A text interrupted my work day: “911.”
It was from Mari.
I checked my watch. Fifteen minutes from my first break at the office. My boss sat behind closed doors. He wasn’t having a good day. I grabbed my cell phone and escaped into the bathroom.
I dialed her number and she answered, sounding like she had spent all morning crying.
“What’s wrong?” I said in a near-whisper.
“Why are you whispering?” Mari hiccuped between words.
“I’m at work.” I rolled my eyes to the ceiling–the plain, white ceiling.
“Oh.” Mari hurried on with her story, stumbling over her words. “He broke up with me.”
“The police man who was divorced with a son?”
“The same.” She said. “I surprised him with a visit. He didn’t seem very appreciative. In fact, he seemed bothered that I dropped in. After that, he called less and less.”
“So he broke up with you?” Silence met my answer.
She cleared her throat before replying, “It’s weird. No text or call or anything formal like that. He just stopped calling me. It’s been a month. He’s not even taking my phone calls. So I stopped calling.”
“Did you, uh, sleep with him?” I didn’t want to know, but Mari was at the very beginning of her journey to Christ and she struggled with that temptation. She asked me to keep her accountable.
“I tried not to, but yes. He got angry and called me a tease. I wasn’t meaning to tease, but I was fighting the temptation of being alone with him. One night…it just happened. I pushed him off, but he tried to force himself on me.”
“That’s called rape.” I said, disgusted.
“Consent. Afterall, look what I was doing?!” Mari sobbed again.
“You made a mistake. Just don’t go back to him okay? He’s not a believer and you don’t want to be with someone who won’t stand by you anyway.” Outside the bathroom door, I heard the heavy steps of someone passing the women’s bathroom. I heard my boss calling my name. I checked my watch–one minute til break. The boss won’t be happy with my extra long bathroom visit. “I have to go, Mari. Let’s get together on Saturday.”
So we made arrangements for lunch on Saturday, and I ended the call. After I flushed the toilet, I put the cell phone in my back pocket and pulled my shirt over it. When I walked into the hall, my boss saw me. His eyes were hooded. He handed me a piece of paper with instructions for my next project. The boss left without a word, but I felt that nervous twitch in the pit of my stomach.
Did he know?