Leopold

Saga of the Bold People, Book 1

by M.D. Grimm

Leopold - M.D. Grimm - Saga of the Bold People
Part of the Saga of the Bold People series:
  • Leopold
Editions:Kindle - First Edition
Pages: 520

The enemy hunts him, but not for the reason he thinks.

How does a human survive in an alien dominated InterGalactic Community? By becoming an assassin, of course.

At least, that’s what Leopold thought when he became an assassin for the elite. Pretending to be an alien known as Voidstriker, Leopold feeds his appetite for vengeance, killing aliens as well as taking their money. It's a win-win to his mind. That is, until a bounty is placed upon his head.

With his true identity now revealed to the IG Community, Leopold knows it's only a matter of time before the powerful family members of his victims come for blood. Far worse is the fact that the one who put the bounty on his head, is the one he most fears.

A routine job three cycles ago brought him face-to-face with Mastrodai, a prince of the powerful Mrrog Nation. Not only did Leopold—accidentally—destroy part of Mastrodai’s moon, but one glimpse of the mighty alien had him feeling desire for the first time in his life. He ran, and like predator after prey, Mastrodai never stopped hunting him.

Leopold is convinced that Mastrodai wants bloody revenge.  But when he finally confronts the mrrog, he is stunned to realize Mastrodai wants something very different. Something surprisingly intimate—the one thing that scares Leopold more than torture.

Trigger Warning: Off page torture and abuse, and aftermath of rape. While the intimacy between Leopold and Mastrodai is always consensual, there are others who wish to break Leopold into as many pieces as possible.

This book is on:
  • 1 To Be Read list
Excerpt:

I climbed out the broken window onto the platform and tried to activate my holo-cuffs again. After several failed attempts, I realized they weren’t going to help me. Damn things were shit! Swallowing my curses, I jammed on my helmet and started to climb down. By the third floor, the ladder had been broken. I would need to jump. Fantastic. Three levels down. If I landed slightly wrong I would at worst break something, at best sprain something. I had no choice. My helmet impeded by vision so I took it off. I dangled it from my fingertips for a moment before letting it drop. To me, the sound it made upon impact was like a crack of thunder, but it was merely a thud. I took a deep breath and crawled down as much of the ladder as I could, and hung there a moment, gauging my descent.

One, two… three.I let go and hit the ground on my feet and rolled, taking off most of the pressure. It jarred me, but nothing sprained or broke. Success!

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I stood, about to grab my helmet, when I saw figures coming toward the mouth of the alley. I froze. I recognized them. They were mrrogs, and that meant he couldn’t be too far behind.

I shivered violently, demanding my legs to move. It took them a moment before they finally got the idea. I crouched slowly on the ground before moving silently backward. One foot, one hand, one foot… on and on until I reached the other end of the alley. I kept myself against the wall, in the shadows, and knew they hadn’t seen me. They were too busy contemplating my land cruiser. If they tried to deactivate the security system it would blow them up, along with the cruz. I would lose my baby, yes, but I would rather it be trash then have it in their hands.

I reached the end of the alley and continued to crouch until I turned the corner, and was out of their line of vision. My heart thundered annoyingly in my ears, and I bowed my head, steadying my breathing. Okay, my cruz was screwed. I couldn’t open fire on them without alerting everyone in the vicinity. I couldn’t run the distance to my ship and needed another way to get to it. I would have to steal a transport.

Great, I had a plan, such as it was. I stood, took two steps back for good measure, and ran into something. I stilled. It wasn’t a building and it wasn’t a transport as I was on the bloody sidewalk. No, it was a body. My heart fluttered, and I knew who it was without a doubt. My body knew, my damn, traitorous body. I could feel his heat pump against my own cold body, and I felt his chest move as he breathed. How did I not sense him behind me? My mouth opened in a silent scream because I knew this was it, I was caught. I shouted mentally at my legs to move but it was as if they were rooted to the blasted ground.

A small breeze blew from behind me, behind us, and I caught his scent. My stupid cock jumped to attention. Kill me now, please. He smelled wonderful. I wanted to close my eyes and wallow in it without any other thought in my head. I wanted to melt against him and have those strong arms—

My eyes had nearly closed when I popped them open. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw something move. I tracked the large arm, covered in a black sleeve, and the golden hand as it lifted and came toward me. My legs finally kicked into action, and I ducked agilely and rolled under his raised arm before straightening, and running faster than I ever had in my life. I heard him shout out orders in a deep voice. I realized it was the first time I’d ever heard him speak. Despite the situation, I thought he had a lovely voice. I jerked out of that stupid thought when I heard rapid footsteps behind me. Was he chasingme?

