Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Blogtour: Finders Keepers by PG Forte



FINDERS KEEPERS 

by P.G. Forte 

Science Fiction Fantasy 



Publisher: Chapultepec Press
Pages: 150
Genre: SFR/Menage



Sometimes finding what you want is the easy part.

Caleb is a bionic soldier with little-to-no memory of his past. Aldo’s an undercover cop who’s searching for the man who got away. Then there’s Sally, an ER physician who used to be married to Aldo’s late partner, Davis. Sally’s just looking for a reason to keep on getting up every day.

This holiday season, chance will bring them together and give them an opportunity to help one another find what they each want most. But every gift comes with a price. And keeping what they’ve found once they’ve found it? Yeah, that’s gonna be the hard part.








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Chapter One

I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future.
The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me.
I will not shut out the lessons that they teach.
Detective Aldo Nash could almost hear his brain humming as it worked to categorize the myriad scents tingeing the cool night air: cedar and sea spray, dry asphalt, cooling car engine, and most potent of all, the warm, aroused flesh of the man Aldo had pinned beneath him.
Aldo slid practiced hands over the slim, partially clad form, and the man moaned softly in response, his whole body writhing instinctively closer as he arched into Aldo’s touch. Aldo pulled in another heady lungful and smiled in contentment. On nights like these, he purely loved his job.
He couldn’t say working undercover for the Oakland PD had exactly been a lifelong dream, but Aldo’s brief stint in the army had left him uniquely qualified for it all the same, and largely unqualified for anything else. When the USA was formally dissolved following the economic collapse of the 2020s and what was left of the military was fully privatized, the idea of patriotism lost its meaning. Losing Kyle on top of that had left Aldo with no clear idea of what he wanted to do with his life.
After giving college a try, Aldo had signed up for the police academy on a whim. Unexpectedly, he found his niche. Now he derived a lot of satisfaction from knowing he was helping to prevent future crimes from happening, rather than hoping to solve those that had already occurred. He got to be proactive, stay one step ahead of the bad guys rather than the other way around. But the bottom line was proficiency. He was damned good at what he did.
Not to take away from any natural ability to dissemble he might have inherited from his late actress mother, but most of his success was due, in no small part, to all the experimental drugs he’d been given by the military. His consciousness had been purposely and methodically expanded, and his brain reconfigured to the point where he could easily exert control over his brain waves and sympathetic nervous system.
In a world where just about every criminal, from the capo dei capi of large, multinational drug cartels to the lowliest of hood-grown thugs, had their own psi-ops tech on speed dial, that kind of advantage was a definite point in Aldo’s favor. No matter how skillful said techs might be at worming their way into other people’s minds and tunneling through their thoughts, with him they could only read what he wanted them to read.
Of course, there were also things about his job he didn’t like. The hours were murder since, apparently, crime rarely slept and when it did, its schedule was crap. The regular debriefings with their in-no-way-optional mind-scrubs were a major headache. Literally. Worst of all, the company he was forced to keep generally sucked, and not in that good kind of way.
That wasn’t the case at the moment, however. No, when it came to his present company, Aldo had absolutely no cause for complaint. Tonight’s operation had him working in tandem with a new partner, an agent on temporary loan from some alphabet agency; Aldo wasn’t sure which one. He hadn’t asked. He didn’t care. As far as he was concerned, it didn’t matter. They were all pretty much the same, and the agent would be gone soon either way. Unless Aldo had missed his guess—a possibility he considered most unlikely—his new partner had been chosen for this assignment based solely on his looks. And Aldo was certainly not unhappy with those either.
He had no idea how much of the other man’s appearance was due to surgical alteration or chemical enhancement, but that was something else he sure as hell didn’t care about. Hot was hot, and Special Agent Caleb Mitchell was just about the hottest thing Aldo had seen in a good long while.
Standing at a hair under six feet, Caleb was just a couple of inches shorter than Aldo. He had fair hair, full lips, broad shoulders atop a dancer’s slim build, and everything about him, from his features to his proportions, was a little too perfect to be real. If the man had a flaw anywhere, Aldo had yet to find it, and not for any lack of searching. Even though they were both pushing forty, only Aldo looked his age. Special Agent Mitchell had obviously been the recent recipient of some highly classified and no doubt heavily restricted cell de-aging therapy, giving him the appearance of a man a good two decades younger than his current chronological age, the lucky bastard.
On second thought, maybe it was Aldo who’d lucked out; he got to look at the bastard, after all.
