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Diana, William, and Harry: The Heartbreaking Story of a Princess and Mother

Diana, William, and Harry: The Heartbreaking Story of a Princess and Mother PDF

Author: James Patterson

Publisher: Little


Publish Date: August 15, 2022

ISBN-10: 0759554226

Pages: 448

File Type: Epub

Language: English

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Book Preface

She grips her seat as the driver opens the throttle. The black Mercedes S280 is built for speed.

As the two-ton sedan pulls away from the Ritz Paris hotel, photographers’ flashbulbs explode in the night like gunfire. More cameramen, on motorcycles and scooters, are in pursuit.

Earlier this month, pictures of her and her boyfriend kissing while on a yacht in the Mediterranean sold to the tabloids for millions. The couple has only been in Paris a few hours, but the photographers following her won’t stop until they get another image worth a fortune.

It’s after midnight, but she’s still dressed for a summer dinner in white jeans and a dark Armani jacket, her red lipstick bright against skin tanned from a season in the sun.

She looks around at the three men in the car: her boyfriend, Egyptian film producer Dodi Fayed, is beside her in the back seat; their British bodyguard, Trevor Rees-Jones, is directly in front of her.

At the wheel is Henri Paul, the hotel’s deputy chief of security. Paul is an experienced tactical driver, trained at a Mercedes-Benz course in Germany.

When her boys, William and Harry, were younger, they played with toy cars and once waved from a BMW motorbike that a kind policeman let them pretend to drive.

Henri Paul is driving too fast.

There’s an established route from the hotel to Dodi’s apartment, over a Cartier store on rue Arsène Houssaye near the Arc de Triomphe, but Paul doesn’t take it. He turns sharply onto Cours Albert 1er.

Only a few hours ago, she spoke with her sons, a few quick words between games with their cousins at Balmoral Castle. At twelve and fifteen, they’re still young enough to need her.

Henri Paul shields his eyes with a visor against the bright lights of the cameras. As the driver glances at the rearview mirror, she turns in her seat to look out the back window.

They’re traveling away from City Center, west along the north bank of the Seine. Across the river, the sky around the Eiffel Tower shines midnight blue with pockets of red and purple reflected by the lights of the monument.

Men on motorbikes are trying to overtake them.

She looks at the speedometer: 160 kilometers per hour and climbing.

If the boys were here with her, the three of them would be traveling together with a lead car and a tail car, the kind of first-rate protection afforded to the queen and those in immediate line to succeed her.

But since she divorced, she’s refused the royal protection squad.

She’s got a flight back to London tomorrow. She’ll see William and Harry at home, at Kensington Palace. I’m going to give Harry the PlayStation I bought for his birthday.

The Mercedes swerves to the right, toward the entrance of the tunnel under the Pont de l’Alma. The burst of speed whirls her surroundings into a dizzying, kaleidoscopic blur.

The bodyguard shouts and points.

Out the front window, she sees a white car that has stopped short of the tunnel.

Henri Paul loses control. He hits the Mercedes’s brakes, sending it skidding wildly into the white car’s left rear quarter panel, then spins out, crashing first into a concrete pillar and then into an embankment wall.

As her body lurches forward, there’s a sensation of dropping headfirst from a great height.

Like when she rode Disney World’s Splash Mountain, Harry in the front, screaming with delight at the speed of the descent.

She’s alive. Somehow, she’s still alive—and fighting for breath. The pain inside her head—she’s never felt anything like it. A concussion? Has to be.

Like that awful time when William’s skull was accidentally fractured by a golf club.

William survived, and I will, too. I’m going home, and I’m going to hold them in my arms and smother them with kisses and tell them again and again just how much I love them.

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