Today I am so pleased to welcome Jeff Adams to Joyfully Jay. Jeff has come to talk to us about his release, Audio Assault. He has also brought along a great giveaway. Please join me in giving Jeff a big welcome!
A Teen Secret Agent Grows Up
One of the things I wanted to do writing the Codename: Winger series was to look at how a teenager might react when tasked with doing very adult things while still young. The Winger series takes place over a year, starting when Theo Reese is in the fall of his junior year of high school and ending as he begins his senior year. While he’s super smart, especially with computers, and plays hockey, he also works for Tactical Operational Support, the same covert agency that employs his parents. Theo’s computer skills make him quite valuable to the organization.
In the series’s first book, Tracker Hacker, events force Theo to go into the field for the first time. It’s very different than working behind the safety of a keyboard from home. Over the course of the year, the missions get more complex with a lot more at stake. In Audio Assault, Theo’s world turns upside down as he faces his most difficult and personal mission to date—and all he wanted was a simple summer with his boyfriend.
For this third outing, Theo accompanies his parents to New York City to help a family friend—who happens to be a musical mogul—whose family is at risk. It becomes more dangerous than anyone imagined. In this exclusive excerpt from Chapter 7, Theo, his parents, and the Glenwood family—Oliver, his wife Marcella and their superstar daughter Sofia—are at a charity event. Chaos erupts right after Oliver and Sofia perform a new song for Marcella, who is being honored. As you’ll see, while Theo has a great gadget to rely on, he’s got far more to do than solve a computer issue.
The lights went out.
For a moment it seemed like a glitch—the wrong button pushed to bring up the lighting on the audience perhaps. When it continued more than a couple seconds the hairs on the back of my neck stood up.
I blinked four times rapidly to bring up the contact lenses’ menu. I activated the night vision.
Everything went green and it took me a minute to adjust because I wasn’t used to working in this mode. Four men moved confidently and quickly around the tables, and they had night-vision goggles on. Oliver’s security blindly felt their way along the walls, trying to get to the stage.
While the lenses were supposed to be a secret, even from my parents, I had to say something because Dad was getting up and had no idea what the threats were.
“Dad!” I yelled to be heard over the crowd who talked louder the longer the lights were out. “Four men with night vision. Mom, keep hold of Marcella. Dad,” I said as I got up, “I’m coming around for you and we’re going to the stage.”
“Theo, can you see my purse?” Mom asked. “Can you put it in my hand.”
I loved my family–no one even asked why I could see. “Yeah. Right here.” As I passed her, on my way to Dad, I put her hand on it.
I grabbed Dad’s shoulder and told him to stay close. “Sofia and Oliver haven’t moved.”
“New gadget, huh?” Dad asked quietly.
“Yeah. Glad I decided to use this as a field test.” I looked behind us. “The four guys are spreading out. I don’t see guns, but I assume they’re armed.”
We got to the stage, and I guided us to step up.
“It’s Theo and Victor.” It was weird using Dad’s first name. “We’re right here. Katherine’s got Marcella.”
I reached out and grabbed Sofia just below the elbow. Then I guided Dad’s hand to Oliver’s arm.
“What’s happening?” Oliver sounded panicked, a surprise given how calm he’d been so far in discussing the past abduction attempts.
“Four men in the room,” Dad said. “They’ve got goggles. Theo?”
“They’re having a hard time getting up here. People keep getting in their way. Having the tables so close together is making it difficult, especially as panic grows.”
“We should get you out of here,” Dad said. “Theo, I can keep these two. Can you get your mom and Marcella out?”
Light illuminated our table. It looked like Mom activated her flashlight app. The night vision blotted out in that area leaving me with just a peripheral. It would do the same for the bad guys.
More phones lit up, making it increasingly hard for me to see. I blinked and brought up the menu for the lenses and chose to keep one eye on night vision and one normal.
“Mom’s got Marcella safe,” I said. “Let’s get these two into a more secure area.”
Oliver’s security had one of the guys. Another was about to be apprehended as he struggled to get his goggles off. Mom indicated an exit just off the stage to our left. Dad and I nodded in acknowledgment.
Despite the phone lighting, people scrambled to get to the exits causing general chaos. I’d lost track of the other two guys. With the night vision activated I wasn’t able to accurately see details, so I didn’t have any idea what they looked like. If they ditched their goggles they could blend in.
