slide1 slide2 slide3

Interview - How did you come up with this amazing story: Gem first came into my mind and her twin sister quickly followed, as did their careers and family. Wyatt was lurking on the side planning his Games. The story fell into place in a matter of a few hours, and the other characters were just “there” waiting to make their entrance.Everyone was crowding into my brain and I had to get them on paper because I couldn’t concentrate on anything else.

Chapter One

He was usually a much more observant man. He had noticed when she sat at the table next to his, but she had kept her head down, reading papers she took from a large brown portfolio. If it hadn’t been for the American tourists, he might have passed the time at the café without fully seeing her.

“Gem! Gem! Why it is you!” the taller of the two men said excitedly.

Wyatt sharpened his focus on the young woman. Gem. Perhaps! However, it was a common nickname.

Gem looked up, shading her eyes with her hand to locate the voice in the bright morning sunlight beyond the café’s canopy. As she lowered her hand, Wyatt realized the true meaning of the phrase ‘blind luck’. He hadn’t known where to begin searching for her. She travelled quite often, James had said; she could be anywhere in the world.

Wyatt saw the extraordinary deep violet eyes fringed with sooty black lashes; the luminous skin caressed by the pale green, tailored silk blouse; the crème coloured ballerina length silk skirt rustling in the breeze, revealing lovely legs. A dab of powder, a hint of lipstick; no other cosmetics were needed for this natural beauty. Her pale blonde hair, artfully woven in an intricate braid extended well past her shoulders; tendrils, tousling in the early August breeze, framed her sun-kissed cheeks.

Breathtaking! Nature had bestowed its finest artistry to her, exquisite beauty, lacking nothing - except a soul.

He had studied the photos hour after hour. He saw her in his nightmares. It was indeed her.

Gem groaned inwardly as she looked blankly at the handsome young couple.

“Hello,” she said tentatively, forcing a bright smile.

Wyatt continued to observe her. The same lovely smile- perfect straight, white teeth.

Gem set down her tea cup. She should have taken a table inside the café, but it was a shame to be indoors on such a lovely day.

“T and J-” the taller man offered.

“Tad and Jeff - remember? - San Francisco,” the other man, nearly a head shorter than his partner, filled in the unspoken questions.

Gem nodded, still smiling. “Of course, San Francisco!” Blast! When was San Francisco? Last spring? No, that was the broken arm. No, February was the broken arm. A year ago? What have I landed myself with? There’s so much I don’t know - or don’t recall. And why should I have to know everything? She usually didn’t have ‘unknown’ situations in London. London had always been her base.

“You’re in London! How lovely!” Please don’t ask me to be your guide, she sent a silent plea. But that offer would never have been suggested - she would never have made that offer! Not for London!

“Only for an hour or so,” the taller one replied. He pointed to his partner. “Tad insists on hitting every castle possible in two weeks.”

“Ah!” Gem mentally relaxed. “Where to first?”

“We’ve done the ‘Palace’,” it had to be Jeff speaking- process of elimination; he used air quotes around palace. “Off to Warwick now. Super!”

“We didn’t stop to think, couldn’t imagine bumping into you in Merry Olde England! You are always grabbing a jet, always travelling. So ubiquitous!”

“And we never did get your cell number when you were in good old S.F. Another of your whirlwind jaunts,” Jeff lightly scolded.

Gem nodded. “Of course.” They certainly wouldn’t have a mobile number. Mobile numbers were only for family. A ring at an inopportune moment might be a massive headache - a lost mobile was a scorching one, and possibly a cog that could slip. And international mobile rates were crippling. She had heard that complaint more than once or twice the past few years. - Flat numbers, perhaps, but no mobile number! No cogs that could slip!

“Well, Gem, old dear, it’s been fab!” Jeff grinned. “But we’re off to see knights in shining armour.”

“They are a dying breed these days, I believe,” she mused.

“There’s that British sense of humour we love so much, Gem!” Tad waggled a finger at her. “Hugs all around!”

She was pulled from her chair and thoroughly hugged by both men. Then more farewells and promises were extracted from her to ‘look them up’ next time she was in good old S.F.! She knew where to find them!

“Who actually says farewell?” Gem chuckled, as the lads went on their way.

“Apparently tourists from good old S.F.,” came an amused reply from the next table.

