Check out this adventure-filled science fiction novel from Pippa Jay: Gethyon.
Abandoned by his mother after his father’s death, Gethyon Rees feels at odds with his world and longs to travel the stars. But discovering he has the power to do so leaves him scarred for life. Worse, it alerts the Siah-dhu—a dark entity that seeks his kind for their special abilities—to his existence, and sets a bounty hunter on his tail.
When those same alien powers lead Gethyon to commit a terrible act, they also aid his escape. Marooned on the sea-world of Ulto Marinos, Gethyon and his twin sister must work off their debt to the Seagrafter captain who rescued them while Gethyon puzzles over their transportation. How has he done this? And what more is he capable of?
Before he can learn any answers, the Wardens arrive to arrest him for his crime. Can his powers save him now? And where will he end up next?
“Tell me about the angels.” The plea in Gethyon’s voice forced him to put aside the issue for now. Time enough for that later.
“Not angels,” Embar said thoughtfully. “Something not of our world, perhaps.”
“Where did they come from?”
“I don’t know, exactly. They called themselves the Rion, and I assumed they were your mother’s people. They were carrying you and Callon. She was asleep, a little pink face with her red hair in curls. You were crying.” Embar gazed towards the window. “I didn’t hear any vehicle come up to the house. They were just there, at my door. The man carrying you had a long, silver staff etched with symbols. They came into the house and sat with me, and then told me my son was dead.” Embar swallowed hard, a knot of grief lodging painfully in his throat as he said the words. “He’d tried to stop a cataclysmic explosion that would have destroyed an entire planet. He managed to contain it, reduce the force of it, but it killed him.”
“And my mother?” Gethyon asked hesitantly.
“Well, they never told me and I never asked,” Embar admitted. “She must have survived the explosion because they said Solar had died before you were born. All that concerned me was Solar’s fate, not hers. And you and your sister, of course.” It had been quite a shock to learn of Solar’s death and inherit two grandchildren in the same instant.
“She might still be alive, then.”
Gethyon’s face glowed with hope, the brightest Embar had ever seen it. The contrast to his own feelings about their mother was stark. He’d never wish ill on anyone, but he hoped they would never see her again.
“What was her name?”
“I don’t know.” Embar rose, bringing any further talk to an end, tired of reliving such painful memories. He saw the barriers close in once more as the boy retreated into his private darkness. “I must finish my thesis. I have a lecture to present next week.” He gazed down at the boy, sensing his disappointment. “Gethyon, we can talk about this again another time, if you wish.”
For the first time Embar could remember, a faint smile grew on the child’s face as he stared up at his grandfather. “When?”
“After my presentation.” He patted Gethyon on the shoulder, and noted with shock the red lines that crisscrossed the boy’s arms. “You should ask Keisha to clean those for you. They must sting.”
Gethyon nodded, but remained seated on his bed as the old man left.
~ * ~
As the door closed behind his grandfather, Gethyon rose and went to the table. A large, clear octagonal crystal lay nestled in a protective bed of fabric, glittering faintly in the slivers of light that trickled beneath the edges of the black curtains. An Χ—the company emblem of the ancient Greek letter chi taken from the acronym for Crystalline Holographic Imager—was carved into one facet of the device. Gethyon traced the emblem, a rare smile touching his face. This was his one treasure, the one sure thing he had. Lifting it from its box, Gethyon clutched the CHI in his hands and activated it. A representation of the galaxy filled his room with a translucent blackness. Stars glittered and planets glowed before his eyes.
Take me away from here. He stared deep into the image, his longing to be out there burning in his chest. Take me far away.
Something within him stirred, forcing him to focus deep inside the image. Warmth flowed from his chest, through his arms and into the crystal. Suddenly, the image opened and surrounded him; the room transformed into the dark void of open space, the stars orbiting him in slow rotation, a supernova within the grasp of his free hand.
Gethyon gasped in shock and dropped the CHI device; the illusion vanished, leaving the inactive crystal gleaming at his feet. He stared at it, expecting the images to leap from the crystal again and surround him. Tentatively, he reached down for the gem and his fingers closed around it. He lifted it to his face, gazing intently into the faceted prism, turning it this way and that as if it would suddenly reveal its secret. When nothing happened, he held it at arm’s length and activated it a second time. Again, the picture rose from the CHI device and hovered above it, nothing more than a simple hologram. Not understanding the strange sensation that seemed to spill from him into the heart of the imager, he allowed it to happen again. The view expanded and enfolded him in deepest, blackest space and sparkling stars. A cloud of infinitesimal space debris drifted across his eyes like wisps of cloud, and he pushed the fingers of his free hand into it, watching as the particles dispersed around his fingers.
Marveling at the sudden magic that had brought the galaxy’s image to life, he permitted more of the energy to surge into the CHI device, forcing it when it threatened to trickle to a halt. The image expanded farther, beyond the confines of his room and out into the landscape. Something within him seemed to unlock, and glittering threads of crystal fire shot through space, a long twisting corridor stretching out to infinity. Gethyon stood gasping on the threshold, dizzy with power and exhilaration, waiting to fall into the passageway.
Sudden alarm shot through him in an icy stream; he turned, fear stinging his nerves and fiery agony pulsing in his mind. From behind him darkness deeper than space, an antithesis of light, life and warmth, billowed into his vision, swamping and consuming all before it. He tried to scream, but the sound locked in his throat, leaving him silent and helpless. He tried to release the CHI device, to banish the image and the darkness back into the gem, but a paralysis claimed him. The blackness swelled. Amorphous fingers reached for him across the millennia, seeking to claim him. Power bled from him as the darkness drained his energy, sucked the life from him.
Pain exploded in his hand to the sound of splintering, and the vision shattered. Gethyon stood frozen. Shards of the CHI device fell from a hand dripping in crimson. He screamed as the darkness swallowed him.