USA Today Bestselling Author
After a year of hell, Dani Summerland’s life is just getting better when she’s tossed unceremoniously a few hundred years into the future with her orange Persian cat, Charmin Marvin, in her arms. With no way to fight it, no way to go back, things are only looking to get worse fast.
Breaking protocol is cause for severe consequences in the time and world Levi Blackburn lives. But, after a year of government regulation, the crackdown is easing up and he begins to relax. Everything he’s worked for is hinged on keeping his reckless brother in check. But, while he’s been protecting Milo from falling under the government’s ever-vigilant radar, his brother has been working on a surprise present for him, one that’s the cat’s meow… Dani is that gift–a woman from the past that Levi has been fixated on.
Milo never anticipated having his brother’s dream girl come to their time with a snarky cat that can not only talk but doesn’t have a clue how or when to shut up!
Formerly Book 1 of the Charmin Marvin series.
Milo is a genius with the understanding of a sixteen year old. He does things he thinks he has thought through but has no clue of the consequences of his actions to himself or others. Milo’s does something he thinks is awesome and as his brother Liev witnesses it, he knows not only does he have to fix it he hasn’t a clue how.
Dani Summerland’s life is finally getting on track, she has a job she likes and now she has a date. Before getting ready she grabs a glass of wine and her cat doing a little bit of a dance, then in a flash of light and what seems to be an explosion she’s somewhere else. Not a thing is recognizable except for one of the men standing there. He looks just like her ex, Lawrence.
After running from an inspection, Dani lets loose on both of them.
This is a favorite scene.
She had to find a way home, and she needed their help. But she’d be damned if she’d let them walk all over her. Knowing what was outside the building scared her shitless, and, for all she’d been trying to shake off her old life, she hadn’t meant to shake it off this far.
And who was this Liev? With each glance to confirm that Liev looked so similar to Lawrence, she had to consider he’d come forward in time as well. But she had discerned just enough visual differences too. Then again, she hadn’t seen Lawrence in over a year. That could account for some of the differences in his appearance. She stole another look in his direction. No, Liev was younger. Much younger. Besides, how likely was it that the two of them were dragged forward in time? And, if they had, were others like her here? She perked up at that idea. If there was a group them, maybe they had a way to go home too.
“It’s not the same guy,” Charming muttered.
She wiped the tears from her eyes as her laughing spell ended and holding Charming so the men couldn’t see her talking to him, whispered, “Why do you say that?”
“Because you’re in the future. That means he’s not the same man.” He shot her a look of disgust, adding, “Duh!”
She pursed her lips at the sarcasm, not even close to being able to digest Charming’s new communication abilities or indeed the sarcastic responses that seemed to roll off his tongue and, stared up at Liev. He had the same tall, lean build, the same jet-black hair as Lawrence. The same quirky smile. But the whole package was fresher, softer, like a younger brother. Not so jaded, or cynical. Still, she had to know. She asked him point-blank. “So did you come from my century as well?”
Liev shook his head in a slow movement that made his slightly long hair curl on his shirt collar. If they were two hundred years in the future, the men still wore shirts and pants. Although outside of the fact that material covered both his legs and chest, the clothing was unlike any she’d seen before. His weird-looking friend with the green mohawk could have been from any number of places in her time, so he looked odd but not that odd. Outside of the technology, like the elevator—and, God, how creepy had that been—the rooms she’d seen so far looked almost normal. High tech and definitely futuristic and with almost a movie scene look to the space with the massive wall of monitors and a wall length console instead of keyboards and individual desks. It’s what had been outside that had shocked her. Flying cars? Rooftop rail systems from building to building while something else snaked around the building going up? And the weird bright reflective silverishness to the buildings? Maybe the city was even domed. She didn’t look out the windows around her. In fact, she deliberately avoided looking around. Her gaze locked on Liev.
“I’m sorry. I don’t know you.” He tried for a friendly smile and added, “Yet.”
She rolled her eyes. “You would say that.”
He gave her a hand to help move her away from the mess. “You must be mistaking me for someone from your time.”
“Yeah, right. Like you aren’t the spitting image of Lawrence Blackburn.”
Liev stiffened. “That is my last name. And Lawrence was a blackhearted ancestor of ours. I’m sorry if you were harmed by him. I can only assure you that I am not him in any way.”
She stared at him. “Doesn’t that figure? Well, at least tell me that he’s dead. That would almost make this worth it.”
“That I can do.” He smiled and held out his hand as if to shake hers. “I’m Liev Blackburn, and Lawrence is definitely dust by now.”
The younger guy bobbed his head up and down. The long skinny body bobbed in a matching tune. She wondered if he had an iPod or something in his ear because he seemed to move to some inner beat. He gave her a huge grin and said, “I’m Milo. Liev is my older brother.”
Her gaze widened. “That is so wrong.”
The smaller guy narrowed his gaze, confusion clouding his eyes. Liev said, “Wrong or not, it’s true. Milo is also a genius.”
She snorted at that. “Oh, right. That whole genius thing about creating some kind of time machine that snatched me out of my own life without my permission. Well, thanks for nothing. So, before we go too far down this road, how about you reverse the results and let me return to the time where I belong.”
A long strange silence filled the room. She narrowed her gaze suspiciously. “Why did you say that’s the beauty of this—that this isn’t reversible?”
And Charming gave voice to her thoughts. Thankfully it came out in a garbled whisper. “Uh-oh.”
Milo looked at his feet and shuffled from left to right and back again. Yeah, he was guilty as hell. She switched to Liev. And he was staring at Milo.
“You didn’t figure that you needed a way to reverse the process?” She motioned to the nonexistent elevator that had dumped her in this futuristic office around her and said in an ominous voice, “You figured anyone—any female—would be delighted to find herself yanked away from everyone and anything she holds dear into a foreign world where she has no way to support herself?” Her voice rose at the end to shrill tones. “Dependent on you two for my living?”
Both men winced in sync.
She lowered her voice and continued in an angry whisper, “And while I’m running up a list of questions, here is a biggie.” She paused. “Why me?”
Mayer, Dale. Cat’s Meow (Broken Protocols Book 1) (pp. 29-33). Valley Publishing Ltd.. Kindle Edition.
Even knowing that Liev isn’t Lawrence doesn’t help the animosity she is feeling for both of them. Her life has been irreversibly altered and she has much to learn about this world of the future.
To top it all off, her cat Charming can talk and is doing many impossible things.
I laughed, cried, held my breath a few times and was totally taken by surprise at the end.
I am so totally hooked now that I bought the other books in this series as a collection. This first book was free so I wasn’t really repeating a purchase which is a definite plus in my book.
5 Contented Purrs for Dale!
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Broken Protocols: Books 1-4!
Dale Mayer is a USA Today bestselling author best known for her Psychic Visions and Family Blood Ties series. Her contemporary romances are raw and full of passion and emotion (Second Chances, SKIN), her thrillers will keep you guessing (By Death series), and her romantic comedies will keep you giggling (It’s a Dog’s Life and Charmin Marvin Romantic Comedy series).
She honors the stories that come to her – and some of them are crazy and break all the rules and cross multiple genres!
To go with her fiction, she also writes nonfiction in many different fields with books available on resume writing, companion gardening and the US mortgage system. She has recently published her Career Essentials Series. All her books are available in print and ebook format.