My father starts to explain how the police operate but Ricky and I both give him looks so he changes the subject, “I’m going to stop and pick up your mother before we drop Ricky off,” he says to me. I’m sitting next to him in the front seat; Ricky is by the door looking out the side window, lost in thought.
“Good idea,” I respond. “Mom’s a lot better at the hugging and consoling.” My father is more of the manly man type. When we pull into our driveway my father waves at the back seat indicating we should get back there and then he disappears into the house. I have to give Ricky a nudge to get him moving and then he still doesn’t understand why we are at my house instead of his or why we need to change seat but he follows my lead. We sit staring ahead for several minutes; my mother must have needed to change or something.
“He’s going to be alright,” I say because it’s the right thing to say.
“You don’t know that,” Ricky sounds pretty depressed.
“No, I don’t. But it’s still true. We’re going to figure this out,” I believe what I’m saying but have no facts to back it up.
My mother hurries into the front seat, out of breath and still putting on a little bit of red lipstick, “Hi,” she turns and looks at the two of us. “I’m so sorry Ricky,” she reaches over her seat and can just tap Ricky on the shoulders with her fingers. “How are you doing?” she asks Ricky. He just hunches his shoulders so she gives him another pat and then turns around as my father backs the car out of the drive and heads for Ricky’s house. No one says anything, everyone is thinking about Ricky’s mom and the best way to tell her her husband has been abducted. I’m pretty sure the best place for me is far away but I want to hear as much about what Ricky’s dad does for a living and what he does with his spare time so I plan to be a fly on the wall. We park in front of Ricky’s house and march toward the front door like we are being lead to a firing squad.
Ricky opens the front door and shouts, “Mom!” at the top of his lungs. I think it’s his normal greeting. And then he adds, “Ricky’s Mother and Father are with me!”