That afternoon we left for the lawyer’s house. It was about a thirty-minute drive away from David’s house. Despite feeling safe in that car, sometimes I would hear the echoes of David’s voice in my head telling me to undress and see images of him kissing my body and I started shivering with fear until my mind brought me back to the reality that he wasn’t there and couldn’t harm me anymore. I started breathing in and out until I calmed down.
Before we knew it, we had arrived. The lawyer’s house looked nothing like David’s, which was old and covered in paintings. The lawyer’s house was much bigger, modern and newly built. I couldn’t wait to see inside. She welcomed us warmly and she said, “I am sorry I forgot to mention my name. Am Hannah, you’re both welcome to my house.”
“Thanks, Ms. Hannah, we are really grateful for your help.” Mum thanked her.
“No no no, Hannah not Ms Hannah, please. You’re both welcome, well let me show you to the guest room. It has two beds and I hope it will be comfortable for the both of you. But I could also organise another room though I thought you would both want to stay in the same room. I hope it’s okay with the both of you.”
”Anything you offer us is enough. Besides, we always sleep in the same room and you have already done so much for the both of us. First you helped bring my daughter to me and you saved us from being caught by David by bringing us here. Am sure he will never think of finding us here because he knows that we don’t have anyone in this town, much less someone rich and powerful like you.”
Hearing such comforting words from Mum made me feel even more safe that I was freed from that pervert, David.
I couldn’t wait to see where we would be sleeping so I could take a shower. All I wanted to do was wash off the dirt and disgust that I had, but instead Hannah continued to show us around her beautiful house. The part of her house that I loved the most was the garden. The garden looked well maintained with a variety of flowers and plants. The most pleasing part was how they were arranged. The mixture of annuals and perennials, with different colours and textures. And the swing seats that were there made me love this spot the most. I just love this house, I wish we could stay here forever, I thought to myself.
“I guess we are done with the tour, I will have Mary serve dinner. And before I forget, Mary is the house help here. She’s been working here for a long time. In fact, she’s more like family now. She will be here to help you with whatever you may need. Let’s have dinner and go to bed, and see how I can start working on your case tomorrow. And by the way, don’t shower tonight. I will take you first thing tomorrow for testing to see if there are sperms on your body so the case could be easy for us in the court.”
I felt so disgusted with this news. Because all I wanted to do ever since I had got there was to take a bath and wash off that dirty old man’s touch and kisses from my body. I wanted to just scrub my body until I felt clean. But oh well, I had to keep it inside.
“It’s okay Hannah, I won’t shower today,” I answered, though my mind was telling me something else.
Being with so many women near me made me feel safe. I was a little bit scared but with Mum and the rest of the people around, I felt David wouldn’t touch me again. I never wanted to be left alone. And Mum also didn’t want to leave me alone. Because whenever I was alone, I felt as if David was around me and startled.
That night, we had dinner and went to bed with the hope of starting my case the next day. It was such a long night for both me and my mum. Neither of us could sleep, waiting for how the next day would turn out. Mum saw me turning around and asked, “You can’t sleep as well, right?”
“Yes, Mum, I am not able to sleep at all. Just wondering if that horrible man will be put to justice. I feel so scared thinking of him being free.” I hugged the pillow tightly with fear.
“Don’t worry, baby, I know you have been through a lot. But I am here now, you don’t need to be scared. Everything will be okay. You don’t need to talk about it right now. Just get some rest.” Mum comforted me as she came to my bed and hugged me. Her warm hugs gave me peace and I ended up sleeping without even knowing it. And with her sleeping next to me, I slept like a baby.
It was seven thirty in the morning when someone knocked on the door. Mum and I were still in the same bed and though I slept, it still felt like I would never feel rested again. I went and opened the door to find Hannah.
“Good morning dear, how was your first night here? Did you sleep well?” Hannah asked me.
“Well, to be honest I couldn’t sleep at all. I think I just fell asleep at the last moment.”
“Get ready and meet me at the dining table for breakfast and tell your mum too. And please don’t take a bath.”
“Sure, I won’t take a bath.” I responded though I felt like shouting out loud what I was feeling inside. Disgust and dirt.
I hurriedly dressed as my mum took a shower. I left for the dining room. My mum got dressed and followed me. We had some milk tea with bread and eggs for breakfast. I felt alive eating with everyone unlike with David where I was always scared that he might start touching me again and again. Just the thought of it made my body shiver. But with everyone at the table, I felt protected and loved. So I really enjoyed the food.
We finished and left for the hospital. One of the doctors went with me to a room as Mum and Hannah waited at the reception. I felt calm knowing that a female doctor was the one going to work on me instead of a male doctor. They had a couple of tests done on me. I went back to the reception to Mum and Hannah and we all waited anxiously for the test results. A few minutes later, the test results were ready. And it clearly showed that I was sexually abused.
“With these results and the bruises on your body, we can send that horrible man David to jail without fail,” Hannah said as we left the hospital to go to the police station.
On our way to the police station, I started shivering with fear that we might lose and David could win the case. My heart couldn’t settle until the case got resolved and David was arrested. I was so frightened to know what he would do to me if he won and remained free like a bird.
2 July, 2023