Star Wars meets Starcraft in this high-octane science fantasy adventure about aliens invading from beyond our galaxy.
The Earth is long lost, but humanity has a chance. When an alien race known as the Krai’kesh emerge from beyond our galaxy, leaving death and destruction in their wake, veteran Federation navy captain Martin Rigsby and his fleet face their greatest challenge yet. Captain Rigsby, along with a marine lieutenant, pilot and intelligence officer, must employ every trick in their arsenal, including ‘magic’to contain the emergence of the enemy before it is too late.
What makes your world special or different?
I feel that what makes my world special or different is that it is an amalgamation of technology and magic that stretches for over two millennia with a detailed timeline. My world begins in my first trilogy as almost pure fantasy with some technological artifacts and elements, then shifts through the years as this fantasy world advances. My latest book, Emergence, is the culmination of those advances over 2,000 years. The world has passed from medieval-esque world through its own renaissance, industrial revolution, steampunk, modern and post-modern eras.
Part of what drove me to connect the fantasy to the science fiction in a shared universe like this was the question I always asked when reading books like Lord of the Rings. I wondered what would happen as time progressed. Would the world remain a low-tech world or would it eventually advance to where the humans or other races went among the stars?
There are no elves or dwarves in my universe, but the core concept of what happens when a fantasy world (with magic) advances technologically is part of what drove me.
How does your main character fit into this world?
There are multiple point of view characters in Emergence. The captain mentioned in the blurb, Captain Martin Rigsby, is a veteran naval captain in the United Federation of Planets navy. He’s seen a lot of combat against the Rakosh Empire, the Commerce Sector and various other small governments and organized crime fleets over the years. As Emergence opens, he is nearing retirement and sort of enjoying a more leisurely post at the far edge of the Milky Way galaxy.
There is also Derek Jamison, a marine leading training operations on a planet that gets attacked at the beginning of the novel. He ends up partnering with characters who were featured in my fantasy novels (yes, they lived for over 2,000 years), but those characters are not PoV characters in this book.
Selene Artois is a pilot assigned to the same fleet Martin Rigsby commands. She’s a hotshot pilot with a privileged past. She plays a pivotal role in Emergence.
Lastly, Kimberly Hague is a Federation Ingelligence Agency officer who, at the beginning of the novel, is forced to protect the president of the Federation from an alien assault. This kicks off an investigation into alien infiltration that goes deeper than she knows.
Is there a system of magic? If so, please tell us about it. Or tell us about the technology of your world.
There are several systems of magic and some technology.
- The primary form of ‘magic’ is in the form of energy and matter manipulation by mages using their mind. Mages are able to manipulate matter, such as particles, and energy, such as light, to perform feats normal humans could not. For example, they could summon fire by rapidly accelerating the particles around an object, lighting it on fire, or they could just rapidly accelerate the air particles to create fire out of nothing, but that is more difficult. More dangerous would be pulling the heat from their own bodies to create the fire, but it is possible. Different mages have different affinities toward one magic or another. Some are stronger with manipulating heat and fire, while others are better at manipulating minerals and dirt and things from within the earth. Still others excel at manipulating currents of air or water to summon things like tornadoes or tidal waves. Some mages turn their talents inward to become doctors or surgeons.
- There is shapeshifting, which is a type of manipulation of matter. It is primarily practiced by druids, but as time goes on the druidic order splits and some former druids start a line of shapeshifters focusing only on wolves, creating werewolves.
- Long distance travel across vast distances of space is possible through the ability known as “shifting.” Some people have natural shifting abilities (such as Bridgette or her daughter Isabelle), while others, in the time of Emergence, have had their brains and bodies augmented to allow them to artificially shift into shadow space. Shadow space is like a sort of hyperspace or warp space where time moves different and space is compressed.
Shifters can travel vast distances with a thought, cutting the time it takes to go between solar systems from months or years down to hours, days or weeks, depending on the distance.
- There are also shadow gates, which are fixed structures placed in certain solar systems that mimic the shifting phenomenon when ships pass through the event horizon. I modeled them after the jump gates from Babylon 5 in some ways. Most military ships have their own shifter or team of shifters that can shift a ship or entire fleet into shadow space without the need for a shadow gate.
- Manipulation of space-time in a ‘bubble’ around a person is limited to only one known character in my universe, Dawyn Darklance. He has the ability to slow or completely stop time relative to himself. He moves normally but to him the world is slowed or stopped. This gives him an advantage in combat. Emotional stress or dire circumstances can sort of ‘unlock’ his ability to completely stop time and most of the time he is only able to slow it.
