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The Fraud Sarah, the smart intern, sat ashen-faced in front of the main computer screen in the offices of, running her hand through her hair like she was going to tear it out by the roots.

"I can't believe it," she muttered.

"What's going on?" asked Maggie, the clueless intern.

"I posted on Brad's website that he had a signing at the Barnes & Noble in Newport News, Virginia, on Thursday, September 17. But a loyal reader named Gail Pascaris tweeted at Brad, saying the Barnes & Noble website has the show being on Tuesday the 15th... and she's right."

(Editor's Note: This is quite true. Please do not show up at the Barnes & Noble in Newport News on Thursday thinking you'll get your fill of Brad and his pleated pants. The signing really is Tuesday at 7 o'clock).

"So hundreds if not thousands of people might be showing up at that Barnes & Noble on Thursday night in error?" Maggie asked.

"More like ones if not tens," Peter, the slothful intern, interjected.

"Well, whatever the number, yeah," Sarah said. "I'm afraid I royally screwed up."

From behind his cubicle wall, Zach, the silly intern, piped up in his best announcer's voice: "Tune in to the Reality Show and watch as an intern gets fired!"

"Do you... do you really think so?" Sarah asked.

Zach's head appeared above the divider. "Well, you know what they say: cemeteries are filled with irreplaceable interns."

"That doesn't even make sense," Peter said.

"Still," Zach said, as if his point had been made.

Sarah retreated to her own corner, looking whiter still.

Those troubles aside, it really has been a glorious summer for Brad and the sixth Carter Ross thriller, The Fraud, which released July 7. The reviews have been typically glorious, like the one in the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star that called it "a terrifically entertaining page-turner (with) all the excitement and drama of a Hollywood action flick." He was interviewed by The Huffington Post, chatted with Newark's NPR station, and was featured in The Star-Ledger's entertainment section, among other media appearances.

In addition, he survived having his car towed, thanks to Erwin, who takes his rightful place alongside Gail as the Readers Who Most Bailed Brad Out of Stupidity This Summer.

Also, for those who have been patiently waiting for the audio edition of The Fraud, there's good news: Dreamscape Audio has put the recording into production. It is due for release in December, just in time for the holidays.

Not that any of that was going to help Sarah, who sat in silent agony until Brad wandered into the office.

"Boss, do you have a moment?" she said. "I have something to tell you."

Brad stopped and tilted his head. Taking a deep breath, Sarah admitted the full extent of her foible, excoriating herself to the point of blood, finishing with, "So if you want to fire me, I totally understand."

"Don't be silly," Brad said. "Actually, that was my mistake. I misread an email from my publicist and gave you the wrong date."

Then Brad continued on, humming a show tune.

Zach popped his head up again: "Tune in to the Reality Show and watch as the author gets fired!"

Yours in Job Security,
The Interns

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