Stag and the crew of the Varnish are on a mission, responding to a distress signal of a freighter that has been attacked by the Markus Models. Instead of finding the enemy, they discover one sole survivor. Nala’s a human, and having suffered at their hands during his time on Earth, there’s no species Stag despises more. But when the petite woman confuses him for an android and tries to order him around, Stag decides she’ll live - and pay for her slights. Nala Vestria has lost her freighter, her crew and her father, only to become personal maid to a cyborg. Stag is surly, short-tempered, and completely untrusting of humans…not to mention intense, commanding, and maybe the hottest being Nala has ever seen. When she finds him temporarily at her mercy, Nala isn’t sure if she wants to kill him or kiss him. Then again, life is short. She opts for the latter. Nala swiftly becomes a distraction Stag can’t afford, especially after he’s had a carnal taste of what the woman has to offer. He’ll take her back to Garden, his home planet, and be rid of her - as well as the emotions she evokes. But as their journey home becomes harrowing, Nala may prove to be more of an asset than a liability. To both the ship…and the lonely cyborg who commands her.