Most Wanted Alien Brides Series
Intergalactic Dating Agency Book 1
When the Intergalactic Dating Agency mistakes a prison ship for their new clients looking for mates, cyborg Kolvin jumps at the opportunity. A new life, with the bonus of a ready-made wife? How can this go badly?
But when Kolvin meets his mate, she winds up not being what he expects.
She drives him crazy. She's not even from his dimension. His Craving, however, wants what it wants, and he finds himself at the mercy of it.
Tina Craige is pretty sure she's dead. After all, one does not walk through an arch in a cave and wind up in another dimension. Especially not in one where a giant cyborg humanoid wants her as a mate.
When she discovers that he's traumatised from being held prisoner of war, she can't bring herself to abandon him. Not yet.
She has thirty days to accept this giant cyborg as her mate, PTSD and all, or return to her dimension and Earth, as if she'd never left. And never see, or remember, him again.
Will she be able to give up everything for her cyborg mate?
"Move, Rhimodian," snarled the Terran guard.
Kolvin twisted around and started to climb out of the bunk from his cell. His body ached, as it did every day. If his internal sensors were working and not being jammed, he would have detected that he was hungry as well.
Unfortunately, all he had was the rumbles of his stomach. Stuck in a Terran Empire prison, his cybernetics signals were blocked from any kind of transmissions and connection to the Rhimodian community. Left to deal with his primal side, the natural Rhimodian in him had begun becoming more dominant as well as the other cyborgs who had been taken captive.
They had survived the last five years in this dark and dingy metal prison. The only places with light were the medical bays where the experiments were done--and not even those were very bright. Just illuminated enough to show how unkempt the ship was.
Prisoners were not given luxury accommodations.
Kolvin, like his fellow mates, had to draw on older, more primitive pieces of themselves to survive.
Kolvin stood, and the Terran guard may have only come to his shoulder, but the stun stick in his hand made up for the difference in size.
And the guards here were liberal with delivering punishment for anyone who dared to defy them.
"What now?" Kolvin asked.
"Are you deaf, robot? Do you need your ears reprogrammed?"
"This is not routine," Kolvin said.
The guards would not be greeting them for another three standard hours. This should be their recuperation cycle. They didn't get a great deal of rest time, but it seemed to remain regular.
He concluded that if they woke him early, there must be something going on.
"Well, we like to shake things up," the guard said and shoved him forward. His feet slapped on the rough and cold metal floor.
He saw that he was not the only Rhimodian awoken and shoved out of his cell. Others who had been captured along with him were being herded out of their cells as well.
"What do you want now?" Marcin, another Rhimodian in his unit, demanded from a few cells away.
"Get in line," the guard said and slammed him in the shoulder.
Kolvin gritted his teeth as Marcin was hit again.
"Move!" the guard behind Kolvin said.
It was his turn to be struck.
Fourteen thousand eight hundred and seven.
The number of times he'd been hit since being brought to this prison five standard years ago.
"Get going. We haven't got all day."
Fourteen thousand eight hundred and eight.
He shouldn't care how many times, but he kept counting it. Kept it logged in his memories. Along with everything else that had been done. Every poke, every slice, every attack on his person. The number of times they tried to remove his lysteel gauntlets. The scars on his arms were evident of all the attempts by the Terran Empire to remove the tech to learn how it worked.
They were never able to remove them.
But not after many hours of trying.
It wasn't the only procedure that was performed on him and his fellow Rhimodians. Genetic code extraction and testing. Some had not survived, but the Terrans determined quickly that the Rhimodian tech died with the cyborg, so they quit killing them. Then they just performed their experiments on live cyborgs.
He could not begin to imagine all the things that were done. More than once, he'd offer to leave them with the nanites.
So, they would let them all go.
But it wasn't what the Terran wanted.
He wasn't sure they knew what they wanted. It seemed to change all the time.
They blocked the connection to the Rhimodian collective consciousness, Master System, through Terran's cloaking technology. Being cut off from the ever-present voice felt like being stripped to the bone. All that they had to confirm who they were and what their protocols were, gone in an instant.
"Move it, Solkan," another guard said, and this one did make Kolvin look over. Solkan was left in solitary for a reason. A growl emerged from inside the cell. If the Terrans learned anything about Solkan, it was that the Rhimodian fought everything.
Today was no exception.
One of the guards flew out of the cell and hit the metal ground hard.
Marcin smirked. He was hit again for his obstinance.
