Just My Luck:Coletti Warlords 01By: Gail Koger
To Darcie, Dorothy, Dawn and Paula. Couldn’t have done it without you.
In 2015 something nasty found our world. They call themselves the Tai-Kok. My stomach roils as I remember that first psychic contact. Their hunger felt like a slap in the face. It was sharp, visceral and constant. They were malevolent, depraved ghouls who lived to eat. Literally. Their image is forever burned into my mind. Tall, hairless, skeletal humanoids with a mouth full of sharp metal teeth.
To complete the total gross out, three blood-red eyes glared out of skin so transparent you could see their bones and innards. Ewww.
How they found our world or why they consider us good eatin’, who knows. The few peace delegates who tried to communicate with them got butchered. After that, everyone was too busy running for their lives.
The Tai-Kok ate their way across Europe and the Middle East until they had the bad luck to capture a suicide bomber. He blew himself up over the Pacific. And, lucky us, the ship he’d attacked crashed outside of Tucson, Arizona. We salvaged their technology and have been using it against them ever since.
Having psychic abilities is a family legacy of mine. Another family trait is everyone, and I do mean everyone, is either in law enforcement or the military.
My brother, Quinn, and I just happen to be the strongest psychics in the world. Which kinda makes up for me being the baby of the family.
Kinda, since I’m what you’d call a trouble magnet, too. This can be a good thing or a bad thing in my line of work. I opted for being a cop.
Finding bad guys easily is good, but they never want to go to jail, which is bad. Since I’m sorta pint-sized, the only thing keeping me from being shot, stabbed or otherwise mangled on a daily basis is something I call my spidey sense. It’s like internal radar that warns me of approaching danger.
I’m also telepathic. Relax. I can’t read your thoughts. The only minds I can read are those of other psychics, which pretty much means my entire family. Since the mind reading works both ways with my family, that can be a real pain in the butt.
They’re always ragging on me about something.
When I was a teenager, it made dating hell. Dad would pop in with a ‘Kaylee Lynn Jones, what the hell is that punk’s hand doing on your breast?’ Or Mom would break into a make out session with, ‘Kaylee, sweetie, a lady doesn’t allow a guy to stick his tongue down her throat on the first date.’
You get the picture. Add my brothers into the mix and I had 24/7 surveillance. And they wonder why I’m twenty-five and still a virgin. Go figure.
My other talent is critter control. Dogs, cats, birds, you name them, I can control them, call them, wind them up and sic them on someone or something. This is a talent which comes in real handy when dealing with alien freaks or low-life scum bags.
Besides being a cop, I also work officially as a Siren for my brother, Quinn. Part of my job description is mentally scanning our galaxy for any signs of the Tai-Kok. They call us Sirens because we’re the early warning system that keeps the human race from becoming an all-you-can-eat banquet for the Tai-Kok. And it’s a battle that we must win or face extinction.
Two weeks ago, while I was searching the asteroid belt for Tai-Kok ships, I sensed an alien presence. It was male. Definitely not human. I sensed his utter aloneness. His grief for those taken from him and his burning need for vengeance resonated so deeply within me that I instinctively reached out psychically.
Big mistake. Now he’s in my head and dug in tighter than a tick on a hunting dog. No matter how hard I try to dislodge the little shit from my mind, he won’t leave. And, just my luck, his hold on me is getting stronger. For the time being, my uninvited guest seems to be content to just observe. That and growl whenever anything male gets near me. I mean, c’mon. It’s like having a rabid pit bull stuck in your head.
My last date was a total nightmare. Not only did my brothers show up at the bar and interrogate Joe as if he was a suspect in a homicide, but my own personal pit bull went into attack mode.
Mine, he snarled in my mind and, an instant later, Joe leapt to his feet, screaming hysterically about monsters and ran from the bar. And my wonderful brothers thought it was the funniest thing they had seen all year.