I can not tell you how many readers have sent me emails and messages wanting this particular hero’s story — there were a lot of them! So many readers have been waiting for the mysterious, protective Imperator of the House of Galen’s turn to meet his match.
I am absolutely thrilled to show you the cover for Galen’s story, Imperator!
In Imperator, Galen has to work with the former head of security of Fortuna Station and Champion of the Zaabha Arena, Samantha Santos, to survive and escape from the dangerous desert arena of Zaabha. Let me just say one thing: this is story is super action-packed!
To celebrate the cover reveal, I have an awesome Galactic Gladiators Swag Giveaway. Scroll down to the bottom to enter.
Galactic Gladiators #11
Release Date: Tuesday July 10th
Cover art by the awesome Melody Simmons
Excerpt from Cyborg featuring Galen and Sam
She was good.
Galen’s muscles strained as he fought. Blood pumped through his body.
Sam swung her sword at his head and he jumped back. He spun, and used his speed to come up behind her. With the hilt of his sword, he knocked her forward.
But she didn’t go down like he’d anticipated. She was already spinning to face him. Drak, she was light on her feet.
She twirled, and he saw that deadly, poison-tipped blade coming at his face. He dropped to one knee, then rammed a fist into the toned belly bared by the ridiculous fighting leathers the Thraxians had given her.
As she staggered back, shaking her head, Galen pushed up and raised his sword.
She watched him with blank eyes, her boots moving through the sand to circle him. He matched her moves.
“I promised to come back for you, Captain Santos.”
Nothing flickered in those brown eyes of hers.
“Remember, I told you that I’ve been protecting your people. We agreed to protect them and bring Zaabha down.”
She lunged at him, and their swords crashed together. She drove him back, and he moved his sword to meet her blows.
Galen was aware of his gladiators fighting around him. Another explosion rocked the ground beneath them, and he shifted his weight to keep his balance.
Anger punched through Galen. His backup team was stuck on the ground. If they could find a way to land Zaabha and get their full contingent of fighters aboard, then he could finally destroy this drakking hellish pit.
Sam leaped high, her strong body a thing of beauty. She had bold features and golden skin turned bronze by the sun. Light flashed off the sword that was like an extension of her body.
Galen had learned to not covet things, but he could only think of one word for her. Magnificent.
It was wrong for her to be imprisoned. To be leashed by that drakking implant.
He’d vowed to free her, and if there was one thing Galen always did, it was fulfill his promises.
As she came at him again, he slammed his sword against hers. He used more of his strength this time. Their bodies crashed together, their swords driven up above their heads. His cloak blew around them, trapping them in a private cocoon. Heat pumped off her body.
Something shifted in her eyes and she tilted her head. Then she blinked, and it was gone.
He felt her muscles bunch, but before she could strike out, he rammed into her. They tumbled to the sand and rolled.
Galen managed to get on top of her and pinned her beneath him. She bucked her hips, trying to fight him off.
“No,” he growled.
Her eyes narrowed. They were still the same gorgeous brown that had haunted his thoughts since he’d first seen her on this sand. But the fierce intelligence and drive he’d spotted was missing, dulled by the Thraxians’ implant.
Suddenly, her strong legs twined with his, and with a vicious thrust of her body, she managed to knock him off her.
They scuffled in the sand, but Galen had the advantage of height and weight. And he used it.
He pinned her again, and this time, her strong legs were spread, his hips settling into the cradle of her thighs. Awareness rocketed through him.
Drak. Now was not the time. He captured both her wrists with one of his hands. She jerked and fought, but he held her down.
With his other hand, he pulled his dagger off his belt. He lifted the dagger above her head, aiming it downward.
Her eyes widened, her gaze shifting to his.
He stabbed the knife down.
The tip of the blade pierced her implant. There was a sizzling sound, and the light on the implant blinked out.
Her eyes closed, then opened. Awareness filled her gaze.
“You,” she breathed.
“My name is Galen, remember?”
“I remember.” She turned her head, taking in the fighting in the arena in a second. Emotion crossed her face so fast he almost missed it. “You came back.”
“I told you I would. I told you that I would take care of your friends, and that I would come back for you.” The words echoed in him. He’d been born and raised to protect and to honor his vows. “And I promised you that we would destroy this place.”
“Your gladiators are outnumbered.”
“We’ll retreat for now, but we will be back.” Galen pushed off her and stood. He held his hand out to her. “Are you with me, Samantha Santos?”
She stared at his hand for a long second, then she put her hand in his. “Yes.”
They both turned, raising their swords.
Then Sam frowned. “Something’s wrong.”
Galen saw Magnus clutching Ever’s still body to his chest. The cyborg’s face was filled with emotion, ravaged.
No. Galen and Sam broke into a run. A second later, they reached Magnus’ side. Galen saw that one of Ever’s arms was missing a hand. The stump was wrapped in blood-soaked fabric.