Kolvin watched as they brought out Solkan, restrained on both sides by shock braces.
Solkan shifted, a jerk of strength, and it startled the Terran guards, but it wasn't enough to break the hold.
When they were lined up, the guards started to lead them out of the cell area and reached the door where they went for testing. Today, though, they did not go to that door. Instead, they were led the other way.
The round exit door. The one that led to the vacuum of space.
Kolvin's shoulders sunk.
The thing he knew would happen had finally come. The Terrans were disposing of them.
Jettisoning them out into space.
More than once, they'd opened the air lock to suck the air out of the cell bay, just to torture them.
Now it seemed to truly be the end. They had finally finished with them, that this was over.
He should have fought. He should have let his primal side fly, but he didn't. Instead, it felt like a strange sort of relief for him. A kind of peace he'd not known in a long time.
The living nightmare was over.
As they got closer, one of the guards on the door opened the air lock.
Kolvin tensed, expecting to feel the air sucking him out immediately, but it didn't.
He narrowed his gaze.
There was something attached to the air lock. As Kolvin got closer, he could see it. A ship was docked at the air lock. The lock on the ship's side opened, and he could make out an essential military transport.
Another set of guards appeared. Two men and a female.
"We have them," one of the mean guards said.
"I have orders to take possession," the new guard said. He had far more markings on his uniform than the guards who had been walking them to the airlock.
The group stopped, the three Rhimodians and the cell guards. Kolvin didn't recognize the new set of guards. They didn’t look like anyone he'd seen.
The female looked familiar, but he wasn't sure why.
"Surrender the prisoners to us," the lead soldier said.
"No," came one of the prison guards.
The lead soldier raised his weapon. "This is not up for debate."
"This is ridiculous. The Emperor will not tolerate this," the front-most prison guard said.
"Yet here you are," the female soldier said.
The guard lunged at her. She jerked to the side, and with a strong hit, she sent him out of the way. The guard came back at her. One of the other soldiers stepped in the way.
"Enough!" The soldier glared at her.
The male solder turned to the guard. "Are you finished?"
The guard opened his mouth.
"The Emperor is dead," another voice overtook the conversation. This one, though, Kolvin knew.
It was Zapier. The head scientist, or torture creator, on the ship. The one who devised all the ideas for removing and testing the Rhimodian tech.
Just seeing Zapier made Kolvin's skin crawl. This was some kind of test or way to get the Rhimodians to do something. He knew it had to be. Zapier didn't show up just to visit. The scientist--and Kolvin used that in the loosest of terms--always had a purpose.
Behind him, he could hear Solkan growling.
Marcin, who was in front of Kolvin, whispered to a different guard. "What's going on, buddy?"
"You're all being taken off the ship. Returned to the Rhimodians," the guard said, his voice low.
"We are under a time restriction. Let us move, then." Zapier waved his hand. "Take possession and return them to the required coordinates. This is the last ship."
The guards did not look happy about it, but they stepped to the side and let the military officers take possession of them.
The soldiers took each prisoner's arm. The first one took Marcin; the second male took Kolvin.
That left the female to take Solkan. She barely came to his shoulder.
Kolvin glanced back at Solkan.
"Be nice," he mouthed.
Solkan frowned but remained still.
"Have fun with him, girlie," the guard said. "He's a fiery one." When the female went to grab his arm, one of the guards threw the restraints at her.
It smacked her in the face, the electrical fields making her shake and convulse, and she stumbled back.
Kolvin's fury boiled up under his skin, and he turned to--
Solkan, however, moved faster.
Solkan spun and punched the guard. Sent the man to the ground. He twisted, so he blocked the female and growled at the guards moving in to attack him, their stun weapons out.
"We told you! He's better off--" one of the guards yelled.
Zapier took two steps back.
The girl grabbed Solkan's arm. "Enough," she said. "I am fine."
Solkan looked her up and down. "You are not fine."
"I will be checked out by medical. Later." She spoke firmly to Solkan.
Kolvin was ready to fight for his fellow Rhimodian. To rip off his restraints and head over there and defend his unit.
Instead, Solkan stepped back into line, head up, and looked straight ahead. Any sign of his anger and fiery temper gone.
Had that female sprayed him with something?
"Get in there," the lead soldier said, gesturing to the air lock.
It was time, for sure. Time to go home.
If he believed what was happening. Kolvin, though, concluded it was more likely yet another one of Zapier's tests, then it was time to die. Kolvin was done being a test subject for the scientist.
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