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Lyz Russo

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Solar Wind II - The Assassin
by Lyz Russo   

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Books by Lyz Russo
· The Mystery of the Solar Wind
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Publisher:  P'kaboo Publishers, E Rossouw trading as ISBN-10:  0620465948 Type: 

Copyright:  June 2008 ISBN-13:  9780620465946

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The Solar Wind II - The Assassin
P'kaboo Publishers - Bookshop

"Remember who you are!" Radomir Lascek's desperate plan to vanquish the Unicate. Can the Assassin hold onto his identity?

 Copyright © Lyz Russo, 2008


ISBN 978-0-620-46594-6

The Solar Wind II :

The Assassin


Lyz Russo

P’kaboo Publishers 2010


Copyright © Lyz Russo, 2008

First published online 2008

First paperback edition via P’kaboo Publishers, 2010

ISBN 978-0-620-46594-6

The Solar Wind II: The Assassin

"Remember who you are…"



There was always damp down here.

It peered out under hooded eyes, noting the solitary man

with his small round spectacles, focusing intently on his

work. He glanced up, his eyes looking straight through it.

It faded into the background and slunk up the steep


Passages it knew so well; it moved through them half

consciously. A white lab. Crew cabins. All quiet. Orange

bioluminescence lining the passageways. The place had a

name, it knew; if it could think in words it would

remember. Instead it remembered impressions. Blood.

Death. Silence.

It moved up silently to the upper deck. Voices ahead. It

opened a door and peered into a blue room with a beige

table and chairs, and half-familiar faces. People. One of

them lifted his head, looked straight at it, nodded. He had a

name, but it didn’t think in names. There was no point.

What it saw was life energy fizzing through bodies, living

blood coursing through veins, scrawny necks. Whoever

had designed the human body had designed it for disaster.

Necks were a stupid invention. They were fragile. And

skin – what was skin supposed to do? Be a loose bag to

contain all the insides? Because it stopped nothing! Not

like scales, or metal armour plating…

It left the doorway, turned and continued up. Avoiding

the cabin across the way. Because if it opened that door, it

would get sucked into a vacuum where they were waiting to

tear it apart…


“…details the plans for total eradication… pest



Federi peered out under hooded eyelids, listening

intently. His Stiletto had found its own way into his hand.

His body had retreated by itself into the crevice.

It was dark except for single orange glowing points in the

heavy haze. The crevice was the space between two boxes

in his storage bay, at the prow of the ship. The awful

flapping noise of vampire wings was the night wind in the

sails. The churning of the abyss was the prow wave against

the Solar Wind’s hull. The earthquake was just a bout of

choppy waves. And the faces, staring at him from the dark,

those accusing, half-familiar faces – they were gone. Only

a dream. He sat up, breaking out of the paralysed trance,

trading it with vivid memories of too many lives snuffed

out on that Rebellion Schooner. Of course they’d come and

haunt him tonight!

But they – who? The data capsules?

What was in those forsaken capsules? He needed to

know, now. He hadn’t looted the one from Anya Miller and

nearly lost his life and his friend and the Solar Wind

securing the second one, just so that he could lie around in

the storage deck entertaining nightmares! Vampire wings?

Did the capsules contain a genetic formula for a new


He cast a glance across the deck. Captain on the bridge.

Alone. The deck, empty. It was late. His feet started

towards the bridge.




(Federi is not the only one sensing trouble.)

“Fun and games,” commented Marsden on the bridge.

Radomir Lascek glanced up from the console, following

his First Mate’s gaze out onto the deck. He sighed,

depressed, returning his attention to the infernal stuff that

had come out of the two Unicate capsules. “My friend,

how are we going to deflect this? We’ll never have our

defences ready in time!”

“We’ve known for years,” said Jonathan Marsden. “It’s

in their character.”

“There’s not enough time,” countered the Captain. He

stared moodily at the deck.

Federi’s hunches were accurate. If he predicted that the

Solar Wind wasn’t going to survive the next three weeks…

Lascek frowned at the Ceilidh out on the deck. Let them

sing and be happy while they were still alive! The Tzigan

had done well when he’d talked him into hiring those three.



