What's a space opera? It's a story set in a world of science fiction and/or fantasy that contains lots of characters stumbling through life.
Gatekeepers, originally published as a novelette for kindle called "In Plain Sight", is about a clan of pagan magicians in a fictional town called New Babylon, just north of Seattle, where odd things begin happening. Doors slam shut in peoples' faces, dust bunnies pull rugs out from underfoot, and a few people find themselves reading minds and shooting sparks from the tips of their fingers. Magic becomes a reality.
Humans are in the next evolutionary leap, which involves mental processes, unlike the previous major leap -homo sapiens standing upright and discovering their thumbs. With humans scattered all over the galaxy, thanks to the Udug (the Grays) who have been taking Earth humans for several thousand years for unknown purposes, the Udug find themselves scrambling to hold on to all the other worlds and races they have been lording over. Something more is going on with our magicians, however, as well as a few Thayan Empire humans.
When alien ships start firing at each other in Earth's solar system, the legendary Grays verses Earth's new friends from the Thayan Empire, Earth is unexpectedly tossed into the deep end of an interstellar war.
Not only are the Udug taken a-back by the unexpected human leap, so are the Thayans. Why have the Udug kept Earth, admittedly in the BFE of the Milky Way, from seeing the ships of other races? Why did they mettle with Earth's history and science? What is it that they have been hiding? WHY have they been hiding?
When a US Air Force pilot is kidnapped by the Udug, and their ship takes a wrong turn through a bridge in space sending them crashing into the Thayan Empire, Captain Kate Lourdes keeps her wits about her and is able to pinpoint Earth on a star chart. With that information, Commander Thane, Umi of the Thayan ship Ka'ma, and Rick Myles, an Earth human who was stranded in the Empire twenty years earlier, gets permission from the queen and her council to lead an exploratory squad of three Thayan ships across the bridge and into the territory of the Udug Conglomerate, breaking a long-held treaty.
Other races in the Conglomerate watch from the shadows, waiting to see what this new addition to the mix does with both the Udug and with Earth. Are they friend or foe? Dare the Udug-held races come forward, risking their safety, to establish negotiations with the new-comers? Can Earth put aside centuries of tribal wars and superstitions to take those steps to join with the others to rid the galaxy of the Udug?
Join the battle!
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This story was originally published on kindle in 2010 under the name In Plain Sight, which was a novelette.
All rights reserved by Michele Briere, creator of these characters and the universe they inhabit. 2014