Weaver thought he had left his bad decisions and bad past behind him. But now they returned to demand a favour: distract a cop during a drug buy. When he sees his target, he wishes he could mix business and pleasure.
When things go wrong, they find themselves in an unwitting alliance. Is that enough to melt the ice of a freezing winter night?
Sinclair Richmond stopped dead. Doug sat on the side on his bed, his gaze focused on the dark blue carpet. Sin briskly hooked the towel around his lean waist. “What are you doing here?” It wasn’t meant to sound harsh, but he supposed it did.
“You don’t need to cover up.” Doug lifted his head. “It’s not like I haven’t seen it before.”
“I thought you left your key.” Sin didn’t approach. He ran a hand through his wet, shoulder-length dark hair and sighed heavily. He didn’t need this, today of all days.
“We made a mistake.” He stood. “We really need to think about this, Sin.”
“It’s over, Doug. Stop this.”
“It’s not over for me.”
Sin met his gaze for a moment; misty blue eyes. “It was a mistake from the beginning, Doug.”
“We’ve always been close; you know that, Sin. You’re my best friend. What am I going to do without my best friend?”
“I told you this could happen. It was my greatest fear. It’s too late to go back now.”
“I miss you so damn much. I can’t think about anything but you. It can’t end like this.”
“Doug, Jesus. I can’t do this now,” Sinclair snapped. “Tonight is a very important night for me. It could make or break my career, everything I’ve been working for. I have to focus.”
He nodded. “Is it dangerous?”
“You know the answer to that.”
Doug reached into his pocket and pulled out a key. He held it up. “I had a spare.” He placed it on the bed. “I know you never wanted this. It was all me. It wasn’t fair the way I took advantage, but I thought…” He shrugged, his fair hair falling into his eyes. “You know.”
“Yes,” Sin nodded, “I know.” Doug walked out of the bedroom. He looked thin and a little pale. He was always fragile in some way, always in need of someone to protect him, soothe his hurt. Sin had been pretty much doing that since they were six years old.
He missed Doug, too, but not for the same reasons. Doug’s absence left a big hole in his life. He’d feared something like that would happen from the moment they’d brought their relationship to a new level. Sex. The moment they’d become lovers, it had been a disaster, a downward spiral to ugliness. Doug had struggled with his sexuality since he was a teenager, whereas Sin had always known who he was. Sin used to tease Doug, accuse him of living out his unacknowledged gay fantasies through his sexual romps. Doug denied it, but he’d always ask Sin to tell him every detail about his numerous one-night stands. There were many nights that Doug would ditch some girl to spend the night with Sin, listening to his sexual adventures.
Then just last year, Doug made the plunge and slept with a man. He couldn’t stop talking about it and confirmed to Sin that he was gay. Sin was happy he’d finally come out, and he never suspected that Doug’s desire would be directed toward him. To Sin, Doug was like a brother, and then a few months ago, Doug took Sin out barhopping one night and got him drunk. When Sin woke up the next day, Doug was in his bed, naked. He wasn’t sure what to do, what to make of it. He assumed nothing happened until he saw the used condoms.
Doug gave him every reason why they were perfect for each other, and before the morning was out, they had sex again. Sin really wanted skyrockets to go off, and although it was pleasant, it confirmed to Sin that he didn’t feel the same way about Doug.
Sin was afraid to hurt him. Doug was so excited about their new relationship. He assumed that they were a couple. He’d always had a key to Sin’s place, but suddenly he was using it and coming in whenever he wanted. He even began talking about moving in together. Sin tried to avoid sleeping with him again, but several times Sin woke up with Doug beside him.
Doug became possessive. He was a Federal Marshall, and he always gave the impression that his job was more important than Sin’s. When Sin made detective and began to work on the streets with the drug squad, Doug started to insist it was too dangerous, and that he should change jobs. Sin suspected that Doug was jealous of his promotion.
For a little while, Sin desperately tried to let Doug know that this couple thing between them wasn’t working out. He just wouldn’t—or couldn’t—take the hint. Finally, Sin knew they needed to have ‘the talk.'
Doug didn’t take it well.
“I knew this would finish our friendship,” Sin told him. “I love you, Doug, but as my best friend, not as my lover. I regret letting it go on this long. I didn’t know how to tell you and…I don’t want to lose you.”
Doug had always been sensitive. “I’m all right as a friend. Not good enough to share your bed, though.” The argument had escalated from there. Sin lost his temper, as he was prone to, and demanded his key back. Now this afternoon, three weeks later, Doug is sitting on his bed. It couldn’t have happened at a worse time. Tonight, after a lot of investigative police work, he’d finally pinned down the location for a major drug buy. It was dangerous but exciting as hell, and Sin’s adrenalin was pumping even now thinking about it. He couldn’t let his feelings about Doug get in the way.