The Ripple in Space-Time - kindle ebook by SF Chapman

There are a couple of big brutes in my Science Fiction Action/Adventure novel called The Ripple in Space-Time (Available as a Free Kindle download June 29th and 30th worldwide).
 
Both are twenty-fifth century space pirates that generally do those things that pirates have done for centuries like rough up the citizenry, swindle the gullible, purloin valuable vessels and, above all, murder the innocent for financial gain.
 
The troublemakers are, of course, men. Human history is filled with many such malicious fellows: the archetypical Neanderthal savages who pounded each other with clubs, the Medieval Vikings and Vandals who plundered and burned, and the wild west desperados who shot at anything that moved.
 
It's easy to reduce the bad guys down to flat characters with only the attributes of pure evil. Bad guys are called "bad" for good reasons. I can't imagine Billy the Kid or Genseric, King of the Vandals having soft spots for fluffy, saucer-eyed kittens. But perhaps they did; unfortunately neither a quick Google search nor an idle twenty-five minute hunt through the shelves at my local library revealed how "The Kid" or Genseric felt about young felines.
 
When I wrote The Ripple in Space-Time, I wanted to be realistic with my ruthless space pirates. I wanted to give them believable personalities. Certainly they were bad dudes but I felt that they should have some ephemeral wisps of humanity as well.
 
The Captain of the space pirates is Olin Gristle. I melded together two amusing names for his moniker that I found one Sunday morning in the Obituary section of the San Francisco Chronicle. One of the good guys in the book notes that, "for some reason, pirates always seem to have the best names." Captain Gristle is especially cruel and vindictive towards prisoners but he does redeem himself when he exerts significant effort to defend the misdoings of some members of his crew.
 
The First Mate on the pirate ship is Bosco Kremerling, again a name cobbled together from the Obituary Section. "Boz," as he is constantly reminding everyone to call him, is a hulking and short-tempered bruiser with no reservations towards violence and intimidation. Early in the book Boz terrorizes one of the main female characters with a dagger. Some benevolence eventually peeks through the clouds of menace. Over the course of the story, Boz develops a reluctant fondness and sympathy for the woman.
 
Perhaps during the minor revisions for the second edition of The Ripple in Space-Time I will add a note that Captain Gristle and First Mate Boz were both secretly fond of kittens.

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