Gem turned to her left, her eyes meeting the gaze of a strikingly handsome man. His hair was lush dark, nearly black, his eyes light grey with a faint rim of blue around the irises. Wow! He could be a magazine advert for a shining knight - sans armour! He was impeccably dressed. Savile row, no doubt, or a personal tailor -elegant black suit, sparkling white shirt, so subtle grey tie that perfectly matched his eyes. The suit, so perfectly tailored, indicated what she knew would be a smashing body.

He smiled at her, and her heart flip-flopped. So corny, but so true!  She blushed, took a step backward, then with her usual lack of grace, knocked her papers off the table.

“Blast!” Gem sighed.

He was quickly beside her. He was tall. Very tall! And perfection!

He scooped up the papers as Gem nervously, and again true to nature, managed to tip over her tea cup. She wondered desperately if this devastatingly gorgeous man was someone she should know.

“Blast!” Blushing furiously, she mopped up the tea with a serviette.

“One of those days?” he chuckled.

“One of those years. Not much sleep last night,” she admitted, clattering the tea cup against the saucer. “Blast! Not a good day to pick up babies,” she sighed.

She glanced at him. The muscles of his jaws tightened. The smile seemed to fade a bit.

“You have an infant?” he asked smoothly, handing her the papers he had collected.

“Oh - no - no,” Gem waved her hand, papers and all, in protest. “No children. No pets. Free. Untethered.”

“Ah!” The smile returned.

Lord! What beautiful teeth!

Gem snapped to her senses. Control! Always be in control of yourself! No blathering, she warned herself.

“May I?” He indicated a chair at her table.

“Yes,” she managed a calm tone - or hoped it sounded calm, watching as he drew out her chair for her, before seating himself.

“Wyatt Grantham,” he extended his hand, “no children, no pets, also free and untethered.” Did she recognise the name? He studied her face.

Gem relaxed. He didn’t seem to expect her to know him. Lovely, she thought happily. His handshake was firm, but not crushing, his touch causing another flutter to her heart. “Congratulations - being untethered,” she offered half-humorously, half-questioningly, completely inanely.

“Untethered - for now,” he grinned, “but a man should marry. Home, family, the ultimate goal.” He arranged her papers in a neat pile as he spoke.

My gosh! He is so - so - so - Gem’s vocabulary failed her.

“And you are?” he prompted with a smile.

“Completely lacking social graces,” Gem blushed. “Gem Forrester. Ah - Gemimah - Forrester.”

“A lovely name. It suits you - Gemimah,” Wyatt stressed her full name.

Gem laughed. “I haven’t been called Gemimah in so long. I nearly forgot it was my name. I’m called Gem.”

It was HER!

Game ON!

He glanced down at the papers. Sketches of churches, some of the drawings were of very fine detail. “You are an artist,” he observed.

“Not really. I studied art history. I’m writing a book about medieval cathedrals - history and architecture.” Please let me speak coherently and say something interesting!

“Coffee table book?”

“More or less. I’m expanding my thesis.”

“Master’s?”

“Doctoral.”

His eyebrows rose. “Very impressive.”

“Last year. So glad that’s in the past. But I’m obsessed with cathedrals.”

“Last year,” he repeated, nodding his head. “Very interesting, indeed.”

Oh good! It’s interesting! Gem smiled.

“And you?” she coaxed gingerly, hoping not to sound prying.

“I admire churches, but they are not an obsession with me,” he said lightly. “Oh - work. Business.” He paused. Would she trip to the name now? “Grantham Enterprises International.”

“Oh,” Gem said politely.

Wyatt again closely studied her face. The name hadn’t registered with her. He would stake his life on that.

Game definitely ON!

And bless James for refusing to trade on the Grantham name, insisting on adopting Smythe, their grandmother’s maiden name. The Game would play smoothly.

Wyatt’s gaze fell upon her right hand.

“What a fascinating ring,” he murmured, tracing the object with his finger. “Wherever did you find such a treasure?”

She watched his finger, circling, circling hypnotically, mesmerizing her.

Gem’s thoughts drifted back.

Gemmy had been hastily packing for the flight.

“Gem,” Gemmy hesitated, then smiled. “You must see this!” She held up a ring that gleamed in the bright ceiling light of their bedroom. “This ring is over two hundred years old! It was crafted in London!”

Gem’s eyes opened wide at the sparkling jewel. “Stunning! Wherever did you find it?”

