Remy? She dived for it, answering in eager, breathless French.

“Et ma fille, Mademoiselle Amelia Weatherbee, avec château?” said an all-too-familiar voice with a terrible American accent.

“Mother, this is me!” Wisely Amy refrained from correcting her mother’s French.

“Why haven’t you called?”

“I was going to!”

“Are you his mistress or aren’t you?”

“Puh-leeze! That’s such an out-of-date term, Mom!” Not that she hadn’t used it herself, but that was different.

“From what the papers say and from what Tate used to tell me, your race-car driver is a fast sort and much worse than Fletcher. Enough said. And by the way, Fletcher’s actually called. You may be hearing from him.”

“I can’t believe you discussed this with Fletcher.”

“I didn’t have to discuss anything. One of his more literate friends saw the stories on the Internet.”

“Well, he called. He wants me back.”

“You broke up with him?”

“Before I came here.”

“Well, I hope you said hell no.”

“My decision. Not yours.”

“Which gives me chills! So how can you fall for a man even worse than Fletcher?”

“I’m a grown woman, Mother, so stop with all the questions and assumptions!”

“Then act like one. The de Fourniers despised your aunt Tate, and she never got her name dragged through the mud. I can’t imagine what they must think of you. Carol certainly never embarrassed me or herself like this.”

Amy took a deep breath and counted to ten—twice.

“When are you coming home?”

“Soon. I do have a few papers to sign and a little more packing.”

“Carol is most concerned. She’d really like you to stop by in London. If you don’t, who knows when you girls will see each other again? Besides, you could use some sound advice from a rational individual like your brilliant sister. At least she’s made something of her life. She’s a barrister, and she’s married to—”

“Must you always throw Carol at me?”

“Just trying to be helpful, dear.”

“Well, then, if that’s the truth, it would be really, really helpful if you could watch the shop a bit longer.”

“Of course, dear. I’ve been having the time of my life running your shop. Not that I don’t have a legal pad full of helpful suggestions for you. The way you order…”

“Okay. Okay. Then if you’ll really watch the shop, I would love to stop in London, although I’m not really in the mood for advice from my brilliant sister.”

“You never are, dear.”

Amy hung up, furious, but at least her anger toward her mother distracted her from worrying so much about Remy.

“I can’t believe it! ‘Probably something I ate, or jet lag,’ you said. My, what a cool liar you were! And I bought it! Me! Brilliant, little ol’ me, big-shot lady barrister who can see through liars like they’re made of glass. And now you say you have a headache. Ha!”“Did Mother put you up to this?”

“As if I needed to be told to call my notorious sister when all my friends are just dying to know what’s going on.” Carol giggled. “They’re all simply wild to meet you, too. If you come, Steve and I’ll throw a big party to show you off. You’re a celebrity!”

“No party! And I don’t need this! Not right now!”

“None of us blame you one bit. Your comte sounds positively dishy. Rich, too! And a celebrity! If he’s half as good in bed as he looks, I may fight you for him!”


“Just kidding. But I do want details.”

“Carol, I’m sorry I lied to you, but I really do have a headache tonight.”


“For your information I’ve had one ever since the accident. So I’m going to hang up, stare at the ceiling and sulk if you don’t stop with the teasing. This is not a funny situation.”

“Oh, my God, you’re not in love with him, are you? Amy? You’re not, are you? Because he’s a comte…and he’s had all those women! He couldn’t possibly care about—”

“Carol, please, I’m begging you—back down.”

“Okay, okay. I’ll save it until you get here. But I want to hear all about him then. If you’ve been sleeping with him, you’ve got to tell me everything because, and I hate to say this, a good marriage can become so dull, so routine after a few years. Not that the sex isn’t kinda nice.”

A phone call from her mother and another one from her sister in one night! Amy was shaking when Carol finally hung up.