By Rachel Akai
She had Heard of It Once
The screams that came from the room in the Little Bungalow on 12bWoods Street in Houston Texas was loud enough to be heard by the Other Occupant that shared the room.
No! No!! No!!! Please don’t, Don’t, I beg of you were the words following the scream heard from Ted, she jerked up immediately from her bunker bed, her younger sister and her shared. Their father was of the average class, Nigerian, though he lived and worked in Texas, Mom was white and was late.
Father owned a Car Shop Registered under the, his work consumed most of his time, he was hardly home.
Ted did not only become conscious of the Dream she had Last Night… No, the Nightmare but her whole body was covered in sweat, Her Sister Ned had come to sit by her after being awakened by Ted’s Screams, Ted didn’t stop trembling, she kept calling out a very familiar Name which Ned knew. Damien was Ted’s classmate in College and her bestie too.
What happened to Damien? Ned sat well inquiring from her sister.
In Tear’s fidgeting, they…
Sis, you can tell me what happened, Ned held her hands…
Ned… Ted looked into her sister’s eyes, her body trembling. They caught her, held her, beat her up, the five of them. They held Damien’s hand; her legs tore her clothes off her body.
I was scared… Ned. She Screamed, Stretched,
Trembling Ted continued. Ned, I could not help I was helpless, no I can’t forgive myself. Ned, they went in into her enjoying her flesh, their so-called fun while she wriggled in pains, three…
No four times wasn’t enough, they laughed hysterically as each of them tore her like her life was a joke. and then Damien’s screams were starting to fade, she reached out for her inhaler which they had kicked away but could not. They left her. I Screamed, begged… The Last I heard was Damien’s’ voice with tears Ted, she smiled, though I would fulfill my dreams with you, I would make Mama smile again Brother’s Death Anniversary is Today and now I ‘d get to see him. Her Last words.
Comforting her Sister, Ted it’s only a dream, Common, you give too much meaning to dreams, nothing would happen, she is right now at home I’m sure. It’s just a Dream, maybe birthed from your imagination. Remember yesterday, we all had coffee at The Cafeteria and we stumbled on an old news magazine o the issue of guys forcing Ladies to sleep with them off their own will. You probably thought too much of it laughed Ned.
Ned, it was real, it looked real and it’s not News that Damien lost her Brother to sickle cell disease when he was two. It felt real ted rolled her eyes. She had stopped fidgeting.
Okay, Sis, l did fix breakfast and we’ll get ready for School.
The bus station was already filled with people, students and workers queuing, after few minutes, the two sisters got seats, in no time, they were in school. Ted walked Slowly, she was still disturbed by the troubling dream she had but didn’t show it, her sister was too young to be stressed, she would just meet with Damien. The class was almost full except that some students had gone for the Excursion.
Looking around to see if Damien was already in, wow, not yet
After about a few hours, she gave up until ted heard that Damien had followed the College bus and had gone with the other students
What!!! Damien didn’t tell her she was going yesterday they met.
Well, you know Damien is teacher Rooke’s Favorite, their female English teacher, said Seth a classmate of hers so she asked that Damien tagged along to assist her with her bag. The Bus would stop by their houses each to drop them.
Okay. It is fine, she’d be safe.
The School bell rang; it was time to go home.
Ted Put a call across to Ned’s Phone and told her to go home first as their College Bus Driver would drop students’ home and she had to be sure Damien is safe.
Ted took a bus and had to alight because the next route Long Buses weren’t allowed to go through, she had to walk a lot was on her mind, wasn’t able to think straight. She didn’t even pay attention to the group of guys she passed by that were in her College neither did she speak to any of them. Ted passed as fast as she could soon, she was at her friend’s house.
After about two hours of waiting, Damien wasn’t home yet, Ted then gave greetings to Mrs. Anderson, taking her to leave. It was getting late, she had to get home quickly, ted thought as she walked by the same route she came. Everywhere seemed quiet, she could hear a pin drop. Running past a building, ted thought she heard shouts, it sounded desperate like someone calling out. She paused for a bit till she was sure she didn’t hear anything… Ted ran along.
The Next Morning, Dad had dropped them at School unless she would have checked on Damien, she had tried calling several times the night before, it wasn’t reachable. As Ted got down the Car into the School gate, a mate signaled to her that a meeting was held at the School hall3 for their class.
She hurried in to find everyone assembled, the Principal had stepped on the Podium with a sudden Solemn face, all their fellow teachers too.
What had happened? Then the News dropped like a Bomb exploding her chest.
We got a call. It is Sad to say that Damien Anderson was found Dead.
Ted started laughing, everyone was quiet, most students who knew Damien had tears in their eyes.
Ted couldn’t bring herself to stop laughing, she laughed and laughed till she got on the floor, holding her stomach, she laughed, in two minutes, five then ten, the pains stuck in her heart, laughter became tears. Damien was gone, the second Black as she.
Ted Sat on the floor, shaking, her hands on her chin, she couldn’t speak, she kept looking at a spot where Damien would stand where she stood when there was a meeting with her calm, pretty face, a kind heart, decent, so decent.
