Far From Broken (Book 1, Seasons of Invention)
Soldier. Spymaster. Husband.
Colonel Jasper Carlisle was defined by his work until he met his wife. When the prima ballerina swept into his life with her affection, bright laughter and graceful movements, he knew that she was the reason for his existence, and that their love would be forever.
But their world is shattered when Callie is kidnapped and brutally tortured by the foes Jasper has been hunting. Mechanical parts have replaced her legs, her hand, her eye...and possibly her heart. Though she survived, her anger at Jasper consumes her, while Jasper's guilt drives him from the woman he loves. He longs for the chance to show her their love can withstand anything...including her new clockwork parts.
As the holiday season approaches, Jasper realizes he must fight not just for his wife's love and forgiveness...but also her life, as his enemy once again attempts to tear them apart.
Far From Broken is also part of an Anthology entitled “A Clockwork Christmas”
We Wish You a Steampunk Christmas
Changed forever after tragedy, a woman must draw strength from her husband's love. A man learns that love isn't always what you expect. A thief steals the heart of a vengeful professor. And an American inventor finds love Down Under. Enjoy Victorian Christmas with a clockwork twist in these four steampunk novellas.
Crime Wave in a Corset by Stacy Gail
This Winter Heart by PG Forte
Wanted: One Scoundrel by Jenny Schwartz
Far From Broken by JK Coi
Stories also available for purchase separately.
Carina Press: Novella / Anthology
Kindle: Novella / Anthology
Nook: Novella / Anthology
Kobo: Novella / Anthology
The snow fell hard and fast, a wall of fluffy white obscuring the world through the frosty window until Jasper could almost believe there was no world at all beyond the train. That the steam pushed it along on rails into nothingness, taking him nowhere.
He snorted and shook his head. Ridiculous. He was definitely going somewhere.
After four months, he was finally going to retrieve his wife.
A sharp rap on the cabin door saved him from an examination of the uncomfortable, heavy sensation in his chest. He looked up through the thick square of glass inset into the door, and waved Murphy inside. The door slid open on a heavy rush of processed air.
“Colonel, we’ll be in Manchester within the hour. I’ve already wired the clinic to expect us before evening’s end and Mrs. Campbell has responded with confirmation that she will arrange for a carriage to pick us up.”
“Will you be needing anything more before we stop, then?”
“No, I don’t think so.” The only thing he needed was at the end of this long overdue journey.
“I’ll see to the luggage, and as soon as this iron death trap pulls to a stop we’ll be ready to roll.” Jasper resisted a smile at his lieutenant’s expense. Murphy had made his discomfort with their choice of transportation more than plain, but had refused to stay behind.
With a short bow, the man left him alone again and Jasper turned back to the window. His hand went to the inside pocket of his vest and closed around the pocket watch, but he didn’t remove it to check the time. There was no need. The train had started to slow already in anticipation of moving into the station. He felt the gentle drag pulling him deeper into the plush velvet seat.
Soon now. Soon he would be with Callie again.
It would be the first time he’d see her since leaving the clinic four months ago. He’d been ordered back into the field to hunt down the men responsible for her attack. It was believed that the same group was also behind the torture and death of a number of other British intelligence officers, including Colonel Wyndham—a friend of Jasper’s.
He had intended to defy those orders, needing to stay with Callie at the clinic. But when she’d finally awakened and her screams had only subsided when he was no longer in the room, it was decided his presence would hamper her physical progress, and the doctor had suggested he give her time to adjust. Callie’s health was, of course, far more important than his wishes, and so he’d gone.
Yes, he’d gone, but insisted on being sent a weekly wire with the details of each and every one of her operations, the drugs she’d taken and every facet of her difficult rehabilitation. The procedures undertaken for her recovery had been extreme, depending upon radical notions and the availability of sophisticated equipment.
He knew she’d refused to walk for a long time, still rarely spoke, and that she continued to experience terrible nightmares, although the doctor postulated that she didn’t remember much if anything of the actual attack. That the trauma of it had proven too much for her conscious mind, forcing her to lock it all away. He said he’d seen it in patients often enough. Since Jasper himself had witnessed what horrible trauma could do to even experienced, deadly soldiers, he almost approved of his hardheaded Callie pushing the bad memories out of her head rather than letting them consume her and take her sanity.
The only thing he didn’t know was how she would react when he arrived. If they could get past this. If they would ever be happy again.
His hand clenched into a fist in his lap as he remembered the sound of her laughter. He somehow doubted he’d hear that sound again soon, but he would do whatever it took to make it happen. For her, he’d try anything, give anything. Risk anything.
Just as she had risked all for him.