It was a nice summer evening and the sun had just set. There was some noise surrounding us, but we didn’t pay any attention to it whatsoever. It wasn’t something that was bothering us so we said the hell with it… if it’s important it’ll kill us.
It was our first night out together as a real engaged couple. We lay out on a blanket underneath the sun setting sky. It was beautiful and romantic and I wish I could’ve just stayed there forever lying in your arms, smelling the fragrance of wildflowers that bloomed around us. I remember how you’d proposed to me so well.
You were standing in the hallway of my apartment, and you blindfolded me for an hour. You took me out to this fancy restaurant that you knew I enjoyed. After that we went to see a movie that I really wanted to see. I asked you what was up with you, but you smiled and then said nothing… I couldn’t stand it any longer and I told you it was annoying me. At that moment you brought me to a cliff… Yes a cliff, but it wasn’t just any cliff… Beyond this cliff was the beach that we would go to all the time, one of my most favorite places to go to. But there, was where we had seen the most beautiful sunset ever. The clouds were in the perfect position to catch the neon orange sun fade into the hot pinkness, and the hot pinkness fade into the beautiful magenta color, all the while reflecting off of the clouds. The moon was full and had already been up over the ocean. The full brightness of the moon was gleaming over the tops of the waves that crashed heavily over the sand. But with the beautiful colors of the sunset, and the beautiful reflection of the moon, you walked me down the cliff side onto the beach, where you got down on one knee and proposed to me. After the night you’ve given me, and all the other memories we’d created together, there was no way in hell I could ever say no to you. It was at that moment we were engaged, and we were to start the rest of our lives together.
It was a beautiful morning this morning and we spent the entire morning looking for a new apartment, one that we’d be able to live in together. Lately he’s been staying at my apartment and sleeping in my bed. Sometimes when we wouldn’t fit together, we would lie on the floor, but that was never good cause there was never a place in my apartment that would permit us both to be able to lay in the same place together. When the floor failed one of us would volunteer to sleep on the couch, but that was always the last resort because we couldn’t stand being away from each other. So we were looking for our own apartment that was a little bigger than this one, but would cost around the same. We wanted one where we could be together all the time.
There were plenty of places that we found, but none of them were really close by. We ended up having to take the bus for a bunch of them. I never did like the bus. It always smelt like drugs and sweat, mostly because there were a lot of hoboes that rode the bus. I didn’t mind them so much; it was just the smell of the bus that came afterwards. And there were a lot of drugs everywhere, not just on the bus, but everywhere around the city. If you really wanted to find some to get some, you wouldn’t have to go far at all, just ask the next person you see and they’re pretty much guaranteed to have some. Anyway, we had to take the bus to quite a few places.
One of the best places we found was exactly what we were looking for. It was at the greatest price that we were able to find, no catches or anything. Everything inside the apartment was nice and everything, electrical and plumbing, worked like a dream. When you first walked it, there was a small hallway that opened to a large area which I assumed was the living room. On the left side of this hallway, there was a doorway that led into the kitchen area. The kitchen wasn’t small, but it wasn’t that big either, and on the other side of the kitchen there was another doorway that looked like it led into the living room as well. Where the hallway met the living room, there was another hallway, this time going right. Down this hallway was the main bedroom, a small guest room which we would probably just use for storage, and then across from both of those was the bathroom. Next to where the bathroom was, there was a walk-in closet which I assumed could basically be used for anything. This went better than we could have expected. The landlord said that not a lot of people looked at this place, so we decided to take it. I mean, with everything working and everything else, the size, no smell, the space, why not!
There was only one small problem with this apartment…: the location. The apartment was located right in the middle of the city. I know he didn’t really mind all that much, especially since it was closer to his job. But my issue was the gangs. There were a lot more gangs than there used to be, and I didn’t like the thought of living right next to one of their possible hideouts. I mean, you never know where they hide anymore, since there’s so many. But I agreed to let him have this place—to let US—have this place. As long as we could be together here, I would be fine with any place.
