“FREEZE!” Lennie and Mike both pulled their guns. The assailant let go of Anita’s hair and reached into a pocket to get something. “Hold it! DON’T MOVE!” Mike yelled. The person pulled out a gun, aimed at Anita.... Just at that moment, Lennie took a plastic plate, threw it across the room and hit the gunman’s hand. The gun fired, hitting the wall and throwing plaster all over Anita. Mike vaulted the bed, grabbed the shooter and threw him against the wall. “You bastard, trying to kill my partner’s wife! You’re under arrest! You have the right to remain silent, the right to an attorney and have the attorney present during questioning. DO YOU UNDERSTAND, PUNK?” Mike yelled in the shooter’s ear. Lennie held Anita, who was shaking and crying. She was trying to tell Lennie that she knew who the guy was, but she was too hysterical. “The guy....Mastroanni...pulled my hair...told me I was dead...” she blurted out. “Honey, it’s OK...the guy’s been arrested. Don’t worry, he’s not going to hurt you,” Lennie said soothingly. She just held tightly to Lennie, crying and shaking. “Len, I’m going to run this jerk-off in. You wanna come down later and file charges?” “Yeah, a lot later. I gotta make sure ‘Nita’s all right.” Suddenly, Anita got up, ran in the other room, and screamed incoherently. “OH, GOD!!!! Thank God the babies are all right!” She picked up both of them and just held them tightly. Then she walked over to the rocking chair and sat down. “Mikey,” Lennie said quietly, “I think, if you would, call Olivet for me. I think ‘Nita’s going to need to talk to her.” “Sure. This whole thing has just got her rattled,” Mike replied. “I’ll be back later to take care of the boys. You two need each other right now.” Mike left with the shooter. Lennie ran his hand through his hair, looked at the nervous wreck that was his wife and thought back to when they realized they were in love. She’s one totally jangled nerve right now. If I disturb her, she’s going to fall apart, he thought. “Honey? Here...let me take the babies and put them to bed, OK?” he gently said. She didn’t say anything, just sat there and rocked. He very gently took first Little Len and then Mikey from her and took them to their cribs; they were asleep, luckily. Then he came back into the room and looked at Anita, who just sat there in the chair, knees pulled up to her chest and rocking. She was still weeping, but not as hysterically as she was. Lennie knelt next to the chair. Looking gently into her eyes, he lovingly said, “Anita...please, let me talk to you...Honey, I love you and want to help...don’t shut me out. I know you’re upset, especially now, but we need to talk about it.” She glared at him. “That man broke into our house and tried to kidnap me. Where were you?” Lennie got up and sat on the couch. “Honey, I was in here talking to Mikey. We didn’t know anything was going on until I looked out the window and saw the car that was here before. That was before you started screaming. I’m sorry....” She looked at him, shocked. He was sitting there about ready to start crying. I’ve hurt him, she thought. I’ve hurt him beyond belief. What is wrong with me? This man is the man I love, and I have loved him forever. I don’t understand. He’s about to cry! I’ve never seen him cry. She got up, went to the couch, and sat down next to Lennie. “Honey, I’m so sorry. I’ve been a total bitch to you since the boys were born; I want to say it’s hormones, but I think the stress of being guarded 24 hours a day is getting to me.” She reached out and held his hand. “I never want to do anything that will hurt you or make you stop loving me. I feel sort of like you already have stopped. I need to know you still do, Len. Do you?” Lennie looked into her eyes, and she could see the answer there: those liquid baby blues got her every time. They kissed passionately and then Lennie got up, turned the stereo on and grabbed his favorite tape: Glenn Miller. “ Come on, ‘Nita. Let’s relive our first dance.” He moved the coffee table and held his hand out to her. She got up, moved into his arms and they danced to “their song”, Moonlight Serenade. The tape continued, shut off, and the radio clicked on. They continued to dance to the music, Lennie humming in Anita’s ears. Then, Lennie started singing, “Do I love you....because you’re beautiful....” “I do love you, ‘Nita. You’ll always be the most beautiful person in my life,” Lennie whispered.
Will 'Nita finally believe him? Serenade Part 12