Award Winning Author
A smile can hide secrets…
Amber Delacroix Chen survived the hellish Evander bombing of Oceania to escape to The Farm. On the run from a miserable, unloved, and abused existence, she starts over. Safe amongst friends and family, she studies to be a doctor and to help in the war effort. Life at The Farm is often fraught with danger, but she’s faced worse.
A smile can hide pain…
The need to reclaim one part of her past brings a fleet to their doorstep. Amari Chen, the negotiator and businessman, the one who leads. Hunter Chen, the engineer, the one who fixes things. Shane Chen, the scientist, the one who heals. Her husbands have come to claim their wife and they will not let anything stand in their way, even if it means confronting their own failures. Still waters run deep in the Chen family, but their love for Amber runs deeper.
War is coming for them all…
I love this series, the strong women and the men they love. Reverse Harem was not a genre I thought I could get into. These are the books that hooked me on the genre and I read many now.
In this book we get to know Amber, Paloma’s sister, who escaped from Earth during a devastating attack on Oceania. It made it easy for her to fake death so her husbands wouldn’t look for her. Her mother-in-law had made her life hell, her husbands hated her, she had to leave or die.
Amber is studying on ‘The Farm’, under the tutelage of Cash, Dane and Ari. In the past year and a half she’s been here, Amber has qualified to be a medic, a job she loves, but her ultimate goal is to be a doctor. It’s her birthday and she asks Canyon for a favor, a file on the tablet left behind on Earth. Unfortunately the fetching of the file didn’t go unnoticed.
This is one of my favorite scenes.
Paloma used her most authoritarian voice. I could have told her that would be wasted on him. I didn’t think it was worth pinging her tablet about. “It’s nice to see you again, Shane. Even if it’s over a monitor.”
He was quiet for a moment. “That certainly feels like a lifetime ago, when you appeared for the first time as a Sandler and gave the whole world a wakeup call.”
She’d changed my life in that moment. It was the day the seed planted in my mind that I wouldn’t—no, couldn’t—continue as I’d been.
“Yes. How are all of you? I haven’t heard from any of you since the day Amari signaled to let me know Amber was lost.”
He tilted his head slightly to the side. “As you can imagine, things have not been as they were here. We don’t expect them to ever be again.”
Earth must really be bad if he expressed it like that.
She nodded. “What can I do for you today?”
“Well, you can start by telling me why someone there is hacking into our system.”
Paloma fell silent as I caught my breath. I put my hand over my mouth, my gaze seeking Canyon. He regarded me from across the room, both of us off screen. Did he not seem surprised? This was Canyon. He was a Super Soldier and a tech genius. The man was said to speak to machines. By the universe, had he gotten caught?
Paloma shook her head. “I’m afraid I don’t know anything about that.”
He stared at her for a long moment. “You’re not lying. That’s concerning. Frankly, I was hoping it was you who had done it, Paloma, in some kind of nostalgic need for her. That I might have understood. Now, I need to know who else would have wanted such a private file off her tablet.”
“I…” We’d really thrown Paloma. This was so unfair. It hadn’t even occurred to me that this could have happened. But of course it could. Canyon got caught. Things happened. And I was so stupid. I had done this.
My sister cleared her throat. “What file was taken off your tablet?”
“Something that was very private between your sister and us. I’m not even sure why anyone would want it except perhaps to release them now as a means to embarrass us. That begs the question, however, why anyone in your employ would want to do that. We are not in business with you or competing for any contracts that might be of interest to you.” He drummed his fingers on the table in front of us. “Do you mean to blackmail us?”
She held out her hands in front of her. “I don’t mean to blackmail you, Shane. As you’ve already somehow deduced I am not lying.”
“Yes, that is true. But something is making you nervous. Perhaps as we’ve spoken you’ve come to a conclusion of who the culprit is. You’ve decided you know who might have done it.”
