Message deleted. What!? No way is that right #SciFi #MFRWhooks

 

In this scene from Bro, Senth fights with idBot over a single, deleted--but vital--message.

Message Deleted

A buzz at Senth's wrist alerted him to a message. He withdrew his mobile and set the device to read-only mode, rather than bring it up on holovid.

The message required a password, which told Senth who had sent it. His Sen'dai--guild master--and father, Luc Saint-Cyr.

The Guild didn't accept non-humans, unless they were enslaved to a human member. No one could rise past level ten, unless related to a human member. Guild-arranged marriages and adoptions happened regularly. To keep the Guild happy, Saint-Cyr was Senth's lord and master and his adoptive father.

Could his Sen'dai send a note the way anyone else would? Of course not. No, the Man had to do it with mystery and ceremony.

Folks in this town never referred to Saint-Cyr by name. You could hear the capital letters when they called him the Man, or referred to him as the Harbinger. His father was the crime lord all the other crime lords wanted to be when they grew up.

"Ooh, big scary Man." He thumbed off the device. "Please let this be a job and not him thinking I screwed up." Senth ducked into a coffee shop and made his father's handsign to the worker behind the counter, then slipped into a back room to access the password function in private. That he had no idea what the password might be did not deter him. It took seconds to break in.

"This is prolly some test to see how fast I can break these suckers." He opened the message, and then brought the device to his ear.

"A worker at the Guild says he's met a man who claims you're family. Come home and we'll discuss it. Now." The message ended.

Senth jerked the device from his ear. "No way I heard that right." He pressed play and brought it to his ear.

"The idBot messaging system regrets that your message has been deleted. Would you like to access another message at this time?"

"No, I wouldn't like to access another message. I want to hear this message." He poked at the screen. None of the usual options showed. After several fruitless minutes, he resorted to asking for help. "IdBot, how do I replay the message?"

"Message has been deleted."

"I know that, you stupid machine. Undelete it."

"IdBot is unable to comply."

Senth swore under his breath. "Why?"

"Message was delivered as hear-once-and-delete. Would you like to access another message at this time?"

"No, I wouldn't, idiotBot. Thank you not very much." Senth turned off the device and put it in his pocket. "Why is Dad sending me encrypted hear-once messages? What in the worlds is going on?"

Bro

When you can make yourself invisible, invisible truths are revealed.
Take two brothers: one a half-blood thief, one a pleasure slave. Raise them in different worlds, reunite them by fate, mix in a powerful immortal, and you have Bro, the story behind the Antonello Brothers.

Want to be first to know when Bro is released? Join one of my reader groups and you'll also get an exclusive behind the scenes booklet about the brothers.


JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog. It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors. Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

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Senth gets an invisibility cloak. Uh oh! #SciFi #MFRWhooks #MFRWorg

 

In this scene from Bro, Senth plays with his new "toy" -- a cloak that hides him from copbot sensors and makes him invisible to people.

Senth plays with his toy

Once Senth stepped outside the Thieves' Guild, he proceeded down the street, gaining the required distance from the entrance. Commit thievery on the grounds and they'd blackball you so hard you'd-- He shook off the thought. After he reached the limit, he skirted around a businessman and backed away, the man's ID in hand. Senth tucked it into one of the cloak's myriad pockets. A male worker in a dirty uniform lumbered past. No trouble unclipping a debit bracelet fastened to the guy's belt.

Of course they felt nothing--his skills ensured that, but the upgraded cloak worked so well no one even looked in his direction. For fun, Senth re-clipped the bracelet on the worker, and then followed the businessman for a block before tucking the ID back into the man's pocket.

Now to see how well the cloak would let him evade after being seen. He pushed back the hood, which turned off the nightstealth, and stepped right in front of a teenaged boy.

Senth let him get a good look at his face.

The kid glared. "Watch where you're going, you half-human freak."

"Half-human? You mean HalfKin." Senth gestured to his catlike eyes. "Get it right, kid." He bared his fangs and hissed.

