The door clicks as I close it, gritting my teeth as I carefully twist the lock so it closes softly. Controlled breathing. It must be light. It must have been an hour or so since speaking to him. I check my phone – in fact it was 2 hours – surely he’ll be asleep by now!
I Tip toe, tip toe, softly down the hall. I am totally soaked. But feeling the 20 pound note, damp in pocket, as reassurance it was worth it. Another little charm for a bracelet. A glass of wine or two. Who knows! But I still feel a small and naughty sense of victory. Though his words are still ringing in the back of my head:
”Now miss, that money I gave you was for one clear purpose. What is it?”
”To get a taxi home Sir.”
“And why is my little girl going to get a taxi?”
“Because its dangerous, dark and wet out’…and…um…”
Since I am still giving more focus on getting my hair right than listening to him from the doorway as he leans against the frame he starts to walks over to me and catches my attention by sliding my collar around my neck….”and…?.”
”And I need to get back safely and soundly to Sir because I’m his Little Girl and he loves me very much.”
”Yes little one. Your safety is priceless. We clear?”
‘Yes sir…please will you help me fasten my necklace now…the girls are waiting.”
Yes he cares. So much. But he is so so cautious with me. So I’m a little wet and happened to walk home alone…nothing bad happened did it?! AND I’m 20 pounds better off. He’ll never find out…
….Little Girl creeps into the kitchen. I take a long drawn out drink of juice from the carton and creep into the bedroom…sliding open the door to get my soaking clothes off…my stomach tightens, knees give a little and breath is stolen as I am greeted by a figure I know and adore, but in this moment fear, sitting comfortably in his leather wingback chair at the back of the darkened bedroom….
“Well young lady…something to tell me….?”
To Be Continued