Contents

Acknowledgments

1. Elena

Elena can no longer tolerate the pain of self-betrayal. Faced with imminent marriage to a man she hates she schemes for a way out.

2. Natalia

Elena discovers freedom and gives it up. Fearing her family's and society's retribution she betrays the woman she loves and heads for her own downfall.

3. Him

Loathing herself for it, Elena submits to her mothers demands and sets up a date with Dmitry. It will be absolute torture.

4. Darkness

Having spent an agonizing evening with Dmitry, Elena is flabbergasted to discover that Meg, a head-strong foreigner, reconnected with her.

5. I love you

On the phone with Meg, Elena commits an act of treason, telling her the words that in her world can only be said to a man.

6. February 16

Although she is unsure she will be able to escape Ivanovo, Elena accepts Meg's invitation to meet in Kiev.

7. Why?!

Following her phone conversation with Meg, then an evening with Dmitry all over her, Elena breaks down in the shower.

8. Talking to the moon

Recalling Meg telling her, that the moon is the only object they can see simultaneously, Elena speaks to the moon, as if it is Meg.

9. Talisman

On New Year's eve, Meg and Elena simultaneously raise glasses on opposite sides of the planet, their connection with each other.

10. First step

Elena surreptitiously buys a plane ticket while on an outing with her girlfriends.

11. Pieces of the puzzle

To prevent her mother from sabotaging her escape, Elena tells her, she is going to Kiev to practice English and visit the opera.

12. On the edge

A week before her escape, Elena's mother arranges to move her in with Dmitry. He continues to take advantage of her, mercilessly.

13. Last days

Dmitry gives Elena a rose for Valentine's day, it embodies everything she fears about her destiny, should she not escape.

14. The eve

Terrified, something will stop her, Elena can't sleep the night before her escape.

15. Master of Self-betrayal

Hours before making her run for it, Elena fears her world will not let her go and she will be right back in her jail.

16. The leap

To safely flee Ivanovo, Elena plays the role of Dmitry's girlfriend up until the very moment she gets onto the bus bound for Moscow.

17. Volcano

Throughout her months with Meg, the transformation Elena goes through, puts her on a collision course with her world.

18. Moscow

Traveling on her own for the first time in her life, Elena counts on her instincts, crossing Moscow to Domodedovo airport.

19. Invincible Together

With Meg beside her in a taxi, Elena knows that no force in the world can take away what they now have by being together.