Jeremy watched as the crowd slowly dispersed outside the police car. He had no idea of time but he had begun to feel some remorse and concern for his actions. If Ina really was leaving him, how would this situation affect his rights to see his children later? It wouldn’t be inconceivable that a judge could deny his visitation based on today’s events. Would he be booked? Was this an arrest? Would he do any jail time? It could be called assault and battery he reasoned. “No shortage of witnesses.” he admitted painfully to himself. And what about today? Randy was done with preschool at 1:30pm and he had no idea if he’d be able to get her. Trevor was done at 2:30. He would need to call someone. Who? He didn’t know all the people Ina might call in this situation. Moms had the network, Dads didn’t. He became suddenly aware of how few people he might call upon to watch his children that weren’t better friends with Ina. Mark might be able to he thought. Mark, his brother had recently married Gina, a good woman and they lived nearby in town. They had watched the kids once before and Jeremy trusted them. In addition they were family and his 6 siblings were tight. They’d lived through a very difficult childhood together and each knew the other was there for them no matter what. They rarely pulled that card on each other which made them that much more supportive when they did. “This is a no matter what moment.” Jeremy acknowledged. Jeremy’s hands were cuffed behind him so he wasn’t able to look at his watch. He’d probably have to call Mark or Gina from the station when they brought him in. Just then the front door of the patrol car cracked open and the large blonde officer set his notebook and a bag in the front seat. “Doin’ Okay back there?” The cop asked in a surprisingly warm tone. “Yeah.” Jeremy answered trying to keep his voice steady. “I’ve had better days.” “I’m sure.” the cop answered. “Sit tight we’ll be with you in a minute.” he said shutting the door again and walking over to the smaller dark haired officer still talking to Tami. She was the last person left out of the crowd of perhaps fifty that had been there during the altercation. The two police talked for about a minute nodding back and forth and then to Tami. Tami nodded herself, shook both officer’s hands, looked at Jeremy with a worried expression and then walked back towards the seminar building.
The two officers then turned back toward the car. The larger blonde one walking around to the driver’s side and the shorter one to the passenger side. The blonde cop opened the rear door and looked in at Jeremy. He motioned with his hand and said, “Come on out.” Jeremy slid over and the officer helped him out by the arm. He gently turned Jeremy around and began un-cuffing him. “What’s going on?” Jeremy asked in surprise. ” You’re free to go.” he answered as he clipped the cuffs back to his belt. Jeremy looked across the roof of the patrol car at the shorter officer. The man nodded his lips slightly pressed together as if in firm agreement about something. “They aren’t pressing charges and to be honest, we would have done the same thing in your shoes.” he said. The blonde cop nodded. “Get out of here now and don’t let us see you on campus for awhile.” “Wow, thank You officers!” Jeremy said now his voice finally breaking. “I do need to go pick up my kids! Thank You!” “Go on.” The blonde cop said. “Take care of your family.” said the other. Jeremy turned feeling suddenly lighter but deeply emotional. He felt he’d been given an unexpected gift and was surprised the officers had known somehow what was going on. Even more surprising they seemed to be on his side. He had no idea how he would manage without Ina or what the new living arrangements might look like after today. There were now many unknowns in his life. He felt like he’d fallen into a dark pit with no obvious way out. He reasoned that he should just start with something he could do and that was to pick up his children. ” At least today I will be able to be with them.” He thought as he walked back through campus towards his car.