Ruth Mallory looked out the window of her office at the Birth Control Clinic for at least the third time in the last hour. The baby was still there, still chain smoking. Her temper rose in a hot wave of red flush that began at her collarbone, and spread across her face over her ears, and up into her scalp.
She wanted to run out there, pick him up, and cuddle him. She wanted to throw away those cigarettes, and cure him of his addiction - somehow. She wanted to catch the jerk who taught that innocent child how to smoke, and shove a lit cigarette down his throat!
As much as she wanted to do all of those things, she knew she wouldn't do any of them. She had already called the Family Services Office about this temporarily abandoned toddler, but they hadn't shown up yet. She was told by the agent in charge, that any attempt she made to remove the child from where he was, could be construed as kidnapping. She was not his legal guardian, and she could not just grab him and take him away.
The authorities would have to wait until the child's guardian showed up, and arrest him for child endangerment. Then perhaps the child would get help for his addiction, and perhaps his real family could be found.