“Barcelona! Lovely, lovely Barcelona! Magical Barcelona! Oh, how I dearly love Barcelona!” Gemma sang and danced around the room. She stopped dancing and lowered her voice conspiratorially. “I cashed in my stocks and bonds. I am going to purchase the loveliest flat you have ever seen! In lovely Barcelona! You will love Barcelona as much as I do, Gem. You must come visit. Ever so often!”

Gem laughed at her sister’s joyous mood. “Barcelona is lovely, I hear!”

Gemmy winked at her. “I’ll tell you a secret, dearest sister in the entire wide, wide world.” Gem nodded encouragingly. “You know, love, how thrilled I am to go on this trip, but when it’s over - when mum and dad and I come home - I am retiring from the Agency. Good and truly retiring - permanently!” She dramatically lowered her voice. “I’ll tell mum and dad on the plane - and soon the dear Agency and I will be parting company - forever!”

Gem gasped in astonishment. “What! You! You who loved to travel so much you wanted your passport bronzed!”

Gemmy giggled. “Bronze is, after all, third place. I am going to be first place! I’m going to live in Barcelona forever! No more quick flights for the Agency! No more gruelling cross-country hopping, six countries in two days to finish my blasted thesis! It is finally, finally finished. And now it’s Barcelona forever!” she sighed happily. “And NO MORE AGENCY! Do you know that Harry is still grumpy about that passport I lost last month?”

Gem smiled, shaking her head. “I can’t imagine why! Lost - one extremely sensitive, especial government passport bearing your photograph!” Gem laughed. “But - still - more power to you, dear heart. At last I shall always know where to find you. Barcelona, wasn’t it?”

“Yes. I shall always be there!” Gemma smiled at her sister, then at the ring. “This is a very, very old, very important ring, my dear sister,” she said, holding out the ring to Gem. “Take care of it for me while I am away. It’s priceless. It is one of a kind!”

Gem gingerly accepted the ring, admiring it as she held it in the palm of her hand. The centre stone was a medium size, square cut diamond; it was encircled by smaller, square cut diamonds - all woven together in an intricate, almost embroidered web of fine sterling silver - the work of a great artisan.

“A lovely thesis completed gift for yourself, dear Gemmy. You deserve it!”

Gemma laughed at her sister. “Gem! You are so funny!”

Then it was a flurry of activity. Knapsacks grabbed, hugs, kisses, and Gem’s family was off to catch the plane.

“I’ll be seeing you,” their father said to Gem, as he always did when he bid good-bye to his daughters.

“Wherever did you find it?” Wyatt was repeating his query, and frowning. She was certainly lost in her thoughts. The lovely violet eyes had an odd, clouded look.

Gem shook herself, realizing he was speaking to her. Back to the present! The painful memories. The painful past. The painful present.

“Barcelona,” she cleared her throat. She forced a bright tone. “It’s over two hundred years old. It was crafted in London, I was told.”

“Quite lovely. It is a treasure,” Wyatt murmured.

“Congratulations gift on a thesis finally completed - a - very - long effort,” Gem said with a faint smile. There was nothing else to say. She couldn’t tell him the truth.

“Hmm, yes, quite a treasure,” Wyatt repeated. He scowled slightly. “Gem - I am being forward - I realize- but as you have already had tea, may I coax you to be my guest for lunch?”

 He gazed at her, and Gem found her breath catching in her throat. She could get lost in his eyes! She glanced at her watch. “It’s half ten. A bit early for lunch perhaps,” she said hesitantly.

“Long stroll?” he coaxed. “Mull which restaurant? Window shopping?”

She opened her mouth to decline. She didn’t even know him - other than his name. And then his mobile rang.

Wyatt glanced at the number. “I am sorry to be rude, but I must take this call. Minor fracas this morning at the company, now escalating to major.”

Gem nodded understandingly.

“It was an error, Manton. Don’t dwell on it.” He paused, listening to the man at the other and of the line. “No, you may not dismiss him. You’ve been much more flexible with other new employees.” He winked at Gem, shaking his head. She could hear the voice ranting from the other end of the line. “The issue will be resolved, it’s nothing critical.” He paused again, holding the mobile away from his ear for a moment. “No. No. Listen - no listen. You terrify him. He’s terrified of disappointing you.” Another pause. He shook his head again at Gem. “Listen, Manton - I am attempting to persuade a delightfully charming, exquisitely beautiful woman to have lunch with me, and I am not going to continue to ignore

her to listen to you rant.” She blushed at his compliments. He was momentarily distracted. How could she possibly still be able to blush!

