Implicit in the agreement between Sharon Towers and Reuben Townsend was the unacknowledged idea that each owed the other his or her life; therefore any further negotiations would be completed without either of them having to be in the same room. This made things tricky for their attorneys, but as any good lawyer knows, idiosyncrasies mean money, and the dissolution of the Towers-Townsend union portended money aplenty. Tomorrow’s meeting in Monaco to resolve the ownership of the couple’s smaller yacht was a ridiculous bit of business as far as Kavita Shah was concerned, but it wasn’t for her to judge. As far as she was concerned, the pressure of their famous union, compounded by the inevitable problem of distance, had doomed Towers and Townsend from the start. Regardless of their mysterious heroics.

On the evening flight from London to Nice the lights of Paris were directly below when the pain behind Kavita’s eyes flashed bright and hot. Because she was alone in the luxurious cabin of her company’s Lear jet there was no one to hear her cry out. There was supposed to be someone. There was—had been. When she sat down. Who? Redhead. Vapid. Fake smile. Where was she? Kavita looked out the window and somewhere behind the roaring in her ears her brain registered Paris. City of Light. Too far away, she thought. She would never make it. Pressure. Distance. Another blinding surge and she found was fighting the urge to vomit.

Paris disappeared beneath the wings.