Life for Sale, Book II in the Tomorrow’s Angels series, is now available from The Wild Rose Press on Amazon and at other fine retailers on-line. or order in your favorite bookstore.
Mayfair Electronics has created life.
But four of their Special Editions—sentient androids indistinguishable from human—have escaped.
Rebel, Christian Aguillard and his owner, March, are on the run, but they have a bigger problem than his creator’s plan to destroy him. They’ve discovered that one of the renegades has suffered a dangerous malfunction, threatening them with more than just exposure.
Trapped on a cruise ship in the middle of the Atlantic, March and Christian must stop the insane robot before someone else dies. All the evidence points to March being the killer’s next victim.
Christian stood transfixed, staring in horrified disbelief. From the open box, dead blue eyes gazed into his living ones. The head rested in a puddle of blond hair, and Daniel had been right. Except for the bloodless pallor, the face closely resembled Christian’s own. The severed head had obviously been embalmed. Revulsion seeped through him on a chill, permeating every sophisticated atom in his mechanical body.
Slippers plopped on the cherry wood floor in the hall, March returning to his office. Christian stiffened, frantically searching for a place to hide the monstrosity. His central processing center hummed, his heart thundering. These programmed and learned responses could disable. Shock held him motionless. He simply stared at the box. She called ahead, “Dear, we should go out soon. We need a bottle of wine for your boss’ dinner party tonight.”
Her voice penetrated the horrified fog. He slammed the box closed, glanced up and time ran out. She stood in the doorway, her hands braced each side on the door frame. He took a deep breath of her perfume and exhaled the tension that had built to a crescendo.
He wasn’t one to lose it easily, but he’d never had to deal with pure horror before. His logical mind struggled with this brutal assault. “Right. Give me a minute. I’ll need to shower and dress, too.”
The contents of the closed box had been branded on his retinas. Damn their eyes, who’d do such a heinous thing? Christian took control of his body, stilling his trembling hands. By effort of will, he didn’t acknowledge the package by even a glance. The pilot had been decapitated in the crash, but how the hell did his head end up in Houston, Texas, more particularly in their home?
“Who was at the door?” March must have seen something in his face. Frowning, she hurried to his side. “What’s that funny smell?”
The embalmed head of a man who looked like me. Another cold quiver leapt along his sensors. He’d never forget the look in the dead pilot’s eyes. Fear now had a physical illustration. If he’d possessed a stomach, he’d have been violently ill.
“I don’t know how to tell you this.” He swallowed hard and shrugged. “What’s in that box…” he pointed, “is the most terrifying thing I’ve ever seen. It can’t have come from Mayfair. They’d never resort to terror tactics.”
“Christian, what is it?” She reached for the vessel containing a man’s—once a living, breathing human being’s—preserved head.
“No.” He seized her hand. “March, you mustn’t. I refuse to let you see what’s in that box. It’s disgusting…and horrible. The pilot who died in the Jersey crash…it’s his head. The article mentioned he was decapitated.”
“His head!” March recoiled. “Dear lord, who’d send a dead man’s head to us?”
“Not to us. To me.”