Wyatt scowled and spoke firmly into his mobile. “Send Peter to Greece and get off the lad’s back. And raise his allowance. His starting pay won’t cover much spending money for Athens’ night life.” He snapped the mobile closed. “Forgive me,” he grinned at Gem. “Manton is Director of our London office but is currently at the Paris office. I hired his son as his assistant. The lad is brilliant, over-eager, and drives his father to great distraction. Peter overreached on a project, caused a minor flap, and now Manton is out for his blood’s blood.”

Gem laughed. The man was so suave! So polished! So commanding!

“As you heard, Peter is going to the Athens office immediately. Manton, however, would prefer to dispose of his son in the middle of the ocean.”

The smile left Gem’s face.

“I have offended you,” he said abruptly, gently touching her hand.

Gem shook off the remark and forced a smile. “No, not at all.” Careless words, but only to her. She began to slip the papers into the portfolio.

“Stroll? Lunch?” he gave a slight frown, concerned that he had somehow ruined his chance at the Game.

Gem reflected for a moment. Damn the ocean. Damn all the oceans! All the seas! They might torture her at night, rob her of her sleep, but they would not steal this lovely day from her with this smashing man!

“Yes, thank you,” she smiled.

He took the portfolio from her hands, tucking it under his left arm, taking her left hand in his right.

The day had been perfect, Gem reflected as she sorted the jumble of papers on her desk. There had not been the slightest awkward pause, or lapse of conversation, from the moment they left Oscar’s Café until they had parted hours later. She had been extremely careful of her remarks; however the effort had been unnecessary. The conversation had floated from university studies - Oxford and the Sorbonne for him, Cambridge for her; family: Wyatt, none; her - Gem had felt a stabbing pain of guilt as she replied the same: none.

They had walked for miles, and at one point he had insisted on purchasing a straw hat for her to wear as the August sun beat down on them. They had eliminated restaurants along the way, finally deciding on the White Rose Pub, a new venue for both.

And fortunately for Gem, she was not recognized by anyone she did not know along their walk. After all, London had been her base. Tad and Jeff were, hopefully, an aberrant episode, not an incident to become commonplace. She could relax in her own country. And she was thrilled to be in the company of the staggeringly handsome, attentive, Wyatt Grantham.

Lord! She couldn’t recall the last time she had been out with a man! She had been so busy! There had been that one lad - was his name Eli? No matter; that was eons of months ago.

Wyatt had actually asked about her study of cathedrals - not merely a polite query, but question after question on the subject of which she was extremely well versed. “Medieval cathedrals,” he had mused. “Good heavens! That’s some nine hundred fifty years to study! Very ambitious! The book will be huge! Italy alone will be a massive section.”

“Italy shall be a separate volume. If I ever finish the first one,” Gem had laughed.

“Indeed! Where does one begin on such an epic work?”

“Ireland, Scotland, Britain, Volume I. Europe Volume II. Italy -”

“Volumes III, IV, V, and VI,” he had chuckled.

Gem had laughed again. “I have photos of many cathedrals, but I have to re-shoot quite a few, including Elgin, Fortrose, Durham, Winchester, and Carlisle, I think. I do know at least the first two. What I view through the lens does not always translate to quality final product,” she explained.

“Or the weather wasn’t as conducive as it seemed to be on a particular day,” he had suggested.

“Precisely,” Gem had smiled. “Fortrose and Elgin photos were ruined by a scratched lens - which I didn’t realize was damaged until I had returned to London and had the photos processed.”

She had tried to direct the conversation to chat about him, but he redirected her thoughts to European cathedrals, restaurants, and disastrous dining in various cities; his travels mainly related to business, however he did not elaborate on that subject.

Their stroll past shops, after the pub lunch, surprised Gem. She didn’t realize that men window shopped - or window hopped as she and Gemmy had titled the process. Wyatt’s taste in window shopping was of a much higher calibre than hers, but Gem couldn’t find fault with his excellent style.

She sorted, arranged, and entered architectural statistics into her computer. Handsome Wyatt Grantham teased her thoughts as she worked, causing her to do a major proof-reading of facts.

