Vicki interviews A Pirate, Gyspy, Thief Extraordinaire, and a Wealthy gentleman.
Fortunately they are all the same person.
Jacko: Hold on! I’m not all those things yet. Liza needs to check her timeline. Right now, I’m only three of those things.
Vicki: Which one aren’t you?
Jacko: A wealthy gentleman…within a year I shall be.
Vicki: What happens?
Jacko: I cannot say, or Liza might rewrite the story to teach me to keep my mouth shut.
Vicki: Yeah, she probably would. So tell me about how you became a gypsy.
Jacko: I was born, and voila, I was a gypsy. And here I thought I’d be born a baron’s son.
Jacko. Not at all. I had a wonderful mother and thought my life most fine until she paid a tavern owner to take me away to London.
Vicki: Why did she do that?
Jacko: *Sighs heavily* My mother had the gift of foresight and saw our entire family would be murdered by angry townspeople in the near future. She gave me up so I could have the grand life she foresaw somewhere in my future.
Vicki: And did that work out?
Jacko: Not yet. She told me I would met a great deal of women but few would touch my heart and one would break it. Only then would I find true love. At least that’s what I recall, but to be honest since I had just learned she intended to send me away, I wasn’t listening all too good.
Vicki: Has any of her predictions come true?
Jacko: The townspeople did murder everyone in the camp. When no further money came for my keep, the tavern sod sold me to a captain who needed a cabin boy. I begged the fellow to let me go so I could hunt down the men who killed my family, but he refused. insisting I would be better off at sea.
Vicki: He was probably right.
Jacko: No, he wasn’t. We were attacked by pirates as we entered the West Indies. The captain and his men surrendered, but the pirate still killed every one of them except for me. He made me his cabin boy and I did whatever he wanted, because a crazier, more evil man I have never met. When I reached seventeen, he made me his first mate. It took several more years for the men to accept me as their second in command. Once they did, I killed the pirate and turned the ship to England.
Vicki: I imagine you were glad to be back on ground.
Jacko: *snorts* I hadn’t been on solid ground an hour before I killed a man trying to rob me. I soon discovered why the man took such a foolish risk. He was starving to death because he couldn’t get a job. No one would hire me either, not even as a day laborer, so I tried my hand at thievery and not only did I have a special gift, but it gave me the first pleasure and sense of rightness I had every felt.
Vicki: You felt a sense of rightness when you stole.
Jacko: Yes. It’s what I was born to do. So I let the various criminal elements know I was available for hire, but only if the job was deemed impossible. Then after two successful thefts, I increased my take to 30% and demanded half pay up front. One day, Seth Sojourn hired me to break into the parliament building and steal some papers from the office of the Prime Minister. The place is extremely well guarded, but I got in and out without a hitch. Then I climb into my waiting carriage only to discover it to be occupied and a gun aimed at my chest.
Vicki: Who was it?
Jacko: Xavier Thorn, the finest sleuth in all of England. He complimented me on my theft, declaring me extraordinarily gifted and wasting my time working for the sludge of Lower Thames. He then explained what I had taken and why it was vital this information be kept secret.
Vickie: And you gave it to him?
Jacko: I did, but not because it would save England, but because it clearly meant a great deal to the first man who had ever spoken to me with a courteous tone.
Vicki: But you said he had a gun.
Jacko: Yes, he did. And I had no doubt he would regretfully shoot me, if I went for any of my weapons. But that made his gentle, rational explanation all the more unusual. He had the upper hand, but he still took the effort to convince me to turn over the papers.
Vicki: What happened?
Jacko: When I gave him the papers, he thanked me, and asked if I would like a more interesting job working for him. I said I’d give it a try and have had steady, enjoyable employment ever since.
Vicki: Do you miss stealing?
