Two Democracies


Prejudice, a military science fiction novelette by Alasdair C. Shaw

Ace fighter pilot Anastasia Seivers is offered a secret assignment: to join a squadron taking the fight to Concorde's true enemies. But this squadron isn't part of the regular Concorde military, it is attached to the Legion Libertus, the independent force responsible for saving thousands of lives after the nuclear attack. After initial hope that her new commanders will be different, Seivers starts to suspect that they too are prejudiced against her.
Determined to remove the chip from Seivers' shoulder, Prefect Olivia Johnson, commander of the Legion, takes her on as pilot for a special mission.

Praise for previous books in the series:
"Where Ancillary Justice Failed to deliver for me, this book succeeded."
"This is what I like, scifi that borders on the believable, like the old Heinlen [sic] stories."
"I'll place these next to my favorite Weber books any day of the week."
"Some of the best written, original scifi I have come across in a long time."
"The writing is clean, effective and powerful, the characters engaging, and the story gripping."

'Prejudice' is a novelette in the Two Democracies: Revolution series.


As the second sun set over the scrubland of Concorde's largest landmass, a lone fighter levelled off for the last leg back to base. Flight Lieutenant Anastasia Seivers stretched her shoulders one at a time then settled herself lower in her seat. Two months flying four patrols a day, and not a whiff of the enemy.
For the first couple of weeks after the attack, the squadron had been in the air round the clock searching for survivors and dropping supply pods. The flying had been interesting back then too; the climate change brought about by the planet-wide nuclear bombardment had stirred up powerful storm cells. Now, the restarted terraforming plants had calmed the weather, though little sunlight penetrated the thick clouds. Seivers smiled, her next flight would be a high-altitude patrol, an opportunity to bask in the warm glow that didn't reach the surface.
A bang from behind jolted her into full alertness. She snapped her head around, simultaneously scanning the data in her visor display and trying to eyeball the problem. A hint of white smoke trailed behind the Goshawk fighter.
Dammit. Heap of junk should have been scrapped years ago.
Warning tones and red engine warnings filled her helmet.
"Sorry, girl. I didn't mean it." She throttled back the port engine. "It's not your fault you were pressed back into service."
The craft bucked, and now black smoke billowed out the back. Seivers cut the engine with a swipe of her hand. "There, there. Running through clouds of particulates all day long, and no time for proper maintenance." She pulled up a map. "It's a wonder you made it this long."
A high-pitched whine insinuated itself into the roar of the remaining engine. Seivers eyed the rising gauges and sighed. She thumbed a button on the throttle. "Mayday. Mayday. Mayday. Attico Tower. Blackjack Zero Fiver. I've lost one engine, about to lose the other. I intend to put her down on the Borro Salt Flats. Over."
She banked the fighter round, almost reversing her course.
"Blackjack Zero Fiver. Attico Tower. Understood. We have your beacon. Will dispatch Search and Rescue. Over."
Seivers trimmed the aerofoils for gliding.
More like a controlled plummet.
"Attico Tower. Blackjack Zero Fiver. Am killing the starboard engine now. Altitude is good for landing at Borro Salt Flats. Out."


And many more...

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