QSFer Sara Rayne has a new queer sci fi book out, a prequel to “The Idle Hands series: Malware.
What did Riley Quinn build?
It’s an urban legend.
A cyber myth.
On the eve of graduation from the Sharp University of Technology, her team of hackers celebrate the fruits of four years’ labors. Tomorrow they gift their invention to the world. Tensions are high and the lines of friendship will get crossed on their last night together. But awkward moments and unresolved sexual tension will be the least of their morning-after worries.
Because Project: Devil’s Playground is more than it seems.
It’s a weapon.
A ticking time bomb.
What did Riley Quinn build?
Everyone’s about to find out.
“Your point?” She covered her eyes so they didn’t try to roll completely out of her head.
“I’m saying this competition has a reputation to maintain, Riley.”
“No worries, Eddison. D.P.’s going to blow the doors off the place.” She smirked. “Metaphorically speaking. Installation of explosives would be a severe violation of the weaponization prohibition clause.”
“You will not be competing.”
“Yeah, so you keep saying. Small issue.” She spread her hands. “You have zero authority to withdraw us from the contest.”
*~*SPECIAL BONUS SNEAK PEAK OF FOX AND COYOTE IN JAILBREAK!*~*
About the Series: The Idle Hands Series are New Adult Hacker Romances with both non-straight and straight pairings. These books may contain: Bisexual characters, out characters, closeted & struggling characters, first time characters and a demi-sexual character who’s still thinking about things – oh, and straight ones, too! Nerd romance, geek romance and cosplay romance fans welcome!
Sara is giving away three copies of her MM Biker Romance, Hellbent. Comment on this post below for a chance to win.
Socially awkward: “Was I being rude? Sometimes I can’t tell. My apologies.” She straightened. “No, thank you.”
A brilliant coder she has built a team and the program Devil’s Playground that has Edison Sharp promising her anything and everything to acquire the program.
Skylar “Fox” Todd
Researcher and human behavior expert who believes that love is prolonged pain.
Former crown princess of the anarchist camp that is now in love with Will the former military man. She is suspicious of the government, paranoid, brash and deadly with her armory of weapons.
Faith’s twin, and king of one-night stands seems to be having a problem with certain feelings for a certain someone that is leaving him confused.
Former military with a background in explosives he “bleeds red, white and blue”, his girlfriend Faith says he’s a Paladin. There aren’t two people more opposite than these two; but somehow they worked, until……”
“So, you graduate on Sunday.” Alex hopped up on the trunk of his car, bottle dangling from his fingertips as he swung his legs.
“Mm-hmm.” Colt drifted closer, kicking at the loose asphalt in the parking lot. His faded t-shirt clung to the muscled lines of his abs with the movement. All rumpled black hair and bright, blue eyes, Colt’s contrasting features were striking in the moonlight.
“Then what?” Alex felt a hitch in his chest.
For over three years while Will put his G.I. Bill to good use, Alex’s life had also revolved around the Sharp Institute of Technology and his brother’s classmates. Currently, he was studying business at a community college, a decision he’d made to appease Will in the wake of their parent’s death. He had no real interest in Higher Education.
Though sometimes he couldn’t help but wonder how his life might be different if he’d enrolled in Sharp Tech alongside his brother. Would Riley have recruited him for her team? Would he and Colt have been roommates? Spending all day in the lab and all night hanging out in their own place?
Colt frowned. “Hell, if I know.”
“C’mon. You must’ve thought about it.” Alex took a few swallows of his beer. The resulting buzz filled the hollow in his stomach. “When you realized Riley was going to pull it off—what you guys achieved together—you had to know…”
“Know what?” Colt ran a hand through his black hair, ruffling it further. “Faith and I grew up home-schooled on a compound full of people waiting for the End Times. I shit you not–they are staring at their watches, tapping their feet, waiting on the Apocalypse.”
Alex laughed. “I’ve heard the stories.”
He gestured with his beer. “College—getting out—was the end game. I never imagined being a part of something…like this.”
“You guys can go anywhere you want. Do anything you want.” Alex shifted on the hard metal of the bumper. He was happy for his friend—his brother, all of them.
But if they went their separate ways, where did it leave him?
“Maybe. Or maybe Sharp finds a way to fuck us over and we’re all left with nothing.” Colt cast a speculative look at the lit apartment window above. “Who do you think won the argument? My sister, the Anarchist? Or your brother, Uncle Freakin’ Sam?”
“My guess is they’re still going. The look in his eyes when he told me he was re-upping—she’s not talking him out of this one.”
“Or they’re banging.”
Colt fixed him with a look. “My sister thought Will was gonna propose.”
“I thought so, too.” Alex rolled his neck. “But the only thing he said about the future to me is he’s giving me Dad’s arcade.”
“Nice.” Colt grinned. “You gonna re-open it?”
“I want to. Will wants me to finish school first.”
“It’s only another year.”
