Book: Risky Behavior
Series: Risky Behavior #1
Publisher: Riptide Publishing
Cover Artist: Garrett Leigh
Publication date: May 1, 2017
Length: 319 pages
It’s day one of Darren Corliss’s career as a detective, and not only has he been assigned a notoriously difficult partner, but the guy might also be a pill-popping dirty cop. Internal Affairs needs proof, and Darren gets to be their eyes and ears whether he wants to or not.
Detective Andreas Ruffner doesn’t play by the rules, and he doesn’t play well with others. With bodies piling up and a list of suspects who are way above his pay grade, the last thing he needs is a wet-behind-the-ears kid for a partner. Or babysitter. Not even if that partner is easy on the eyes.
As Darren gains Andreas’s hard-won trust, they both realize there’s more than just mutual suspicion simmering beneath the surface. But their investigation is heating up as quickly as their relationship, and Darren has no choice but to go along with Andreas’s unorthodox—and borderline unethical—methods. As IA puts the squeeze on Darren to give up the man he’s falling for, he has to wonder—is Andreas the only cop left in this town who isn’t dirty?
Welcome to the Riptide Publishing/Cari Z/L. A. Witt blog tour for Risky Behavior, book 1 of the Bad Behavior series!
Every comment on this blog tour enters you in a drawing for a choice of one eBook off each author’s backlist (excluding Risky Behavior) and a $10 Riptide Publishing store credit. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on May 6th. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries.
On the way up the stairs to meet Hamilton and my new partner, I passed Thibedeau. I knew that motherfucker well, and I didn’t like seeing him here. I didn’t like him, but no one from Internal Affairs came up this way unless they were talking to Hamilton, which meant he’d just come from Hamilton’s office.
Wow. I hadn’t even met the new kid, and he was already in IA’s pocket.
Good to know, assholes.
At the top of the stairs, I stopped, ostensibly to lean against the wall and check my phone. The new pills I was taking made me dizzy as fuck, especially after going up a flight of stairs, and I’d already blacked out twice this week. No point in pushing it, so I stood there as casually as I could, pretending to care what was on my screen until the sparkling faded from the edges of my vision. Hopefully that particular side effect would wear off soon—I didn’t need it happening at an inopportune moment. Like, say, a foot chase or a struggle to disarm a suspect.
When I was steady, I continued toward Hamilton’s office.
“Well hello, Detective,” Marla chirped from behind her desk. “How are you, sweetheart?”
“Depends on who my new babysitter is.”
She laughed. “He’s in with the boss now.” She gestured toward Hamilton’s office. “They’re waiting for you.”
“Of course they are.”
I didn’t bother knocking. Hamilton hated it when I did that, which was exactly why I did it.
“Ah, there he is.” Hamilton plastered on a grin and leaned back in his chair. “Corliss, meet your new partner—the infamous Andreas Ruffner. Ruffner, this is Detective Darren Corliss.”
Corliss stood and extended his hand.
I didn’t reciprocate. As I nudged the door shut behind me, I sized him up. He did have one edge over my previous partners-slash-babysitters: he was not hard on the eyes. Almost as tall as I was, so probably six one or so. Built like he made religious use of a gym membership. Bit of a baby face, which made me wonder how many dicks he’d sucked to make it through the ranks as quickly as he had; he couldn’t have been more than thirty. Maybe a little older if he came from one of those families where everyone kept paintings in the attic and looked twenty until they were sixty.
I eyed his extended hand like he’d offered me a bag of shit. “Corliss, eh? As in—”
“Yes, my stepdad is Commissioner Corliss.” He narrowed his eyes a bit and withdrew his hand. “Well, was.”
“Was? I hadn’t heard that he’d passed.”
“He retired, Andreas,” Hamilton said with no shortage of irritation.
I bit back a comment about it being a shame the man was still kicking. I did have to ride around with his kid for the foreseeable future, after all. “Well, if you’re the son of Commissioner Corliss, I guess there’s no need for this introduction, is there?”
“Stepson,” he said. “And no, I can’t say he ever mentioned your name to me. Why? Should he have?”
I started to answer, but the boss beat me to it. “Sit down, Ruffner. You too, Corliss.”
My new partner and I exchanged glares as we took our seats. I had to admit, he was ballsier than his predecessors. Most of them seemed nervous when they first met me. That usually wore off in short order. Once they realized my reputation for being an asshole was no exaggeration, they went from nervous to exasperated, and that was fine by me. The sooner they got sick of me, the sooner they were back in here begging Hamilton to be reassigned.
