The Secret of the Tzaritsa Moon
“I signed aboard the Tzaritsa Moon as her second engineer. I ended up a toaster repairman. I was very lucky.” – Rafe d’Mere, from The Secret of the Tzaritsa Moon
The Secret of the Tzaritsa Moon marks the long awaited return to the Nine Star Nebula of the Bright Black Sea. This story takes place in the Alantzia star system, the most remote of the eight solar systems. The Alantzia system is known for its many little worlds, moons, and rocks that are reputed to be more like the “lawless” drift worlds than the staid worlds of the Unity.
Old spaceers convinced Rafe d’Mere that to fully appreciate the exotic romance of the Alantzian experience, he needed to ship out on one of the small planet traders which call on the eccentric little worlds of the system. So he did, signing aboard the Tzaritsa Moon, under the name Rye Rylr, as her second engineer.
On the passage to Fairwaine, Rafe’s swift response to a critical engine failure saved the Tzaritsa Moon. And his life. However, the failure was deliberate, part of a pirate prince’s plan to keep the Tzaritsa Moon from arriving in Fairwaine orbit. And when it did, thanks to Rafe, the pirate prince was not happy. At best, Rafe might expect his memory of the incident to be erased. Erasing Rafe would, however, work just as well.
So Rafe needed to get clear of the Tzaritsa Moon and get very lost on Fairwaine until things cooled down. However, while doing so, he crossed orbits with a thief. A girl with a pretty face, who may, or may not, have been a covert agent of the Patrol. She was rather evasive on that point. But she was determined to discover why the pirate prince wanted the Tzaritsa Moon destroyed. And Rafe found that he couldn’t resist helping her. She had a pretty face.
The Secret of the Tzaritsa Moon is a cozy SF mystery adventure. It features Rafe d’Mere, ex-Patrol contraband suppression and repair tech, now a spaceer engineer, and Vaun Di Ai, who seems to be a Patrol Lieutenant JG, Intelligence Analyst 2, who had, somehow, escaped her desk job to be an acting covert agent. The story is set mostly on the moon of Fairwaine, and in one of its old fashioned, nonconforming societies. One that uses toasters to make toast.
C. Litka writes old fashioned stories with modern sensibilities, humor, and romance. He spins tales of adventure, mystery, and travel set in richly imagined worlds, with casts of colorful, fully realized characters. If you seek to escape your everyday life, you will not find better company, nor more wonderful worlds to travel and explore, than in the stories of C. Litka.