Second part of the condensed version of Charged (Collection of Short Stories titled Love Is All Around)
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PO1 Granada parted through the crowd like Moses dividing the Red Sea. Her uniform did the trick this time, her stature quickly accepted especially when they saw her caress her holstered gun.
“People! What’s going on here?”
“Loverboy there is decimating the flowers!”
The heckler was popular because he knew how to sew up the right words to create laughter. Known in the world as the ever-smiling race, he proved his claim to be the perfect example.
“Sir,” PO1 Granada wondered why on earth the man sat there like a fool, unperturbed by the loathing he repeatedly received. “You have to stop that. Park regulations prohibit people from destroying public property.”
Roger stopped suddenly, the phrase ‘she loves me’ his last. He sensed that the new arrival was different from the people around him.
He turned around casually, ready to defend his actions for all to hear. However, when he saw the police officer who admonished him, his eyes widened.
PO1 Granada gasped, her surprise total. Dispersing the crowd was the first option that crossed her mind. She would lose her credibility if what she feared occurred.
Shut up! Don’t do this to me!
Roger telepathically received the unspoken message, bowing his head to avoid eye contact with anyone. He was a portrait of a criminal, caught in the act of a senseless crime.
“Enough people! You have your entertainment for the day.”
“What about him?” the heckler asked, stopping the crowd from losing interest. “He should be punished.”
“He will be,” the policewoman agreed. “I know my job.”
“I am curious,” the heckler would not leave unsatisfied. “What will be his punishment?”
Roger did not move. He started blaming himself for the stunt he initiated.
“I know,” the heckler roared. “He should gather all the petals on the ground and make a crown. That way we could make him the King of Wishful Thinking. Yeah, like the song.”
The crowd clapped heartily with the suggestion. They began preparing their cellular phones and other gadgets. The scene could be uploaded in YouTube and other social networks.
“Enough!” PO1 Granada had to pronounce her authority. “There would no mob judgment. This is police business now.”
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Handcuffed and herded like an ordinary felon, Roger was mum while the policewoman kept her distance. Onlookers watched them, most in a state of bewilderment on what happened.
“I am sorry,” he coughed out.
“Have you lost your mind?” she shot back, walking ram-rod and straight like a proper law enforcer.
They reached the Japanese garden, which was tucked away from the main grounds, unusually free from visitors.
“Give me you hands,” she produced the key to unlock the cuffs. “You do this again and you’ll be more than sorry.”
“I was really desperate since yesterday. I could not sleep. I had to do something to let my mind at ease.”
“Are you at ease now?” she mellowed her delivery.
“It depends on what you’ll decide,” Roger looked like a lamb, well, a bearded lamb who was on the verge of tears.
“You’re the most sincere man I have met,” she clasped his hands. “As a woman, I am supposed to follow the routine, you know. I have to keep you guessing. But …”
“But what?” Roger did not want to hear the usual parting words he heard so many times. Still, he bravely waited for her final say.
“with what you did today, I have to make sure you won’t try other silly performances.”
“You’re not a bright person,” PO1 Granada, a.k.a. Sally, jested. “Do I have to spell it out for you?”
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