WARREN, SHEREE AND RENEE
His day, up to that point, had been quiet but he liked it that way. The 'action' was always still super exciting for him but he'd gotten to the point with it where if nothing untoward happened on his shift, he wasn't going to complain.
Warren Reinert was a cop, Lieutenant Warren Reinert, that is. He was one of the leaders of what the city had branded the T & W squad, Tactics and Weapons. It was their own version of S.W.A.T.
He'd received his commando kind of training in the Marine Corps and had decided to use this training, when he was back home after his last tour of duty. Now at age 38, he was well trained, in great shape but not all that anxious for excitement and mayhem. That was a dream of youth, he realized; and he told himself that he'd left it comfortably behind.
He was the only child of an old and fairly wealthy family, and, in his own way, the black sheep of that whole clan because he didn't become, like his father, and grandfather, and his uncle, a business man. He'd rebelled, so he thought but had his father's blessings to pursue his own kind of vision for his life, so that the Marine Corps it was and after that his involvement with setting up, training and perfecting the work of the T & W Squad.
And in all of this he was, he knew, extremely fortunate. For, despite his insisting on 'going his own way' with his Dad and Uncle, the businessmen, he was always loved and supported by them. He missed them, both of them all the time. In passing they'd left him very, very well off. In fact they'd left him with more money and income than he ever knew what to do with. But that was his own secret and his financial advisor's.
But the day was done, and he went home to his new apartment, where no one knew or guessed that he actually owned the complex. It was handled by a property management company, and his only connection was the money that the complexes made. He also worked with a kind of vision to make the apartments as good as possible. He was constantly in touch with an architect friend about how to improve the apartments, and for a number of people living there, made sure that the rent was what they could afford.
One such tenant was a school teacher named Sheree, Sheree Wells. She was 26 years old and the mother of a charmer, Renee.
Warren knew them fairly well because Renee was a member of a martial arts class that he taught at the local Boys and Girls Club. She was 9 years old, had, as often as not, pigtails, and a huge smile, especially for her apartment neighbor Warren, Lt Warren. She called him 'her favorite cop'.
Warren and Sheree had developed a kind of cooperative plan. Sheree always took Renee to the martial arts class and Warren saw her home. It had developed because Sheree had frequently enough evening meetings and events.
That time, wandering home from their class and chatting turned into a special time for Warren and Renee.
Now he was on his way home. Schedules had been redone; meetings had been held; reports had been submitted and Warren was free to go. At home he had his usual light dinner, since his noon meal, while on the job, was normally his main meal of the day.
He got into his running clothes and got ready to go to the nearby Boys and Girls Club, when there was a knock on the door.
It was Sheree.
"Hey, Sheree!" he said pleasantly.
(To tell the truth, Warren Reinert always was pleased to see Sheree Wells. He was certainly conflicted about her. He had constant flags in his overly practical mind about Sheree. He had already talked to himself seriously about the propriety of his asking her out given the difference in their ages, and the fact that as a young afro-american woman, he suspected that she might not welcome such attention from him, a caucasian, at all.
In that he was pretty much wrong but would not discover that right away.)
"Warren!" she said with a killer smile. "I have a thing tonight, it won't be long but I have to go. Could you possibly take Renee with you, when you go?"
"Of course!" he said, "Be a pleasure, and if you're not home, when we get back, I'll keep her for as long as needed."
She got up on her tiptoes and kissed his cheek, causing him to blush:
"You are grand!" she said, smiling. "Thanks for being such a good friend."
"I'll be ready soon," he said, trying to cover his reaction to the kiss on the cheek.
As was his usual practice, he simply pushed any ideas that might have crept into the back of his mind due to the cheek kiss and kind of locked them away.
Warren was good at that.
He went out his door precisely on time. (He was that kind of 'on time' person. He felt it was a function of politeness that mattered.)
They didn't keep him waiting. Sheree emerged from one of the other apartment complex doors with Renee.