He had asked to see her again when they parted at the bus stop. He had wanted to drive her home, or escort her in a taxi, but Gem had politely declined. She had easily agreed to join him for tea at nine o’clock the following morning - again at Oscar’s Café. She didn’t worry about sleeping through her alarm. She now had an unforgiving internal clock – always waking at seven in the morning; tomorrow would be no different.

Gem smiled to herself. He certainly was delicious! She could not put Wyatt Grantham from her thoughts. Such a lovely day! When was the last time she had had an outing - with anyone? Work, study, work, the heart wrenching search that nearly drove her to desperation!

Gem shut down the computer, having accomplished very little of what could only very loosely be termed work. She took a shower and immediately fell asleep as her head touched the pillow.

Hours later Gem wakened. She didn’t need to check the time. It was precisely two o’clock in the morning. It was always precisely two o’clock. Brisbane or London, it was always two o’clock. The moon shone faintly on the quiet street below the windows of her flat. She shook her head to focus her eyes and her brain, then slid from her cosy bed, pulled on her dressing gown, and switched on her computer. She clicked on the top folder in her computer files - the Pacific Ocean, and reached over to press the start button on the cd player. Vera Lynn’s voice sang to her every morning at this time - I’ll Be Seeing You - her parents’ favourite song. The songs of the Second World War. Gem kept the volume low so as not to disturb the other residents in the building.

Pacific Ocean: 165,241,241.439 square kilometres; 10,914.888 meters at its greatest depth.

But I am only interested in a relatively small part of you, she informed the massive body of water. The Timor Sea. Or perhaps the Arafura Sea.

Gem paced the floor, retracing her steps to the computer to stare at the screen that seemed to mock her night after night on end. Perhaps it just seemed endless, for she had only recently started her own search. Until a few weeks previously, she had worked assignments. Worked until she could no longer bear to board a flight. She could no longer cross bodies of water by air or by ship. She could no longer travel through the Chunnel. She was trapped in England and would be so until she had resolved her search. Or until the Agency had resolved its search. They were all working together - brainstorming, searching for details, for clues, for glitches. For any information, no matter how minute or illogical. Anything. Absolutely anything.

Six hours out of Brisbane. Flying dead reckoning? Or instrument panel?

Gemma and Gemimah. They were only ‘Gem’ - interchangeable - or both at the same time - from the time they could first remember. Twins - so identical that only a careful scan of fingerprints could differentiate Gemma from Gemimah. Identical deep violet eyes, same black lashes, skin tones, and teeth.

Gem and Gem. Friends didn’t get them confused - they had had few friends, didn’t need them - they always had each other. Their home outside Brisbane had few neighbouring houses, few and far between.

There was one difference between the sisters, Gem self-edited. To give the girls some identity separation, their parents had bestowed upon the girls different surnames. Gemma had their mother’s surname, Gemimah their father’s.

Gemma Louisa Lawson. Gemimah Louisa Forrester.

The surname difference was also a hope of protection for some day in their future, if necessary, due to their parents’ careers. Margaret Lawson and Gerald Forrester wrote and published little known travel guides.

Margaret mainly pursued the travelling while Gerald remained at home to write the books.

A lovely story, Gem mused silently. Actually mum was a courier for the British government and dad was a master cryptographer.

There had been no formal private or public schooling for Gem and Gem; they had been parent educated. The girls hadn’t been forced to study; they had devoured books, and no subject limits had been imposed by their parents. Possessing near photographic memories was also an ace in the hole for the sisters while they pursued their course work.

The sisters had been separated when they were twelve. Margaret Lawson’s courier assignments more and more involved European countries; Gemimah had moved with their mum to England, basing out of Auntie Jane’s cottage in the country; Gemma had remained in Brisbane with their father.

Constant e-mails, phone calls, and then texting, had kept the sisters intimately tuned to one another. Month long visits three times a year to Australia had kept the family unit solid.

Gem was still amazed when she thought of the exciting offer to Gemmy and herself when they had reached their eighteenth birthday. Harry Breckett, long time family friend, and Director of the Agency - a wholly separate department of British Intelligence - had offered the twins courier positions with the Agency. Harry believed that no one would ever suspect the two young sisters were government couriers. Receiving no parental objections, Gem and Gem had pursued the required training; Gemimah had been posted to London, continuing her studies at university, while Gemma had been posted to and studied at Melbourne.

