The caution is not for an actual rape, but an attempted one. There is no caution for attempted rape, so I used that one.
Samuel Thomas Kerrigan sat in his recliner in the living room of his tiny bachelor apartment, staring into a nearly empty long neck bottle. There were dozens of identical bottles scattered across the floor around his chair, and eleven more left in the case he had bought earlier today.
His life had been good before everything changed seven years ago, a beautiful and loving wife, a rambunctious five year old boy, Daniel, a beautiful little three year old angel of a girl named Alison and a 15 month old golden retriever that loved the kids as if they were litter mates.
Then his wife reported him to the police, insinuating that he intended to sexually assault his precious little girl.
Never mind that it had taken him over six months to have the stigma of the charges removed, he had watched his family be ripped apart by her and had come very close to losing his freedom. He had barely managed to hold onto his job at the radio station as the sound tech; if his boss, Felix, hadn't known him for almost eight years after hiring him just days after his high school graduation... well, better to leave that alone.
He was still staring into the depths of that long neck, on the point of raising it to drink the last of the beer, when the impossible happened. There was no way it could be real, but he stared at his apartment door as someone, no, some THING, walked through it as if it were vapour.
The hallucination threw him for a loop when it stared at him and whispered, "Do ye plan to drink yerself into the grave, Sammy?"
"What business is it of yours, whatever the hell you are?" Sam snarled at the brightly shining creature. Damn, now he would have a migraine!
"I be an angel, Sammy. Have ye not drowned yer sorrows enow yet? It has been nigh on seven years, me bucko!"
Sam couldn't believe his eyes, this supposed angel was standing on at least three bottles, yet none of them were broken? How could that be?
"I am nae a ghost, Sammy, I be an angel, I tell ye. I can appear to ye without being fully physical. Do ye intend to let her win? Do ye?"
Let her win? Her who? Did this creature mean his wife or someone else? He shook his head, sighed and drank the last of the beer, then reached down to the case beside the chair, picked up another bottle and used the bottle opener sitting on the end table to open it.
Opening the bottle wasn't as easy as it normally would be, thanks to how many beers he had already consumed tonight, but he managed it eventually. Once it was open, he carefully set the bottle opener back onto the end table, then tipped the bottle up and chugged half of it.
"She already has won," he muttered at the bottle in his hand, "She has the house, a new car, the children, a boyfriend and a divorce decree."
The purported angel sighed, then stepped closer and took the bottle from Samuel's suddenly shaking hand.
"She has nae won yet, Sammy boy, e'en though it may seem to be that way to ye. Would ye let her harm the children?"
That brought an expression of anger to Samuel's face. "Let her harm them? Hell, no! What in the seven hells is she doing to them?" he snarled.
"Ahhh, that looks more like the Sammy that ye used to be! Why, she be setting up your little angel to be hurt as she accused ye of doing."
The meaning of that statement changed the anger that Samuel was feeling to utter horror. "She'll let some bastard rape my little angel?" The actual angel standing in front of his chair nodded her head, then extended her hand as Samuel grabbed the chair and attempted to stand.
"That be what she intends to do, aye," the angel replied. "Do ye care enow to protect yer little ones, nae matter what it may cost ye?"
"I'd wade through the fires of hell itself to protect my children, dammit!" Samuel hissed as he swayed unsteadily in front of his recliner.
"Then get yourself to yer bed, me boy, get some sleep, and when ye wake up, call yer friend the lawyer, have her contact a judge for ye."
"Are you saying that I can save my kids from whatever she is planning?" Samuel asked the creature as he nearly fell down.
"Aye, Sammy, ye can, but ye canna drown herself in the bottles nae more, do ye hear me? Ye must be strong for yer little ones!"
Samuel swayed again, barely managing to stay upright, turned and muttered as he stumbled to his bed, "I swear it, on my honour!"
The angel nodded, her job was done. So long as Samuel did not break his oath, the children would be safe. She smiled and vanished.
Samuel collapsed onto his bed, not even bothering to undress or to cover himself and slept as he had not done for almost seven years. He woke up a few minutes before 8 AM the next morning, used the toilet, then showered and shaved before he pulled his one suit from the hall closet.
He was about to put the suit on when he remembered the creature from last night saying he needed to call his lawyer friend right away. He stalked over to the kitchen table, spotted his cell phone on the floor, picked it up and dialled the number from memory, then listened as it rang.
The phone was picked up on the second ring, a pleasant female voice stated, "Hello, Samuel, it's been a long time since you last called me."
Samuel sighed, then answered her, "Yes, Bonita, it has. Can you get a restraining order against my ex-wife and her boyfriend?"
Bonita frowned, why would Sam Kerrigan be wanting a restraining order now? The poor guy's ex-wife had divorced him six years ago.
"Sam, you need to talk to me and explain why you need one. I can't just go in and ask Judge Browning without a damn good reason."
"Bonita, a friend of mine came by last night and said something to me that leads me to believe my ex-wife's new boyfriend is a pedophile."
"That's a very serious allegation to make, Sam. How did this woman discover this and why did she only tell you now?" Bonita asked him.
"She said that the guy has done this before, he gets close to women with young kids, then does... I can't even say it, it makes me feel sick."
"That's still only hearsay, Sam. Do you know his name? Anything about him?"
