Read an Exerpt of See You on Monday

Tanner looked doubtfully at the small aircraft sitting innocently on the tarmac outside the hangar. It had seemed like a great idea when Ezra had first mooted the plan to take in the Flames-Avalanche game, even though flying came a distant also-ran on his list of preferred modes of transport. It had even seemed a perfectly acceptable means of transport as he waited and watched while Ezra methodically went through his preflight inspection. Now, face to face with the reality of climbing into an airplane that stretched a bare twenty eight feet from nose to tail, he wondered if Buck might not have been right. He was crazy. The Texan swung his duffel bag off his shoulder, not bothering to conceal his anxiety.

“Jesus, Ezra. My truck’s bigger than this.”

Standish grinned as he swung open the passenger door, well aware of Vin’s aversion to anything with wings that could not be shot and eaten, and stowing his overnight bag into the cargo space, he reached out for Vin’s own modest contribution to the payload.

“But,” he sighed, leaning for a moment on the door, “your truck can’t get us to Calgary in under nine hours.”

“No,” agreed Vin, “But at least it stays in touch with the ground.” He hesitated, then smiled. “Well, mostly.”

The Southerner firmly took Vin’s arm and steered him closer to the plane. He was familiar enough with the routine of gentle persuasion that was needed to get Tanner into any airplane.

“Just think hockey, Vin. Think two days in beautiful Western Canada away from the pressures of the job. Think chili dogs and…” He paused. “…and whatever else it is that you traditionally inflict on that cast iron stomach of yours.”

The Texan looked uncomfortable. “Did you have to mention food, Ezra?”

A frown momentarily creased the pilot’s forehead. “Yes, I take your point. Cast iron everywhere but ten thousand feet in the air. Forget the chili dogs, think Forsberg and Sakic, Iginla…”

“Okay, okay. I get the message. You convinced me. Let’s do this!”

Standish smiled and jogged around the front of the plane to quickly swing through the open door and into the pilot’s seat, leaving Vin to board at his own pace. He had a good feeling about this. It was going to be a great weekend.