Lucy told me the following morning that she planned to move back into her house on Wednesday. “All I have to pack is one suitcase of clothes and a few toiletries, plus the food in the kitchen. Of course, I want you to come with me.”
“I have to go home sometime, but I can wait until Thursday or even Friday. I have to tender my resignation personally and I have my apartment to close up. I don’t know what to do with the furniture. Most of it is kind of old, but I do have a big flat screen TV I’d like to keep. Maybe we can find a place for it in your place.”
Lucy moved up to kiss me. “Our place, Matt…OUR place.” Then she kissed me again. “You need to see Martin Albright this morning. He was at the Council’s table, but he’s not a member. He’s our city attorney. I’ll bet he has your contract all but done. Don’t just accept what he shows you. Make whatever changes you think are necessary and make sure it says you have control over hiring and firing. I have a feeling you’re going to make good use of that provision.”
I did meet with Albright, walking right in with Max around 10:30. Lucy was right in that he had a contract for me, but not surprisingly it completely favored the city. I insisted on eight changes which he made without comment or complaint. When we were done it was ready to be signed and notarized and it would be right after I was appointed.
Max and I walked into the diner around noon and I could barely get into our booth just four feet from the door because of all of the congratulations I received from the patrons and staff. I finally joined Max who was already seated and was about to order when Lucy joined me. After a quick kiss I told her about my meeting with the attorney. She just smiled when I told her about the changes I had insisted on. She assured me that the Council would agree and that the vote would once again be overwhelmingly in favor. “I plan to ask that the Council formally approve your performance standards, too. I’ve been very busy calling everyone except Carl Haynes. You’ll have plenty of support for hiring your friend. A number of us have been trying to hire minorities for some time, but our present chief is a total bigot. We’ll be happy to see him go. Maybe knowing that we’re hiring a black officer will encourage him to go earlier.”