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The Pursuit of the Valdakk. A spaceship is missing. It belongs to the alien Tasak, and they have come to the planetary commonwealth of Ancinnion to seek help. The provincial council minister is in no position to refuse the Tasak, and Anadar Tolarin, a political cogwheel with a checkered past, is persuaded to shepherd the recovery operation. It is a simple job that will return great patronage and large sums of money for everyone involved, but there are a few problems. The ship in question turns out to have been missing for eighty-five years. The Valdakk is a warship, and evidently, it carries some secret weapon. The Tasak cannot explain exactly how this ship has become lost, why it has taken so long for them to come for it, or what terrible cargo it contains; however, they are convinced they know where it is. Anadar embarks aboard a powerful new combat vessel, but his nefarious political career has produced enemies, and the selection of the crew has left him suspicious, if not fearful. The dark corners of such a large warship conceal myriad dangers, and he senses only resentment from everyone aboard except the ship physician, a woman without a past. Against his better judgment, he picks up an alien pilot for his quest into the Rim Nebula, and to no one’s surprise, they are shadowed by the ships of a notorious criminal syndicate, the Ultracaan. They locate the Valdakk , but the ship evades them, and recovery becomes pursuit. It is a race now against a treacherous competitor—a contest at gunpoint with each played against the other by a quarry that always seems to stay one step ahead. Every contact grows more perilous, every battle more dangerous, every confrontation more personal. Anadar’s future and the fate of his mission will ultimately depend on the skills and courage of people he cannot trust. The closer he comes to the vessel, the more he discovers about the fears of the Tasak, the motivations of the Ultracaan, and the real purpose of his quest. Anadar Tolarin will grapple with his enemies, his past, and himself before he can face the Valdakk. What begins as a routine military excursion will go beyond the exercise of ships cannon, and he will discover that although much is offered, much is also demanded in the pursuit of the Valdakk .

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