Nightchaser by Amanda Bouchet

Nightchaser by Amanda Bouchet

Author:Amanda Bouchet
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc.
Published: 2018-12-05T16:00:00+00:00

Chapter 17

It was sheer embarrassing torture, but I forced myself out onto the platform in the morning to bring Shade his usual cup of coffee. He accepted it with thanks but then barely looked at me again. He was always a little off in the mornings, so maybe he was just being his habitual cranky self. Or maybe it was the fact that I’d thrown myself at him the night before, and he’d turned me down. My stomach still dropped at the thought of that.

I climbed back on board the Endeavor without trying to make small talk with Shade, but then regretted missing our usual conversation time over coffee. He was interesting and intelligent, and he went down uncommon paths of discussion without looking horrified or making a fuss, which made talking to him one of the highlights of my day.

But not today. His rejection was still too fresh, so I hid out in the kitchen with Miko and Shiori until lunch. Together, the three of us managed to generate the mother of all shopping lists, which I then uploaded to a local food and goods outlet that would deliver later in the day. I added a huge supply of cat food and some of that extra-special litter Susan had given me to the end of the list. We had Bonk to think about now.

When the total came up, I nearly blanched. With everything I still had to pay Shade, that was the end of our money. It was time to start planning a new heist, one that had to be at least somewhat profitable to us as well as useful to our friends. One thing was for sure, though: I wouldn’t be selling my blood. Or a kidney. Or anything else.

Through the internal com system, I sent out a call to lunch. Jax and Fiona arrived, completing our group for the trigrain noodles I’d made with sauce. I didn’t go outside to invite Shade in to eat with us. He could fend for himself.

“Plain red sauce? Again?” Fiona looked at her plate as though I were asking her to eat worms in mud.

“Sorry.” I shoved a fork in her direction. “It was all we had left without dipping into the food for the Outer Zones. New stuff is coming in later today.”

“I cleared a spot for it in Cargo 2,” Jax said, already digging into his lunch.

I nodded my thanks. Cargo Bay 2 had plenty of free space for crates and a huge refrigeration unit that stayed cold even when the ship wasn’t running for days.

“Any news from Mareeka?” Miko asked.

“I haven’t checked in yet today.” Wiping off my fingers, I reached for the tablet I’d used earlier to order the food and supplies. As soon as it powered up again, I shot off a quick note to the director of Starway 8.

A response came back almost immediately.

“Same,” I told the others after reading the message. “Sickness but no quarantine, probably because there haven’t been any deaths yet. High fevers.



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