“I don’t really have a choice. The terms are non-negotiable.” Alex rolled his eyes. “Apparently he’s the only one who gets to make decisions without proper sign-off.”
“I could help you. Work on the place while you finish up your degree.” Colt kicked at the asphalt again.
The pit in his stomach eased. “There’s plenty of room in the bunker.”
Alex and Will’s parents had bought the arcade because of the enormous atomic bomb shelter buried beneath it. They’d then expanded it into a sprawling six-bedroom underground steel and concrete reinforced home. But all the security in the world couldn’t stop some things from happening.
They’d died in a car crash two years ago.
Colt and Faith had spent a month in the bunker with the Cash brothers, riding out the aftermath. Alex didn’t know what they would’ve have done without the twins.
“Awesome.” Colt’s grin was infectious. He had loved the bunker. Seemed to make him feel safe. He and Faith tended to prefer a space one could ‘properly secure.’
“Really? After the Fair tomorrow, you might be able to go anywhere in the world. Who knows where the offers are gonna roll in from?” Alex arched his brows. “But you want to move in with me to remodel an old retro arcade?”
“Fynn’s a great roommate and all—he more than made up for his half of rent with sourcing D.P.’s materials. And don’t get me wrong, the studio’s affordable as hell. I’m not complaining.” Colt held his hands up.
“But…I’ve never had a bedroom of my own before.” He looked up, eyes lit with anticipation. “This will be a first for me.”
The idea of Colt bunking down the hallway from him pleased Alex more than it should. In no small part due to the amount of gleeful satisfaction rolling off his best friend.
Alex held out his bottle. “To firsts.”
“To firsts.” Colt’s voice had been roughened by the night’s excesses. He clinked his beer against Alex’s and promptly finished it. Wiping his mouth on the back of his hand, he asked, “Wonder what’s keeping Fox?”
“Said she was going to update Riley.” There was the pit in his stomach back again. He looked away, shooting for a casual tone. “You and Fox—you actually thinking ’bout going for it?”
Alex didn’t like the carnal curve to Colt’s lips when he tipped his head back as if considering the possibility. But a second later, he shook it off with a rueful grin.
“Nah.” He turned, bracing a hip on the bumper next to Alex’s leg. “Fox is awesome. She’s funny and brilliant, and even though I hate it when she reads my face and beats me at poker, she’s one of my best friends.”
“Is she undeniably hot? Absolutely. But if I slept with her? Our friendship would be ten shades of over.” Colt’s blue eyes glittered. “Hell, it’d fuck with the entire group dynamic.”
“You really think so? Will and Faith are together and we’re all good,” Alex pointed out, hoping his tone didn’t sound argumentative.
“Think they’re still together?” Colt’s eyebrows raised.
“Maybe not. Either way…” He gestured with his hand. “I think friends can become more without the world exploding.”
“It’s all fine as long as they’re in it forever. But when the ride is over—everybody’s happy ever after gets fucked up.” Colt nodded sagely. “You guys are family now. Not worth losing you. No matter how hot the sex might be.”
Collective ‘you,’ Alex.
He cleared his throat, forcing his brain not to analyze what Colt had just said. “Sounds like you’ve given this a lot of thought.”
“Hell, I’m thinking about it right now.” Colt snorted, putting a hand on his belt buckle. “I’m half-drunk, lonely as hell, and just between us bros—it’s been awhile for me, too. Not to mention, have you seen those legs showcased in her Raven cosplay?”
Alex couldn’t help but grin at Colt’s exaggerated wince.
“Mercy me,” Colt intoned in a spot-on impression of Fox’s breathy alto.
“Even I gotta admit she’s a knock-out in those boots.” He sprawled back on his elbows, trying to dispel the restless energy itching under his skin.
“See? She can turn a gay man’s head. I should be commended for my restraint.”
“I’m sure you are a hero amongst your people.”
“You better believe it.” He hooked his thumbs at his chest, grinning wide. Then he paused a moment. When he spoke again, his voice dropped to a wicked whisper. “You wanna hear a secret?”
Alex wet his lips. “Always.”
“Sophomore year, Fox picks this guy up at a bar on a dare. We all end up back at Faith’s place, and while I’m trying to pass out on the futon, I overhear Fox and the dude going at it in the shower.” He leaned on the trunk, propping himself on an elbow to angle close to Alex, his voice living in the same low, intimate rasp.
“I wasn’t trying to eavesdrop. They just didn’t seem to give two fucks how loud they were.” His eyes slid closed, teeth sinking into the full expanse of his lower lip. “But the sounds she made…downright filthy…no inhibition, just pure, full-throated pleasure.”
Alex stared up at the stars sprawling over the night sky, pretending he wasn’t turned on by Colt’s description. “You have a kink for sound, huh? Should’ve known.”
Colt froze, staring down into his face. A muscle pulsed in his jaw, a breath forgotten stuttering across his lips.
