Unformatted text preview: rited this little beach house from her Great-grandmother Dorothy, on her father's side, and over the years, she had spent her most contented moments here. Gifford wasn't happy now, however. She was only less miserable than she would have been if she had stayed in New Orleans for Mardi Gras, and she knew it. She knew this misery. She knew this tension. And she knew that she could not have gone to the old First Street house on Mardi Gras, no matter how much she might have wanted to, or how guilty she felt for running away. Mardi Gras in Destin, Florida. Might as well have been any day of the year. Clean and quiet, and removed from all the ugliness of the parades, the crowds, the garbage littering St. Charles Avenue, the relatives drinking and arguing, and her beloved husband, Ryan, carry- ing on as if Rowan Mayfair had not run away and left her husband, Michael Curry, as if there had not been some sort of bloody struggle on Christmas Day at First Street, as if everything could be smoothed over and tightened up, and reinforced by a series of careful legal pro- nouncements and predictions, when in fact, everything was falling apart. Mich...
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