Would you get a ticket if the Courtship cop pulled you over?

Joanna Purswell. She liked the sound of it. Joanna Marie Purswell. Yes, it definitely had a ring to it. Joanna Stockwell was dreamily playing the Last Name Game in her head. Hi, I’m Mrs. Purswell, she practiced. Hello, I’m Mrs. Joanna Purswell. This is my husband.
Shawn was driving her home after an enchanting evening together. They’d only begun their courtship a few weeks before, but she’d already decided that if Shawn proposed, she would definitely say yes. Shawn had so many wonderful qualities. He was cute, he drove a great car, and he was… well… so cute. He’d look so handsome in a black tuxedo standing next to her in her white satin wedding dress. What colour bridesmaid dresses did she want? Pink or emerald green?
Next to Joanna in the driver’s seat, Shawn was in his own dream world. he looked over at her and smiled. She smiled back. The sunroof was open, and the cool summer air was blowing through her hair. There was so much about Joanna he admired… her hair, her legs. He’d kissed her for the first time two nights before. He accelerated the car as he anticipated kissing her again when they said goodbye. If they got married, he wouldn’t have to say goodbye. What would the wedding night be like? Ahhh, the wedding night….Flashing red and blue lights in his rearview mirror jerked him back to reality. “Oh this is just great!” he said angrily as he eased his car to the side of the road.
“Were you speeding?” Joanna asked.
“No,” Shawn answered bitterly. “At least I don’t think so.”
He fumbled in his glove compartment for his insurance card, and then rolled down his window. A tall, meticulously dressed policeman was already walking briskly to the car.
“Uh, hi,” Shawn said, talking quickly. “Sir, I honestly don’t think I was going over limit back there and….”
“Not here to talk about the speed of your car, son,” the officer interrupted. “We need to talk about the speed of your relationship.”
“My what?” Shawn asked.
“You heard me,” the officer said, pulling off his dark glasses and hunching his body down so that he was eye level with the couple. “How long have you two been in a courtship?”
Shawn and Joanna looked at each other in open-mouthed shock.
“I’m a Courtship Cop,” the officer explained. “It’s my job to make sure couples like you don’t speed your way into bad marriages.” He whipped a flashlight off his belt and pointed it in their eyes. “Just as I suspected,” he said. “Bloodshot eyes. Young man, you’ve probably been thinking about sex. And you, young lady, have the glassy eyes of a Premature Wedding Planner.”
The color drained from both their faces
“When did you start your relationship?” the cop asked again.
“Um, about a month ago,” Shawn stammered. His mouth was dry
“And did I just see you pull out of the parking lot of Marquee Jewelers a few miles back? The cop asked.
“Uh… well, yeah,” Shawn said.
“Don’t tell me you’re already looking at engagement rings!”
“Well, um, we were just browsing,” Shawn said sheepishly.
“It was his idea,” Joanna interjected.
“Hey!” Shawn said defensively. “You wanted to look too!”
“I really don’t care whose idea it was,” the cop said dryly. “I pulled both your records, and neither looks good. You both have a history of quick emotional entanglements. You’ve only been courting three and a half weeks; and our reports show that most of your interaction so far has been superficial and based on fantasy. No real friendship. No spiritual relationship. And there’s been no serious discussion of values, goals, or expectations for marriage. Even worse: zero counsel from others!”
“Could you let us off with a warning?” Shawn asked meekly.
“I don’t think so,” the officer said sternly. “I’m writing you both up for ‘considering engagement while under the influence.’ Do you realize the danger you put yourselves in by speeding towards marriage while romantically intoxicated?”
At that, Joanna started wailing and tugging on Shawn’s arm.
“My mum is going to kill me!” she moaned. “She’s a member of MADE- Mothers Against Dumb Engagements! She’s going to freak out. This is all your fault!”
Shawn didn’t say anything. He was already beginning to sober up…

An excerpt from Boy meets Girl by Joshua Harris

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