Mistress Of The Ages (In Her Name, Book 9)

Mistress Of The Ages (In Her Name, Book 9) by Michael R. Hicks

Book: Mistress Of The Ages (In Her Name, Book 9) by Michael R. Hicks Read Free Book Online
Authors: Michael R. Hicks
told him, “rather than burning to smoke and ash upon a funeral pyre.”
    “I was still a youngling when the last war between the Settlements was fought,” Ulan-Samir said thoughtfully. “From what I recall, none of the ships were nearly as powerful as these.”
    Syr-Nagath nodded. “These vessels are drawn from the Ka’i-Nur Books of Time.” With a look upward, into the sky, she added, “They were used to destroy the Settlement on the Great Moon.”
    “You must have drawn builders from every part of the world. I have never seen so many.”
    “All of them are here, save those who remain at work building airships and other implements I require. They build until they can build no more, and only then are they given rest. I have drawn most of the healers and other robed castes here to support them.”
    “But what of the cities and villages? They must be suffering terribly.”
    “Their suffering will not last overlong,” she said quietly. “That, I promise you.” Pointing at the nearest ship, which was a scene of orchestrated chaos as warriors loaded supplies, carrying them up several massive ramps through yawning hatches, she said, “Would you like to see one?”
    “Of course,” he breathed.  
    At a gesture of her hand, one of her warriors dashed forward, leading a pair of magtheps. Quickly mounting them, Syr-Nagath and Ulan-Samir rode to the ship.
    “It is larger than it appeared,” Ulan-Samir said as he dismounted, following Syr-Nagath’s lead. He craned his neck, looking up at the sleek hull. It was dark green in hue and highly reflective, and Syr-Nagath’s name, written in stylized Ka’i-Nur script, was emblazoned across the raked prow. The hull’s rakish lines were broken only by streamlined weapons turrets and recessed gun ports.
    She led him on a tour of the vessel, laughing as he gaped like a child at its intricate complexities. Through the main sections they went, from the propulsion section to the galley, and finally to the bridge.  
    “Sit here,” she told him, indicating the large chair, almost a throne, that occupied the center of the bridge, from which the shipmaster or shipmistress commanded the vessel. Around that central chair was arrayed two circular tiers of consoles that were already occupied by warriors preparing the vessel for action.  
    He did as she bade him, and she smiled at the look on his face. Even as powerful as he was as the high priest of one of the ancient orders, he was not immune to the sense of power that sitting in the chair evoked. It was as she had hoped.  
    Ulan-Samir touched a control on the console and was rewarded with the main display springing to life, showing a view of Syr-Nagath’s pavilion, which lay ahead of the ship. Pressing the button again, the display went off. He touched several other controls that served different functions, a look of puzzlement growing on his face.
    “I have never seen such a thing before,” he told her, “and yet I seem to understand how it works.”
    “It is in our blood,” she told him. “The warriors require training, yes, but they take to their tasks quickly, as if they have done this all before and need only a reminder.” Standing behind him, she put a hand on his shoulder and leaned close. “Do you like it?”
    “How could I not?”
    “Then take me to my pavilion, and I will show you something you shall like far more.”
    After he did as she told him, she led him to her private chambers. By the light of flickering torches, she slowly removed her sandals, her armor, then her black undergarment, to stand before him wearing nothing but her collar. “Do you like what you see, most high of the Nyur-Ai’l?" she whispered.
    “Yes,” Ulan-Samir rasped, his eyes drinking in her beauty.
    She came to him and removed his armor with torturous slowness, undid his sandals, then peeled away his undergarment. She ran her fingers over his hardness, making him moan and quiver until he seized her arms and shoved her to the

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