Seventeen-year-old Essie knows how to stitch up robotic drones so the men in the mining settlement remember she’s worth keeping around. She knows how to use her fists to make sure they keep their hands off her. But all her self-preservation skills don’t tell her how to deal with Kyle, a boy who’s depending on her to get his crashed shuttle off the ground and out of orbit.
He’s polite, chivalrous, even a little charming, and he gives Essie the kind of attention she’s never had ... until he discovers her secret. She’s the missing princess of Windsong, nemesis of his home planet, Candara. One betrayal later, he’s taking her home whether she likes it or not, to exchange for Candarans held captive by Essie’s father. What Kyle doesn’t know is she had damn good reasons for running away. His ‘leverage’ means her death.
STITCHING SNOW is a tale of Snow White in space, if Snow were a cage-fighting tech-head with daddy issues.
It took seventeen seconds to decide Jarom Thacker’s reputation as sharpest fighter on Thanda had been exaggerated. At twice my size—and age—he was still quick, forcing me to move or risk getting pinned against the cage. Like everyone else who came through Mining Settlement Forty-Two, though, he aimed for my gut. Never the most obvious target.
Wouldn’t want to botch the pretty girl’s face, right? Idiot.
I blocked him on the left but missed his fist slamming into me on the right. Pain flared through my ribs. The fire spurred me on, and I slipped Thacker’s grip when he grabbed at my arm.
Unlike him, I had no qualms about uglifying him further—not with the way he looked at me, the shudder it sent across my skin. The heel of my palm slammed into his nose with a satisfying crunch despite the cushioning of my shock-fiber handwraps. He ignored the blood and lunged blindly. An easy dodge, and I took the opening to knee his groin. When he doubled over, I kicked his legs from under him. He dropped and I followed, bracing my legs against his while my upper body pinned his shoulders. The shouts surrounding the cage crested as Thacker pushed against the threadbare mat. Before he could throw me off, I grabbed a fistful of his hair and slammed his head down.
“Three . . . two . . . one . . . fight goes to Forty-Two’s own Essie.”