Brendan Townsend is a young man who is very loyal to his friends. So when his best friend, occasional lover, and complete screw-up tony comes to him in trouble, Brendan is determined to help. Seems tony is being blackmailed by the owner of the molly house , a private club that tony - and other like-minded gentlemen-frequent in order to indulge their entertainment needs. While the proprietor is ostensibly doing them a favors, he s now seen a way to make easy money off his patrons. Tony s father is desperate for his son to marry into society and will no doubt pay any fee. Then disown his son. Brendan is disappointed in his friend, but goes to seek the help of his older brother s military commander. Philip Carlisle is a gentleman to society, but also a man Brendan's brother trusted completely and told his younger brother to seek out if he ever was in trouble. Philip is a 40-year-old widower, and finds himself charmed, for the first time, by an attractive young man. Brendan is likewise besotted with hero-worship, especially when Philip turns the tables on the blackmailer and saves the day for many of society s closeted sons. What follows is a tale of desire, regrets, cross-country pursuit, hidden identities, lovers torn asunder then reunited, clever cover stories, and the requisite pistols at dawn.