Captain’s summons from the bridge was more than

welcome! Federi headed up the passage and ascended the

steps into the control room.

“What do you make of that out there?” asked Lascek,

pointing to a disturbance on the turbulences screen.

“Shoals,” said Federi. “Quite a few. Some quite


“No, that there,” countered Jon Marsden.

“Ah,” said the Tzigan. “No idea. Enemy submarine?

Unicate experiment?”

“Jokes aside, Federi,” said Radomir Lascek. “What could

it be?”

“It’s so big,” replied the gypsy. “Should be able to see

it!” He glanced out through the volcaniplex windshield.

“Bleeding pea soup out there!”

“Should send the minicam,” suggested Marsden.

Radomir Lascek punched a sequence.

“It’s not responding.”

“Hah! Probably needs new anti-freeze on that hatch!”

speculated Federi, reached for a life-vest and put it on,

already on his way outside. “Give me half a minute,


Rain was pelting down in nearly solid sheets. Federi

peered in the direction of that disturbance and saw nothing.

He climbed into the rigging, and past the Crow’s Nest to

the very top of the mast. What a stupid time for the thing to

go out of action! He fished the tube of hydropolyglossimer

anti-freeze lubri-squatch out of his pocket

and applied a liberal glob of it all around the rim of the tiny

hatch. The mini-hold sprung open. He followed the tiny

camera with its miniature helicopter blades with his gaze as

it whirred out of its hold and into the storm like a mad


And then his eyes wandered beyond it, as the rainsquall

passed and visibility was suddenly restored as if by magic.

The Solar Wind lifted onto a high crest, and he swallowed

and blinked. And activated his com.

“Captain, it’s a freak wave. A huge one.” He fished his

binoculars out of his pocket and peered through them. “At

least a mile long, I’d say, and coming at an angle to the

normal waves.” With frantic haste he activated the

binoculars’ distance- and size-measurement features.

“’Bout two miles away, and a height of over twenty metres.

With the sort of trough it must have, that would make it

thirty-five to forty metres high! That means it’s something

like a twenty… no, twelve-storey building coming at us!”

Lascek swore. “Federi, get below, now!”




The Solar Wind II: The Assassin

End of preview



"An exhilerating fast-paced tale"

An exhilarating fast paced tale that keeps you glued to each page from beginning to end.

Again we meet all our old friends from the Solar Wind in an adventure of a different sort, testing friendship and trust. I recommend “The Assassin” to anyone who wishes to escape to an exciting life at sea with some of the most diverse and interesting characters.

(Ruthven Frylinck – Reader)

Professional Reviews

Review by Leslie Hyle Winton Noble
Review by Leslie Hyle Winton Noble, reader, freelance editor and author of several books:

Readers already familiar with the remarkable Solar Wind schooner, her ‘pirate’ crew, and her twisted world of the future, will expect the constant surprises and puzzles which leap from the pages. Those not, will soon find their sea-legs and adapt to the writing style which, without using first person narration, changes to the point of view of main characters in each scene.

Amidst intrigues and treachery aboard, it comes to light that the evil Unicate regime has extremist factions whose fanatical leaders are threatening the very safety of the planet. Assassination seems the only solution - and there is a trained assassin aboard. This Assassin needs help from someone as protection from a dangerous other-self, and from other people for part of the task. Who fills these roles is part of the delight.

As the story develops, emotional entanglements and youthful indiscretions provide further complications. Teenagers and young adults alike show typically impulsive behaviour, threatening not only individual safety but the very success of the vital missions.

As happened in the first novel, mysteries frequently arise and solutions to some emerge; others remain to provide future threads. Action is not limited to elimination of individual baddies, either. There are some pitched battles. This makes it sound like a violent book, but the author handles such scenes with a sensitivity suited to younger readers; yet with enough realism to satisfy adult ones.

Overall, this is the sort of book – and series – which one wants to re-read in order to enjoy the parts one breathlessly skimmed over the first time. Dialogue is good. In between action scenes one breathes a sigh of relief and enjoys humorous situations or a ‘ceilidh’ break as much as do the crew. Imagination never flags.

Bad points? I’ll come back to you if I think of any.

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