Jacko: *laughs* Xavier has me constantly stealing one thing or another. In this book, I will steal some very fine horses, a beautiful young lady and her brother, and the most impressive collection of black mail items you could imagine. The only difference now is that I am on the side of good, and it turns out I prefer this side. Which reminds me. I do need to steal the horses tonight, so I best be on my way.
Vicki: Well, it was a pleasure meeting you. *extends hand*
Jacko: *kisses each knuckle, winks, and disappears into the shadows*
Vicki: While I calm down from that kiss, here’s more about The Troublesome Apprentice.
The Adventures of
Xavier & Vic
The Troublesome Apprentice
By Liza O’Connor
The Key to Aunt Maddy’s Death
The Missing Husband of Mrs. Wimple
The Disappearing Scarlet Nun
The Clever Butcher’s Wife
The Rescue of Lady Anne
While investigating the death of a friend and client, Maddy Hamilton, Xavier Thorn (reputed to be the greatest sleuth in England) is greatly impressed with Maddy’s nephew, Victor, and offers him a job as his secretary. Aware of Xavier’s history of firing secretaries, Victor garners a promise that for three months he cannot be fired. Vic then proceeds, in Xavier’s view, to be cheeky and impertinent at every turn. Xavier endures the impudent pup because Victor is most skilled in extracting the truth from clients and intuiting facts with little evidence to assist.
As they solve a string of cases, Xavier discovers a few more important details about his troublesome apprentice, such as her true gender, and the realization that she has awakened his long dormant heart.
“Head out to the estate today. Make no notice or reference to the horses. I’ll send men to assist you in removing them,” Xavier advised.
“How will I know they are your men?”
He described the lead man. “Jacko’s appearance and manners will give you little confidence you’ll ever see the horses again, but I trust him more than most men.”
When Winston left the room, Xavier turned his intimidating stare upon Aaron. “You are lucky to have a man like Winston. You should rely on his instincts in this matter. He is not emotionally involved.”
“You think my feelings for Anne are impacting my judgment?”
Xavier answered without hesitation. “Yes, I am quite convinced of it.” He sighed and leaned back. “Anne Rothchild is clearly a beguiling woman. Her influence on the Earl of Carlington…and you…is clear proof of her seductive powers.”
“It is clear proof she is a woman deserving a life far better than the one she has endured!” Aaron snapped. “If you do not wish to assist me, Xavier, tell me. Otherwise, remain quiet about matters you cannot possibly understand.”
His remarked offended Xavier on several levels. “Do you think me devoid of all human emotions?”
“Let us not play games. You have emotions, and they are more than obvious when your secretary is in the room. I do not condemn your preference, nor do I insinuate it impedes your ability to think in a rational manner. I only request you offer me the same courtesy.”
Xavier laughed beneath his breath. “My dear friend…I hardly know what to say to such a declaration.”
The Troublesome Apprentice
I’m tired of telling my proper bio. So you get the improper bio.
Liza O’Connor was raised by feral cats, which explains a great deal, such as why she has no manners, is always getting in trouble, and doesn’t behave like a proper author and give you a proper bio.
She is highly unpredictable, both in real life and her stories, and presently is writing humorous romances. Please buy these books, because otherwise, she’ll become grumpy and write troubled novels instead. They will likely traumatize you.
Mostly humorous books by Liza:
Saving Casey – Old woman reincarnates into troubled teen’s body. (Half funny/half traumatizing)
Ghost Lover—Two British brothers fall in love with the same young woman. Ancestral ghost is called in to fix the situation. There’s a ghost cat too. (Humorous Contemporary Romance)
A Long Road to Love Series: (Humorous Contemporary odd Romance)
Worst Week Ever — Laugh out loud week of disasters of Epic proportions.
Oh Stupid Heart — The heart wants what it wants, even if it’s impossible.
Coming to Reason — There is a breaking point when even a saint comes to reason.
Climbing out of Hell — The reconstruction of a terrible man into a great one.
Don’t Forget to enter to win one of the two $25 Amazon Gift Cards.