The Island Deception
by Dan Koboldt
GEnre: Fantasy (Epic)
What happens in Las Vegas stays in Las Vegas. But what happens after you step through a portal to another world, well…
For stage magician Quinn Bradley, he thought his time in Alissia was over. He’d done his job for the mysterious company CASE Global Enterprises, and now his name is finally on the marquee of one of the biggest Vegas casinos. And yet, for all the accolades, he definitely feels something is missing. He can create the most amazing illusions on Earth, but he’s also tasted true power. Real magic.
He misses it.
Luckily—or not—CASE Global is not done with him, and they want him to go back. The first time, he was tasked with finding a missing researcher. Now, though, he has another task:
Help take Richard Holt down.
It’s impossible to be in Vegas and not be a gambler. And while Quinn might not like his odds—a wyvern nearly ate him the last time he was in Alissia—if he plays his cards right, he might be able to aid his friends.
He also might learn how to use real magic himself.
The hiss of the pneumatic pistol surprised him, but not as much as the jab of pain in his midsection. He reached down and found something odd in his cummerbund — a narrow metallic cylinder about the size of his pinkie finger. The metal was cold to his touch.
He jerked it out. A numbness started to spread from his abdomen. “What the-”
“Are you all right, Mr. Bradley?” Reiser stepped forward to take Quinn’s arm in a vise-like grip. “It looks like you need to sit down. My limo’s just outside.”
Quinn tried to refuse, but now his tongue had gone numb, too. All he managed was a faint shake of the head, which the man ignored.
A second set of arms came into view. They were slimmer, more feminine, but locked around his other arm just as tightly. Quinn couldn’t even move his head up to look at her. He was limp as a rag doll while they half escorted, half carried him down a hall and toward the emergency exit.
Good, let them try that. The door had a silent alarm. Security would be all over them in about thirty seconds. A little surprising that they hadn’t intervened already, in fact. There had to be cameras back here. Surely the security feed would have shown what happened.
That’s when he remembered that Raptor Tech was a security company. The market leader, in fact. And the Bellagio never went in for anything but the best.
Oh, I hope I’m wrong about this.