It was the case the two men were working that had brought them here tonight, to this exclusive private club located high in the Oakland Hills. Aldo’s role in Operation Midas—the elaborate sting the department was running—was to attempt to infiltrate a notorious local group of wealthy, degenerate scumbags. His appearance at tonight’s function, and the apparent arrest that—if everything went as planned—would shortly follow, was supposed to give him the “street cred” he needed in order to gain the scumbags’ trust and acceptance. Disguised as yet another degenerate wannabe, Aldo had done his best all evening to ingratiate himself with the crew. Agent Mitchell, by virtue of his rent boy looks, had been picked to play the part of Aldo’s paid escort or, as Aldo had jokingly told him, to do as he was told and look pretty doing it. He was playing his part very well, in Aldo’s considered opinion, particularly at the moment.
Another gust of air blew across the parking lot. The body stretched beneath Aldo’s shivered, but was it in response to the sudden chill or to the press of Aldo’s fingers that had just breached his opening? Aldo leaned in closer, partially in an attempt to shield Caleb from the cool, night air, partially for the pleasure of pressing himself more firmly against that delectable flesh. “Whattsa matter, darling?” he whispered playfully in the other man’s ear. “Cold?”
Caleb—bent over the hood of the shiny-new Mercedes Aldo had requisitioned for tonight’s operation—glanced up at him and scowled. “Fuck you, Nash. Skip the chitchat, all right? Let’s just get this over with.” Up until that moment, Aldo had found Caleb’s permanently raspy voice a big turn-on, but there was nothing sexy about that angry tone, the gritted teeth, the fury blazing in those jade-green eyes.
Aldo straightened immediately, his fingers slipping free of the other man’s body as he pulled away from him. “What’s your problem all of a sudden? Why you wanna act like such a prick?”
“Gee, I can’t imagine.” Caleb pushed away from the car and busied himself with his clothes, a rented tux of markedly poorer quality than the one Nash wore. He tugged his shirt and pants back into place, then bent to retrieve his jacket.
“That’s it?” Aldo prodded. “That’s all you got to say?”
Caleb shrugged. “Well, it couldn’t possibly have been anything you were doing, right?” He shoved his arms into the jacket’s sleeves before turning to face Aldo. “Look, don’t worry your pretty little head about it, darling. I’m sure your technique gets you rave reviews. You’re probably very popular with all the other boys.”
“What the fuck is that supposed to mean?”
“What it means, Detective, is that while I have no problem helping your ass get arrested, I didn’t know you’d be looking to take things so far. It’s not my thing. It’s not what I signed up for.”
An ice-cold shower couldn’t have cooled Aldo’s blood any more effectively—or any more quickly either. Screwing the other man in the middle of a parking lot hadn’t been his idea. Well, not entirely his idea. But it was exactly the kind of thing the character he was attempting to portray would have done, and a damn good way to ensure his arrest. Besides, they’d both agreed to it, hadn’t they? Or maybe not. Caleb had been noticeably reticent during the meeting when the plan had been hatched. He’d been reticent during both their meetings. Aldo figured that was just his way. Now, as he frowned back at Caleb, niggling doubts began to displace his complacency. “Bullshit. This is exactly what we discussed. And besides, you…” A brief pause. A deep breath. A cold, hollow feeling in his gut. Fuck. He couldn’t have misread those heated, heartfelt moans…could he? “You were just as much into it as I was.”
“Yeah, okay, Romeo. You keep telling yourself that. Just remember, though, none of this was my idea.”
A hot blush scalded Aldo’s cheeks. “If you really hadn’t wanted it, you should have said something,” he insisted, striving to keep his voice cool.
Caleb quirked an eyebrow at him. “I thought I just did?”
“I meant sooner.”
“What, and spoil all the fun you were having? We wouldn’t have wanted that, would we?”
“Care to elaborate on that?”
“Not particularly, no.” Caleb shrugged. “Anyway, I figured you already knew I wasn’t interested.”
“Are you fucking insane?” Aldo glared at him. “You think I knew and…and what? What the hell were you thinking? You think I’d do that kind of thing for…for fun?”
Caleb blinked. His expression was one of guileless innocence that had to be fake. “Well, sure. Isn’t that kind of the point? Correct me if I’m wrong, Detective, but isn’t that how guys like you get off?”
Nash’s jaw clenched. “Exactly what are you suggesting, Agent Mitchell? What kind of guy am I?”
“Well, I meant gay. But you can take it any way you want. How should I know what kind of kinky shit you’re into?”
“Gay? Meaning you’re not?” A sardonic smile lifted Aldo’s lips. “Now, why am I finding that hard to believe?” He could still recall the feel of the other man’s cock in his hand—stiff, throbbing, dribbling precum. There was no way Aldo had imagined that response. Not gay, my ass.
Caleb shrugged indifferently. “Beats the shit outta me. If I had to guess, I’d say it’s probably unresolved issues from your childhood. Or maybe you just hate having to admit you’re wrong.” Caleb cupped his junk and stroked provocatively over the hard bulge at his groin. It was all Aldo could do to suppress a shiver of need as his gaze tracked the motion. “The way I see it, I already got one dick. It’s right here, see? Conveniently placed and fully functional. So why would I have any need of yours?”
Aldo opened his mouth, ready to point out that Caleb was still hard from what Aldo had been doing to him, but before he got a single word out, Caleb’s expression abruptly changed. Moving swiftly, he grabbed Aldo by the open sides of his shirtfront and yanked him close. “Incoming at two o’clock,” Caleb whispered urgently. “We’re about to get company, and I don’t want to have to do this more than once, so let’s make it look good.” Then he sealed Aldo’s mouth in a passionate-seeming kiss.
