Angela sat at a table in the back corner of Dave’s Cafe nursing a cappuccino. She’d been waiting almost an hour and was about ready to give up when a man stepped inside. He was probably late thirties, wearing a black pea coat with a grey turtleneck, and had blond hair slicked back from a receding widow’s peak. He glanced over the room and made a beeline for Angela.

“Are you Leigh’s friend?” the man asked.

“Yeah, that’s me,” Angela replied. “Have a seat.”

The man pulled up a chair opposite Angela. He crossed his arms and leaned back, tapping his fingers on his elbows.

“It’s Carey, right?” Angela said. “I’m Angela.”

The man didn’t say anything, just nodded. Angela smiled and looked him in the eye. She could feel the whispers of thoughts pressing in at the edges of her mind, but her mental levee held.

“You don’t have to talk for this to work,” she said, “but it’ll be easier if you do.”

Carey sighed.

“You need to understand, this is a very sensitive situation,” he said. “Leigh vouched for you, so I trust you, but I’m putting my life in your hands here.”

“I understand,” Angela said. “And I’ll do everything in my power to help you.”

“Okay,” Carey said, taking a deep breath. “Have you ever heard of Fatima Brighton?”

Angela shook her head.