The Cadillac Diaries: Episode Two

Ray sat back in his bed as Deborah fixed his pillow.
“Why would she go for his collar?” Ray asked absently.
“Who?” Deborah asked.
“Your aunt,” Ray said inattentively.
“I don’t have an aunt,” Deborah said.
“Uh huh,” Ray mumbled.
Deborah knew when Ray wasn’t listening to her. She took a step back from the bed and put her hands in her pockets. After watching him ramble for a moment, she called,
“Daddy? Daddy.”
Ray jerked his head toward her and asked, “Yea?”
“I’ve got to get home to Richard,” Deborah said.
Almost a year ago, Deborah had married patrol officer Richard Clay. He was a hardworking man who had recently earned a promotion to detective. When Ray talked about him, it was with disrespect. But he only did it to bug Deborah. In truth, he had nothing but respect for him. Richard was a good guy who took care of Deborah.
“That’s right. It’s time for his changing. Go ahead,” Ray said.
“Daddy!” Deborah scolded.
“I’m just kidding. I’m sure he’s a nice person,” Ray said.
Deborah kissed him on the cheek and walked to the doorway.
She turned and called, “Daddy?”
“Yea?” Ray asked.
“Please behave,” she said.
“Of course,” Ray smiled.
Deborah watched him for a minute and said, “All right. I love you.”
“I love you too,” Ray responded.
Ray waited for a few minutes after Deborah left the room. Once he was sure she was in the elevator, he slipped out of bed and left the room.
Standing in the hallway holding his hospital gown closed in the back, Ray looked left then right and said,
“All right. Where are you hiding?”

*    *    *

Detective Chambers stared at his watch, waiting for someone to come out and tell him that his partner Carrie Waters was dead. He couldn’t believe how bad things had gotten. Like a tilt a whirl at a county fair, it was fun at first but soon things were flying out of control. Now here he was pacing back and forth like an expectant father.
“Excuse me.”
Chambers turned to see an old man, dressed in a hospital gown, looking at him.
“Yes?” Chambers asked.
“I lost my glasses, and I was hoping you could lead me to the cafeteria,” the old man said.
Chambers didn’t want to leave the room, but this side trip might help keep his mind off things. Looking around, he spotted a sign pointing to the cafeteria. Placing his hand on the old man’s shoulder, he said,
“This way.”
The old man waddled beside him.
“You seem nervous,” the elderly man said, looking at Chambers. “Your wife?”
“No,” Chambers answered.
As the old man shuffled in the direction of the cafeteria, he watched Chambers. “You don’t look old enough to have a daughter. Sister maybe?”
“No, my partner,” Chambers finally said. The old man’s staring was making him uncomfortable
He responded, “Partner? What like cowboys?”
Chambers looked at the old man and said, “What? No. I’m a police detective. My partner is in the ER.”
“Oh,” the old man said. “Don’t I feel foolish.”
By now Chambers was fighting the urge to leave the old man where he stood and take off.
“What happened to her?” the old man asked.
“She was shot,” Chambers said. Then something hit him and he looked at the old man. “How did you know my partner is a woman? I never mentioned that.”
The old man looked up, as if the ceiling tiles would provide the answer. After a moment, Chambers prompted him.
“Hey,” he said.
“Huh?” the old man looked back at him.
“How did you know?” Chambers repeated.
“Know what?” the old man asked.
Chambers grit his teeth and said, “That my partner was a woman.”
“Oh,” the old man responded. “Isn’t that how it works now a days? Equal rights and all? One woman, one man?”
Chambers rolled his eyes. This old guy wasn’t prying; he was just old and stupid. They continued toward the cafeteria in silence until the old man asked,
“Aren’t you cops supposed to wear protective vests or plate armor or something?”
“We don’t always wear vests, and we never wear plate armor, “ Chambers explained as he spotted the cafeteria entrance and sighed with relief.
“There you go, old man,” he said.
“Why thank you,” the old man said shuffling away.
“Detective Chambers! Detective Chambers!”
Chambers turned to see Carrie’s doctor rushing toward him.
“I’m sorry, detective,” the doctor said. “Ms. Waters lost too much blood. We were not able to save her.”
Chambers dropped his head and answered, “Thank you.”
The doctor patted him on the back and said, “If you need our grief room, let me know.”
Chambers just nodded as the doctor walked away.
“That’s a shame.”
Chambers looked up to see the old man still standing at the cafeteria entrance.
“Thank you,” Chambers said, wanting to punch him.
*    *     *

Ray left Detective Chambers alone in the hallway and hurried into the cafeteria. Snatching the phone away from a doctor, he hung up and dialed a new number.
“Hey, that’s my phone!” the doctor protested.
“Look! Shiny!” Ray said, pointing to the lights.
When Tommy answered the call, Ray said,
“Tommy, look I need a favor…I know…I know…Tommy…Tommy…Tommy, shut up! I need you to spin by my place, grab the Cadillac, pick up Pete and get to the hospital. I need your help.”
Ray hung up the phone, tossed it back to the doctor, and left the cafeteria.

Published in: on January 1, 2010 at 10:37 pm  Leave a Comment  

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