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Since committing an environmental crime on the post apocolyptic planet Klairn is grounds for execution, investigating the guilty is quite dangerous for a Protector of Klairn.
The rookies joining the ranks of this elite core of environmental spies team up with experienced veterans for the ride of their lives.
Book two of the Klairn series takes you on a voyage with a twisty plot filled with adventure on the Majestic Ocean.
While Iona and Enoki, a dynamic fellow Protector must pose as newlyweds in a risky espionage assignment, Lexti is confronted with feelings of jealousy as he must stay on shore and work on research with local animals.
Chapter Four Iona carefully leaned over the small sea craft as she grasped the rope and attempted to pull Enoki up onto the slick deck. The waves of this part of the Majestic were somewhat choppy today; as there had been a storm two nights before. The results of this for poor Enoki was that each time he tried to swing one of his legs up to the railing, the ship would seemingly move out from underneath him. Drake and Iona were pulling on the rope, and Drake’s job was to anchor the rope and hold it steady as Iona would hold Enoki’s hand (or arm or whatever she could take hold) and assist him as he pulled himself on board. To make matters worse, the deck had received a liberal amount of water, from both the rains and the splashing about of Enoki as he tried to climb up, and both Drake and Iona were struggling to remain on their feet. Remain on their feet, they did not, however, as they continued their efforts to pull Enoki on board the small craft. What happened was this: Enoki decided to get the better of the situation by using hand over hand technique to get himself further up the rope. This was no small trick, as he had to take special care not to bump any of the samples of sand and porous rocks from the Majestic’s floor. These were in small containers balancing around his waist in a tray with holes to hold each floatable vial, and locked into place with a special click-type mechanism. To bump one could cause a vial to break, making Enoki’s work for the day less than valuable. This is why an ordinary ladder could not be used. As Enoki struggled to pull himself up with the rope, he had to keep his feet on the side of the craft and walk himself up. Looks good, he thought to himself. “I am as strong as I am brilliant and resourceful. The only thing wrong with Enoki’s plan, however was the fact that this stance of his caused Iona to lean farther over the deck than ever. This also made it even more difficult to keep her hand on the rope. Iona squeezed herself between the second and third rail, regretting her well-sized bosom for not the first time that day and wavered slightly before reaching Enoki’s hand. At that moment the boat pitched, Drake swore as he fell, and Iona plunged headfirst into the chilly water, bumping Enoki backward into the Majestic Ocean again for the fourth time that half hour. As Iona submerged into the green wetness, she felt herself bumping the samples. Her whole body slammed into Enoki’s, and she felt a strong masculine leg come up and kick her chin. If I wasn’t so wet already, I’d cry, she thought, scowling underwater. She burst into the air, and felt the cold moisture sear her lungs as she took a deep breath. As she brushed aside a lock of her dark, wet hair, which had pasted itself over her eyes, she saw an angry, red-faced Enoki glaring straight at her. “I’d be a whole lot better off without your help,” Miss Stonefinder, he said in the brogue of the Yarven Province. “Otherwise perhaps I should call you Miss Sample Finder since you knocked them right off of me. Do you think you could trouble yourself to swim clumsily about to help retrieve them?” Angered by her colleague’s sarcasm, Iona opened her mouth to reply, but was overcome by a bright green wave of the ocean and swallowed a mouthful of water. Through her coughing fit she could hear Drake scowling as he called down to them. “Hello down there! Damn it you two! There’s a sample floating behind Enoki there! Grab it! Quickly now!” Iona sputtered as she swam toward the sample. Enoki did one backstroke move as he splashed it further away. “That took talent,” she said. “Quiet,” Enoki growled. Suddenly he lunged towards Iona’s left ear. Surprised, Iona could not help but yelp loudly as she dodged him. This resulted in another mouthful of salty water but she managed to swallow it without coughing. As she looked over, she saw that Enoki had secured one of the vials. “Did you think I was going to hit you, lass?” Enoki asked, trying unsuccessfully to conceal his amusement. “I feel most certain that you need to work on your espionage skills a bit more. Yelping about and all that. It won’t do, really. Help me with this thing, will you? I can’t see to get the vial to click into place.” “Here,” Iona said as she swam a little closer to him. Enoki handed her the container of sand and she took it from him. “There now,” he laughed. “At least we’ve gotten this far. I’m going to guide your hand down to my waist. I will hold the belt steady and you click it in.” As he did so, Iona gingerly slid the vial into the little hole and maneuvered it around until she felt it click. It actually took a few moments since she and Enoki had to tread water; jogging in place, their legs occasionally bumping each other’s while she did this. At the sound of the successful Click! Enoki looked up at Iona and smiled broadly. “There now! Think you could do that again without getting fresh with me?” Iona blushed slightly as the soaking wet, handsome man turned away from her to reach for the other vial. I feel like such a lost child out here, she thought. He’s obviously experienced as a Protector and with women. I am not experienced with men or as a Protector. What if I don’t fit in? Another wave came and splashed Iona right in the face and banged her right side up against the sea craft. “I thought you said you could swim!” Drake called down to Iona. “I can!” Iona called back up to the navigator and lead man of the project. “Well, tell your body that! It seems to have forgotten,” sputtered Enoki as he spat out the water that splashed up over him as well. Drake called down again. “Enoki!” “What?” “How many vials are missing?” “I have to ask the lady to count.” Iona swam back to Enoki, took the second vial and clicked it again. “Just a second and I’ll tell you!” She called back up to Drake without turning around. She felt around Enoki’s waist, feeling his breath on her face as she did this. “One’s missing on this side,” she said, then pursed her lips tightly as she felt a wave wash over her. “Good girl, you’re catching on,” said Enoki once the wave passed over him also. Iona kept her hand on the belt attachment and slid around. This time, however, as she slid her hand around, she accidentally cupped her hand firmly on Enoki’s behind. “Sorry,” she muttered, grateful that Enoki could not see how crimson she was turning. “Quite all right, lass,” he returned coolly, but Iona could see his neck redden as well. Iona continued to swim around to come up on his left side. “ I only felt the one missing,” she told him. “Drake!” Called Enoki. “We only have the one missing. Do you see it?” “I’m looking!” Drake yelled back. Iona and Enoki swam about as best they could while dodging waves. Then Drake had an idea.