One of the best parts about writing science fiction (besides the advanced technology, the new worlds, and of course, the fashion) is creating new species. When George Lucas talked about creating Chewbacca for Star Wars, he said, “There was a dog in ‘American Graffiti’, but I didn’t use ‘Indiana” for the part because it was a night scene and I wanted a white dog. My wife was very upset that I didn’t put my own dog in the movie; so I said I’d put Indiana’s spirit in the next one. And that’s how the ‘Wookiee’ came into being.”
The spirit of my dog didn’t quite make it into Gemini (unless you count Shadi’s unconditional love, loyalty, and blatant disregard for life), but I did pull from a few other sources to create the species of the Gemini universe.
• Nyx – The bad guys. They came from a combination of things, but mostly Bob the Killer Goldfish from Earthworm Jim. Without their giant titanium suits, they’re incapable of functioning away from their home planet of Lophus, and without slave labor, they’re incapable of joining the galactic economy. Also, they suck. Most often referred to as those “damned oversized blowfish” by Uri.
• Vodni’du – Admittedly, I’m a little too in love with Bioware, the video game studio that brought me much joy with Mass Effect and Dragon Age. My blue skinned vodni’du are an homage to Mass Effect’s asari, but their biology is more based on seahorses. A select few of them are genderfluid, and their religion is one of the most prominent in the galaxy. However, I wanted to avoid what almost always happens in science fiction—the entire species believes the same way. The vodni have several branches of their principle religion, some agnostic, and atheists, and in between.
Vodni’du have blue skin with differing shades, black eyes, and black hair.
• V’iak – One of my favorites, admittedly. I haven’t done a lot of building with v’iak culture, but they have a group of women called the huntresses, who are almost like bounty hunters, and some of them also hunt lesser species for sport. It takes years of training and practice to become one of the elites, but once you’re part of the club, you have to make every single kill. They have a reputation to uphold.
The v’iak mostly have black skin, colorless eyes, and long, brightly colored hair. The huntresses have raised tattoos denoting their rank and number of kills.
• Eibronian – One of the lesser species, and one frequently hunted by the v’iak. Eibronians resemble Qunari from the Dragon Age universe. Eibronians are tall and muscular, with large horns on either side of their heads. Their blood is a useful panacea, able to treat most infections, and their horns are a source of pride for collectors. Eibronians are intelligent and resourceful, are capable builders and mechanics, and are often used as infantry in galactic disputes. However, their status as a lesser species keeps them from certain protections that the vodni’du, v’iak, humans, and other greater species enjoy.
• Gurita – Gurita are known as the worriers of the galaxy. They tend to prepare for every possible outcome of every possible scenario, which makes them the ultimate doomsday preppers. Somewhat resembling octopi, gurita do have tentacles (this is NOT that kind of book, just fyi), and also have small beaks. They’re typically extremely intelligent.
Hope you enjoyed learning about my species. There are many more that I haven’t covered, so you’ll just have to read the book to learn about them!
Being one of the Embassy’s glorified treasure-seekers has its perks…
Komandan Uriah Jacobs recovers ancient artifacts in exchange for more than just decent pay; he also receives guaranteed protection from his former owners, the nyx…until an emergency landing on a too-familiar colony brings him face-to-face with his past life and something more—a surprisingly priceless treasure in the form of a human woman.
A slave to the nyx since childhood…
Shadi spends her waking hours in the forge, dreaming of rescuing her brother with the help of a man she once worshipped like a father. A crashed ship on the colony becomes her only hope to escape. But before she can steal the ship, the pilot abducts her. They may be the same species, but will he help her find her Shilah?
Their attraction is undeniable…
Fighting it seems inconsequential as they evade the nyx’s bounty hunter and uncover a conspiracy that shines unwanted light on Shadi’s past and reveals the corruption in Uri’s beloved Embassy, placing their fledgling love in danger.
As the universe systematically falls apart, will Shadi and Uri’s newfound passion be enough to keep them alive?
Catherine Peace has been telling stories for as long as she could remember. She often blames two things for her forays into speculative fiction—Syfy (when it was SciFi) channel Sundays with her dad and The Island of Dr. Moreau by HG Wells. She graduated in 2008 from Northern Kentucky University with a degree in English and is still chasing the dream of being super rich and famous, mostly so she can sit around in her PJs all day and write stories. When not being a slave to the people in her head, she’s a slave to two adorable dogs.
Make sure to follow the whole tour—the more posts you visit throughout, the more chances you’ll get to enter the giveaway.
The tour dates are here: