Say hello to Ramona Sanducci, Ana's time travel heroine's best friend. She smokes, chews bubble gum when she can't smoke, speaks her mind, and is worth her weight in gold to Angel and Ana.
Angel Foster groaned each time the covey of secretaries cooed over a shower gift.
“Yours is next.” Ramona, her assistant, handed her a cup of fizzy, red punch.
“What did I get her?” she asked.
“What? When they break up, what’s she going to do? Pick off the lettering with a razor and tweezers?”
“Think happy thoughts, Foster. Not everyone shares your views on love.”
Ramona was thirty-two, petite and divorced. She favored lipstick that matched her hair color-of-the-week and hoop earrings as big as her fist. She had been hired as a secretarial temp, but her take-charge attitude quickly won her a permanent position. By luck she had been assigned to Angel, and they had clicked from the start.
“I should never have let you talk me into this.” Standing outside O’Malley’s Bar, Angel regretted her promise to meet Jeremy Dumont after work.
“One drink,” Ramona coaxed.
“He can afford to pay for it,” Tony added helpfully. (Tony is the computer genius intern)
"I always pay my own way,” Angel snapped. “You know that.” With luck, this sham of a count had tired of waiting and was already redirecting his misguided infatuation. There were plenty of single women prowling the downtown tavern district on Friday nights.
“One drink,” Ramona repeated. “Just let us get a look at him.”
“On one condition. When I do this…” She ran her Celtic cross to and fro along its chain. “…you come and rescue me.”
“Deal.” Snapping her gum, Ramona elbowed her way past a boisterous group of twenty-something stockbrokers from the building across the street. “Do you see him?”
“Not yet,” Tony replied.
“Show me his picture again.”
Tony held out his pilfered printout of Jeremy Dumont’s green card.
“Nope. Can we go now?”
“Nope. Can we go now?”
“Maybe he’s in the john. After all, we are late.” Ramona shot her an accusing look. “Jesus, Mary and Joseph. That has to be him.”
Dressed in a tailored, navy suit with a collarless, silvery-gray shirt, and Italian shoes with knotted tassels, Jeremy Dumont looked like a jet-setting playboy in a Monte Carlo casino. He was talking to a buxom redhead in a tight skirt and even tighter blouse. She laughed at something he said and pressed against him suggestively. He shook his head, murmured in her ear and slipped something in her pocket.
“That better not be your phone number,” Ramona screeched.