“I appreciate you letting me sit here,” he said. “God! It’s good to talk to somebody outside of work! How long you been over here?”

“A month.” An entire month of a precious three, gone. But two, two, two lovely months left to savor.

“A month? And you aren’t crazy yet? How can you stand it?”

“How can I stand Paris?”

“Everything is so … foreign.”

I took a sip of wine so I wouldn’t have to respond to that.

He lifted his own glass. “At least the booze is good.”

The prince waved a hand toward the towering wall of glass beside them. “Roxana, bride of my heart, is imprisoned behind this unbreachable barrier. With your help, I have slain the sorcerer. Again with your help, I have restored my father to health and sense. Yet my soul is still dead within me while Roxana’s enchanted prison keeps us apart.”

Lonnie’s wife, Leona, had dragged my Mary Lee off on a church Meditation Retreat. I hoped Mary Lee wasn’t going to come home a hardshell Baptist like Leona, who was a fine person but sometimes a little too particular about what was okay and what wasn’t. How she got to be married to Lonnie was something I’d always been a little afraid to ask.

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