Aldo stiffened under Caleb’s assault. What the fuck was the idiot doing now? For the space of two, maybe three heartbeats, Aldo froze, unable to even process what was happening. Then he kissed Caleb back, curving one hand possessively around the back of Caleb’s neck while his other hand made itself at home at Caleb’s waist. The crazy son of a bitch had him tied up in knots. His taste, his kiss, even the sounds he made, they were all so delicious, so familiar, so eerily reminiscent of Kyle. Even the scar that slanted across his midsection did so in exactly the same way as Kyle’s…
Aldo had been with Kyle the night he’d received the wound that made it. He could still recall the helpless panic that had risen inside him as he pressed his hands to Kyle’s abdomen, providing pressure, holding the edges of the torn flesh together as best he could while Kyle’s blood welled between his fingers and his breath stuttered in and out unevenly.
 “Don’t die,” Aldo had begged over and over while they waited for help to arrive. “Don’t you fucking do it, Kyle. You hear me? Please…” All the while holding his gaze, not daring to look away, as though by keeping Kyle’s focus he could somehow force him not to lose consciousness, not to leave him…
Aldo’s thumb rubbed back and forth with an increasingly urgent motion, absently caressing the scar. Caleb shuddered again. A thick, needy whimper left his throat. His heart was pounding so hard even Aldo could feel it. When he tilted his head to the side, deepening the kiss, Caleb followed his lead automatically, tilting his own head in the opposite direction, opening his mouth wider, inviting Aldo’s tongue in to plunder at will.
Yes. God, yes. Don’t stop.
Footsteps echoed on the wet pavement. The soft murmur of laughter forced itself into Aldo’s awareness. He tracked the sounds through the glistening fog with a growing sense of desperation. Closer… Closer… Slow the fuck down, goddamn it! The sooner they got here, the sooner they’d leave. The sooner this kiss would end. Aldo couldn’t stand for that to happen—not yet. He didn’t want this moment to ever be over. But the steady pace of the footsteps continued. Aldo heard a muffled gasp, a shuffling something that could have been a nudge, an answering grunt, then the footsteps sped up and hurried away, growing fainter and fainter until the sound had melted into the ambient distant noises. Car doors slammed. An engine started. Aldo groaned inwardly. Mission accomplished, goddamn it.
Caleb took a deep breath and pushed Aldo away. “And we’re done.”
Aldo’s heart beat savagely. He grabbed Caleb’s wrist and tugged him back against him. “The hell we are.”
Caleb’s hands tightened into fists. “Nash,” he snarled in warning. “Let me go. I will deck you if you don’t take your hands off me, and I mean right the fuck now.”
“Not so fast. That scar on your stomach, how’d you get it?” As he spoke, Aldo pulled Caleb’s shirt out of the way and held it there, exposing the other man’s chest and stomach to his sight. On closer inspection, Caleb’s scar wasn’t exactly identical to Kyle’s, but it was close enough that fifteen years and a few additional surgeries could easily account for the difference. Aldo stared at the wrecked flesh, unable to look away, remembering that long-ago fear. I nearly lost you! But he had lost Kyle, hadn’t he? Maybe not that day, but in the end Aldo had lost him just the same.
“Screw you,” Caleb growled as he yanked his arm free of Aldo’s grip. “It’s none of your fucking business how I got it. Now get off me.”
“Tell me, please. I need to know.”
Caleb’s mouth tightened. An angry flush colored his cheeks as he dropped his gaze and looked away, mumbling, “I don’t know, all right? It’s not important.”
“What do you mean you don’t know?”
“Did I fucking stutter? I can’t remember. Jeez.” Shoulders hunched against the cold, Caleb tugged his shirt closed and began to button it. “Give it up already. Get a life.”
“How can you not remember?” Aldo waved his hand impatiently, gesturing at Caleb’s midsection. “You’d have to have been nearly gutted to end up with a mark like that.” He knew that for a fact.
“Yep. Very likely.” Caleb shrugged. “But what can I tell you? Another day, another mind-scrub. Know what I mean? You’d be surprised how much you can forget if you try—or, hell, even if you don’t try.”
“What?” Aldo’s eyes widened in shock. A feeling of sick terror chilled him to the bone. “But that… Mind-scrubs? No. That can’t be right.” That wasn’t possible, was it?
“What’s the matter, Nash? No, wait, don’t tell me. Let me guess. You were hoping to make a lasting impression on me, weren’t you? Didja think maybe I’d be so blown away by your mad sex skills I’d change my mind and decide I wanted to come play for your team instead? Sorry to disappoint you.”
Anger flared. “You are such a fucking ass. What’s your deal? Are you always like this? Or is this just part of some act?”
Something about Aldo’s frustration must have amused Caleb. He chuckled softly as he finished tucking his clothes back into place. “You know, Nash, I think it’s real cute how fixated ya are on my ass.”
“Don’t flatter yourself.”
Once again, with no other warning, Caleb pressed close. “No need for that, is there?” he murmured, distracting Aldo with a kiss, hands fumbling at Aldo’s belt. “Especially not tonight. That’s what I have you for.”
“Fucking asshole,” Aldo groaned. The shuddering sigh that left his lips sounded a whole lot like surrender, but he just couldn’t work up a reason to care. Kyle, Caleb, whoever the fuck this was, was driving him nuts. “You make me crazy. You know that, right? I can’t for the life of me figure you out.”




