The Proposal (part 53)

“So, it’s true? You’re using Terrestrials to harvest minerals?” Ayn’s sense of unreality grew as she watched her dad’s face twist into a grimace. “Ayn,” he said, “that is so far beyond the point of this conversation between you and I right now. This is about survival.” “You’re scaring me,” she said. “You should be

The Proposal (part 49)

It was obvious as soon as the Counsel began arriving that everyone was on edge about something. They stood in the living room, not even bothering to sit, drinking cocktails and eating finger food, their conversation a buzz of topics Ayn mostly didn’t understand until Professor Chirwnoff said, “That’s right, the mine’s been closed now

The Proposal (part 43)

Her dad caught her arm as she passed him. “Apologize, Ayn,” he said, not letting go. His voice was quiet but firm. Ayn clenched her jaw and turned enough so she faced the iron-haired woman whose lips curled in the faintest of smiles. A burst of heat rushed through Ayn’s chest. She’d only experienced that

The Proposal (part 42)

“Oh, Professor Hyarzden,” Lettie began, “I was only updating your daughter about the young man—” “Nev,” her dad finished, shaking his head. “Dad, you don’t believe what she’s saying, do you?” Ayn was incredulous. “Did you see the so-called evidence she produced?” Her dad frowned. “Ayn, you will not be rude to Lettie, she—” “She’s

The Proposal (part 38)

“Thank you,” her dad said to the Black Suit as the got out of the solar craft. On the front stoop of their apartment, he stretched; several bones cracking as he did. “I’ll be right there,” Ayn said. Her dad nodded as he raised a palm over the security box beside the front door, and

The Proposal (part 34)

A Black Suit—the compound’s security team—showed up forty minutes later to take Ayn to school. “I thought you said I could do whatever I wanted,” she snapped. She hadn’t intended to stay home, but she resented Lettie presuming that she would. She wasn’t stupid, she knew she could fail her dad. Lettie didn’t try to