We walked through the front door and were met with relieved cries of our names.
Our mothers engulfed us in a hug.
I glanced at Claud.
“I think we need to call the police.”
Claudia nodded. Mrs Jules looked worried.
A few minutes later the police were there, and we sat down on the couches. Kate and Dad were still outside, but the door was open and I could tell they were both listening. Sara sat tentatively at
my feet. I could tell she wasn’t sure if she wanted to here this.
“Hello again Indiana,” began Officer May, the one we had dealt with last night.
“This must be your friend Claudia. This is my partner, Officer Josh.”
Both Claudia and Josh nodded.
“So,” I began. “You already know what Aaron did to me. He drugged me, then left me in the middle of a forest.”
Claudia winced slightly at those words.
“Yes,” Officer May agreed. “Now, Claudia. Why don’t you tell us your story?”
“It’s pretty simple,” Claudia said slowly. “Last night, Aaron tried to rape me.”
My mum, Mrs Jules and Sara turned to look at her in horror.
“It tried to tell him to stop but he wouldn’t listen. So I kicked him and ran away.”
Mrs Jules moved over to hug Claudia. Sara was speechless at my feet. I knelt next to her, and gave her a hug. She attempted a smile.
“Officer, so we have enough to charge him?” asked Mum.
“No, I’m afraid we don’t. We can only take your statements, and hope he slips up again soon.”
Mrs Jules sighed.
“So what do we do in the mean time?” she asked.
“Girls, just try to avoid him. I’m afraid with the evidence we have that’s the best we can do.”
I glanced at Claud, and we sighed in unison.
“Now, you girls better go change into some proper clothes,” instructed Mum.
“Claud, you can borrow some of my stuff.”
We headed into my room in silence; I could feel their stares burning a hole into our backs.
In my room, under the light; I got my first proper glance at Claudia. She had bruises along her arms where he had pushed her and grabbed her. I grabbed a denim skirt and a multi-coloured shirt for
“Put these on,” I said.
I picked out a sleeveless yellow dress for me.
“So,” began Claudia. “Talk to me. Tell me about what happened to you.”
“Well…” and for the second time I began my story.
She grimaced when I told her about my nights in the forest, and smiled when I told her about boisterous, funny Aimee. Her face softened when I told her about Zeke, and out first kiss. I finished up
and I wiped a stubborn tear from my cheek.
Claudia looked shocked.
“He lied to you?” she inquired.
“Yeah,” I sighed.
“How could he do that too me? He must’ve known my family would be worried sick. Kate, Sara, Mum, Dad, my cousins, everyone…” I broke down, finally letting out my anger and frustration.
“Shhh,” Claudia soothed. She held me tighter.
I just let the tears flow. It was like a waterfall; everything just coming out. And what frustrated me the most was not the situation with Zeke; but the fact that despite it all, I missed him. I
missed him so much it hurt.
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