All Detective Heath Barrington and his partner, Alan Keyes, want is to get away for a weekend of romance, but they find murder instead when a missing tie leads them to the body of the peculiar Victor Blount, and Heath can't resist the urge to investigate. Who killed Blount, and why?
Clues turn up around every corner, but what do they mean? The bloody "W," the green spool of thread grasped in the dead man’s hand, the newspaper left at the doorstep: they all lead down a strange and winding road of mystery and danger. As Heath and Alan work together to solve the case, they encounter various and eccentric suspects, old friends, and a hostile Chicago Detective, Marty Wilchinski, who doesn’t like Milwaukee police involved in a Chicago crime. Forced to act on their own, out of their jurisdiction, they race against time to find the killer before Wilchinski files the case closed.
Cal State engineering student Hardy tries not to repeat all the mistakes of his gay-supportive but womanizing father. Hardy is too young for a husband, but not too young to fall for bi Tom, or out Brad, or to move in with Sebastien, a French visiting economics professor who surprises Hardy by not taking him along to Paris for the summer—perhaps because Sebastien has a secret boyfriend? In Sebastien’s absence, Hardy works as a barista and turns to online hookup Dick, who is obviously not who he says he is, yet inspires in Hardy the fantasy of being husbands.