The next day, Joe was talking to Adams in the squad room of the 2-3 when Carl came in. Joe finished his conversation with Adams and
walked over to Carl.
"Joe," Carl said, " I need your help."
"As a cop, or as your son-in-law?" Joe asked.
"Can we talk someplace more private?"
"We can go into my office."
A few minutes later, in Joe's office, Carl said, "I need you to promise me that you won't repeat what I'm about to tell you to anyone."
"Not even Rachel?"
"Especially not Rachel."
"All right," Joe asked, "what's going on?"
"I recently heard from someone I thought was out of my life," Carl said.
"Who is this someone?"
"Her name is Lydia. Lydia," ... Carl hesitated for a few seconds... "Hutchins."
"I'm guessing she's not your sister," Joe said.
"No. She is my wife," Carl answered. "We were married years ago in Arizona,but things didn't work out, and we were divorced, or," Carl went on, "so I thought.
But Lydia called me the other day, and told me that the divorce wasn't legal."
"Can she prove that?"
"She already has. I met with Lydia yesterday at a restaurant in Chicago, and she showed me documents proving that we are still married.
I asked her to have the divorce made legal, but she refused."
"You have to tell Rachel," Joe said.
"She has a right to know."
"She also has a right to stay alive, and Lydia has made some threats. Besides, I don't want Rachel to worry about this. Not right now."
"No," Joe agreed, "she needs to concentrate on getting ready for her show."
"That's right," said Carl.
"I'll do everything I can to protect Rachel," Joe promised.
"I knew I could count on you," Carl said, "but I hate burdening you with it, with the baby due any day now."
Joe's cell phone and Carl's cell phone played their tunes simultaneously.
Two minutes later, both men said, also simultaneously, "I'm on my way."
"That was Remy," Joe said. "Paulina's in labor. I'm heading over to the hospital."
"Congratulations! I'm sorry I can't go with you, but that was Lydia. She wants me to meet her at the Rosenthal
Hotel in Chicago. She has decided to legalize the divorce after all."
"But why would she want you to meet her at a hotel, and not a restaurant?" Joe wondered.
"I don't know," answered Carl.
But Carl was afraid he did know.