Best Served Cold


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Revenge. Getting even. Fighting back. Whatever it’s called, it’s supposed to warrant two graves – or at least, that’s how one old saying went – usually, in the case of mere mortal Human beings. In the case of the Human race as a whole, it was less about that and more about survival.

Having just survived the Big Nuke twenty years before, a recovering Earth just beginning to reap the rewards of interplanetary colonization was suddenly attacked by an alien race that didn’t communicate, didn’t negotiate – and seemed absolutely intent on taking the entire solar system for itself.

The only option the war-weary people of Earth, Mars and Luna had, was to beat their plough-shares back into swords – and fight back! In the first six months, the best the fledgling Earth Defense Fleet could manage, was to push the savage Gimp back to the asteroid belt. For four long years since then, it was all they could do to maintain the stalemate, with each side waiting for the other to make a fatal mistake.

Sooner or later the war would end, one way – or the other.

For Alex Nikolls, a pilot fighting in the blackness of space on an almost daily basis, it couldn’t come soon enough!

For Francis Talon – Commander In Chief of a strike force intended to bring the aliens to their knees, it was the culmination of a journey of self-glorification and ambition leading all the way back to the L.A. mafia and the killing of Marian Mureau’s parents.

For Marian Mureau, it meant more than just the end of the war – it signified the end of a life-long vendetta!

Details:

  • Published: February 20, 2020.
  • Words: 58,864
  • Pages: 202 (6×9″ paperback)
  • Audiobook: to be announced.


Synopsis: [Spoiler Alert]

War. Devastation. World War Three.

“Nobody knew who started the War, or why. Nobody really cared anymore. It was all over so quickly – and anyway, it seemed so long ago now. More people had died in one single day than in all the human wars in recorded history put together – and that’s all it took: just one day.

Terrible …isn’t it?

Life had gone on and on like it had for years and years, and then suddenly it started raining nukes – and within ten minutes, everything just turned to shit and ashes.

That the Earth hadn’t just turned to dust under the force of all the strikes and counter strikes was a miracle in itself. By the time it was over, much of the formerly so-called civilized world lay in ruins, smoking like it had had really good sex and gotten fucked hard, sideways.” – Broken Promises

Looking at the outcome somewhat optimistically – especially given the circumstances in today’s world, humanity had finally realized the futility of fighting each other over territories, riches, power – and differences in culture, ideology and beliefs. Instead, all governments that survived the nuclear holocaust, begin to co-operate as a matter of survival. In the years that followed, remaining military resources were re-purposed towards a peaceful life.

“In the past two decades, Earth had become practically one nation – a nation of diverse races and cultures at peace with itself – a peace built upon millions being sick and tired of war, saddened beyond the bounds of grief of loss – and frightened out of their wits by the prospect of annihilation!

There hadn’t been any wars on Earth in just over twenty years. There was no active military left, just what could be described as a large labor force utilized mainly in the farming and industrial zones, with sub-divisions performing emergency services, medical and rescue, and civilian police work. What had once been described as an ‘air force’ now flew crop dusters and performed rescue and relief operations during natural disasters and at sea. Likewise, a conglomerate UEC navy now enforced commercial trade and fishing regulations, rescued ships in trouble, and did little else. There were no more wars, no more warriors. The optimistic outlook was, that there never would be again.” – Broken Promises

After waves of strikes and counter-strikes, Earth is all but devastated – with vast tracts of the surface left uninhabitable. With so much of the planet unsuitable to grow food on, Earth establishes farming and mining colonies on Luna (Earth’s moon), Mars, and several asteroids and moons in the Sol system. With survival of the species being the highest priority, Humanity is by this time, a multi-planet species in its own system. In this time of peace, Earth recovers and begins to flourish. It is just about at this point that the hostile Ruminarii enter, stage left.

Without attempting to make any contact, this conqueror-species is first observed by long range probes, setting up what appears to be a military base on Pluto for staging an invasion of Earth. Desperate to avoid another war, Earth sends a specially modified long range loderunner to make contact with the aliens – but the aliens aren’t interested in talking at all, and destroy the ship without a word. Barely a day later, the Gimp as they are labeled, launch a massive assault on all Earth’s colonies in the system, destroying most of them in a single stroke. Cut off, practically unarmed and under-supplied, Earth realizes it is again at war – like it or not – for the same tired old reasons as before, greed, territory, and power – only this time, the fight would be between the Human, and the inHuman – and it would be a fight to the death!

A collage of sketches done for the original first title of the Galaxii Series, originally titled “Galaxii”, from about 1990.

At the onset of the Gimp War, Humanity faces a terrible foe who is better equipped, better prepared – and also violent, remorseless and cruel. Earth’s would begin by having its military put down its farming implements and begin the mass manufacture of cutting edge weaponry whose designs had been buried in a vault for over a decade, and later, improvised from reverse-engineered captured Ruminarii tech.

Although outgunned and outmatched technologically, the Earth Defense Fleet (EDF) would distinguish itself through desperation, ferocity, and tenacity. The Gimp War would last five years, culminating with the Battle of Pluto – when the EDF finally pushes the invading Ruminarii force all the way back to Pluto, and defeat it outright. It is at this time that Earth is strongly unified socially and politically – and on the verge of achieving interstellar travel for itself.

The History of “Best Served Cold”

Although the Galaxii Series launches with “Blachart”, the story – the untold story – really begins many years before that – at the conclusion of the Third World War, set sometime in the 21st century… with the near annihilation of the Human race!

Best Served Cold” (original title “Galaxii”) is the origin story of the Galaxii Series and tells this story, interlaced with the stories of numerous characters and events of those times.

Origins

The Galaxii series started out as a series of false-starts while Christina was at high school. At that time she’d already learned to master writing sci-fi short stories with whole plots interesting enough to captivate the reader… but writing longer ones was for some time still beyond her. Then, one day in 1988, something clicked into place (not for the last time), and the Galaxii series was born. She began to churn out draft after draft of titles that would become the stories her readers recognize today – starting out with the first title in the Galaxii series – “Galaxii”.

Although Christina finished the first handwritten draft of “Galaxii” in the early 1990’s, the story remained in limbo – being redrafted numerous times over successive years. When the Galaxii Series was first published in 2005, the introductory first title was – and has remained “Blachart”. Christina went back several times to redraft the original first story as a prequel, uncertain of how to release it as part of the series without disrupting it completely. Finally, until early 2020, the story was ready for release after a major and complete redraft – and retitled as “Best Served Cold”. It was finally released – after more than 30 years in limbo – as a standalone novel!

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All material copyright © Christina Engela, 2020.

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