Sir Paul McCartney reportedly fled Britain last week (ends12MAY06) in a bid to escape his wife Heather Mills MCCARTNEY's constant arguing. Animal rights activist Mills MCCartney has slammed reports her marriage to the former beatle has hit crisis point, insisting the pair were spending time apart so she could rest after having surgery five weeks ago (APR06). But the LET IT BE rocker, who flew back from France on Friday (12MAY06), has reportedly been taking stock of his stormy relationship. A friend of the star tells British newspaper the Sunday Mirror, "He's beaten up emotionally and just needed time out. So he just walked out. "It's not the end - yet. Paul will go back to Heather because he adores her. "Paul's very down about the whole situation. He's a very sensitive, thoughtful bloke, so when she shouts at him a lot he finds it soul-destroying." Another pal adds, "She's jealous of Paul's fame. She just doesn't understand why she's not as famous in her own right."