Samuel sighed into the phone, "No, Bonita, I've never actually met the guy, I've only seen him once or twice with my ex and the kids." Samuel turned and looked out the window at the rain falling hard enough that it seemed as if the very heavens were crying in wretched sorrow.
Bonita growled through the phone, "You were close enough to see him and did nothing?"
"I did nothing back then, Bonita, because I try to stay away from the ex, I lost almost everything years ago thanks to her," Samuel snarled. "Also, I didn't have any idea the guy might be like my friend last night implied. I try not to run around accusing people of things, but this time, if there is even the slightest chance that my friend was correct, I have to do something! I can't let my little girl be harmed by doing nothing!"
Samuel shuddered as he saw the image in his mind's eye of what could happen if he ignored what the strange creature had told him the night before. "I will do everything I can to protect my children, Bonita, even if it means that I put my life on the line in the process."
"Sam, slow down, you can't go running around acting like a vigilante!" Bonita declared.
"Bonita, you've known me since Danny was a year old. You know that I value my word as my bond, my honour, yes?"
Bonita listened to Sam, who seemed to be more exasperated by the minute. "Yes, Sam. Just what does that have to do with it."
"I swore an oath last night, on my honour, Bonita, that I would not drink any more because I need to be fully aware to help protect my kids."
"People break oaths all the time, Sam. That doesn't change anything in the situation you've told me here."
"Oh, but it does, Bonita," Samuel chuckled, "When have you ever known me to break an oath I had made? My word is my honour, remember?"
Bonita was quiet for a few minutes, then muttered into the phone, "You've never broken an oath that I heard you make."
"Bonita, I can't be sure, but it's possible that my wife hooked up with the guy to actually have him do what she accused me of intending to do."
"Why would your ex do that?" Bonita enquired. "That would make her an accomplice at the very least if it did happen and she was involved. If it was proven that she intended it to happen, that would raise it to the level of either conspiracy or actual accessory to rape."
"Because she conned me for years, Bonita, led me to believe we had a life with each other, then almost destroyed my life for the heck of it. Can you give me any other plausible reason for her alleging that I intended to sexually assault my own daughter seven years ago?"
"You know I can't, Sam. You know darn well that I know that you would never harm a child, not if there were any way to avoid it."
"And yet you sit there in your lovely house and tell me that I cannot protect my own daughter from something that would definitely harm her? Bonita, if you do nothing, I WILL put my life on the line to prevent my little angel from being harmed by this bastard. I swear it."
"Oh, dear God, Sam, are you insane? You could be throwing your life away!"
"No, not at all, Bonita," Samuel replied, "My wife is the one that threw my life away seven years ago, I drowned my anger in beer since then. Now I have a chance to turn my life around, from the hell it has been since she made that blasted accusation, and to keep my little angel safe."
"All right, Sam, I'm not promising anything, let me see if I can find something to take to Judge Browning. I'll get back to you later."
Sam listened as Bonita hung up the phone, then he dropped his phone on the kitchen table and put on one of his at work outfits.
He left the tiny apartment a few minutes later, heading in to the radio station, where he made sure the audio equipment was working properly. He would examine the equipment at least two or three times each day, then watch the control systems for anything out of the ordinary.
He rarely had to do much more than sit around for most of the day, but that was okay, he was paid to be there even if nothing happened.
He had just finished another check of the equipment while the DJ took a brief break when his cell phone rang. He answered it right away.
"Sam, it seems you were right," Bonita stated. "A detective I know on the force here found your ex's boyfriend on an old warrant list, his name is John James Barber, he was accused of raping two little girls in a city on the other side of the state five years ago and was acquitted on a technicality. Judge Browning issued the restraining order thirty minutes ago, the police are on the way to your ex's home to hand over the restraining orders and to pick up the children. You are not, I repeat, you are not to be anywhere near your ex's house, is that understood?"
Samuel shook his head, he wanted to be there for his daughter, but Bonita was right. "I understand. I don't like it, but I understand."
Samuel sat in his booth watching the audio systems, praying that his children would be safe. He was worried to the point of being nauseous. It was not an easy thing for him to let other people do what was needed, but this way, if his ex was involved, he would not be implicated.
Samuel's shift ended, the evening guy, Parker, walked past him into the audio room and Samuel shuffled out of the building. He had just entered his fifteen year old rust bucket of a car when his phone rang again. He answered it on the second ring, Bonita was calling again.
"Sam, I need you to go to the courthouse. Police officers are bringing Danny and Allie there, your ex and the boyfriend were just arrested. Your wife refused to obey the court order, ran back into the house without closing the door, and the police followed her up the stairs, where they discovered the boyfriend stripping your little girl. It gets worse, though, your ex was screaming for him to "fuck the little cunt good!"
"Oh, my God!" Sam yelled, "So they got there in time, he hadn't done anything beyond stripping my little angel?"
"That's right, Sam," Bonita whispered. "Just be glad they weren't any slower. Both are facing charges including attempted sexual assault."
"Thank you for listening to me earlier today, Bonita," Samuel responded. "I'm on my way."
Sam listened to the angel and by not interfering in what took place, was about to be reunited with his children after seven lonely years. He wasn't happy it had come to this, but he would do everything he could to give Daniel and Alison a stable, loving home from this day forward.
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