At night, the other Shari emerges. With a glass of wine by side, I curl up on the couch with my computer nestled in my lap and let my imagination play until stories take shape. I also periodically check on my teen-ager, hiding out in the bedroom. Once I’ve reassured myself she’s not plotting world domination, I pull out my alter ego, who definitely is. As my alter ego, I save cities in a cape and spangled tights, wander space and time on a surfboard, fly over the Himalayas on feathered wings, make six-toed footprints in indigo talc snow on the sixth planet in the Andromeda galaxy or eavesdrop on Olympian gods while pretending to whip up a bowl of ambrosia.
In all these wondrous worlds, romance and passion blossom. I can't resist a happy ending. And I am particularly prone to writing happy endings for those who have given up on ever getting one.
Beverley: What’s your name?
Marisol: My name Marisol Martinez.
Beverley: Where did you grow up?
Marisol: I grew up on the planet Nordika, one of the first planets colonized by Terrans after the great environmental devastation that destroyed most of Earth. Nordika follows an elliptical orbit so its winters are particularly long and cold. We have a tundra-like terrain with clusters of mountains that are impassable during that season. Nordika’s economy relies on mining crystal dust which powers the grid.
Beverley: During what time period does your story take place?
Marisol: We are over three hundred years in the future. It’s the Terran year 2357.
Beverley: What’s your story/back story? Why would someone come up with a story about you?
Marisol: I am hacker by trade, a master of the intergalactic grid—the so-called internet on your earth today. The grid connects all the planets in the Terran-Magaran Coalition. Once, I was engaged to the most wonderful man. Aren, my fiancée, led a mining team but at heart, he was an artist, a truely creative and gentle soul. Twelve years ago, the mining shaft collapsed, killing him and so many others. Although never proved, sabotage was suspected. We have a small population, so the loss devastated the planet. Two weeks after his death, I learned I was pregnant with his child, which became my lifeline. From that moment on, I centered my life on revenging his death. I joined a clandestine rebel faction who believed the coalition government and the corporations that funded it were corrupt and were behind the mining accident as well as many other accidents on many other planets. We didn’t know why, but that was one of the things we were working to find out.
Beverley: What’s your goal in this story?
Marisol: When the story begins, my only goal is revenge and justice for Aren and the other Nordikans who lost their lives. When Aren arrives on Nordika as a cyborg soldier twelve years later with no memories of his past life, my goal switches to finding a way to restore his memory.
Blurb for The Scent of Memory
Twelve years ago, Marisol lost Aren. Now he’s back – pointing a gun at her head and treating her like a stranger.
Rebel hacker, Marisol Martinez, never thought volunteering to keep the hospital safe from cyborgs would lead her back to the man sabotage ripped from her arms. The man she swore to avenge by any means possible.
For over a decade, Cap protected the cyborgs
under his command from every danger. Until he meets an insurgent, whose scent
wreaks havoc on his control. She calls him Aren and insists she knows him. But
she’s wrong. He has no past, no present, no future – only orders he’s
programmed to complete.
Forced together, Marisol and Cap can’t resist the passion that keeps building between them. With time running out, Marisol must use her computer skills to restore Aren’s memories or Cap will kill all subversives on the planet – starting with her.
Excerpt from The Scent of Memory
“I’ll take you there,” Marisol volunteered. “Follow me.” She rushed out of the room. He was by her side in seconds.
“Explain your interest in me.” He turned off his scent sensors to prevent himself from being sucked into the pungent turbulence of emotions spilling out in her aroma.
“We were to be married.” The gentle emotion vibrating in her voice stroked his remaining flesh like a caress. He shook it off. It was dangerous.
“Was it arranged?”
“No, we chose each other. We were living together when you were killed—abducted—after a mining accident.”
“We were intimate?” Heat roared through him. He shut it down reluctantly. He was starting to like the way he felt around her.
“You have no memories of me? Of us?” She blinked rapidly as though to force back tears threatening to spill.
He shook his head. “Cybercorp wipes our long-term memories. Periodically, a memory fragment may surface, but our systems are programmed to shut down if that occurs. If a cyborg suffers from too many of these recalls, he is decommissioned.”
“We’re brutal. You’d be wise to remember that.”
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