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Hide in plain sight had been her motto for the past three years and had worked until today. She knew instantly he was trouble. The steady stare, combined with his turning up in all the “wrong” places, the places she was in, was a dead giveaway.

Fran was disappointed. She’d made a life for herself here, one that suited her just fine. Working for a caring vet looking after dogs and cats mostly with a variety of wildlife every now and again, she found the job suited her. The animals trusted her and she loved them in return.

On more than one occasion Brian suggested she stay permanently, and her reply was consistent, she couldn’t but she never explained why. Her “as long as possible” had turned into three glorious years and she’d loved every moment of it.

Now, with the advent of the stranger turning up, she was sure the life she’d created was over and she’d be moving on, quickly. The apartment was immaculately clean and her suitcases stood at the ready so she could leave at a moments notice.

She arrived at the clinic and prepared for the day, setting out all the supplies and utensils Brian would need for the fury patients scheduled for the morning. He’d be arriving shortly and she’d have to break the news. She wasn’t the least bit happy about it and she knew he wouldn’t be either because her departure would leave him short-staffed.

The ready smile on Fran’s face froze when the back door opened and Brian entered, along with the one man she felt she couldn’t afford to see.

Brian greeted her as cheerfully as ever while the look on the other man’s face was blank, immobile. Damn!

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