I carried Hester up the stairs. Her cries had stopped now but I could no longer be down there. With him. And I wouldn't leave her alone with him. I continued up the staircase to the upstairs level where I opened the door to Mikey's room and collapsed onto the bed. Hessy beside me.
As the sun dawned I drew my eyes from my daughter where they had rested for the last five hours. The curtains were not drawn and I stood beside the window to watch the sun rise over the neighborhood. Hessy was sound asleep and wouldn't wake for another hour or so. My robe was heavy on my shoulders, but I was scared to look down at my body. My legs burned and the pain was as unbearable as the last time. The last time. At least this time, it had been in love, with love. Gerard had been careful with me to some point, unlike Simon had been. I knew id be bruised but as I dropped the shoulders on the fluffy robe I saw how hard he'd held onto me. A band of yellow skin ringed by upper arms, the small bruises would be purple in only hours. I turned away from the window and dropped the robe lower. Bruises lay across my chest and my right breast. Lower bruises covered my stomach and thighs. The purple blotch between my legs was unbearable to look at. What had he done. Why hadn't I moved with him. If I had, I wouldn't be so bruised.
Hester began to stir. I'd need to grab my stuff. Luckily my cell had been in the robe pocket. I'd be out of here soon. As soon as I'd said goodbye to Don. Ellie and Will were moving in with Bob and I was out of here.
I picked up Hes and walked quietly to Donna's room, across from Mikey's. I knocked gently. No reply. I pushed open the door gently. Don lay in bed, her windows and curtains thrown open wide. The wind blew gently threw her hair as she sat reading one of her novels. Hes clung to me with all her might. “Donna?” She looked up at me and removed her glasses. Her mouth gaped open.
“Come in love. What's wrong? What's happened?”
“I'm sorry Don, I've got to go. I've promised Trace I'll pay him a visit. I'm taking Hester. I just wanted to say thank you and that I'm sorry but I have no choice.” She stroked my hair gently.
“Keep in touch. Or I'll never forgive you.” She joked harmlessly. She played with the little hair Hes had on her head. “Whatever he's done. It meant nothing. He loves you more than anything.” I tried to smile but gave up. I left her, tears in my eyes. I'd miss her more than I missed my own mother. I smelt coffee downstairs. Please god let it be him. I needed to get my stuff and get out. Now. Before I could change my mind. I nearly tripped as I ran down the stairs. Hessy nearly started to cry but I held a finger to her mouth gently. I didn't want to hurt her but I needed her to be silent. I was right. He was making coffee in the kitchen. Downstairs was empty. Blood covered the sheets and a blade led beside the pillow. I grabbed my suitcase and tore my clothes from the wardrobe and Hessy's things from the drawers. I grabbed the doll Donna had given her and the teddy from Bob. I left Hes on the bed, grabbed some clothes from the top of the pile and ran into the en-suite. I ran cold water into the sink and washed my face and body quickly. It was only then I looked into the mirror. My eyes were dark and it was obvious I'd been crying. No wonder Donna had stared. There was a large purpley bruise forming around the right edge of my lips. That one would be hard to cover. I scrambled through the cupboards looking for my make-up. I grabbed my concealer and my foundation and covered the bruise as best I could. It was nearly gone but it stung as I pressed my fingers against it.
In my hurry I'd left the door open and in the mirror I saw him reflected. He stood. Stone still. Staring. Staring at what he'd done. He'd see every bruise but he would not feel the pain that I felt from them. I scurried to close the door but his foot was in the way. “Get out of my way.” I slammed the door shut. I hurried into my clothes. Hessy was on the bed and I wouldn't leave her much longer. I flung open the door and threw the make-up bag into the open case. “Give me my daughter.” He held her. She was smiling at him and her fingers were tangled in his hair. “Don't leave me. Please.” I wouldn't listen. I took her from his arms. She began to cry and I shushed her. I zipped shut the case and grabbed the bag with Hessy's toys. He stood at the bottom of the stairs, barring my way. I wrestled with the pram trying to pry it from beneath the bed. Hessy was wriggling in my arms trying to get to him. “Let me help. Let me get it.” His hands wrestled with mine.
“Get away. Get away!” I scratched at his hands and he released the handle.
I finally got it out but now Hes' was crying really hard. I drew my suitcase and the pram behind me in one hand and held the bag and Hes' with the other. I turned to the stairs and he was crying. “Please Kat. I'm sorry. I don't know what happened. I never meant for that. I should never have hurt you. I promise never again. I won't touch you ever. Not without your say so. Please. I love you.” His arms were trying to pull me in but I pulled away, now seeing the blood dripping from his arms. “What the hell. What are you doing. Guilt tripping me into staying? You idiot!” I pushed him away and wrestled my way up the stairs. At the top I heard the doorbell and pulled the door open. Trace quickly helped me to pull the pram up the stairs and took my bags from me. Ellie had opened the door to the living room and her and Will were with us in minutes. Quick hugs goodbye and promises to call. Donna was down the stairs and hugging me when Gerard joined us,sobbing hard. “Him! Your leaving me for him?!” I pressed my hand against Hester to protect her and bit my lip in agitation. “I'm not leaving you for him! I'm leaving you because you left me with no choice.” Ellie looked from Gerard to me and realization shook her. The bruised lip. “Go Kat. Get out from here. Now.” She hugged me once more and I swapped another regretful glance with Donna. Trace edged towards the door carrying the bags after him. I turned from my family and followed him but as I reached end of the porch a hand grabbed me around the waist. I pulled away as if I'd been burned. “Get off of me! Leave me alone.” Tears were streaming hard down my face and my voice was raspy.
“Stay. I'll do anything. Please.” I looked at him. Spite hissing at me.
“You've done enough. You'll never touch me EVER again. Goodbye Gerard.” He tried pulling at my arms to grab Hessy but I fought him off. I pulled away and was down the stairs in seconds. My breathing was hard and my chest stung. “YOU WHORE! I SHOULD HAVE SEEN THIS COMING! YOU SLUT.” I glared at him with shock. What the fuck. The next thing I knew Trace had dropped the pram and had flew up the stairs and Punched Gerard in the mouth. Trace's hand grasped his jaw and he pinned him against the house. “Never again. You'll never see her again. Your evil. Rapist.” Trace hissed before throwing Gerard's head back against the wall and dropping him. I hadn't realized but Trace had had Gerard off the floor. He slumped against the wall but nobody rushed to help him. Regret hit me like a tone of bricks and I wanted to be near him, holding him. But the pain between my legs flourished again and I remembered his broken promise and the lies. Trace took Hes' from me and fresh sobs stung at my throat. He carried my daughter to the car and belted her into a new car seat. I ran a hand through my hair. I had to go. I backed down the drive and climbed into the back of Trace's car beside Hes'. Trace started the engine and drove from the front of he house.
I waited until we'd rounded the corner out of view of the house where my friends and family stood, before allowing the waves of anguish and pain surge through me and take over my body. I cried out for all the pain I was in and all the pain my baby was going through. I cried for me. My dignity. My past and future. So uncertain now as I glanced up into the rear view mirror and into the eyes of someone I could always run too. Somebody who would never lie or hurt me. Somebody who'd die for me. Kill for me.
Keep reviewing! thanks kat xxx