"Hey there," Renee sang out, "All the bad guys need to scramble, here's the big cheese of the T & W Squad! Everyone duck!"
He grinned at her and now it was Sheree who ended up looking embarrassed.
"Renee," she said.
"No," Warren jumped in with, "She's got me cold!"
Renee grinned at her Momma and then at Warren.
"Don't act out in class!" Sheree said.
"No," Warren was quick to interject, "She doesn't; she takes it seriously and is a good student!"
"Working on the day, when I can use my skills on the big Lieutenant himself," Renee said, still grinning.
"Renee," Sheree said softly, "Don't be so outrageous!"
"Yes, Momma," Renee said, calming down but still grinning at Warren, and then turning to give her Momma kiss.
"Love you, Momma!" Renee said.
"Love you too, sweetie!" Sheree answered and then she and Warren were off down the street.
Renee was excited but she always seemed to be for the martial arts lessons that Warren was teaching. She liked it, liked the work outs, and really liked what she was learning and how confident she was becoming.
It was on their walk home that Renee spoke with Warren about something that was upsetting her.
"Warren," she asked, "Can I talk to you about something?"
"Yes," he said softly.
"I'm worried about my Momma," she went on.
At this point she had Warren's undivided attention.
"Yes?" he said.
"It's that George," Renee said.
"George?" was his response.
"Yes, her, oh, I don't know, one time boyfriend, I guess!" Renee said.
"And?" he prompted.
"Now he's back around these days and he's so mean to my Momma, and I don't know what to do. I'm not good enough yet to do anything but I want to be!"
"Well, maybe he'll just fade," he answered, thinking now.
"I don't know," she said then, "Momma doesn't like him and seems to be a bit afraid of him but he won't let her alone. Can you do something?"
"Don't know," he said, "Seems like not my business kind of..."
But he never got to explain that thought clearly. They turned the corner just then, that put them on their own block, and heard the ruckus immediately.
It was Renee who realized it first.
"That's George!" she said desperately, "And look what he's doing to my Momma!"
Warren saw immediately. Just a few door down the block, Sheree was out in front of the apartment building with a young white guy, who had her by the shoulders and was shaking her for all that he was worth. She was crying and beginning to shriek.
"You stay here!" Warren said to Renee, "Right here!"
It was his total take charge voice and she said an immediate: "Yes, sir!"
And then he was down the block.
"I'll teach you, you black bitch, to say 'no' to me," George was saying, as he raised his hand to slap Sheree.
But before he could carry out his intention, Warren was there and simply grabbed the upraised hand, and, using the fact that George was now off balance, three him out onto the lawn.
George was surprised but on his feet in a moment.
"Who the fuck are you, hero?" he asked, snarling and coming toward Warren.
Warren was calm and answered: "I'm the guy that's gonna kick your butt for treating a woman, especially this woman, that way!"
George laughed but in the middle of the laugh Warren moved with a speed that George had not even thought possible. He kicked George's feet out from under him and, as he was going down, spun around and kicked him on the side of the head.
It was all that George needed. He began to move off immediately and said to Sheree, pointing to her:
"I'll be back, and don't think I won't, some time when he's not around!"
Warren didn't do anything more or say anything more to George because right then Sheree was his main concern.
He turned to her, as soon as he knew that George was going to run away. She took a few steps forward and threw herself into his arms, where he held her, and let her sob.
"Oh, thank you, Warren!" she said.
But right then they were interrupted by Renee, who'd caught up with them. Warren opened the hug and let Renee into it. Renee was crying too.
"It's okay, honey," Sheree said, kissing Renee on the top of the head. "Warren has taken care of George. I don't think he'll be back."
Warren thought that he knew better but refused to say anything right then. For the moment, he simply kept his arms around the two woman and let them calm down.
Slowly Sheree calmed down and looked up at smiled at Warren. For a moment, he thought that she was going to kiss him but then realized that it was only his over active imagination at work.
"Thank you, thank you!" she said.
"Yes, thank you, Warren!" Renee chimed in.
.... There is more of this story ...