always will be writing novels.
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