I glanced behind, saw the truth in those blazing yellow eyes, in that golden face, and pumped my legs faster. I wove and dodged around large trash bins, unable to keep myself from glancing back. Mastrodai simply leapt overthe trash bins, landing on his hands, and continuing on all fours to chase me, quickly gaining ground.

Shit, shit, shit!

Clouds rolled in overhead, and the moon grew darker, mistier. I needed to lose him. How? His large nose indicated his overdeveloped scent glands, and the way his eyes glimmered in the dark, when I dared another look behind, told me he had no problem hunting in the shadows.

I was so dead.

Recognizing the buildings around me, I swerved sharply to my right and raced down several narrow alleyways. The confined spaces forced him to throttle his boosters. He was still way too damn agile for someone his size, but he couldn’t use his full speed in the alleys unless he wanted to run into a wall. The turns forced him to slow down just enough, and more and more I was starting to lose sight of him whenever I glanced back.

I let my own nose lead me to the large, festering trash pile set along a creek with questionable cleanliness. Trash was rarely collected this far out and, in this case, it would prove to be my savior. Granted, I enjoyed being clean, but survival called for disgusting measures, at times.

After a few more turns, I burst out in the opening and dashed to the trash. I took a deep breath, closed my eyes, and dove inside. Eewwww! I swam through the garbage and shut down my mind from speculating what it consisted of. After what felt like forever, I popped out the other end and sucked in a gigantic breath of the foulest air I’d ever tasted. That would kill his ability to track me, no matter how powerful his nose. Without stopping, I rolled forward and dropped to the ground. I didn’t look behind for Mastrodai before staggering toward the creek and jumping it. The water was swift and sure and carried me farther down the city.

I managed to lose him for now, but it wasn’t over, yet. Not even close.

The hunt was on.

COLLAPSE
Reviews:Carra on Making It Happen wrote:

4.5 Stars

I so rarely read science fiction stories, that it’s always an exciting treat for me when I find one like this that has such vast scope, intriguing characters, and complex world building. It was much longer than most books I read (about twice as long), so I was immersed in this universe for quite some time and did grow attached to both Leopold and Mastrodai. There were also supporting characters who caught my attention, and my curiosity is thoroughly piqued to see where the author goes with this saga.

Leopold seemed to have a lot of animosity toward alien species, and rightly so for the most part given how humans are viewed in this book’s world. He channels that into what he does, developing a reputation and becoming a sought-after assassin. While he’s aware there are aliens who are not like most and who are accepting of humans—even calling some of them friends—he never lets his guard down, always protecting himself first. Mastrodai, as a powerful mrrog alien and one who has Leopold on his radar, is someone Leopold actively tries to avoid…until he has nowhere left to run.

The intensity between them, boosted by the enemies-to-more/taboo aspect of them together, makes for a potent pairing—particularly once the physical side takes over between them. There’s still plenty of tension to go around, especially when it comes to the customs of Mastrodai’s people, as well as how alien species in general relate to humans, since humans are seen as nothing more than slaves to most. You’ll also find action and suspense, plus the friction you’d expect in such a complex world with so many diverse, intelligent species.

With a word count of around 170,000 (over 500 pages), this is a pretty long story. While there is plenty of detail, and the world and characters are complex, I felt there were areas that could have been scaled down or even removed without impacting the story and made it feel like it wasn’t so long. But at the same time, I liked that the author explained so much as it really did let me lose myself in the story to the point where I didn’t realize how much time passed as I read. Kind of a double-edged sword for me, but the length is something you should be aware of before you start.

Leopold was a 4.5-star read for me, and I’m definitely planning to see where the author plans to take things from here. If you’re a fan of sci-fi stories, this one would be a great book to add to your collection. This story is meant for readers 18+ for adult language and sexual content.


Heads-up: There will be six books total in this saga. The main character, Leopold, will be evolving as the series progresses, as will his relationships. His relationship with Mastrodai is secure, however, I will be adding someone else (a woman) to their dynamic as the stories progress. I hint at the inclusion in book 1 since we meet the human woman from the start.

About the Author

M.D. Grimm has wanted to write stories since second grade (kind of young to make life decisions, but whatever) and nothing has changed since then (well, plenty of things actually, but not that!). Thankfully, she has indulgent parents who let her dream, but also made sure she understood she’d need a steady job to pay the bills (they never let her forget it!). After graduating from the University of Oregon and majoring in English, (let’s be honest: useless degree, what else was she going to do with it?) she started on her writing career and couldn’t be happier. Working by day and writing by night (or any spare time she can carve out), she enjoys embarking on romantic quests and daring adventures (living vicariously, you could say) and creating characters that always triumph against the villain, (or else what’s the point?) finding their soul mate in the process.


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