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Last night Joshua and I were on our back patio. We were having some wine, cooking some veggies and roasting chicken in the oven (he requested a night off the grill). It's a beautiful Texas night. Not very hot at all. Nice and mild, though a little rainy. It's getting late, we're getting hungry so we're about to finish up our glasses and go inside and eat. We're also a little tipsy, okay...we're kinda drunk but home and safe.

I hear a shout. At our 9 o'clock is a young couple who I know have a newborn. I see the blinds close REALLY fast and I see a glimpse of what looks like her man standing over her and I see her fall. I could hear them arguing earlier outside.

"Baby," I say to Joshua, "I'm pretty sure I just saw him hit her."

We go back and forth about it for maybe two minutes. Josh wants to go over there himself but then there's a chance of the cops getting called besides which I'm not too sure about what I saw yet. And we're drunk. We thought about talking to a neighbor who lives closer to them and helps the couple out a bit. He's also one of the maintenance guys. Then she screams again. She falls into the sliding door. He's hovering over her again.

"That's it! Give me the phone!"

I grab our cordless that is just inside and Josh dials 911 and is put through immediately to an Arlington PD dispatcher. We don't know the apartment number, but we know we can point them there once they arrive.

Three squad cars pull in discreetly. No lights or sirens, as per Joshua's request. Josh points them and a younger cop hops the gate and the others walk around our building, through the courtyard, to their apartment.

The guy is cuffed. One of the officers gets a statement from both of us. He lets us know the woman is going to be fine, but had we not called she probably would not have been. He told us that he wishes more people would do what we did. After they leave, she's out on her porch smoking a cigarette. Minutes later, we see her walking towards us with her young daughter.

I warn Josh that she could be pissed, despite him brutally attacking her. Having been through an abusive relationship prior, I unfortunately know the Stockholm Syndrome too well. She is thankful. Her neck is bruised and Joshua later told me he recognized it as a "blood choke", the same one he learned in the Marine Corps. She told us that had we not called, she may not have made it and that she had actually blacked out. Josh knelt down to say hi to her daughter who was about 4. She wanted nothing to do with a 6 foot 6 man with a deep voice. Even though I know he's a teddy bear, he doesn't look that way to some people, let alone a little girl who just saw her mama get beat up by a man.

I can't describe the feeling of relief knowing we put that son of a bitch behind bars. Actually, he got himself there, but we were in the right place at the right time. Just thinking that we were about to be inside and never would have heard anything just floors me. I'm thankful she's alive, I'm thankful that I got myself out of a bad situation myself and what's more, I'm thankful to have a man like Joshua. There aren't many like him anymore and I know for sure this time that I'm very blessed.

And this is the man I'm blessed with. Mr. Joshua Lynn.


Elizabeth Ashbury

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