Blackthorne Brothers Prequel
(A Healing Springs Romance Series)
Declan Blackthorne stared at his computer screen. Any second now, each of his estranged brothers would appear on screen, and it was his own damn fault.
Making arrangements over email and text wasn't working. A phone call would be a jumbled mess. So he had proposed a videoconference, figuring it was the easiest way to get them all on the same page while they were scattered in various corners of the world.
Miss Molly—their aunt and practically a second mother to them when they were growing up—had sent each of them a letter, imploring them to return to Healing Springs. Apparently their father had disappeared without a trace, and the police weren't taking his absence as seriously as Miss Molly thought they should.
The screen lit up with an incoming call, so Declan clicked on the notification and grumbled a hello to his oldest brother, Zander.
"Where are the others? I only have a few minutes." Zander glared into the camera, not bothering with pleasantries.
Before Declan could respond, Kaden buzzed in. Blaze tuned in a moment later, just as Declan started typing out a text to him.
"We're really doing this?" Kaden questioned, pushing his Hollywood hair away from his forehead.
"What choice do we have?" Declan asked. "Our father is missing. We can't sit back and pretend he doesn't exist."
"It's worked for the past eight years," Zander mumbled.
"Well it's not working now. He needs us."
"We needed him," Kaden spoke with disdain, as if Declan could have forgotten how they had been forced off the farm. Out of their home. "He didn't exactly fight for us."
"We were grown." Why Declan felt the need to defend his father was beyond him. Being cast out of the family home at nineteen, having to find places to stay during school breaks, and having to dodge questions about his family hadn't been a picnic.
"And he's a grown ass man now," Kaden replied.
"He'll be back," Zander said with authority. "Probably on a bender."
"Do we know if he's been drinking?" Declan knew the answer to the question he posed. Of course they didn't know. They wouldn't have known their father still lived if not for Miss Molly's twice-a-year updates.
"Probably needed to escape StepWitch." Kaden shivered dramatically. "That woman still gives me the chills."
"Valid point," Declan conceded. "But still. Can you imagine Dad waking up one day and deciding to walk away from the farm? He loves that farm more than anything."
"Including us," Kaden spat. His eyes narrowed as he stared into the webcam, challenging any of the brothers to dispute his claim. When no one did, he resumed his usual nonchalance.
Declan needed to work another angle. He had already made up his mind that he'd return to the farm to find his father, but he needed the support of his brothers. He didn't want to do it alone.
"Zander, come on. You're a doctor. You took an oath. He could have a medical issue. He could need a professional assessment."
Zander groaned and shook his head. "They have doctors in Healing Springs."
"But none as committed as you," Declan responded. "Blaze, if he's in trouble he might need some muscle to get him out of it."
Blaze continued to stare ominously into the camera, looking creepy even for him. He wasn't one to speak much, and Declan had grown to accept that early on. Declan didn't relate to the lone wolf thing, but Blaze was as loyal as an alpha wolf, so Declan and the other brothers didn't take offense at Blaze's lack of interest in conversation.
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Blackthorne Brothers: A Short Story PrequelRomance
In this short story prequel, the Blackthorne brothers wrestle with the decision to return home after a long absence. Estranged from their hometown for eight years, the Blackthorne brothers are called back to search for their missing father. Convince...