Warning: Mature content ahead.
“… Where are mommy and daddy… ?”
I don’t remember how many times I asked that. It’s been one week since John and Carl took me away from uncle and aunt’s house. They brought me to some kind of apartment, saying no one would hear me. I didn’t understand at first. My room had no window, but there was one of those things that changes the air in the room. John always turns it on.
I curled up on my bed, gripping and bringing over myself the light blanket they gave me. I was also given a warm shirt that reached my ankles in exchange for my old clothes. When I asked why I had to give them my clothes, John said neither of them wanted to waste time washing them. I haven’t washed myself since I was at home.
I rarely saw Carl, he only brought me food twice a day. John visited me almost every day, sometimes even more than once. He hurt me. It hurt me. It hurt me so much… *sniff* mommy… please… save me… *hic* it hurts daddy… *hic*
John began getting tired of me. He said that like this, I’m no good. That I should react more. I thought that maybe, if I continued like that, he’d bring me back to mommy and daddy. After some days he said he killed “mom” because I didn’t do as he said. I tilted my head in confusion as I knew no one named “mom.” He then said that “mom” was how everyone called mommy while “dad” was daddy. John said daddy would be next, but I didn’t believe him.
He continued to lie to so I tried to punch him, but John just slapped me and went away. He didn’t return for a while but when he did, he brought a photo of dad and mom. They were both lying on the ground on a big pool of blood. I tore the photo to pieces, screaming “No! It’s a lie! You’re lying!”
This time, he punched me in the tummy. It hurt, almost as much as that time.
“They are dead, if not, why are you still here?”
John’s words as he left my room echoed in my mind. ‘No! No! NO! IT’S NOT TRUE!’ I kept thinking to myself for days, probably. I knew how much time I spent here by counting the times Carl visited me. Every two days I added a day on the wall, behind the bed. I broke some of my nails, but I had nothing better to do.
My black hair felt all oily and dirty, my hands and feet were covered by sick stuff, it was all brown but when I strongly brushed it, it would peel off. I was dirty. I felt dirty. John made me dirtier with each visit. I stunk, but the thingy that changed the air made it so that my room didn’t stink, so at night I covered my body with the blanket, leaving my head out so I didn’t have to smell my odor.
When I woke up, Carl was standing by the side of my bed with my lunch in his hands. He wordlessly passed it to me and went away. He always seems to be looking at something very far away when he comes here. For lunch this time he gave me two sandwiches, a bit of salad with rice, a pear and a bottle of water.
I had recently finished eating when John entered. My body began to tremble unconsciously as I looked straight down while taking my shirt off. Strangely, this time I hadn’t heard that loud *zip* sound, so I looked up fearfully. Lately, he had taken a liking in punishing me by punching me in the tummy. He always stared at me as I squirmed on the ground or bed because of the pain.
“Come with me.”
I just stared at him, which seemed to make him angry.
With a loud *bang* John hit the doorframe. I quickly stood up, and followed him outside the room. He led me to a bathroom where he washed me while doing.. that. After John was done, he went outside the bathroom and waited for me to wash alone.
Later, he brought me back to my room and went away. I waited for a few minutes before dragging the bed away from the wall. I wanted to count how many days had passed.
3 times 9 days plus 4 days, not including today, which I marked with a little circle. I wanted to make a flower but it was painful. I also didn’t remember how many days there were in a week so I just counted by days.
Scary. It was scary. I saw strange creatures and flowers all around the room. It felt weird and it scared me. John’s face became all distorted and scary, his now deeper voice penetrated my head and seemed to be punching my mind directly.
When I tried to talk I only heard disconnected muffles of a high-pitched voice. I called for my mom and dad. I cried and cried while I called for them, I even tried to reach for them but stretching out an arm.
I began losing track of time.
Even if Carl did bring food in my room, sometimes it just stayed there on the ground, near my bed, only to get replaced without me noticing.
It was also becoming harder to make scratches on the wall, as I took the habit of biting my nails, which would fall off after a while. Biting them off seemed the only way to make that sensation go away. That sensation that I was missing something and that I desperately needed that something.
Later, I discovered that every time John gave me “the shot,” as he had called it, that sensation went away and I felt immediately better. Though John appeared scarier and the room became choke full of blue flowers of various types. Sometimes some moved as a creature ran through them. I never clearly saw what those creatures were.
I was given a longer bed, a bigger blanket, a sweater that barely reached my bottom, panties and a softer pillow when Carl came to change my pot. I was allowed to go to the bathroom only to wash my body. My hair reached out a little over the half of my back.
3 times 9 times 9 times 9 days plus 6 days passed.
It was more a matter of having stopped counting after that, than that being an exact number.
I stopped biting my nails, at least until they become too big.
I stopped feeling that something was missing, but sometimes I saw glimpses of the blue things in the corner of my eyes.
I stopped believing my parents were alive. If they were, they wouldn’t have let me suffer this much.
I stopped resisting John, but I made him believe what he wanted. He’d punch my tummy otherwise.
Carl had started giving me more food over time, I was grateful for it so to thank him I once tried doing the same things I do to John. Carl pushed me away and ran out the door. After that for a long time it was John who brought me food, but he enjoy putting his sick stuff on it oftentimes.
I didn’t like it but I was hungry…
When Carl returned, I was overjoyed. He spent more time with me, just telling me about this and that, or bringing me a story book and reading it to me. Carl also said to keep this a secret from John, he promised that if I could keep the secret, he wouldn’t go away again. He also brought me flowers, mostly different ones. John didn’t pay attention to them.
I accepted and many other days passed like that and now there were many, many flowers in my room. I found it beautiful.
Then everything changed the day the men in uniform arrived.