Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Unspeakable Me

6/27/2002

{This is one of those out of order entries. Will write it out and find where it goes later.}

There was no one to play with today. She was feeling bored and lonely as she skipped up the street. She had seen one of her brothers go into the woods with some friends earlier. They were building a fort up there. Maybe she could go find them.

As she got to the top of the hill on her street she slowed down. The woods were scary and she didn't want to go in alone. Mr. Madis had told her that the bears in the woods would eat her and even though he had laughed, she knew grown-ups didn't lie. Five years old was too big to be such a scardy cat and she never told anyone why she didn't play alone in the woods anymore. She didn't like getting laughed at and people always laughed when she was scared.

Henry was a neighbor boy that lived up the street. He was standing on the sidewalk looking into the woods where the boys had gone.

"Do you know where's Randy?"

Henry looked at her for several seconds before answering. "Yeah. Do you want me to take you?"

She nodded and joined him. He was 12 and big like her brothers so he wouldn't let the bears get her. Together they walked along the path into the woods. She looked up at his face and wondered if he ever counted his freckles. Nobody she had ever met had so many freckles. They covered even his arms and legs. His hair was so red and his skin was as white as the paste she used in Mrs. Westinghouse's class at school. Maybe that's why her brothers didn't like him.

They came to the clearing where bits of plywood and boards had been put together to create an oddly shaped lean-to that her brothers and their friends would hang out in. There were cigarette butts in the leaves around the little structure and lots of trash, but no boys. Maybe they had already gone home?

Turning to ask Henry if he knew where they went, she saw he was gone. Fear knotted her stomach. What if the boys were gone because they saw the bear? Tears springing to her eyes, she ran back the way she'd come. She was so far in the woods you couldn't see any of the houses on her street.

Someone grabbed her from behind and she screamed. Henry put his hand over her mouth and said he knew where Randy had gone. If she would be quiet, he would take her there. So, taking his hand, she walked with him away from the path into the darker part of the woods. They walked and walked until Henry stopped and said the boys must be on their way. "Why don't we wait here for them?"

Something in the girl's stomach began to tighten as Henry leaned his back against a tree and held his hand out to her. "Come here. I have to take a piss."

Shocked at the cuss word, she shook her head and refused to move.

"I'll give you quarter to watch me take a piss. Betcha never saw how boys do it, did ya?"

The knot in her stomach felt as big as she was and she couldn't hear anything over the sudden sound of buzzing and screaming in her ears. Everything got jumpy and funny looking like when the t.v. didn't work. She couldn't move or talk but could see the little girl in a dress like her own, walking over to Henry. It never occurred to her to wonder who the other girl was. Somehow it seemed normal.

The little girl who was not her took Henry's hand. When he unzipped his pants and told her to get on her knees, she did as she was told.

The girl who stood watching knew this was a bad thing. She wanted to tell the other girl to run and tell her brothers but she was rooted to the spot and could not make her hands move to cover her eyes.

She watched as the little girl obeyed when told to suck on the thing the boy held in his hand. She could feel it in her own mouth as he grabbed the little girl's head and yanked her forward. She could feel the attempts to breathe as her nose was pressed into flesh and his hands in her hair as he began to pull her head back and forth while hissing instructions to her. She idly wondered if Henry was going to pee in that other girl's mouth.

----

She was in bed. Her hand was on the dirty place between her legs and she jerked it away. Could God see when she did those things? Did he tell mommy? She vaguely remembered the girl in the woods and wondered where she was now. Could she hear the screams of "dirty girl!" and "Don't you ever do that!" that seemed to still echo in her mind? Did she too live with the terror of mommy knowing what she had done?

She closed her eyes when she heard the footsteps of her mommy in the hall. She concentrated on keeping still and breathing slowly so she would not be caught awake in the dark. She let herself relax and smile after mommy's footsteps faded down the hall. With a look at the door cracked to let the hall light in, she curled up, scooted her back close to the wall and let the now gentle voices lull her to sleep.