The Principal spoke again, her body was found few blocks to her house, uniform ripped, Ted didn’t want to hear, she was going mad, had her dream come true, Damien was found in her own Blood The Investigation Team had seen writing of a three Lettered word on it JAC. The team was sure Damien wrote them before she died. They promised to send in reports.
Ted stared at the Principal finishing his speech, she could not stay, she was weak, Sick to the Bones.
Ted could not face Damien’s Mom, she called but all they did was Cry, she stayed away for three days. Those three days were hell for her, nightmares, tears, Ted cursed herself, he hated herself, the only thing she could do was catch Damien’s Killer. She had to take it upon herself, had to live to fight for Damien.
The Next Morning, ted emailed a letter to her class teacher on her leave from School for two weeks, it wasn’t anytime close to Exams so she could cover-up. Ted spent her time Reading Books, Trailing, following up on events that happened the day before Damien’s Death News.
According to her research, Damien had left with the School Bus returning the Students back to their homes at 3 pm, ted herself had left School 5 pm, Most Students she spoke to said Damien had alighted the bus at 5:20 pm and she was the only one that alighted.
Not getting any useful information Ted decided to talk to the Investigation Team. Fortunately, her English Teacher Mrs. Rookie helped a lot because she carried the guilt having taken Damien along with her.
Mrs. Rookie got from the Principal Information on the Investigation Team that was how ted got a lead.
A week had passed and still, nothing happened, no evidence, no proof. Was she disappointing her best friend Damien?
Thanks to Creator Dad was busy at work and would not come home in the next three weeks, that was enough time for her. She had to keep the faith that something good will happen and Justice served. It was not going to be easy, what can a 14-year-old do. She and Damien were like two sides of a coin, she didn’t have a Mom and Damien with no Dad.
The past week’s research had made her stronger, no longer a weakling in Uniform.
The Investigation Team’s Office was really distant but ted had to put up with it.
Ted met with One of the Team’s Officer Mr. Luke, an Elderly White Man close to her Father’s age, she was told he was the only one she could talk to. Though he wasn’t on the field to see what had happened, all reports had to pass through him.
After all Protocols and days, they had a chat and Ted got to know Damie was Raped and had to go through a lot of struggling, she also got information on the building where this act was carried out. They found her inhaler far from her body. The lab had also pulled tests and results showing that Damien’s wrist was broken, her waist fractured and she had lost five of her front teeth. Ted could not withhold her tears, they dropped unconsciously, she could not take it in that her friend had gone through all this. She told Mr. Luke she would do a few investigations on the building too.
Ted went back four days later, other tests conducted showed that four guys had raped her and had their way with her. In all these, no one mentioned what the Principal had said about the handwritten word in her blood JAC.
With days off, she made her own research, behave reports to Mrs. Rookie and they had both secretly scanned through the School System for a Name as such… None.
Ted also went to the building and discovered that it was the same building she had heard a shout the day Damien was supposedly dead. Should Ted shake terribly, she also remembered she saw Students on that same route but never paid attention. Now everything is confusing, the students she spoke to said only Damien went off the bus that Evening so how…. how was it possible?
Her head felt like exploding, she couldn’t take all her eyes clouded in tears.
Could it be that she had several chances of saving her friend’s life? but lost it, if only she had paid attention to every detail…But…but how would I have known
Ted went in, looked in, it was an old storage place, Ted shut her eyes.
Please Damie I need a clue… I need to catch your killers.
She thoroughly searched the whole place; it had been wiped clean. An hour had gone and still nothing, ted said in sweat not even a piece of paper. She looked up to heaven to pray then she saw it… She Saw…. she didn’t know how but she did.
A boy’s school shirt hanged as if stacked upon an Iron piece in the building… oh God! How do I… Ted excited… Just then, the storage door opened, Ted was shocked, surprised, no one knew she was here, couldn’t be her sister, then there stood Mr. Luke, the Investigation Officer, he smiles at her.
Ted Stood Still…
Hello Ted, thank Goodness Ted exclaimed. I figured you’d be here Ted since you told me, I wanted to see how your little investigation work is going…Thank you, sir, for the concern, please, I would love you to help me, I think I found Evidence. Ted Stammered
Really, but dear why would you come here; it’s been cleaned already I doubt there’s any evidence. Luke started walking towards her then he stopped and looked her in the face. I really admire you, your strength, your courage, he was moving close to her again. Ted started moving backward, she then turned to run but he caught her and laughed. Ted tried to struggle through, Luke slapped her across the face, Ted fell, he was stronger, he pinned her to the ground, hit her. You want to help your friend, you little bitch we aren’t competent enough, you want me to lose my job, he said this hitting her hard, Ted cut her lips. She cried, he kept on hitting her wanting her to feel the pains.
No… No, Ted struggled through her voice Please don’t… Was the dream about her?
I’ve never been accepted for once, even from my mother, all the women I married never loved me Luke said in Hysteric laughter, they came for my money, I am Sick… I have a disease. they never allow me to touch them… I am alone… I am so damn alone…You are a fresh flower, a ripe fruit, when you appeared at my front listening, paying attention to me, it was easy.
