The Last Mission of the Living by Rhiannon Frater
(The Last Bastion)
Publication date: August 28th 2014
Genres: Adult, Horror, Post-Apocalyptic, Zombies
Humanity teeters on the brink of extinction…
Vanguard Lindsay Rooney has faced the undead hordes of Inferi Scourge and lived to tell the tale, but she has also suffered horrible losses. Like millions of other civilians, she had hoped that The Bastion would recover after a team of modified soldiers eradicated the undead hordes of Inferi Scourge that infested their valley. Yet the city still crumbles around them, along with any chance of survival.
Lindsey’s growing friendship with Torran MacDonald, an officer with the Science Warfare division, is her only solace as the decline of the city continues. When food riots fill the streets, martial law is enacted, and the upper echelons of government battle for control of the city, Lindsey is conscripted by her superiors to embark on a dangerous mission into the dead world beyond The Bastion. To add even more complications, Torran and the SWD join the squad.
Soon, Lindsey realizes that her mission is more than what it seems, and there are secrets that could both destroy The Bastion and take her life.
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Rhiannon Frater is the award-winning author of over a dozen books, including the As the World Dies zombie trilogy (Tor), as well as independent works such as The Last Bastion of the Living (declared the #1 Zombie Release of 2012 by Explorations Fantasy Blog and the #1 Zombie Novel of the Decade by B&N Book Blog), and other horror novels. In 2014, her newest horror novel, The Mesmerized, will be released by Permuted Press. Dead Spots will be published in 2015 by Tor. She was born and raised a Texan and presently lives in Austin, Texas with her husband and furry children (a.k.a pets). She loves scary movies, sci-fi and horror shows, playing video games, cooking, dyeing her hair weird colors, and shopping for Betsey Johnson purses and shoes.
You can find her online at:Website: rhiannonfrater.com
Email: rhiannonfrater at gmail.com
Once on the main floor, she sat at her computer array beneath the elevated bed, and she logged into the program. After several long, excruciating seconds, the message downloaded. It was from Maria. Gnawing on her bottom lip, Lindsey quickly scrolled through it. The message was short, but worrying.
Lindsey, Dwayne and I need to talk to you and Commandant Pierce ASAP. Call tomorrow at exactly 1600 hours.
“You look worried.”
Lindsey gazed upward to see Torran peering at her over the rail of her bed.
“I’m always worried in the back of my mind.” With a sheepish smile, she shrugged slightly. “Well, not worried exactly. I’m always got some fixation back in the gray matter.”
“Sort of like you got a computer program running in the back of your mind sorting things out?” Torran ventured.
Surprised that he got it so right, Lindsey gazed at him in awe.
“You get a look in your eyes. Like you’re processing something.” Torran slipped over the side of the bed and dropped down. “Considering your very nice computer display, I’m going to guess that you’re good at working with them, too.”
“My father was a programmer. He taught me everything I know.”
“But you had the natural talent, too, huh?”
“You can say that.” Lindsey uneasily shifted her weight on her chair, not willing to let Torran too far into her personal headspace.
“But you’re a grunt. Not a programmer.”
Lindsey swiveled toward him and shrugged. “I wanted to do something different. I didn’t want to follow in someone else’s footsteps but make my own path.”
With a slight nod, Torran rested his hands on the edge of her bed and stretched. It was very provocative and she was distracted by the muscles shifting beneath his skin. She wanted to be distracted. Fear was a tight knot in her gut.
“And you don’t want to talk about it.”
“Is this where we draw lines?” Torran asked, tilting his head.
“Yep.” Lindsey slid to her feet and ran her hands down his chest. “We’re getting to know each other. We’re getting to be friends. But not only did I lose the stupid ex, but my best friend. I need a new friend.”
“A friend with benefits.” Torran stared into her eyes somberly. “I’m there with you.”
“Are you?” Lindsey really hoped he was, because she liked him.
“This life is too uncertain,” he said at last. “Better to keep things simple. Uncomplicated.”
“Let’s enjoy the rest of the night before we have to go back to the real world.” Lindsey rubbed her lips against his chin softly.
Torran cupped her face and kissed her lightly. “I better go.”
“No, Lindsey. I should. You see, if I stay any longer I won’t want to go back to the real world.”
Frowning, she feared she’d made a misstep with him.
“The thing is this... you’re a great girl. And I think we’re going to be great friends. But we need boundaries. Sleeping here tonight... a little too much over the line.”
“So don’t sleep.” Lindsey gave him the beguiling look that seemed to affect him so much.
“Oh, that’s playing so dirty.” Torran laughed.
“One more time, then you can go home.” Lindsey turned up her flirty look, her fingers lightly touching his hip.
“Fine. But... boundaries.”
His kiss rendered her breathless.