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Checks and Balances

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Sharon walked through the door of her condo at the end of a very long few days. Her heart ached for Julio, and she hoped that he would come to understand why she had done what she did during the investigation.

In her years in FID, she had mirandized many police officers, but never one of her own. She hoped the subtext was not lost on him.

You have the right to remain silent.

(Please, please exercise it.)

Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law.

(By FID, not by me. I’m on your side.)

You have the right to an attorney.

(Trust me. You want one right now. A lawyer can help you in ways I can’t.)

If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you by the state.

(Gavin still owes me a favor or two. I’ll call it in if you ask. You saw the miracles he worked for Brenda.)

In all, it worked out well. Back in the day, she had sent Provenza to sensitivity training and Flynn to substance abuse counseling, but that was when she was Darth Raydor, the wicked witch of Internal Affairs. Then, she was the principal sending people to detention. Sending Julio to anger management felt different because he was one of her people. Now she was like a parent sending a kid to his room.

Before she could continue her ruminations, she heard the front door open. Rusty walked in with a bag from the hardware store. “I bought a new lock for the front door.”

“Thank you, Rusty.”

Rusty took one look at Sharon’s facial expression and said, “Do you want to talk about it?”

“Not tonight,” Sharon said. She continued, “I think I’ll go to bed.”


The next morning, Sharon was sitting in her office doing paperwork. She heard a knock on the door and said, “Come in.”

She looked up and saw Julio standing awkwardly in the doorway. She smiled and said, “Please have a seat. What can I do for you, Julio?”

“Ma’am. I have my first anger management meeting in about half an hour, but I wanted to talk to you first. Thank you for going to bat for me. I know if Sergeant Staples had his way, I would have been suspended.”

“We’re a team, Detective. I look out for my people,” Sharon said.

“I know that now. It really hurt when you put me in an interview room and interrogated me like a criminal. It brought me back to the first time we met, when you came here accusing Sergeant Gabriel of murder, looking to throw the book at him. You were the enemy then, and Chief Johnson was the one who had our backs. After thinking about it and having a good long talk with Mike, I realized that by following the rules exactly, you were protecting me from FID. I’m sorry I doubted you.”

“FID isn’t the enemy either, Julio. We’re all on the same side, the side of the law. They keep us honest. Just like there are checks and balances in Washington, they check us,” Sharon responded.

Julio stood up. “I should get going. I don’t want to be late for anger management. I guess I have a chance to check myself before I wreck myself,” he smiled.

Sharon smiled, too. “See you in a few hours.”

Julio left and Sharon breathed a sigh of relief. Crisis averted for now.

Her relief was short-lived as Provenza knocked on the door. “We’ve got another murder.”


-The End-