The punk backed off, and then darted around him. Senth tucked the guy's debit bracelet into a pocket, and then moved off the sidewalk and raised the hood, but did nothing else to hide.

The kid suddenly glanced at his empty wrist and whirled around, his gaze searching the ground. He hurried past Senth without speaking, once in one direction, and once in the other, and kept going.

"Should I return his bracelet? No, I think he should've said 'excuse me, sir.' He owes me a 'sir-charge'." He pushed back the hood and started walking.

Bro

When you can make yourself invisible, invisible truths are revealed.
Take two brothers: one a half-blood thief, one a pleasure slave. Raise them in different worlds, reunite them by fate, mix in a powerful immortal, and you have Bro, the story behind the Antonello Brothers.

Want to be first to know when Bro is released? Join one of my reader groups and you'll also get an exclusive behind the scenes booklet about the brothers.


JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog. It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors. Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

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If what this client says is true, Khyff will be the one paying #SciFi #MFRWhooks

In this scene from Bro, Khyff is about to bolt for freedom when his client says one word that stops him cold.

NOTE: Bro has adult themes but NO graphic or explicit content.

Client or Friend?

As usual, Khyff's master hadn't allowed him to eat until he'd met his quota. First up: shower, clean clothes, food. Not necessarily in that order. He kept a few stale crackers hidden in his room for emergencies. He'd satisfied his last client, and was unscheduled the rest of the day. Or at least the next six hours.

Khyff bolted toward freedom.

"So you're an Antonello."

The way the client said it drew Khyff's attention. This particular client was one of the less odious. He didn't grab or cling, he was--thankfully--clean, and he tipped well. Still, the guy was paying for sex and Khyff had no choice. Being a pleasure slave meant you serviced the clients sent to you, or you suffered for it. In Khyff's case, refusing meant risking prison.

He would never go back there, no matter what they made him do here.

Khyff clenched his teeth and pasted on a smile. "Pardon?"

"Your last name." The guy continued getting dressed, seemingly in no hurry. "It's Antonello, right?"

"Why?"

"I never noticed before. It's right here on my receipt." He picked up his mobile and turned the screen toward Khyff. "I mean I've been here what... five times now?" He poked at the screen. "Whoa! Seven. Huh. I should have a free visit after three more."

Khyff choked back a retort. His master was giving away free visits with him? It would take hundreds of client visits to earn enough in his Freedom Savings Account so Khyff could buy himself. If his master was giving him away, it would take forever.

Khyff jerked open the door.

"You don't look like the other one."

Half a step into the hall, Khyff's heart stuttered. He made a slow pivot. "Other one?"

"The other Antonello. You look different."

The world went silent. Khyff came inside, shut the door and leaned against it. "So I'm sure I heard right. You know another Antonello."

"Yeah. I saw the name, and figured you had to be related. Antonello's not common. Not on Kelthia. I'm guessing you don't have much family here."

Good guess. More than three quarters of the world's population was black-skinned. Khyff had blond hair, blue eyes, fair skin.

Could this be a link to his missing mother? Did the client know her? Khyff fought the hope that rose within him. It had been how many years? No, he would not allow himself to hope. When you hoped, people could hurt you more.

Bro

When you can make yourself invisible, invisible truths are revealed.
Take two brothers: one a half-blood thief, one a pleasure slave. Raise them in different worlds, reunite them by fate, mix in a powerful immortal, and you have Bro, the story behind the Antonello Brothers.

Want to be first to know when Bro is released? Join one of my reader groups and you'll also get an exclusive behind the scenes booklet about the brothers.


JOIN US FOR BOOKHOOKS
Book Hooks is a weekly meme hosted by Marketing for Romance Writers as part of the MFRW Authors Blog. It's a chance each week for you the reader to discover current works in progress or previously published books by possibly new-to-you authors. Thank you for stopping by. Please say hello or leave a note in the comments.

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