Rumors came to Seth, despite every effort not to listen when Ricky Pluch's name was mentioned. According to Ricky, he and Hope were getting back together. Seth had written it off as an attempt to make Hope responsible for his debts. Every time Ricky played the repentant-scoundrel-trying-to-become-a-family-man card, chances were good he had figured out how to turn that pretense to his profit.
A tapping on his side window made him jump. Seth muffled the curses that rose in his throat -- occupational hazard, from unsavory characters he had to deal with. He reached for his service revolver and remembered he was off-duty and had left everything in his locker -- uniform, pepper spray, nightstick, revolver, handcuffs. He had never felt naked before.
"Hey, Seth, how's it going?" Tiffany Hobbs said, after he fumbled for a few seconds to turn the key and get power so he could roll down the window. "What brings you to this side of town?"
"I was hoping to talk to Hope." He winced and hoped the elderly woman didn't think he sounded as stupid as he thought he just did.
Then again, Tiffany had changed his diapers in the church nursery and endured hazardous duty as his babysitter and Sunday school teacher. There wasn't anything he could do to embarrass or surprise or stun her.