The Runaway Concubine
by Jamie McNabb
Lt. Daisy Wong, space marshal, despised Los Angeles, Mars.
She despised it this time around just as much as she had the last time work had forced her onto the Red Planet. Her boss, Captain Spaulding, had arranged a favor for the political higher-ups, and so here she was, on Mars, doing the work.
Daisy hated doing favors for the higher-ups. However, in this particular instance, Daisy had to admit that she would have agreed to take on the case, anyway . . . even without Spaulding's so-called request that she do so. The favor involved a member of Daisy's family, and family is family, especially when it's part and parcel of some of the most powerful criminal tongs in the Sol system. Besides, Mars was only one grubby little planet and Los Angeles, Mars, was only one grubby not-so-little domed city.
Meanwhile, Daisy's partner, Officer Muffy Chatterjee, was in the throes of open glee, had been since their shuttle had dropped into Mars orbit. All the way through customs, her delight had not slackened. All the way through the spaceport to the waiting line of taxis, her grin had not faded. And now, on their ride into town from the spaceport, she was excitedly watching the passing scenery—red and gray and grubby and plasticized and dirty though it was. She was also keeping up a stream of dirt-side—that is, Earth-side—accented chatter.