When the police woman came, I was sitting on the edge of my bed, still dressed in the clothing I'd worn the night before. I was 13.

The police woman sat down in the chair at my desk and said, "Are you all right?"

"No, I'm not all right," I replied without looking at her.

"How did you get the bruise on your cheek?"< p> "My father hit me."

"Does your father hit you a lot?"

I looked at the police woman contemptuously and said, "No, this is the first time he's ever hit me. He hit me because he was scared."

The police woman asked, "What happened?"

I looked at the floor and said, "I hitched a lift. I wanted to go to a dance and my parents wouldn't let me. So I snuck out with my friend Dee."

"And then?"

"We couldn't find the place. It got late so we decided to go home, but the busses stopped running. So we hitch hiked. Dee hitch hikes a lot..."


"So a man picked us up. But he drove out past the airport, where there are no houses. Then he stopped the car. I was sitting in the middle, next to him, Dee next to the door. He turned to me and said, "Are you ready?" I looked at the expression on his face and then I reached across Dee to open the door, but it was locked. I can't remember how I got it to unlock, but I did. So I pushed it open. Dee said, "What are you doing?" I said, "Run!." Then I pushed her onto the ground and scrambled out after her. I ran. Dee ran too. We ran and ran. The ground was slippery, covered with patches of ice and snow, and it was pitch black, no lights from houses anywhere to be seen. I ran and ran and then I came to a barbed wire fence. So I vaulted it, one hand on the fence post. Except that I didn't make it over the top and cut the inside of my legs on the barbed wire.

“He was right behind me the whole time. He caught up to me after I vaulted the fence. I guess he tackled me...one minute I was running and the next I was on the ground and he had his hand around my ankle. I think I was screaming. I don't know. I was clawing in the dirt and snow to get away from him. I found a rock, tried to beat his head in with the rock. It didn't work. He stood up and dragged me to my feet, pinning my arms behind my back and dragged me back to the car. I don't know how or why, but Dee was there. He threw me into the backseat..."

"And then?"

"He molested us."

"Did he rape you?"


"What did he do?"

"He was doing things to Dee."

"What did you do?"

"I said, 'leave her alone, she's a virgin. I'm a virgin. Don't do this."


"He fingered her and masturbated. Sometimes he did that to me too."

"What did you do?"

"I didn't do anything. There was nothing I could do. I didn't even pray. I looked out the window, at the night sky, at the clouds and the stars. The sky is huge, so I let myself be the sky."

"What happened then?”

"He looked at me and he said, "You look just like my niece. I can't finish this." He made us sit in the front seat and drove us into the city. He let us off on a corner and drove away. I got his license plate number. He had a Kentucky Fried Chicken bucket resting against his back windshield."

"Then what did you do?

"I went into a Laundromat. It had orange chairs and a big glass window facing onto the street. Dee just followed me. We were really tired and we didn't know what to do next, whether to call the police or go home...we just sat in the chairs staring at the window. Then someone came in, a young guy. He stood facing the window for a few minutes and then he pulled down his pants. He started to masturbate.

“I just sat in the orange chair, looking out the window. A little while later, I saw out of the corner of my eye an approaching police car. So I said, ‘There's a police car coming.’ The young guy pulled up his pants and went into the washroom."

"Then what did you do?"

"I went home. The busses were running."

The police woman wrote down the license plate number and left the room. I sat on the edge of my bed and wondered what the point of all of that was.

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