Saturday, April 20, 2024

Spotlight-Excerpt: GODSPEED, LOVERS by TQ Sims (Lovers Universe)

Godspeed, Lovers

by TQ Sims

Release Date: Friday, October 20 2023

Publishing Company: Archway Publishing

Cover Artist: Joel Luna and Fritz Westenberger

Primary Plot Arc: Speculative Fiction

Main Genre: Sci Fi Fantasy (with heavy romance subplot)

Story Type: Novel (>50k)

Word Count: 167K +


Lovable loner Casey Isaac thinks love isn’t for him. Not since extraordinary events left him with supernormal powers and a great deal of trauma. But when Oscar Kenzari looks at him, he can’t help but change his mind.

As Divinators, Casey and Oscar have used their psychic powers to defend humanity from sentient, extradimensional storms for one hundred years.

But a storm more powerful than any before is brewing. MaalenKun, prince of the maelstrom, conqueror of countless realities, plans to turn the tables by infecting Casey’s mind.

MaalenKun is not the only threat.

Casey and Oscar must determine who they can trust: the eccentric trillionaire keeping them in the dark, the independent contractors with secrets of their own, or a seemingly helpful extradimensional being shrouded in mystery.

As Casey works to defeat threats around and within himself, he must open to love for his chosen family, for Oscar, and for himself to unlock a transformative power capable of banishing MaalenKun. And Oscar must make a difficult choice that could cost him the future he dreams of.

Can Casey and Oscar’s love break the storm?

"It's fantastic to have such an emotional, thoughtful, and at times really sexy story to enjoy and identify with. I love books that take characters who are usually shoved to the margins and make their stories, their struggles, fears, hopes, tragedies, and triumphs the focus--which is exactly what this book does." –Doug Spearman, Actor/Activist/Writer/Producer/Director, From Zero to I Love You

“From the title page onwards, I was unable to put this book down. With excellent worldbuilding and rich, dimensional characters, T.Q. Sims' Godspeed, Lovers skillfully weaves a world that is equal parts fantastical sci-fi, spirituality, and queer joy. I can't wait to see where Casey and Oscar go next.” –Colette Bennett, Author, Enter the Meta


I realize that without assistance nearby from Casey, I would not be able to maintain the psybridge alone. I send him waves of gratitude and he nods at me. No one has to do this all on their own. It occurs to me, then to both of us. His special divination, his unique attainment, is empathic. He gleans from other divs that he syncs and replicates their capabilities. This is a new skill he is tapping into. He smiles with a hint of surprise and amazement before a hint of fear shows in his eyes. We both know the ability he is beginning to unlock through Four is incredibly rare and powerful. I nod at him, signaling my confidence in his abilities. 

“Ready, Div Kenzari, Div Isaac,” Murtagh speaks and transfers her message to ensure we are tuned into each other in body and mind. “Prepare for mass heartstar turning.”

Murtagh stands in the pontiff suite at the metaglass bow of the yacht. She lifts her hands to the heartstar shining brightly in her chest. Casey does the same. Through the psybridge Murtagh’s voice is mighty as she addresses hundreds of divs ready to level up. Everyone, steady. 

Murtagh and Casey turn hundreds of heartstars, locating within each the light-thread connecting each Div to MaalenKun’s energy. The sound of a bass drum echoes throughout our connections, and a low steady AUM builds as glowing mandalas expand and turn around Casey’s mudras. Hundreds of light-threads pour through the psybridge, glistening through space, and funnel through the mandalas. The array reaches into the crystal chamber and pins MaalenKun down just as Vasif breaks through, tearing away an entire end of the crystal before flowing inside and descending onto the immobilized Haddyc. 

Now! I shout through the psybridge. 

All the divs, all the Sages create space with and through their light-threads. Casey channels it into the trapped storm being enveloped by Vasif’s radiance. Vasif expands like rolling fog descending onto the darkened storm cloud. The force pushes against the Haddyc’s body within Vasif. As planned, the force steers the crystal closer to the rift. 

