Happy Birthday Phantom Harvest!
The world of Phantom Harvest is mutated and violent. Nobody can walk its gritty streets or dangerous wilderness better than Gideon the Sounder. A child of two violent predators, Gideon has learned to use his natural talents to his advantage. He’s become a gifted tracker, one of the few who can make a living in the dangerous Outskirts of the Mutant World.
Gideon’s a tough guy. It was fun and cathartic writing those fight scenes. Yet, it’s Gideon’s flawed side I found so intriguing. His mother is a feral predator who tried to kill her young son with her bare hands. An elusive criminal holds her prisoner as leverage to force Gideon to do a job for him. Gideon has every right to abandon her and walk away. He doesn’t. Even he can’t quite explain why he risks everything to save the mother who wants him dead.
“Tell me you aren’t serious?” Hiroshi’s outraged voice came from the back seat.
Gideon bolted upright, twisting around to face the stowaway and smacked his head on the snowcat’s ceiling. Sneaky damn cat! “I thought you were doing shots from the barmaid’s chest.”
Hiroshi gripped the back of Gideon’s seat and pulled. Warm fingers held Gideon’s forehead, forcing him to meet the angry black eyes.
“Are you actually going to waste a thought for that Sounder cow?” Hiroshi’s frown deepened as his gaze locked Gideon in place. “You are a fool!”
Gideon pushed his hand away and sat back up. “Come on, Hiroshi.”
Hiroshi leaned back in the seat and folded his arms. His accusing eyes never left the rear view mirror. “Does she still bear my mark?”
There was no ignoring the trail of Hiroshi’s sword stretching from his mother’s left cheek to her right hip. It had been a battle that the three of them could never forget. It was a hurt Gideon couldn’t forgive.
His mother had taken her twelve-year-old shame to the Outskirts. When Hiroshi stumbled upon them, her tusks had already gored Gideon mercilessly until his innards were spilling out into his trembling hands. She’d wanted her offspring dead. It took Hiroshi’s mutant powers to force her away from her wounded son.
“She’s my mother.”
“She’s an incubator. I’m your family. Remember that!” Hiroshi gave one last disgusted grunt and morphed into his predator cat form. The massive gray body turned away from Gideon and plopped down on the backseat, rocking the snowcat wildly beneath the weight. A deep rumble vibrated the vehicle when Hiroshi let out a disgruntled sigh. There was no talking to him now.
Gideon started the snowcat and pulled away from the plant. He’d been in such a good mood a few hours ago, dreaming that his shitty luck had changed for the better. Thank you, Franklin Gallagher. Dark Elves and their plots within plots.