A week passed and we’ve finally finished packing all of our things. It was wonderful to think that we would finally be living together. I feel really happy at this point in life. It was wonderful how many things were just going right for us… He was right.
Another week passed and we were finally all settled into our new apartment! My mother was coming over to visit soon. She said she wanted to see what our new place looked like, and she said she wanted to see her daughter and son-in-law-to-be. My mother got along very well with him. They agreed and disagreed on the same things, it was wonderful! Same with my father… He was the first boyfriend—now fiancé—that my father approved of, and he was excited to come down here to see my ring. My father was somewhat of a materialistic man. He was so concerned about his budget even though he was basically rich. He was the richest man that lived in our old little town.
There was a knock at the door. I knew it was probably my parents right away. My fiancé wasn’t home… He went to the store to pick up a few snacks that my parents would like, seeing as how all we had was junk food. I didn’t get to the door right away. So a couple seconds later the knocks turned into pounding on the door. I knew at that point that it wasn’t my parents at the door because my parents are usually very patient people. Either way I walked over and opened up the door, which was a huge mistake on my part. I was staring straight into a gun pointed at my face. I froze.
There was a man behind the gun. His face was hard to see because he was wearing something over his mouth and nose. But I could see his eyes, which were a deep brown. When he spoke, his voice was so deep, it was intimidating. Not only was it intimidating, it was spine tingling. “Let me in, now.” I stepped aside letting him walk into our apartment. “Close the door.” I closed the door. I still faced the door after closing it, afraid of looking into a gun again. He started rummaging through things, I could hear. He was knocking things over that I’d probably just put up earlier. He was shuffling through papers, throwing them on the ground after looking at them. He had a walkie-talkie on him. I could hear muffled voices through it. It would beep every now and then between his words. “Yep…the place I said I’d be…aight I’ll be here…hurry up, I don’t know how much time we’ll have…peace.” From what it sounded like to me, there were more guys coming up. I was terrified. Not only was I being threatened with a gun, there were more of them coming.
I took a step to the side into where the kitchen was in the apartment. He turned to see me moving. “Stop right there!” His voice echoed throughout the entire apartment. I didn’t move anymore. I stood still in the doorway to the kitchen. Just then I heard stomping coming down the hallway. All of a sudden the door whooshed open and in came about six more men. They completely raided our apartment.
After an hour or so, they were all gone, and I was left alone crying in the middle of what used to be a full living room. It feels like I’ve been crying for at least another hour before he came home and came over to me. He held me tightly after I was finally able to tell him what had happened. I was barely able to get out my words between sobs but he was able to at least understand me.
It didn’t take long before all our stuff was replaced, but it was something that wasn’t going to let me live the same way again. It haunted me every day. Whenever the door knocked, I was so afraid that someone was going to come in and do the same thing again. It was terrifying. But I never did tell him what really happened to me that night. I never told him that I was raped by three of the men, and he was never going to know. I was never going to let him find out about it. But pretty soon he caught onto the fact that I just wasn’t the same and that I wasn’t getting any better, so he was able to talk me into seeing a therapist. The therapist didn’t really help much, but I agreed to meet with him twice a week, and if I was doing better, then it would change to once a week. But my therapist started off by telling me that I needed to let my fiancé knew what was going on with him, and to let him know that everything with him is okay. He told me that to get over what I was going through, I needed to be able to let my feelings escape through the truth. He also said that when I talk about these things it really will make me feel better, even though I never ever wanted to speak of it again; it had to be heard, especially by my fiancé.
The apartment was a bore. It took a while to get everything back, but we did eventually. It took a lot of effort having to find similar things that had previously matched our new place, and it was upsetting that we had to go through all this trouble for something as simple as that. My fiancé has noticed things about me that have been wrong. He’s been noticing how distant I’ve been, even when I’ve been trying so hard not to be. I needed to tell him, but I could never find the right time, and I would never want to have that conversation. I haven’t been as worried about the pregnancy because I did hit my period over the past few months, so that was out of my mind. It was still the fact that I was raped. I don’t want to bring it up again, but I feel like if I don’t things are going to start going wrong. He needs to know, just not right now.
