He loves it when I call him a paladin.

Yesterday morning, I was sitting around, checking my email and reading my RSS feeds, when someone started pounding on the door.  Not knocking like friendly “Hello, I’m a door-to-door salesman and I don’t think your doorbell works so I’m knocking.”  Oh, no.  This was full-on pounding the door with the side of a fist “I’m angry and I’m making myself be known and you’d darn well better open the door if you’re in there.”

A little flashback for a minute here:  Justin quit his job on June 23rd.  He handed in his resignation, effective immediately.  He said that he’d help wrap up a few projects, but that he was done.  Not working for them anymore.  Q-U-I-T-T-I-N-G.

He worked on projects for them a little bit for the next week and then we went out of town for a week.  And then he spent a little more time late last week working on things for them.  But the whole time, he’s been pushing that he’s done.  He’s not doing projects; he’s wrapping up stuff and he’s gone.  On, I think it was Friday, they brought him a hard-drive to put files onto so he could give them projects from his home computer and wrap up that stuff.  Monday, he had other work, and they knew about it, so he didn’t answer when they called.  Fourteen times.  When he did call them, he offered to get the drive back to them, but they didn’t want to come pick it up that day.

You can see where this is going, right?

People from his former employment (either the boss and a coworker or just the coworker, I’m not sure) pounded on our front door Wednesday morning for TWO HOURS.  That’s two full hours of knocking and pounding and yelling at the house, interspersed with moments of quiet when I’d sit there hoping that they’d finally gone away.  Oh, heck no, I didn’t open the door!  When people pound like that on my door, I’m not opening it up!  No, no.  I hid up in my bedroom, away from windows so they couldn’t see that I was home.  And tried to concentrate on other things than the people knocking stuff off the backside of the door because they were pounding so viciously.  People who stood outside in upper-80* weather in 85% humidity for TWO HOURS.  People who freaked me the heck out.

Also, people who are apparently a little stupid.

After 2 hours, the police showed up.  Inside my house, I was happily promising to bake cookies for the wonderful neighbor who’d had the sense to call the cops on the lady (because at that time I was sure it was just the one coworker—if the boss had been there, he’d already driven off in a huff) who was trying to break into our house by repeatedly banging on the front door.  (Why hadn’t I called the cops by then?  Good question . . . .)  Anyway, the heroic officer asked the woman for her ID, asked what was going on, and sent her away.

Sounds about right, right?

Here’s the funny part—the disgruntled ex-boss was the one who called the cops.  Yeah!  He called the local PD to come to our house to help figure out why I wasn’t answering the door!  So when the officer showed up, well, (1) the lady coworker was the only one still there because the boss left her to handle the mess and (2) the officer was not inclined to be helpful to the lady who’d been pounding on the door of what might be an empty house for 2 hours.  (Yes, I was still pretending to not be at home—don’t judge me, I was terrified!)  In fact, when the officer heard that she was trying to get back a hard-drive that she’d GIVEN to the homeowner who had offered to RETURN it, he laughed at her.  And then gave her a warning and told her to leave.

Justin sent a delightfully nasty email to his former employer and coworker later that afternoon telling them that the behavior was unacceptable and that he was done doing work for them.  Not still finishing stuff up.  DONE.  He wasn’t going to work for people who pounded on the door of his house and terrified his wife.  He would leave the hard-drive in our mailbox and they could either pick it up, or he’d destroy it.  And I’m not fully expressing the emotion that he put into his email, but he was angry.  He was Steamed with a capital S.  His protectiveness for me came out full-bore and he wrote that email like a paladin would have stormed into the dragon’s den to save the princess being held hostage.  He was really, really mad.

His coworker called crying and apologetic about the whole thing, saying that she only pounded on our door because the boss told her to do it.  To which Justin said that the Nazi’s couldn’t get away with that excuse, and neither could she.  If I had called the cops and if I had answered the door when the officer showed up, I could probably have pressed charges and then she would be the one in trouble because she was the only one still there.  I’d love to see how a judge would react if she stood up there and said, “My boss made me do it.”  That sort of thing doesn’t fly once you get over the age of, oh . . . 8 or so.

But she told Justin what had happened on her end of the story (which is how I know the cop laughed at her) and asked him to tell me that she was really sorry.  She came by this morning and collected the hard-drive (we were at the beach) and left a note on Justin’s car apologizing again (and again said she was “just doing what [she] was told”) and now we’re done.  Justin is forgoing payment for the work he did last week and we’re not having anything further to do with this company.  And people, it feels SO GOOD.