The sisters had worked diligently, followed the rules to the letter, and enjoyed travelling - sometimes at the drop of the proverbial hat - with special government passports, micro-chipped to allow them nearly free passing at airport customs counters all over the world.

Their paths rarely crossed, but they were perpetually linked by phone and computer, meeting at least once a month - usually in Europe. Gemma rarely set foot in London, Gemimah retreating to Australia only for the designated family reunions.

Gemimah’s immediate government supervisor was Mrs Brown, who had been employed by the Agency for many years, first as a courier, then as an agent, and finally as one of the Directors; she was now retired to courier assignment supervisor, which allowed her more time for her precious gardening. Gemma was connected to Eric Portermann, Agency agent and government pilot.

On assignment, names on passports aside, the sister couriers were known to Agency personnel as ‘Gem’. No differentiation. Which was helpful when Gemimah had flu, or when Gemma had broken her arm skiing late last winter; they covered each other’s assignments without missing a beat.

Gem paced the floor as the minutes ticked by. She crossed to the computer, enlarging the section of the Timor Sea. 480km wide, covering approximately 610,000 square k, some 3300 meters deep. Wide and deep enough in which to lose a prop plane.

Flying under radar? If so - why? To what purpose? No contact. No SOS. No Mayday.

“No nothing!” Gem said bitterly.

What was the flight plan? Her father had sent it by code to Harry, but Harry had been unable to decipher the message, Mrs Brown had carefully explained to Gem the day the plane was lost. “We don’t know where the plane went down, my dear. Without the flight plan we can only begin with guess work.”

“Harry can’t break dad’s code,” Gem had caught the older woman’s point.

“He is in your father’s league with codes, trust me on that. But there was a sort of glitch in the receiving code computer. The only letter that was deciphered was the letter D. Harry sent the preferred flight plan to Mr Portermann. Your father was to confer with Portermann, and confirm by code ‘as stated’ or indicate alternative plans, then confirm by code at the last possible minute before leaving the house for the airstrip. He was then to destroy the file, and shut down his coding computer.”

“My father never made coding errors, and only he knew how to use his code computer,” Gem had insisted.

Gem knew there were three Agency sending/receiving code computers in the world. One in the States, one in France, and her father’s in Brisbane. The main frame was in London in Mr White’s Agency computer lab. Harry could send and receive coded messages from the other code computers, but the three computers could not transmit to each other unless Harry sent a code to connect a relay.

“Nor does Harry make errors,” Mrs Brown had firmly insisted.

“A computer glitch. But which computer?” Gem had groaned with frustration.

“Harry is continuing to work on the problem with Mr White,” Mrs Brown had attempted to console her. “Planes are searching the waters off the coast of Australia, however there have been no signs of debris.”

“But no on knows where to search,” Gem had protested helplessly. “And how does one coordinate a search when the flight was ‘unscheduled’? Take-off from a private airstrip, no flight plan was filed with a commercial airport. And the flight never existed. It’s like piecing together a picture puzzle while wearing a blindfold.”

“Pilots logging flight hours for ‘new’ Australian government requirements,” Mrs Brown had explained. “Harry pulled a lot of strings to get this process in the works.”

Gem shut down the computer and crawled into bed. It was only half four. Too early to sleep. The dark hours wouldn’t be over for another half hour. She had to wait it out.

I’m trying, Gemmy!

For the past two months, Gem’s thoughts had been so confused; she had existed to complete courier assignments, and to re-adjust her life to her non-existent family. Her life was a waking nightmare. The insomnia had started that night. 30 May. She couldn’t sleep during the day. She had insisted on working until mid-July. Until she realized she could no longer trust her concentration - her judgment - and the latter was what had disturbed her the most. Now she was having trouble focusing on anything but Gemmy and the missing plane. Nor could she board a plane or bear to look at large expanses of water. She was in an emotional stupor, dragging herself through each day, forcing herself to work on her book, desperately attempting to find a starting point to search for the plane - for Gemmy, for mum, for dad, for Mr Portermann.

And then there was Barcelona.

As the hands moved to five on the clock face, Gem closed her eyes, her thoughts again drifting back to Wyatt Grantham. Much more pleasant thoughts. She wanted to gaze into his eyes - and to shut down her brain.