My action-thriller dieselpunk piece “Deadstick” is the lead story in the Oil anthology from Static Movement, available now at Amazon. Would you risk your career and a pricey prototype aircraft for a slim chance to rescue someone? Here are the opening paragraphs:
Hank pushed Sally-Jean over the crest and slammed on the afterburners. He’d logged more hours strapped into her snug cockpit than in the rest of the test planes put together. The snub-nosed Lockheed felt like she was a part of him. Some of the guys at Ridgecrest were starting to make lewd comments, asking when the wedding was.
He didn’t mind. What they didn’t know was the sheer bliss of pointing her heavy ass at the ground and shunting her into the stratosphere at six-gees, then bending her around, butterfly-like, into a parabolic arc, cutting the engine and letting her float fifty thousand feet down before re-igniting and pulling up, all sense of butterfly gone, screaming along fifty feet above the desert floor. He didn’t need the amphetamines they sometimes offered around, Sally-Jean kept him alert and hopped-up all he needed. She always came back with an empty tank.
My thanks to editor Marty Zeigler for taking the story – and for working with me on finding a great title.