In the spirit of Xmas, the following is an extract from Redemption, book 2 of Warner's World.
Chapter 24. Chester 1900, 24 December
Hose Romerez, the owner and maître de of El Dorado’s nodded as he welcomed the arriving guests. He directed them down to the large table where Dave, Rihan, Art and Sue were already seated. Ivan, Aubrey and Crystal had brought along partners. Mary, Chase and Val were unaccompanied.
After the introductions and the entrées Dave tapped his glass and the talking subsided. “I’d like to thank you all for coming tonight. There’s a saying in the service that Xmas is for families but I regard you all as my family so I’m really pleased to be sharing this time with you. Merry Xmas everyone!”
The Spanish guitar played intermittently with the Xmas tunes. The wine flowed, the tapas came and was devoured, the conversations continued and merriment reigned.
Dave found himself looking down from the head of the table at his officers and friends. Rihan was laughing at a joke Sue had just made at Art’s expense. Ivan was explaining something that Chase had said to his partner. Aubrey’s partner, who worked in the mining sector, only had eyes for her. He was whispering something to her and Aubrey was laughing. She was the most relaxed he had ever seen her.
Val and Mary were strumming their plates with their cutlery in time to the ‘little drummer boy’ enjoying their karaoke. Crystal had really loosened up. Normally the quiet, serious one she had become loquacious as the dinner progressed. Her partner was Silvio, a young intern from the local hospital. He was smitten.
“What do you think darling?” asked Rihan bringing Dave’s focus back to the top end of the table.
The deserts were being devoured as each guest had to say what they wanted for Xmas. Being the newest officer, Crystal was last. She swallowed the remainder of her desert wine, tilted her head back so her long glistening black hair draped down her back and with her eyes to the ceiling announced “I want to get laid and then I want to kick some pirate arse.”
Well this brought the table to an uproar. Silvio, at first, blushed and then was in a state of shock. Mary who was beside him said “Looks like your lucky night.”
“I want to change my wish” yelled out Ivan and his partner whispered something in his ear which brought a big grin to his face.
Dave O'Connor is an award winning designer of computer war games, a consultant to the military in the simulation space, an expert in artificial intelligence and now author of the Warner's World series of sci-fi books. He is probably best known as President of Panther Games and designer of the Command Ops computer wargame series. He lives in Canberra, Australia, with his wife Joy. He has two adult children.
Warp Drive Publishing
is a division of
Panther Games Pty Ltd
ACN 66 008 609 541
We are located in Canberra, Australia.