Tough black policeman Rat Trapp leaves New Orleans for a reunion with newly rekindled romance Camille Bynum (whose rock-star son Danny's death had provided the mainspring fora Project Named Desire, 1986), only to see Camille electrocuted by someone who's been nursing a revenge plot for 40 years. Camille was killed when she grabbed a smoking microphone away from aging P.R. man Nat Wren, who tells Rat that a lot of his friends have died in funny accidents lately--just a day before he himself is gutted outside a gay bar. In the meantime, Rat's old service-colleague Al Narbonne, now head of security for retired President Reagan, has warned Rat off the case and reintroduced him to another former lover, CIA-op Candace Prescott, whose bookstore-owner father, Milt Hebron, is a former screenwriter run out of the industry by blacklisting. It seems that Nat Wren and every one of his dead friends--seven, with an unsuccessful eighth attempt--were members of the House on Un-American Activities Committee, or friendly witnesses, and when Rat hears about the 1951 HUAC-provoked suicide of gifted young actor Philip Stern, the connection should be obvious. But not to Narbonne, who's convinced it's all a terrorist plot masterminded by Rat's wizened old KGB adversary, Jacobs. Bucking the feds and the local law (whose ""white zone"" he's painfully aware of having invaded), Rat takes Candy on a bloody hunt for the real killers--and a final, after-the-shooting revelation he hadn't counted on. Though Rat's idea of detection is too often limited to catching or creating corpses, the authors' acrid writing gives his adventures real grit. It would be a shame if John Corrington's recent death brought the series to an end.