So far only one writer has managed to penetrate the tight security surrounding the Bosnia peace talks at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base just outside Dayton, Ohio. It helps that author Kati Marton is married to chief U.S. negotiator Richard C. Holbrooke.

Over the past week, the couple has been mounting a two-pronged diplomatic assault on Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic. Because Marton chairs the Committee to Protect Journalists, whenever the Serbian strong man found himself with a spare moment, he would get an earful from her about imprisoned American journalist David Rohde.

The efforts of Marton and others finally bore fruit yesterday when the Bosnian Serbs released Rohde from detention after holding him for more than a week. A correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor, Rohde helped expose the massacre of thousands of Muslims by Bosnian Serb forces following their capture of the former United Nations "safe area" of Srebrenica.

Marton said she had held three separate meetings with Milosevic about Rohde. "I think this was a giant embarrassment to {Milosevic}," she said. "I talked to him about the full weight of the American media coming down on the Serbs in general for holding this man." Marton, in accordance with the news blackout, declined to discuss details of the conference other than to say that it was "the most intense experience" of her life. The Holbrookes share a dormitory-like barracks on one side of a quadrangle with other U.S. officials. On the other three sides are identical barracks occupied by the delegations from Serbia, Croatia, and Bosnia.

Holbrooke who has been locked up for the past week with assorted Balkan warlords for company, could find himself locked up in a jailhouse in Telluride, Colo., after the negotiations end, for failure to pay a parking fine.

His troubles with law enforcement in Telluride stem from what sounds like a nightmare vacation last August. Instead of strolling in the Rockies with Marton, the ambassador spent much of the time on the phone to Washington, trying to put together a new Bosnia peace initiative. While all this was going on, he double-parked his car in Telluride's main street and was ticketed.

News of Holbrooke's brush with the law was revealed by the weekly Telluride Times -- Journal in its column "Police and thieves." The newspaper noted that the San Miguel County Court was expected to issue an arrest warrant against a "Richard C. Holbrooke, of Washington D.C." who had failed to answer a court summons.

The normally voluble assistant secretary of state for European affairs has been observing a self-imposed "news blackout" since the beginning of the Dayton talks, and was unavailable for comment. A spokesman said Holbrooke's secretary had contacted the court, and was trying to make arrangements to pay the fine by mail. Marton said the ambassador had been given a temporary "reprieve."

"At this point, a Telluride jail sounds very enticing compared to Dayton," she joked. Providing the first hard clue about the duration of the talks, she said she and her husband are planning to spend Thanksgiving in Telluride.

To provide everybody with some relief from the tacos-and-burgers diet offered by the Air Force Base, Western governments are taking turns providing dinner to the delegates. On Monday it was the turn of the French. The menu included champagne canapes, smoked salmon, pumpkin soup, lobster, beef tournedos with mushrooms, assorted French cheeses and sorbets, all washed down with a Chateau Margaux, one of the world's most expensive wines.

"Everybody was in a good mood," said Joseph Reif, owner of the four-star L'Auberge restaurant. "Everything seems to be on the right track."