Vasif roars like breaking timber as MaalenKun screams the sounds of bending metal. With fast moving vines, Vasif pulls MaalenKun into its body. A flash of purple-black lightning is quickly disarmed within Vasif’s expanding luminous body. The dingy cloud that is MaalenKun explodes into sprays of grey light and ash which slam against the interior of the crystal chamber and knock us onto our knees. The violent bursts of grey give way to explosions of white light before the explosions become invisible light, seen only psychically. As Vasif’s luminous body rips apart the Haddyc’s storm, sounds of metal bending and breaking reverberate through the crystal’s cracked surface. 

The cracks grow and spread as the crystal chamber moves toward the rift.

Yahima looks back toward Mira and Liam. “Signal Vasif!” 

“Hurry!” Mira urges. “Vasif is struggling!” 

Yahima slides the ornate cover away from the coffer and hands it back to me.

The misty leaves which merged with the golden festoon within the ring shine brightly as they peel away. The leaves stretch long and thin. They become a film of glowing colors which psychically reaches towards Vasif. The EDB has shifted its shape as well. It has become a luminous whirling pale mist stretching toward the rift. A flash emerges from within the ring and a high-pitched peal pours from it. The rift crackles before a low hum reverberates from it. It is unlocked. The Helixx Corp drones zoom forward into the rift. Their flashing lights drift into the half-lit interior and disappear. Hundreds of divs work to immobilize and dull MaalenKun, and Vasif consumes the Haddyc. Vasif stretches itself into the dull half-light of the rift and expels the shredded body of MaalenKun and all of the Haddyc energy it had consumed and contained back 

Through the psybridge, the sounds of hundreds of divs reaching new Levels builds. An ebullient music of their emotion swells and cascades around us. Joy bubbles forth from within and rolls like a wave through us, uplifting us all. 

The unstable crystal shatters! 

Vasif begins to drift. Luminous thin mists stretch from its body, and it clings to the open space around it. 

From within the rift, a bolt of purple-black lightning rushes out, sizzling the space around it. As it moves past us, several of our gear functions are affected. I try to call Ops through the comm but hear only my voice reverberating in the helmet. My HUD flickers and faintly indicates that all of our thrusters are offline, but I swear I hear their quiet whistle through a looped sensation.

Casey drifts into the rift first. Yahima slings the coffer containing the ring back, away from the rift, as they sail into the half-light. Through our psybridge, I hear Liam and Mira and Carmel screaming as the two prescient divinators who could not see this coming disappear into the rift. Mira and Liam drop away from my psybridge. Carmel panics.

The music of the levels becomes discordant. Joy is torn away. The nimbuses grind against each other as they fall out of sync. There are so many. Even the Sages cannot hold them in place.

Vasif catches the coffer and begins to shapeshift into its more human-like body. I drop the ornate coffer cover, and it floats away. Misty vines wrap around the cover and the clear box containing the ring.

Behind me, a bright, fiery light grows as the purple-black lightning breaks the shields and pierces the wings. The psybridge is filled with wailing moments before the low boom of exploding deep space V’s reaches me. It all fades into muffled distortions as I drift helplessly amidst broken crystal and empty space.

My thrusters come back online, and I right myself.

Realizing my intentions, Thiia cries out.

Without pause, I fly into the rift.

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About the Author

TQ Sims writes stories that center Queer characters in supernormal situations. In their first novel Godspeed, Lovers, two men fall in love while using their psychic powers to battle sentient storms and an evil corporation that wishes to control them. Godspeed, Lovers is a story about mental health, post-traumatic growth, and found family.

TQ’s story "The Ritual" was a finalist in competition at the Tennessee Williams and New Orleans Literary Festival in 2022. Their work has appeared in Louisiana Words, Beyond Queer Words, and The Queer and Trans Guide to Storms. They live in New Orleans with their partner and a growing number of cats.

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