- Zombies do exist! Well, sort of. About ten years before the events of Emergence a plague wiped out an entire planet and re-animated them as mindless zombies. However, the story didn’t end there. A scientist figured out a way, using nanites and implants, to recreate the synapses of the undead, basically giving them back their higher brain functions. The infected still remained, for all intents and purposes, dead, but they had higher brain functions. Of course, just the fact they exist causes social tension akin to racism in the 20th century on earth and stigmatism and discrimination. At the time of Emergence the phenomenon is accepted but still feared in some circles. It is an uphill battle for those who did not choose to die and be reanimated.
- I’ve allowed for vampires in that a mad scientist basically creates a race of super humans who have to feed on the life energy of living humans to survive, but I haven’t fully fleshed it out. I’m hopeful that eventually some ambitious author will come along and, with my permission, write an origin story for vampires set in my universe that they can then sell and make money on.
- Technology-wise, there is nano-technology during the time of Emergence. There are lasers and space ships and also coil guns, which are basically guns that use electromagnetic coils to hyper-accelerate projectiles to high speeds, sort of like miniature railguns, though railguns do exist separately also. There are starfighters and androids and robots, though we don’t see too many of those in Emergence. There is adaptive combat armor and neural implants to help augment the communication and cognitive ability of people as well, though most implants are restricted to the military and essential civilian personnel due to the “new” nature of the implants. One of the reasons some of the characters from my fantasy trilogy survived for 2,000 years was remnant nanites brought by the escapees (known as the Founders) from future Earth that kept these characters healthy and stopped them from aging. They also received neural implants, but kept them a secret for many centuries until technology had advanced sufficiently for general society to accept it (think of them like the Illuminati of Tar Ebon).
What are the people who inhabit your world like? Are they based on real-world cultures? What systems of government are in place?
The world of Tar Ebon, which is featured in the fantasy trilogy and is the capital planet of the Federation in Emergence, was inhabited by survivors from Earth who had fled from the future and gone back into the past in the hopes of having a second chance to defeat the alien Krai’kesh.
There were eight ark ships, with seven landing on Tar Ebon, and the eighth being lost…
The ark ships were much like Noah’s Ark in that they carried embryos from all the animals on Earth and thousands of humans from various cultures. These cultures amalgamated and combined with the existing people on the planet and created new cultures that resembled Earth cultures in some ways but were different in others.
For example, there are desert samurai, known as the Sagami, who basically are like Bedouins mixed with Japanese Samurai. Then there are the Rovarkians, who were historically a mix of like Huns/Mongols with Native Americans.
Are there any non-human characters: i.e., robots, sentient animals, androids, AI, alien races, etc?
There aren’t any magical creatures, just humans with special abilities.
There are robots, androids, AI and alien races.alien race is known as the Krai’kesh and they are the race that drove the humans from Earth in the future and forced them to fleet to the past. The Krai’kesh are quadruped aliens that stand upright and also have two arms with pincers at the end and mandibles surrounding their mouth aperture. They stand taller than humans and wear a hard carapace that is difficult to pierce with energy or projectile weapons. They use their ferocity and numbers to intimidate and overwhelm human opponents.
Is there anything special, precious, or unique about your world’s geography or its place in the universe?
Tar Ebon is special because human civilization had been more advanced than Earth at the same period of time before it was destroyed mysteriously. For example, in like 2,000 BC on Earth the human civilization on Tar Ebon was already in the Medieval period. Human archaeologists from Earth in the future found Tar Ebon and dug up the ruins of said civilization and dated it. They made this observation and tucked it away. Then when the Krai’kesh invaded and all was lost they remembered that fact and used a time machine to send what survivors they could back into the past to SAVE Tar Ebon from being destroyed millennia earlier, to prepare the human civilization for the return of the Krai’kesh.
One unique geographic feature on Tar Ebon was a world-spanning super-storm centered on the equator.
It was known as the Storm Wall. It was neutralized in the years following the fantasy trilogy (I’ll show it in a later book) and is not present in the science fiction era.
How does the landscape or geography of your world affect the plot or theme of the story?
There are four continents and in the fantasy series the two continents in the northern hemisphere were separated from the two continents in the southern hemisphere. On one continent the Federation was born, on the other the Rakosh Empire was born. This led to inter-continental war during the fantasy period that ended up carrying on to the stars as a sort of Cold War.
What is one last thing you would like readers to know about your world?
One thing I would like readers to know about my world is that there will be many, many more stories set in my universe in the months and years to come. I will not only be expanding the war between the Krai’kesh and humanity during the science fiction era, of which the Dark Tide Trilogy is the first of many trilogies to come, but also going back and telling stories set during the fantasy, steampunk, modern and post-modern eras. I also plan on partnering with other authors to license them to write other stories in my shared universe (sort of like my own Kindle World or Star Wars Expanded Universe). So stay tuned for that.
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