Earth barely fed its own people. Jobs were scarce and many scholars pointed to this century as a new Dark Ages. This wasn’t the time to raise the banner for a new crusade against aliens. Or was it?
Barton Kinsolving has got a lot on his plate.
As mine supervisor for Interstellar Materials’ Deepdig #2 mining operation, he has to ensure that the mine is run safely, efficiently, and, most importantly, in a way that doesn’t make their alien landlords angry.
Humans are new to the interstellar scene. With a dying planet they were desperate to escape, they went out into the universe in the search of something better, only to find that there were others already there, more numerous and more technologically advanced.
Luckily, the alien races see the humans only as a primitive nuisance, and while they treat Earthlings with disdain, they can come to agreements. Such as allowing the humans to mine their land for rare earth materials that humanity needs to power interstellar flight – at a heavy price of course.
Theft of untold tons of rare materials has occurred, and been moved off-world without paying the tax. And the Lorr, the alien overseers, are not going to like that.
In the cause of his investigation, Kinsolving uncovers a much larger, much more insidious plan and suddenly he is a man marked for murder by the company he once served and the woman he once loved.
Framed for crimes beyond imagination, hunted by human and alien alike, only Barton can avert an interstellar war of unthinkable proportions!
Praise for Robert E. Vardeman:
“Fast action, unusual characters, and fun to read!” – Fred Saberhagen
“Without a doubt, Vardeman can write an exciting page-turner!” – MyShelf.com
Robert E. Vardeman has written over fifty science fiction, mystery, western and fantasy novels. As well as his main works he has written under eight pseudonyms, venturing into game tie-in works, Star Trek novels, and short fiction. After gaining a degree in physics, he began writing for fanzines, resulting in a nomination for the 1972 Hugo Award for the Best Fan Writer. His other Venture works include Cenotaph Road, A Symphony of Storms, and The Glass Warrior.