Alex hid a smile. Colt had always possessed an auditory sensitivity. The man closed his eyes in bliss, listening to the orchestra when Alex had taken him for his birthday. His eerily accurate impressions of everyone he’d ever met had brought the group endless amusement, sure. But it was also a testament to the careful tuning of Colt’s ears. Made sense he’d be totally in to the audio track when it came to sex.
With his quick wit and merciless tongue, he could probably make a porn star blush with dirty talk…
He coughed, interrupting his own thoughts before they headed down the forbidden path. “S’ok. I like ‘em vocal, too.”
A twinge of red bloomed across Colt’s high cheekbones. Alex raised a brow.
Colt cleared his throat. “Careful, man. Or I’ll think you’re considering switching teams. Why are you grilling me so hard about Fox?”
Grilling? He’d thought he’d achieved casual. But Colt wasn’t the only King of Deflection on the hood of this car.
Best defense is better offense.
“Some turn-ons transcend gender. The sound of raw, animal pleasure? A few obscenities…hearing your name…breaths catching and speeding…” Alex trailed off to affect a shiver, eyes slit to study Colt’s reactions. “It’ll rev anyone’s engine. Man, woman—makes no difference.”
Colt cracked open another beer and Alex couldn’t help noticing his fingers shake as they circled its long neck.
“Makes a difference to me.”
And there it was—the wall Colt threw up whenever they approached the topic of sexual flexibility. He’d never thrown a hint of shade Alex’s way about being gay, but every now and then something overtly macho would jump up to make it clear Colt was the straightest of the straight.
Except…it didn’t quite ring true.
Alex had seen Colt check out guys. Especially once drunk enough to lose track of controlling his gaze. And sure, he’d banged more than the requisite number of chicks to earn his bro-credits in college.
But there was also the time…
“I’d never get turned on by some dude.” Colt squared his shoulders as if heterosexuality were a light jacket he could readjust.
Alex snapped back to the present. Something inside his gut twisted and a wicked impulse swept through him.
Maybe it was the oddly charged night.
Maybe it was the sinfully sensual turn of their conversation.
Maybe it was the booze.
But Alex couldn’t help himself.
“Bet,” he purred.
Immediate gratification followed when Colt choked on his beer.
“Excuse me?” he sputtered.
The devil rode Alex’s tongue. “I’d have you rock hard in your pants in under five minutes, if I wanted.”
Colt’s hand tightened on the glass bottle. “Bullshit.”
Alex let his gaze travel down to Colt’s lips, tracking the movements of his tongue darting out to wet them, before trailing the sharp features back to Colt’s midnight blue eyes.
He let the timbre of his voice drop. “I got mad skills, bruh.”
Colt’s smirk didn’t quite hit the mark. “Think you might be biting off more than you can chew right now.”
“Bet you twenty bucks. Hard as a rock.” Alex deliberately swept his gaze over Colt’s groin. “Five minutes.”
“Twenty bucks?” Colt shook his head as if trying to block out some kind of internal argument.
“Five minutes,” Alex repeated.
“You just trying to give your money away, or…?”
“If you’re so confident, it should be an easy score.” Alex grinned. “C’mon Colt, put your money where my mouth is.”
“Fine.” He grabbed Alex’s hand and shook it, jaw clenched mulishly. “Bring it. Let’s see what you got, hot shot.”
“Lay back. Close your eyes.” He planted a hand in the middle of Colt’s muscled chest, pressing until he reclined against the hood. His black lashes swept closed obediently.
Alex wet his suddenly dry lips.
What have I gotten myself into?
He downed the rest of his beer in one shot, then after a moment’s hesitation, finished off Colt’s as well.
Stretching out next to Colt, he took his time, letting their mingling body heat ease away the night’s chill. Alex leaned close to his ear, his breath stirring the black hair curling along Colt’s neck. The dark scruff on his jaw scratched across Alex’s cheek and a tug of heat swept him.
He hummed softly, letting the vibration stretch, twisting into a low, hungry, aching sound.
Colt’s lips curved, but his eyes remained shut. He looked so damn sexy, sprawled on the hood of Alex’s car.
A growl built, unbidden, in his throat.
Colt fucking shivered.
Love without Limits
I believe love exists between souls and romance is created when those souls overcome whatever obstacles fall in their way to be together. Love celebrates the connections between all of humanity and pushes us to overcome divides. It transcends race, orientation, gender, status, labels and most of all judgment. Love is love and it should be limitless.#loveislove #lovewithoutlimits
Born and bred in the rust belt of Ohio, Sara spent most of her time lost in stories, Tumblr and fandom. When she’s not writing, over-working her coffeepot or serving as her cat’s emotional support animal, she’s watching Netflix like the rest of us.‘Happily ever after’ is surrounding yourself with the ones who get you.
Amazon Author: https://www.amazon.com/Sara-Rayne/e/B017GEQ3S0