Gavin G. Smith
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Three hundred years in our future, in a world of alien infiltrators, religious hackers, a vast convoying nation of Nomads, city sized orbital elevators, and a cyborg pirate king who believes himself to be a mythological demon Jakob is having a bad day:
"Nothing gets in the way of a hangover like being reactivated by your old C.O. and told to track down an alien killing machine. The same kind of killing machine that wiped out my entire squad. And now it's in my hometown.
My name is Jakob Douglas, ex-special forces. I fought Them. Just like we've all been doing for 60 bloody years. But I thought my part in that was done with.
My boss has other ideas. If I didn't find the infiltrator then he'd let the Grey Lady loose on me. And believe me; even They've got nothing on her. So I took the job. It went to shit even faster than normal.
And now I'm on the run with this teenage hacker who's had enough of prostitution. The only people I can rely on want to turn the internet into God. And now it turns out that They aren't quite what we'd all thought.
I've been to the bottom of the sea and the top of the sky and beyond trying to get to the truth.
And I still can't get far enough away from the Grey Lady. All things considered I'd rather be back at home deep in a whiskey bottle."
Veteran is a fast paced, intricately plotted violent SF Thriller set in a dark future against the backdrop of a seemingly never ending war against an unknowable and implacable alien enemy.
themselves as water spirits, were buffeted out of the way by the storm or raked by Annis until they became puddles. High above Pagan and Annis I could see the Spoke’s hired guns descending clothed in various water-borne mythological icons. I watched as they were blown and buffeted by Pagan’s storm, their own attacks swept aside by the defensive software in the storm. The cinema’s walls of water parted for Annis. She was holding what looked to me like an old-fashioned jack-in-the-box. I could see
destroyed and my skin was burnt down to the dermal armour on the bottom part of my legs. My left hand and much of my face had been burnt. My hair was a burnt brittle mess coming away in clumps. This burnt visage was what MacFarlane saw as I made my way towards him, slowly reloading my guns. The remaining patrons and hookers in the bar just lay low as I passed. Some of them whimpered, but most were used to scenes like this. I stood over MacFarlane, still smoking gently. One of the girls had
pixelated haze, the resolution slowly improving. It wasn’t the high-definition neon animation VR of the net but rather the more naturalistic realism of sense software. I felt familiar boots sink into familiar mud. I was on a plain surrounded by the sawn-off stumps of dead alien trees. I was wearing full battle gear, my Heckler & Koch Squad automatic weapon strapped horizontally across my chest. What the fuck was Vicar playing at? I was back on Dog 4. In the distance the horizon lit up in an
of the house. I could hear swearing, commands and panic as the Fortunate Sons tried to get away from the grenades. ‘Jess, get out now!’ I shouted, but there was no reply. Someone tried to jump in through the window, silhouetted by the flickering red light behind him. There was a momentary ruby-red connection between him and my shoulder laser and he fell into the water. I hunkered down next to the wall and pulled the two nearby dead Fortunate Sons over me as the first of the grenades I’d thrown
I could’ve beaten him in my prime but he was younger, faster and stronger than me, and if I was being honest probably had fewer bad habits. That got me. I was only thirty - kind of old in our brave new world - and Rannu was proving that I was obsolete. Maybe this was what Balor was talking about. I had all these augmentations and skills. Even in a society completely geared towards war I had to be considered among the more dangerous, yet I was at the mercy of people like Rolleston, the Grey Lady,