Callie and Jasper get called in by the War Office in JK Coi's 'Broken Promises.'
Note: 'Broken Promises' is the second story in the 'Seasons of Invention' series. The review of the first story, 'Far From Broken', is here. Otherwise, read on!
Colonel Black is back, and he has a mission for the Carlisles. One of his agents, a man named Dunsmoor, has gone rogue. It will be Callie's first mission as an agent of the War Office to get him back.
Dunsmoor, however, is more than just a random agent. Brought into Doctor Hemholtz's care with a heart full of shrapnel, he mas more 'alterations' from the good doctor than anyone else. Unfortunately, it seems that some of the nanites in his bloodstream may be malfunctioning. This would be reason for his mad, violent behavior as of late. And speaking of malfunctions, Callie's prosthetics have been acting a bit...twitchy.
But more important than the War Office intrigue is the still-healing relationship between Callie and Jasper. All Callie wants is to be as good a wife to Jasper as she can manage anymore. If she can no longer dance, or cut a pretty figure on his arm, then she'll help him with the War Office missions instead. All Jasper wants to do, though, is protect Callie from any more pain, especially after all she's been through because of him already. Will they both be able to put the past behind them and work towards the close, loving marriage they once had?
We first met Callie and Jasper in the A Clockwork Christmas story 'Far From Broken.' Here, Callie and Jasper are a couple who truly love each other, a rarity among nobility at the time. JK Coi does an admirable job giving the Carlisles real problems to work through, along with the other issues in their lives, and their reactions are spot-on for a young couple of good people trying to come together again.
Highs: Callie trying to work through packing up her dance studio, and putting that part of her life behind her.
Lows: As the plot gets more convoluted, with bad guys coming out of every direction, the pacing changes rather abruptly.
Verdict: Perhaps less of a romance than the first story, Callie seems to be developing a taste for the more adventurous life of a War Office agent.
Further Reading: 'Tanglefoot', Soulless