Children of Alpheios
by Diana Fedorak
A genetically engineered colony on a new world. A baby born different than everyone else. A mother who will do anything to save him.
On planet Eamine, twenty-one-year-old Alina must protect her baby when Mandin is born with a remarkable DNA anomaly. The colony’s central corporation wants Mandin for an experimental treatment program. Trained by the Expeditionary Academy, Alina knows how to survive Eamine’s harsh environment and flees to keep Mandin safe.
While Alina tries to uncover the truth, she finds herself relying on Kiean, a gruff pilot who protects her from threats in the midst of her new surroundings. As an upcoming rebellion brews, Alina must discover who she can trust, facing choices about family, life, and love. Despite the risk, Alina is determined to safeguard Mandin from the colony‘s most powerful institutions.
Aurore handed her a tall glass. Alina drank the citrus liquid, inhaling bubbles. The crackers and fish in front of the robot beckoned. As she savored the alternating salty-sweet flavors, an audible ping lit up Aurore’s expeditionary link.
“From SG.” Aurore then read the message aloud. “AI scan correlates to a very high intelligence, but the sequence indicates a possible neurological condition. Have a pediatric neurologist look into this. Ask for Dr. Olek at Genodyne. He was one of my students at the med institute.”
Alina tried to swallow the cracker stuck in her throat. It couldn’t be. She was born of Phase One herself. Genodyne edited hereditary diseases out of everyone’s genome as standard procedure. Sucking on the straw of her drink helped wash down the cracker.
“He said it might be a really high intelligence,” Aurore said.
“Yes, but a neurological condition? The doctor said they didn’t detect a radiation leak, but what if there was one? What if it’s neurodivergence or—”
“Mandin could be a genius for all we know,” Aurore said.
Alina took another swig of her drink. She had broken her rule of stating her fears aloud.
3 Ways to Be Like Alina and Get More Done
by Diana Fedorak
Alina is the heroine in my novel, Children of Alpheios. She’s a single mother to an infant with a chronic medical condition. She also works and trains as a physiographer at the Expeditionary Academy, an institution dedicated to exploring planet Eamine. When she’s not working, she’s helping her community overhaul a mine for a specific project. She also manages to squeeze in some romance. Let’s examine how she gets it done:
- Ask for help. Alina relies heavily on other female characters to look after her son while she’s at work. While she’s reluctant to do so at first, she doesn’t have many options. The upside of this is that’s she’s exposed to other families who can provide her a good safety net, and her son will become friends with their children. She also has a good friend in her co-worker, Aurore. Aurore is a safe confidant for Alina, pushes Alina on her career aspirations, and helps her out of jam on multiple occasions.
- Steal time away for yourself. Because Alina accepted help, she finds opportunities to have a life outside of motherhood and her career. She climbs a glacier at one point in the story. In another scene, she attends a wedding. Both scenes lead to consequential decisions for her, taking her life in a new direction, further developing her character.
- Make friends with a pilot. Alina meets Kiean, who flies a hoverjet. He’s able to take her to work daily and cut down on her commute time. He appeals to her adventurous streak by taking her to other scenic locations. Plus, he’s incredibly appealing to boot. This last one might take some work, but go find a local aviation event, show up, and mingle with the aviation community. You never know who you might meet.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Diana Fedorak is a speculative fiction writer from Las Vegas, Nevada. Born in Saigon, South Vietnam, she grew up in a Pan Am Airways family who frequently traveled overseas. Her prior career was serving as an officer in the United States Air Force.
Diana’s debut sci-fi novel, Children of Alpheios, was acquired by The Wild Rose Press in 2022. Set on planet Eamine, the story is about a young mother who finds herself pitted against the colony’s corporation when she discovers they desire her baby’s DNA anomaly for their genetic engineering program.
Children of Alpheios is available for purchase on Amazon and Barnes & Noble:
More information about Diana can be found at these sites:
Diana Fedorak will be awarding a $25 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.