We moved to the exit door staying close together. Marcella and Mom were going there too when they were tackled to the floor by a woman in a ball gown.
That wasn’t an accident—the woman was not someone trying to get away.
Oliver broke away from Dad and went to help.
“Get her out of here,” Dad called to me as he went after Oliver.
My grip on Sofia’s arm tightened. “Come on.”
“No way, man. I’m not leaving my family.”
I moved us toward the exit despite her resistance. I leaned into her—not as forcefully as I would a defenseman but enough to get us moving. “No. We’re leaving here now.”
She jerked against my hold but couldn’t break it.
“Let me go!” She was furious.
“My parents got this.” I pulled her with me. “We’re going out that door.”
The scene couldn’t be easy for her to witness. I didn’t like it either. Mom grappled with the woman who’d attacked them. Dad had Oliver and Marcella on a path for the rear doors of the dining room. Dad’s mouth moved but I couldn’t hear him over the noise. We should’ve been on comms. My earpiece was in, but only to record audio for the lenses.
There were no guns in sight. The team must only be interested in getting their hands on the family without injuries. Sofia and I got to the door. According to the plans I’d studied earlier it would lead into a service corridor and ultimately to the kitchen. From there we’d be able to get into a stairwell that would exit onto the street.
The door pushed open easily and we slipped through. It was pitch black. Did they cut the electricity to the entire building? It would’ve been easy enough to control the lighting in the dining room, but it seemed extreme to take out more than that.
“We need to go back.” Sofia jerked hard against my hold. I stopped us a few steps inside the corridor. “We can’t even see in here.”
“I can.” I adjusted the lenses so both eyes could see. “We have to go. Our parents are expecting us to get outside.”
The door burst open behind us. I turned and found a man pulling goggles over his eyes. I swung Sofia around behind me.
“Hey!” Sofia shouted in surprise.
I got into a defensive stance as the guy charged me.
Codename: Winger, Book 3
Theo Reese is just like any other seventeen-year-old—with one small exception.
This summer all he wants is to spend time with his boyfriend, Eddie, and work on his MIT research project. His parents have other plans.
An old friend needs the help of Theo’s family. Oliver Glenwood is an ’80s music star who runs his own label. His wife and his daughter, Sofia, now a chart topper herself, are the targets of kidnappers. Oliver hopes they can eliminate whoever is behind the threat.
When Theo uncovers an even more insidious plot, the covert agency the Reeses work for, Tactical Operational Support, swoops into action.
Song files have been modified to steal personal data from devices and emit a tone that drives listeners into a homicidal rage. Theo and his parents race against the clock to stop this mysterious enemy from releasing the music on an unsuspecting populace and causing worldwide chaos.
Just when Theo thinks the mission couldn’t be more complicated, Eddie shows up in New York looking to hang out with his boyfriend.
No one ever said being a teenage secret agent would be easy.
Jeff Adams has written stories since he was in middle school and became a published author in 2009 when his first short stories were published. He writes both gay romance and LGBTQ young adult fiction…and there’s usually a hockey player at the center of the story.
Jeff lives in northern California with his husband of more than twenty years, Will Knauss. Some of his favorite things include the musicals “Rent” and “[title of show],” the Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins hockey teams, and the reality TV competition “So You Think You Can Dance.” He also loves to read, but there isn’t enough space to list out his favorite books.
Jeff is the co-host of the “Big Gay Fiction Podcast,” a weekly show devoted to gay romance as well as pop culture. New episodes come out every Monday at BigGayFictionPodcast.com.
You can find out more about Jeff’s books at JeffAdamsWrites.com
Connect with Jeff:
- Website: http://JeffAdamsWrites.com
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/writerjeffadams/
- Twitter: https://twitter.com/WriterJeffAdams
- Jeff (& Will’s) PodCast’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/biggayfiction/
To celebrate Jeff’s Codename: Winger Series re-release and brand new audiobooks, Jeff is giving away:
- A Signed Paperback Set of Codename: Winger Series (US & Canada Only)
- 1 of 2 Audio Codes for Book 1 Tracker Hacker (International Winner)
- A Personal Signed e-set of Codename: Winger Series (International Winner)
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