Later on we went down to the local diner to get something for dinner. I didn’t realize it until he had said something to me.
He got my attention when he set down his fork and knife unto his dinner plate. “Kate,” he started, and I could tell there was a lot of doubt in his voice by the way he said my name. Instantly I looked up at him with my guilty eyes, afraid he was going to say something about it, and he did. “Can you please tell me what I’ve been doing wrong? You don’t look at me anymore, you don’t talk to me anymore, and you don’t even come near me anymore. What am I doing that displeases you so much?”
I stared blankly into his eyes, afraid to tell him the truth. I had to tell him now that he brought it up, but I was still afraid. When I didn’t say anything for a while he looked back down at his place. He didn’t touch anything; he didn’t even move. “Babe.” My voice shocked him. He didn’t look up but I saw him move when I said something. “I need to talk to you. I know I’ve been putting it off for a really long time but we finally need to talk.”
It almost looked like he was going to start crying. He still didn’t move. Instead his head dropped and hung a little lower than it originally was. “I knew that this was coming. I knew this was going to happen.”
“What are you talking about babe? I don’t think you know what I’m going to say.” I set down my fork onto my plate like he did earlier.
“You want this to end don’t you?” His voice was in shambles. I could tell it was shaky. He was really scared. He didn’t want me to leave, but I never did either. I guess it was a little amusing to me that he thought that, mainly because it was something totally different.
“Babe,” I started and then paused. “I don’t want to end anything.” I was formulating what I was going to say next. I was really scared because I didn’t want to have the vivid memories coming back to me. He finally lifted his head with a curious gaze in his eyes. I know he was waiting for me to speak. My mouth finally opened, but nothing came out. Then before I knew it, thinking about all this, a tear ran down my cheek. I noticed it after I felt it fall. “That night they broke into the house…” I sat there rubbing my hands together trying to contain myself. “They held me down…. All of them…” suddenly I started weeping. The emotions were coming back to me. They were the same emotions I had felt at that time: panic, terror, helpless, distressed, scared, and most of all, violated.
I got out of my chair when I saw everybody staring at me. I grabbed my stuff and left the diner. I stood outside until I saw a bench about half way down the block. I walked over to it and sat down. I let the tears drain out of my eyes until I saw my fiancé follow me. He ran over to me. “Kate, please just tell me what’s going on.” I could see the worry in his voice as he somewhat was grasping what I was trying to tell him.
Finally I said it. “I was raped that night.” I put my head into my hands, embarrassed to have to talk about it. “They held me down, all of them. They all raped me.” I saw him take a step towards me. He sat down on the bench next to me and went to put his arm around me. I flinched as his warm hand touched the coolness of my back. He paused for a moment when I flinched, but then started rubbing my back the way he used to, when he would calm me down. Finally I turned into him and buried my face in his chest. I starting snotting and crying so hard.
It was a while before I stopped crying. I wanted to continue but I had no tears left. When I was finally able to grasp myself and actually breathe normally, my fiancé stood up and gave me his jacket. I didn’t realize how many goose bumps I had on my arms. My face was wet and my eyes were stinging and red. I still wasn’t able to recuperate anything from then. I was so tired from crying, which was weird but I was. He took me home and he put me to bed. He even tucked me into our big bed. I was so comfortable and I fell asleep.
That night, he called the police. He was able to press charges against the rape after they found surveillance footage from the lobby of our apartment building cameras. They immediately knew who these men were. The most these men got was a fine, but we never even got the money for the items that they had taken from us. We never saw a penny of what they owed us. These men weren’t taken to jail either, which pissed me off because I knew they were just going to do it again to some other innocent person. This was terrifying again because they could easily come back here and do it all over again. They were never stopped. They were never captured. They were left to run free after they broke in, stole all our things, and raped me. They never repaid us for anything that they did. I had a feeling they might come back sooner or later… And I hate to say that my feeling was right.
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