The moment Eddie heard the question, he seemed to -- stop. For once, the suave Eddie Carmichael seemed at a loss for words. This wasn't supposed to happen. Nobody was supposed to know about her; she who had been the reason he came back to this country in shambles; she, who he had loved, who he had wanted to marry. She, who had left. He inhaled deeply, trying to think of some quick-witted way out of this, but there really wasn't. God damnit. He had sworn to never speak her name again, to never speak of her, and now this was all glaring at him in the face and shit he still had to answer Maisie before she got up and left, too.
"...no one," he said at long last, his voice lacking the usual charm and elegance that everyone had come to know. He really didn't want to talk about this - not now, not ever. It was to be the secret he kept with him till he was dead in the ground. But the silence was still there, still eating away at him, until he exhaled slowly, examining each of the pictures in turn as he held them in his hand. "Just some girl I knew in California." Just some girl my ass, he thought.