10 Things You Might Not Know About PG Forte

  • I’m a grandmother. Yeah, that’s still relatively new, so I’m still getting used to it myself, but I love it!
  • I’m not a native Californian, although most of my stories are set there, and I’m passionate about my adopted home state. We have the best weather, the best scenery, the best wine…and possibly the worst traffic. What can I say? No place is perfect, I guess.
  • I can no longer count how many tattoos I have. It’s funny now to remember all the years I spent agonizing over what single tattoo I should get. The correct answer, for anyone who is similarly undecided, is all of them. Start anywhere—it really doesn’t matter. They’re so addictive that sooner or later you’ll probably end up with more ink than you ever thought possible.
  • I love dogs. Or, at least, I love my dogs. On the one hand, this is kind of a surprise because I’ve been a cat person for most of my life. On the other hand, who am I kidding? I love pretty much all animals.
  • When I was a child I wanted to be a veterinarian because…see number 4. lol!
  • Although Finders Keepers is my first full-length futuristic science fiction story, the very first story I ever wrote (as a school assignment—so long ago, that the world it was set in is probably the past by now!) was a dystopian tale of a world where computers were taking over. Told from the perspective of a teenage activist (IIRC, the story was told as a series of diary entries) it did not have a happy ending.
  • Finders Keepers is the only book I’ve written to date that isn’t part of a series. Which is somewhat depressing, because I love the world I created for it.
  • Since steampunk is—technically—science fiction, my first published science fiction story is This Winter Heart (still my very favorite story title, btw).
  • Unlike Finders Keepers, This Winter Heart is part of a series. Book two, Lightning in a Bottle, is due out in October. In the meantime, I have a short free-read available on my website. This Winter Night is a prequel to This Winter Heart. You can find the link (along with descriptions of the other books in the series) on the Winter Hearts series page.
  • I’m currently in the process of re-publishing or re-releasing all but two of my 31 previously published titles. Gah! That’s a lot of formatting.





PG Forte inhabits a world only slightly less strange than the ones she creates. Filled with serendipity, coincidence, love at first sight and dreams come true.

She wrote her first serialized story when she was still in her teens. The sexy, ongoing adventure tales were very popular at her oh-so-proper, all girls, Catholic High School, where they helped to liven up otherwise dull classes…even if her teachers didn’t always think so.

Originally a Jersey girl, PG now resides with her family on the extreme left coast where she writes contemporary and paranormal romance in a variety of sub-genres.

PG loves hearing from readers. She can be reached directly at: pgforte@pgforte.com









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