Everyone would agree that Darius Halloway was the most civilized of men, a professor of French literature; a connoisseur of ideas, beautiful women, and fine wine; a perfect guest at life’s dinner party. Darius himself would have especially agreed until Emma, waifish and insatiable Emma, leaves her empty clothes hangers rattling in his closet and walks out the door.
For a little while, it’s not so bad. He’s in shock. He thinks she will come back. Other women find his melancholy quite compelling, and there are compensations to be had. But then the sparrows of insomnia start picking at the inside of his skull. Life’s little aggravating moments suddenly seem to require him to seek direct retaliation. Soon, all his smoothness and cleverness are directed toward wreaking the most elaborate revenge—until there he is, in the most damning of situations, with his nerves on fire and his heart in his throat.