As former NSA, Dayton (Day) Ingram has national security chops and now works as a technical analyst for Scorpion. He longs for fieldwork, and scuttling an attack gives him his chance. He’s smart, multilingual, and a technological wizard. But his opportunity comes with a hitch—a partner, Knighton (Knight), who is a real mystery. Despite countless hours of research, Day can find nothing on the agent, including his first name!
Former Marine Knight crawled into a bottle after losing his family. After drying out, he’s offered one last chance: along with Day, stop a terrorist threat from the Yucatan. To get there without drawing suspicion, Day and Knight board a gay cruise, where the deeply closeted Day and equally closeted Knight must pose as a couple. Tensions run high as Knight communicates very little and Day bristles at Knight’s heavy-handed need for control.
But after drinking too much, Day and Knight wake up in bed. Together. As they near their destination, they must learn to trust and rely on each other to infiltrate the terrorist camp and neutralize the plot aimed at the US’s technological infrastructure, if they hope to have a life after the mission. One that might include each other.
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“Look. If last night was some huge drunken mistake for you, then fine. I can deal with that. But I don’t think we do things when we’re drunk that we wouldn’t do when we’re sober. The alcohol lowers our inhibitions so we end up doing what we really want to do. So deny away and hide behind some façade that you were drunk and all that, if you want.”
“I didn’t say that. God. You jump to the worst conclusions, and for the record, you can stop trying to analyze me. I’ve had a ton of people do that over the last few years, and they got nowhere, so what makes you think you’ll get any farther than the professionals? If you want to know something, then ask, and if I don’t want to answer, I’ll tell you to fuck off.”
“Okay. Are you gay?” Day asked.
“Fuck off,” Knight answered.
“Why were all kinds of professionals trying to analyze you?”
“Fuck off. Are you gay?”
“Fuck off.” Two could play that game.
“Okay. I think we’ve gotten the picture that neither of us wants to talk about all this shit.”
“We sure as hell don’t. But one thing we can both agree on is that after last night, whatever we want to call ourselves, there’s something about each of us that we both need to figure the hell out.”
“Fuck off and amen,” Knight answered and closed his eyes. “This fucking conversation is making my head hurt.”
“No. I think the fucking conversation actually happened last night, and if I’m remembering correctly, there wasn’t a lot of actual conversation going on.” Day shifted slightly. “Regardless of what we feel and how uncomfortable we are, we do need to talk this out.”
“Fine,” Knight breathed. “But not when we’re hungover.” He put his arm over his eyes, refusing to look at anything. “We need to be sober for that. So lie down and help me keep the damned room from spinning for a while, and then we can leave this cabin so maybe I can jump over one of the railings, because I think I’m going to die and that will make the whole damn thing a hell of a lot less painful.”
Day smacked his arm. “Fuck off,” he said with surprising gentleness, and then he settled and the room grew quiet.
It took a while, but the room stopped moving, except for the rocking of the ship that he couldn’t do anything about, and slowly he felt more and more human. Eventually he got up and went into the bathroom for some more water and decided that taking a shower might make him feel better.
Dirk is very much an outside kind of man. He loves travel and seeing new things. Dirk worked in corporate America for way too long and now spends his days writing, gardening, and taking care of the home he shares with his partner of more than two decades. He has a Masters Degree and all the other accessories that go with a corporate job. But he is most proud of the stories he tells and the life he's built. Dirk lives in Pennsylvania in a century old home and is blessed with an amazing circle of friends.
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