Reno Detective Cristian Flesh is an out and unashamed cop, but his slutty ways might be his downfall. Christian lives by a strict set of personal rules, preferring hook-ups and anonymous encounters to committed relationships. His guidelines work for him… until one of his tricks is murdered and he becomes the prime suspect.
Leave it to handsome lawyer Colby Maddox to save Christian’s life. He takes the case and the attraction between them is quick and undeniable. After several passion-filled encounters with Colby, Christian unexpectedly wants to break all his rules. However, before they can contemplate a future together, they’ll have to clear Christian’s name and find the real murderer.
I LIVE my life by a strict set of rules. Some have been around since I was a kid; some are newer. For example, you have to know when to walk away, and you have to know when to run. I learned that from my dad, a big country music fan. Also, all the clothes in my closet have to be organized—pants together, shirts together. I learned that from my mom. The majority of the rules, and the most important, have to do with sex. Why so many? Because I like to have sex. A lot. As much as possible. In my mind sex is like money: you can never have too much. The rules have always guided my life, and I didn’t break them for anybody. Wasn’t even tempted. Until I met him. My life was already screwed up by then. Some of that was my own fault, but not all of it. He was tall, dark, and handsome. It’s a cliché, I know, but for him it fit.
He straightened things out in my life while simultaneously tearing it apart. How did he do both? He got me out of the trouble I was in, but I also ended up breaking a few of my rules because of him. But breaking rules can be good, because some rules are made to be broken.
I’m a cop in Reno, Nevada. A detective, actually. No, we’re not like the cops on that show Reno 911!
It all started at the beginning of June, when my partner and I made a major bust.
My partner is a short but tough African American woman named Alexandra Luther. Everybody calls her Lex. We’re an odd pair. She’s five foot six and the slightest bit chubby. I’m six two, thin and in shape, and I have lily-white skin that won’t tan no matter what I do. Lex has a full head of dark hair that she always pulls up in a ponytail, and I keep my head shaved to the skin.
“Good job, Detectives.”
That was Chief Gary Brunson congratulating Lex and me on making the arrest. We had just brought in a young white teen who had been running drugs for a local piece of scum named Anthony Zion. The boy spilled his guts about Zion after we promised he and his family would be protected.
“You guys did good. I’m surprised you got him to talk so quickly.” Brunson always seemed to be astonished when we got results.
Well, more me than my partner. Lex had been a detective for years and had an excellent track record. She had a handsome hubby and two kids at home. She’d been mentoring me for a while now. At twenty-five, I was one of the youngest guys to ever make detective. What could I say? I was dedicated. I wanted to be a detective, so I did what I had to do to get it.
Brunson liked me well enough; I couldn’t say the same for my fellow cops. There were a couple of reasons for that. The first reason was my age. Other cops hadn’t been able to make detective despite more years on the force. They didn’t like it that I had achieved it so quickly. In their mind it was easy for me, but it wasn’t simple at all.
The other reason I wasn’t well liked in the precinct was that I was gay. Openly gay. I’d never hidden the fact that I was homosexual, but I didn’t flaunt it either. I wasn’t a fruity, dress-wearing, sashaying queer. I didn’t go around holding hands and kissing face with my boyfriend. First of all I didn’t have a boyfriend, didn’t want one, but if I did, there wouldn’t be any public displays of affection. PDAs, even between straight people, made me sick to the stomach.
After being congratulated by Brunson, Lex and I gave each other a high five.
“You did good, Cris.” Cris was short for Cristian, and Lex was the only one I allowed to call me by the short version.
“You too, Lex.” We split up and headed for the locker rooms.
I was drying off after taking a shower when I heard some whispering. I glanced up to see three guys staring at me. For some reason I didn’t think they were talking about what great shape I was in at 220 pounds, or how good I looked with my head shaved, or how pretty my bright blue eyes were.
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Ethan Stone lives in the soggy state of Oregon, and, yes, he does have webbed feet. He used to have a day job where he wore a sexy uniform, now he can wear whatever he wants to work as he attempts to see if this writing thing can support his Mt. Dew addiction.