Hamilton had played a wild card this time, though. Corliss was the stepson of a man who blamed me for a significant portion of his gray hair, assuming he had any of it left. While my partner apparently hadn’t heard my name, he wasn’t nervous or intimidated.
Of course he’s got brass balls—they belong to IA. Along with his eyes and ears.
Just what I need.
Hamilton cleared his throat. “You two can get to know each other while you’re out on the streets. All you need to know right now is that you’re both top-notch cops, and if you can work together”—he shot me a warning glare—“then this will work out nicely.”
“We’ll see about that,” I grumbled.
Corliss said nothing.
Hamilton rubbed his forehead, probably exhausted from refereeing the two of us. Then he dropped his hand to his desk. “All right. What’s on your docket today, Ruffner?”
I fought the urge to steal a glance at Corliss. “I’ve got a lead on someone who’s working with one of the kingpins downtown. Going to see if I can squeeze a few answers out of him.”
Hamilton scowled. “And by squeeze a few answers—”
“By the book, Captain.” I smiled sweetly. “Of course.”
Beside me, Corliss fidgeted, but he didn’t speak.
The captain gave his forehead another rub. “You’re on thin ice after that last stunt you pulled. Do not test me, Detective.”
Corliss cleared his throat. “Uh, what stunt?”
“Never mind,” I growled.
“No. If I’m going to be out there with you, I’d like to know what I’m up against.”
I turned to him. “Does it matter?”
That baby face didn’t seem quite so babyish as he glared right back at me. “It does when ‘stunts’ happen in an environment that can get a partner killed.”
“Gentlemen . . .”
We held each other’s gazes for a moment, then turned back to the captain.
“Look.” He put up his hands. “You two don’t have to like each other, but you will work together. Ruffner, that means playing by the book. Got it?”
“Yes, sir,” I said.
“And Corliss, even if he does do something reckless and stupid, he’s your partner. Don’t get yourself killed, but have his back. Understood?”
Corliss hesitated. Then, “Yes, sir.” He said it with just as much enthusiasm as I had.
Well, wasn’t this going to be fun?
About the Authors
About Cari Z
Cari Z was a bookworm as a child and remains one to this day. In an effort to combat her antisocial reading behavior, she did all sorts of crazy things, from competitive gymnastics to alligator wresting (who even knew that was legal!) to finally joining the Peace Corps, which promptly sent her and her husband to the wilds of West Africa, stuck them in a hut, and said, "See ya!" She also started writing, because some things she just thought she could do better. She's still climbing that ladder, but can't stop herself from writing, or from sharing what she creates.
Cari enjoys a wide range of literary genres, from the classics (get 'im, Ahab) to science fiction and fantasy of all types, to historical fiction and reference materials (no, seriously, there are so many great encyclopedias out there). She writes in a wide range of genres as well, but somehow 90% of what she produces ends up falling into the broad and exciting category of m/m erotica. There’s a sprinkling of f/m and f/f and even m/f/m in her repertoire, but her true love is man love. And there's a lot of love to go around.
Cari has published short stories, novellas, and novels with numerous print and e-presses, and she also offers up a tremendous amount of free content on Literotica.com, under the name Carizabeth.
About L.A. Witt
L.A. Witt is an abnormal M/M romance writer who has finally been released from the purgatorial corn maze of Omaha, Nebraska, and now spends her time on the southwestern coast of Spain. In between wondering how she didn’t lose her mind in Omaha, she explores the country with her husband, several clairvoyant hamsters, and an ever-growing herd of rabid plot bunnies. She also has substantially more time on her hands these days, as she has recruited a small army of mercenaries to search South America for her nemesis, romance author Lauren Gallagher, but don’t tell Lauren. And definitely don’t tell Lori A. Witt or Ann Gallagher. Neither of those twits can keep their mouths shut . . .
L. A.’s backlist is available on her website, and updates (as well as random thoughts and the odd snarky comment) can be found on her blog or on Twitter (@GallagherWitt).
To celebrate the release of Risky Behavior, one lucky winner will receive an ebook from each Cari and Lori’s backlist and a $10 Riptide credit! Leave a comment with your contact info to enter the contest. Entries close at midnight, Eastern time, on May 6, 2017. Contest is NOT restricted to U.S. entries. Thanks for following the tour, and don’t forget to leave your contact info!