“Galen.” Magnus’ eyes were wild. “Poison. She was touched by diseth.”
Sam looked down at her sword and her face spasmed. “This is my fault.”
Galen shook his head. “No, it’s the Thraxians’ fault.”
“I…I had no other choice.” Magnus stared at Ever’s face. “I had to remove the source of the poison.”
“We’ll get her to the healers,” Galen said. They weren’t losing the woman or her child.
Shouts and screams echoed over the sand, and Galen lifted his head. A fresh wave of Zaabha fighters was rushing across the arena.
“We need to go,” Galen ordered. “We need a way out of here.”
All around them, his gladiators were drawing back, protecting them.
“The flying creatures?” Magnus asked.
“Gone.” Galen scanned the stands. “Are there ships or shuttles anywhere?”
“Not that I’ve seen.” Sam tossed her honey-brown braid over her shoulder. “But there is an emergency exit.”
“Where?” Galen demanded.
“Near the northern stands. I’m not sure exactly. It’s heavily guarded, and I’ve only overheard the guards talking about it. It’s some sort of wire ladder that will reach down to the surface.”
Galen nodded. “Let’s move.”
He took the lead. With Sam beside him, and his gladiators at his back, they fought through the Zaabha fighters.
“There.” Sam pointed with her sword.
He saw a tight group of Thraxian guards huddled in the stands.
Galen leaped over the railing. Almost all the spectators had scattered, leaving the stands nearly empty.
Guards rushed at them. As he thrust his sword at the first attacker, Sam moved in beside him, taking on another.
“For honor and freedom,” Galen yelled.
“For honor and freedom,” Galen’s gladiators roared.
Galen cut down the guard, pulling his sword back. His gaze met Sam’s.
“For honor and freedom,” she murmured.
Galen felt a flood of energy and he nodded.
“We have more fighters incoming,” Raiden yelled, bringing Galen back to the present.
Galen turned and saw the wild crowd of fighters leaping into the stands. Nearby, he saw Magnus was holding Ever carefully, Jax and his other cyborgs protecting them.
They needed to get Ever out of here. Now.
Galen ripped into the fighters. He ran along the seats, swinging his sword and taking down fighter after fighter. He focused solely on the battle, nothing else. Blood splattered on the seats, and for a second, he was on another planet, watching red blood splatter on stone.
No. Stay in the present. He scanned the desert arena. This place was an abomination, and it had to end.
Sam’s warning had him spinning.
A huge Thraxian swung a giant axe at him. He leaped backward, the blade missing him by a thread.
Sam jumped over a row of seats, driving her sword through the alien’s gut. She stepped back, and shoulder-to-shoulder, they fought the incoming fighters. They fought together like they’d been fighting together for years. Galen forced the shocking feeling of awe away.
Sam glanced his way and smiled. Galen inclined his head, marveling that she could look so beautiful, even with blood staining one smooth cheek.
A horn sounded out across the arena. More gates clanked open below them.
Sam’s face hardened. “They’re throwing everything at us.” She dragged in a breath. “There are too many. We won’t make it.”
“We will.” Galen lifted his sword.
She arched a brow. “Do you always just say something and it happens?”
“Yes. I’m good at giving orders.”
Sam snorted. “What a surprise.” Then her gaze moved to the arena floor. It was packed with fighters, Thraxians, and beasts. “Get your people out of here, Galen. Get Ever out and help her. I’ll hold the fighters off.”
Not again. He grabbed Sam’s arm. “No.”
“You might give your orders, imperator, but I’m unlikely to follow them.”
With that, she broke free of him. She leaped down the seating, racing to meet the oncoming fighters. Then she jumped, flying through the air, sword swinging.
Drak. Courageous fool.
He swiveled and saw Raiden waving at him from higher in the stands. A trapdoor was open, and he watched as Magnus disappeared down the hole, carrying Ever. The others were quickly following them.
A muscle ticked in Galen’s jaw. They’d be overrun before they got far enough down the ladder, even with Sam holding some of the fighters back.
“Get Ever out,” Galen yelled at his best friend. Raiden was his closest friend, his brother.
Raiden’s eyes widened. He shook his head angrily.
“Get them all out safely, Raiden. That’s an order.”
With that, Galen turned and followed one stubborn, intriguing Earth woman into the fighting mob.
Galactic Gladiators Swag Giveaway
To celebrate the Imperator cover reveal, I am giving away a big tote bag of signed Galactic Gladiators paperbacks and swag to ONE lucky winner! AND the awesome Cara Bristol has offered a signed paperback of Claimed by the Cyborg that will also be part of the main prize as well!
I also have THREE runner up prizes of signed Galactic Gladiators paperbacks to give away too.
Open internationally and closes on Tues 3rd July. Winners notified by email by 7th July. You DO NOT have to use every option below to enter. Just select the one(s) you prefer to do.
To purchase your own Galactic Gladiators gear, just visit my Zazzle store!