✅ YA Fairy Tale Retelling
✅ Cyberpunk Setting
✅ Hacker Heroine
✅ AI Sidekick
✅ Part of the Enchanted Kingdoms Anthology (and only 99c!)
Blurb for Silver Hands, part of the Enchanted Kingdoms Anthology
Sage lived like a paper doll; her destiny to be an arranged marriage to a suitable mate. To please her family.
After a terrible day and night, to save her family she accepted exile and sacrificed her hands.
In the depths of Lowtown, she found the strength to survive.
Can she find the strength to face what she lost?
Silver Hands is part of the Enchanted Kingdoms Anthology.
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Old tales get a new twist in this anthology featuring 22 novel-length retellings of different classic fairytales—all written by best-selling and award-winning authors. And—because everyone deserves a fairy godmother—100% of proceeds benefit Puzzle Peace United, a children's autism charity!
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Silver Hands (from the Enchanted Kingdoms Anthology) by Daphne Moore
An upcoming amputation put everyone’s nerves on edge.
Within the airy meeting room, the walls and flooring were all done in light wood that shimmered slightly with gloss. Viny plants trailed from their pots near the ceiling, and full-spectrum lights shone from above them. The plants and people needed the lights since the space was situated at the heart of the family quarters of Rayne tower. There were no windows here – no natural lighting. Without the special lighting, people and plants would wither and die over time.
Like the plants needed light, Sage needed something more than the careful existence she was offered, or she, too, would wither away.
The wall screen glowed, waiting for a presentation to begin. Plush but elegant chairs stood carefully arranged through the rest of the meticulously designed space.
In metered defiance, Sage slouched just a hair in one of these chairs while her sister, Mallory, sat with perfect posture in one of the others. Sage bowed her head, enduring her parents’ lecture. Their carefully considered but chastising words flowed into her ears, as inevitable as the spring floods driving into the ruins of Old Houston. Inwardly, she sighed. She was used to it. They’d gone through this argument so many times in the past few years, always reaching the same conclusion. Sage often wondered why they felt the need for these meetings when the result didn’t vary.
“Mr. Abe brought another internal incursion to our attention.” The chill in Mama’s even voice indicated real irritation. She paced on the other side of the long wooden table. “His analysis indicates that it was you, Sage. Would you be so kind as to explain why you continue this behavior?”
Normally, Sage’s mother would not have been so edgy, but a full quorum had been called to witness a punishment for corporate theft. It was the first public punishment in a decade and one they could not skip. Even if the event would be barbaric and hideous, the Rayne family had to function within the corporate code and obey the Council’s decisions.
Sage knew she had left no evidence of her own runs against other networks, proving she had the needed skill to take the credit from other companies if Rayne International needed it. Mr. Abe, the head of Lattice security, had manufactured that evidence after receiving her message. But she couldn’t win this argument. More so because she was a terrible liar and Papa was exceptionally good at detecting any and all lies.
Sage smoothed the rich fabric of her wide trousers. “The security on the research division is substandard. I was checking it, and I gave Mr. Abe a list of the holes I found. Since he hadn’t found them himself.” She couldn’t resist muttering that last even though she knew it wouldn’t help her argument. Straightening her shoulders, she peered up at her parents. “I think I’d do better in Security. Remember what happened when we were hacked?”
Papa’s frown blackened. It sat oddly on his round, cheerful face. He covered his reader with a large hand, staring straight at Sage. “My girl, have you forgotten what happened when you went up against corporate security in the Lattice? How long it took you to recover use of your arm?” His finger tapped against the reader’s screen. “Mr. Abe took on the job after all that and tightened up the security to prevent another raid on our finances.”
I remember I got our desperately needed credit back from the company that raided us. That comment didn’t make it to her lips. She worked part-time for Accounting, and she was also aware of the fact that finances continued to be precarious. The release of the new uplink chips had been delayed again due to issues with supply of materials, specifically the growth media needed to implant the uplinks correctly.
Sage spent the rest of her time in Design, working on the next generation design for the uplink. While the version Rayne offered was groundbreaking work, she had found– and gotten approved– some tweaks in the design to make the uplinks integrate into the user’s nervous system even more smoothly.
Rayne International had altered the original design from Sage’s parents for safety reasons, but Sage wanted to continue her parents’ work. She hoped to someday be given access to the schematics for the prototype, which she and Mallory had in their brains.
“No exterior agency has gotten through the defenses. Security is too risky for a family member to work in. Your time would be better spent working in your assigned divisions, preferably in accounting,” Mama finished the old argument. A tiny but unreadable smile curved her lips, and Sage knew that the next thing her mother was going to say would rattle her. “Or attracting a good husband to the company. You’re a Rayne; we’ve had offers for Mallory and you already even if you’re not ‘out’ yet.”
Blindsided, Sage gaped at her. Offers? To be married? She’d only just turned eighteen! What about their brother Gideon? He was twenty-four and still not engaged!
Her sister Mallory, ash blonde and perfectly groomed, looked up from her reader in the corner chair. She met Sage’s stunned glance with a smile full of dry amusement and then turned her attention to their parents. “From whom? I thought it went against custom to offer before we turn twenty.”