Zara – A Name Among The Stars – SciFi Adv/Rom – Episode 16

Whoa! 60k words in total. This week’s episode is shorter than I promised, but longer than last week’s (3.4k). The pot is coming to the boil.

Love to hear from you as ever.



I have had to remove the episodes I posted here to fall into line with Amazon’s policies on Kindle Unlimited books.

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When I post stories on my blog, they will remain for at least a month after completion.



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About Mark Henwick

I was born in Africa and left out in the sun too often. An early interest in philosophy and psychology was adequately exorcised by tending bars. And while trying to enroll in a class to read Science Fiction full time, I ended up taking an engineering degree which splendidly qualified me to move into marketing. That in turn spawned a late onset career in creative writing. When not working, I get high by the slightly less conventional means of a small light aircraft. My first book, 'Sleight of Hand' is available on Amazon at

12 responses to “Zara – A Name Among The Stars – SciFi Adv/Rom – Episode 16”

  1. sarah says :

    I enjoyed this episode pritty much -the dream was a thrilling expirience and can’t waite fore next friday to see weather her violent slip in front of the media has serious consequences.

  2. Shana Pare says :

    You clever dog! I must have read and reread those opening paragraphs at least a dozen times before I realized what was going on.

    I was about to go back to the last chapter because I was absolutely convinced that I surely had somehow missed last Friday’s email.

    Well done, sir.

    • Mark Henwick says :

      Yes, apologies. In a book, it would just be a flick of the page and the final sentence would tell you she was off to bed, so the dream wouldn’t feel so out-of-sequence.

  3. Richard says :

    I hope there is something in the memory unit that can be used to effect public opinion. Legal nuances are easily ignored as necessary evils.

    Getting on the boat would be easy, a nock out gas that metabolize quickly. That way by the time the drugs and alcohol do the job there is no trace.

    Can the Delphines carry extra power sources?

    Odd that talon took the lock with her, personaly I always leave locks attached to one side of the door. To big and unconfortable in my pocket and easily misplaced.

    I’m really looking forward to the next installment.

    • Mark Henwick says :

      You’re right about the lock, and it’s not really necessary for it to be taken away. I’ll change that.

      I had envisaged the Delphine as having either a large battery or an internal combustion engine with a limited amount of fuel. But in either case, dragging along an extra supply underwater would limit the range. Good question though – I’ll have to think how to incorporate it without getting into a long technical discussion.

      Getting on the boat – no. There are gases that could knock someone out, and I can write it so they metabolize quickly. However, delivering the gas on an open boat out in the middle of the sea would be extraordinarily difficult and risky.

      Actually *finding* the boat is a problem as well. The proposed murderer is trailing along behind with a limited range on the Delphine, having no idea where or how far the Duchess is going. Also, the Low Lady is called that because she rides low to the water, and is difficult to see, as required by a smuggling craft.

      The memory unit …. tune in.

      • Mark Henwick says :

        DoH! A Delphine is electric of course. The range-limiting problem still applies.

        • Michael Orton says :

          This is a Sci-Fi world. The power source can be a battery with whatever energy density best suits the plot, or a fuel cell using the sea water as one of its reagents and the other half can be as limited as you like.

          Moving though water doesn’t require a huge amount of energy if you have the appropriate streamlining available. Moving through water quickly without being observed is far more difficult.

          You have limited control of the Laws of Physics. Range is only a problem if you want it to be, Stealth v speed has to be explained, though you have the right to invoke technobabble if you really must.

          The danger is that the more you define about the technology available the more likely it is to come back and block the plot later.

  4. Justin Savely says :

    The dream got me there for a minute. I am assuming this when the Government realises who she is?

    • Mark Henwick says :

      As she’s grabbed the memory from the main mediacam, it depends whether there were any other cameras taking pictures or videos at the time…

      Anyway, difficult to keep this secret if the conspirators want the information out there.

      Tune in next week.

  5. Vroni says :

    Loving the little hints. There is a small Handheld Camera in Play….
    As usual this will get worse before it gets better.
    Are there no trackers to hide on Board available? So I know exactly where to go? Or is there something like GPS wich man be hacked(and Leaves a Trail to follow for showa)?
    Still waiting impatiently,
    BR, Vroni

    • Mark Henwick says :

      Yes, the GPS tracker would work, but would also register on scans, and might make someone suspicious.
      Of course, the Low Lady might have a tracker built in for safety, and that signal can be hacked.
      And yes, as you noted, the scruffy girl has a handheld camera, and like a cellphone, these can be transmitting back into the InfoHub as they record… Oh, no!


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