Pauline Baird Jones recently released the finale to her Project Universe science fiction romance series, Kicking Ashe. Ashe is part of the Time Service, ensuring the safety of time and space. But when she gets sucked into a time tsunami, she is spit out onto an archaic planet where she encounters Vidor Shan, a man from her past who needs her help to escape danger.
Overall, Kicking Ashe is a fun, fast-paced read with plenty of action. And thanks to Ashe’s nanite, Lurch, a spunky companion who exisits inside of Ashe’s body, readers will also get some laugh-out-loud moments when it lets loose with some very strong opinions. But Lurch is more than just a snarky second conscience; he also monitors Ashe’s vitals, lets her know where in time she is and provides much-needed assistance. (How’s that for keeping your best friend close?)
Lurch is so well written that it got me thinking about other fictional companions. Everyone knows that sidekicks can be essential in a good science fiction story, typically adding comedic relief. If you like reading about Lurch, here are a few other tales that include sidekicks that live inside or on the hero's or heroine’s body.
DEMONIC WARRIORS FROM MARJORIE M. LIU’S HUNTER KISS SERIES
Maxine Kiss is the last demon hunter on earth, but that certainly doesn’t mean she’s all alone. This heroine has her own small army of warriors who aid her as she takes on a dangerous demon army. But these fighters do more than get up close and personal; they’ve attached themselves to Maxine. They live on her body as tattoos during the day, making her immortal, and come off to help her battle at night. Though they can be devious troublemakers, Maxine’s bond with her demons is touching. In the most recent Hunter Kiss book, The Mortal Bone, Maxine’s adventures take an unexpected twist when her demons escape her body permanently, robbing her of her powers, and making Maxine realize just how much her fierce protectors mean to her. This is a must-read series if you’re looking for sidekicks who truly know how to stick around!
SIMI FROM SHERRILYN KENYON’s DARK-HUNTER SERIES
You can’t talk about “besties on the body” without mentioning Sherrilyn Kenyon’s Dark-Hunter series and more importantly, Simi. This opinionated demon lives on the leader of the Dark-Hunters as a tattoo that moves around his body, springing to life when she feels like it. As Dark-Hunter Acheron’s protector, Simi, like Maxine Kiss’ demons, lives on Acheron’s body in the form of a tattoo. She acts as Acheron’s protector, barbecuing anyone who dares cross him. And although she appears in several key scenes throughout the series, Simi is most active in the 12th Dark-Hunter book, Acheron. Quick-witted and full of snark, Simi is one of Kenyon’s most enjoyable characters. Not only is she a beloved fan favorite, this young demon often provides much-needed comic relief to this dark series.
And if we’re talking about sidekicks, besties and friends on the body, then you know we also have to mention frenemies that live inside main characters. The fifth book in Karen Marie Moning’s time-traveling Highlander series, The Dark Highlander, features these. They aren’t fun, amusing buddies living inside of Dageus MacKeltar, though; he has the 13 evil Druids that are possessing his soul. As a result, this tortured Highlander must have sex in order to feel. When Dageus meets art historian Chloe Zanders, he thinks she may be the key to his salvation. Meanwhile Chloe (and readers) are swept away with passion this hero shows on the page as he woos his woman. But for the couple to find any long-term relief, they must destroy the Druids plaguing this brooding warrior, without destroying Dageus himself.
Did we miss one of your favorite “sidekicks inside?" Let us know in the comments below! And to learn more about Lurch, Ashe and their adventure, you can pick up Pauline Baird Jones’ Kicking Ashe today!