Melissa shook her head. She might interfere in this any second. Instead, it was Blaze who stepped into the view screen. His presence didn’t throw Shane at all. My husband was always ahead in negotiations. I’d bet credits I didn’t have that he’d known others watched this.
“Hello, my name is Blaze. I am working with the resistance here to do something about Evander.”
Shane shook his head fast. “Check your data, Blaze. This isn’t secure to discuss Evander. I’m not interested in having this conversation at all. We have nothing to do with Evander.”
“Yes, but you should.” He looked over his shoulder in my direction. “We’re losing.”
I knew many things right in that moment. My heart started to race, my hands to tingle. It had cost Blaze a lot to say we were losing. There was pain in his eyes. He didn’t show emotion easily. And despite his not knowing how many warriors the Chens had at their disposal, Blaze knew they could help us. The Zansi, or the Z as Amari called them, were a well-guarded secret. Even if people knew they existed, outsiders didn’t know much about them.
They’d sworn loyalty to the Chens in the time of the bombs and nothing had changed since. Generation after generation lived and served the family. I’d been an outsider, an usurper, who had taken their favorite sons.
Blaze knew there was help to be found. And he wanted it.
The Chens didn’t want to get involved. They never would. But maybe there was a way to negotiate with them, to get them to help. Maybe there was more to the universe than my own safety.
There would be no safety for anyone if we didn’t get Evander off Earth. Already, people were dying everywhere. Soon there would only be those left alive the company considered fit for existence.
I stepped forward. “I took the files, Shane.”
I was proud of myself. I hadn’t stuttered. I almost always did when I was nervous, and the last year with my husbands I’d barely been able to form a word. Paloma paled. She reached out, grabbing my arm and then pulling me to her in a strong embrace as though she would keep me upright.
My unflappable husband grasped onto the desk in front of him as though he might fall over. His face paled. It had to be like looking at a ghost. I shook in Paloma’s arms. It didn’t matter. I’d done this and so help me it better have mattered.
“Amber.” His voice was low. “How? I don’t understand. I…”
He didn’t have to. “I took the files, Shane. No one else here did. No one is going to use them. I have them. That’s all. C.J., could you…”
The older man must have understood what I wanted. He disconnected the connection. I turned to Blaze. “I hope you get what you want from him. He’ll certainly listen to you now.”
Blaze nodded at me. “I wasn’t sure you were that brave.”
“I’m not. I’m a total coward. Even cowards can sometimes have their moments.”
Royce, Rebecca. Still Waters: A Reverse Harem Science Fiction Romance (Wings of Artemis Book 9). Kindle Locations (312-354). Rebecca Royce. Kindle Edition.
From here things get very interesting as Amber’s husbands speed to her location, threatening her family and friends. Not that she’s having any of that. She has rights here on ‘The Farm’ and no one is taking them away from her.
Amber stands her ground but agrees to face to face, with her family beside her. The Chen brothers are about to get quite the education and more.
I couldn’t put this book down, so much happens as Amber’s husbands start really knowing their wife and understanding what she really wants and needs at this point in her life. The Evander threat to not only ‘The Farm’ but also Earth and the dark planets, is escalating and they have to be stopped.
I really can’t wait for the next episode in this on going tale.
5 Contented Purrs for Rebecca!
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As a teenager, I would hide in my room to read my favorite romance novels when I was supposed to be doing my homework. I hope, these days, that my parents think it was worth it.
I am the mother of three adorable boys and I am fortunate to be married to my best friend. I live in Austin Texas where I am determined to eat all the barbecue in town.
I am in love with science fiction, fantasy, and the paranormal and try to use all of these elements in my writing. I’ve been told I’m a little bloodthirsty so I hope that when you read my work you’ll enjoy the action packed ride that always ends in romance. I love to write series because I love to see characters develop over time and it always makes me happy to see my favorite characters make guest appearances in other books.
In my world anything is possible, anything can happen, and you should suspect that it will.
I’d love to hear from you!