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Maura Tierney

You’ve been hunting Maura Tierney for so long that it has reduced you, like balsamic vinegar boiling, to a potent solution with a vigorous scent. And here she is in La Jolla, eating breakfast in front of you: poached egg and salmon over whole wheat toast.

Explain to her that she should kill you.

Ask her if her gun is loaded.

Tell her to tie you to the subway tracks.

Slide your cell phone across the table, already speed-dialed to the number that will explode the tiny bomb next to your heart.

“No,” she’ll say gently, and watch you sob.


Jodie Foster isn’t here to kill you.

“There is one thing everyone knows about my life,” she says, “and it’s not this: I speak French like a native. Four years of using it exclusively, in school, and I own a home dans la patrie. I recorded two singles there. I served on the jury at Cannes.”

Throw a pen at her. You’ll miss.

“But you’re going to do as I ask, in any language.” She slides around your desk with canine grace. “Aren’t you?”


Cherchez la femme,” she whispers, holding the photo of Maura Tierney very close. “Cherchez la femme.


Kelsey Grammer is here to kill you.

“You know I’ve had a difficult life?” he asks, pouring you Evian from a carafe. “My father and sister were murdered, my brother killed by a shark.”

That’s rare.

“Went to jail, too.” Kelsey Grammer dabs his mouth with a napkin. “And my production of Macbeth, well…”

He pops the cap off a fountain pen, then drives it through your eye. Go ahead and collapse.

“But the murders,” murmurs Kelsey Grammer, deflecting a bullet with his fork. “They’ll change a man.”

“Drive him to vengeance,” confirms Maura Tierney, gun smoking sadly, watching you bleed.