He roughly pulled her clothes tearing bits of it. She shouted, begged… cried…With all hatred in Luke’s heart he pushed into her, Ted screamed, she wanted to die, what evil fate…Five hours he did all he wanted with her from whipping or trying to choke her… Ted was too weak, tears rolled down her cheek, she saw Damien on the Ground close to her she pictured her dear friend going through all this…
Her blood flowed…
After Mr. Luke was through with her, he left her, cleaned himself, and left.
Ted tried to call out for help, she could not hear her voice. she laid there 30 Minutes was gone.
I have to be strong. I have to take justice for Damien, Ted wept bitterly
I found it… I found… I just did… she stammered
Tears rolled down
Damien, I found something, she tried with all effort, she couldn’t feel her legs. Her Cellphone rang, it was far from her, she crawled forward, reached for it. It was from Ned.
In no time, Ned arrived, Ted tried to talk, pointing to the Shirt hinged up. Ned immediately reached for a Ladder from the storeroom, the shirt was covered in dust. Ted was right, it was their School Uniform and Luckily it usually had names of students stamped on the breast pocket.
Ned turned to speak to ted but she met her lifeless body.
Ned is sitting at her Sister’s side on the hospital bed. It’s been eight days; she hadn’t opened her eyes. Dad was there. Ned had blamed herself for letting her sister go alone but ted had forced her to go to school. Now this, Dad you’re never home. Father couldn’t stop crying, his Beloved daughter has been raped and now is unconscious. He had failed to be a Father figure. He only called on Phone and provided for their needs. Ted is the only one who can tell us something.
Eight Days became two weeks, friends from School and Even Mrs. Rookie had come visiting, Prayers had been put up for her.
Then One Morning, Ted Opened her eyes slowly, where was she? Faintly then clearly, all she had done these few days maybe months was spent time with Damie. She looked and saw Ned and Dad. Immediately Ted asked, were us the cloth. The uniform please tell me where she could not suffer all this to lose it. Ned calmed her down, the police had arrived already to question Ted.
In tears, Ted explained. Some Officers left with Ned to go bring the Evidence while Others rushed to the Investigation Team’s office. The door to their house was Opened. Ned was shocked, she walked in accompanied by the police officers, behold a strange man figure. Mr. Luke was searching the whole house for the uniform, he planned to use as evidence that he found to catch the Group of Rapists which would have earned him fame and cleared his name, He was arrested. The Uniform was taken in, and there in their faces written on it was Jimmy Andes Cole
Ned rang Ted’s phone. Ted, we have it, we found Jimmy Andes Cole. Yes, that was how the Name was formed. JAC was a Nickname.
Mrs. Rookie had searched for names like Jack, names that begun with Jac but had found Nothing.
The next morning, the Police arrived at the school College, having informed the school principal. Jimmy was picked up he never could have thought that after two months he would be found.
None of the Students believed, Jimmy, his real Name Dran was a Calm person who could not talk. He was sickle celled so he was deficient in ways.
During Jimmy’s trial, he called out his other colleagues.
Ted was there in her wheelchair, she covered her mouth with her hands, with tears in her eyes.
His co-Rapists didn’t have families they called their own, no one showed up for them during meetings, school Acts, they lived their lives in ways it pleased them, they were looked down on by most students. Though she wasn’t an exception her classmates still had little regard for her.
She cursed them in her heart
Jimmy began to talk…what ted heard could make her be in shock for the Next Six Months
Dean (JAC) was Damien’s Little Brother. He explained how the Nurse he stayed with told him his Mother left him to die, she gave up on him when there was no resource when it was too much of pain she had to bear, how this Nurse close to his Mother’s age would inflict pain on him, how she started molesting him at age 7. How she let other Nurses molest him.
Finding out who his mother and sister was, how he hated them
I lost hope how can I be worth anything in the future.
I may lose Life anyway
I Lost All! I Lost Everything… What else… Dran Cried
I tried coming close to Damie but she like everyone else, used to see her as an Angel, but she was like everyone she called me useless, she told me I got no Parents. I didn’t want to kill her just to make her suffer but…….Tears rolled down…
I know I would die anyway so what are you waiting for. Throw the Sentence in my face Judge.
Ted couldn’t hold it in Everyone…
Damien’s Dreams shattered, gone by her own brother whom she didn’t really know but loved.
Ted, her dreams of being the first Black in her school to join the FBI, to get an award for crime detecting shattered by a white man old to be her father
How would I pick the pieces?
Mrs. Anderson, Damien’s Mother could not stop the tears, yes, she was there, Her Son was right there about to be sentenced.
Nurse Charlotte was put on a house arrest for molestation, her license taken from her.
Dran and Other Boys jailed…
Dran to serve 70 years… Co-Rapists to serve 30 years
Mr. Luke lost his job and was on house arrest for 25 years.
SAY NO TO RAPE!!!!
SAY NO TO RACISM!!!!
Could be your Daughter or Son
Train up the Children in the Lord’s way
Show people Love… Give them Acceptance. Give them hope