17 Pieces: Chapter 1

August 18, 2013 12:00 pm

17 Pieces
By Maulton R. T. Campbell


17 Pieces tells the story of a girl’s courageous battle to be freed of those responsible for abusing her and to find happiness

Chapter 1

“My life is tore into 17 pieces. No one wants me at all,” Jackie said with teary eyes and  fought the pain. “I love my grandfather. If I could change anything about my wretched life, I would want my grandfather to be alive. Why did he have to leave when I needed him the most? Death took him away and abuses shredded my innocence away.”
There is a piece of me that is dead, gone forever. It died the day I heard that grandpa was gone and I had go to live with my aunt and that horrible man, my aunt called her lover. He was a huge muscular Caucasian man with giant hands and feet. His eyes were frighteningly dark balls that peered at me with pit black evil look. It made a four year old girl want to run and screams, “Grandpa, I don’t want to go.” I stopped and observed the feeble old man I revered with all my heart. Tears broke through his blue eyes and his aged lips mumbled some caring words, “it will be only for a while dear, grandpa has to go somewhere to be well so that grandpa can take good care of you, dear.”
The sound died and I walked toward the strange house to greet the short thick woman who was my aunt. Her hair was colourful despite it being red and she wore bright makeup with noticeable lipstick. Her voice was perky and her hands danced as she spoke in a rhythmic tone almost like she was singing. Something cold ran across my body and tears erupted into screams. My grandpa had approached the door to leave. I screamed until my voice was gone. My body shook violently until sleep took my eyes. I became dead to the world and my grandpa was dead to me.
As the days went by I learnt that grandpa was very ill and had gotten worst. One morning I woke up to a house of confusion. I heard screams and wailing and horrible sounds travelled through the house. Grandpa had died. I felt empty. I felt lost.
“I hated him,” I thought, “he didn’t keep his promise. Now, I am stuck at this place with that evil man.” I never cry. I just stared in deep thought.
“He never kept his promise. He said he would come back for me,” I questioned myself everyday hoping grandpa would come for me. I started to see Cherry regularly. Cherry was the woman that trapped my life. I was bounded by her chains of control. I did not know how we were related. I called no one mother or father. She was preparing for some big event called a funeral.
“What was that?” I thought, “was grandpa going to be there? Why do I need new clothes and shoes to go see grandpa?” Cherry had bought me a pretty dress and brand new black shoes. I wished she had used the money to buy me food. More food because I had to wait long hours to eat at my aunt’s house and I got only small portion to eat in the evening as there was always so much mouths to feed. No one asked me if I were hungry or not. I had to wait for the what left to eat or wait until my aunt cooked late into the evening and after she had shared everyone food to get my little morsel of food.
If I breathed a word to Cherry I would get a beating. If I say I was hungry I was barked at or run to go find something into the house to do ‘lazy child’. How could I be a lazy child when I was the one that clean out the house every morning, wash the dishes until my fingers painfully turned red, wash the clothes, sweep out the house and my name was always ringing on everybody’s lips to go and do something?
“Yes! I was anxious to see that man I called grandpa. I wanted to give him a piece of my tongue like what grownup say when they were going to curse someone to scorn or dirt,” I said to myself.
“How could grandpa dash me away to this, to this type of living? I thought he care about me and why hadn’t he come for me. Why didn’t he keep his promise?” I wondered. I did not want to go to the funeral and wear any new clothes or new shoes. I wanted to wear my best old clothes and possibly my dirty bare feet and raggedly cloths my aunt gave me to wear. I wanted my hair to be wild and dirty.
On the day of my grandpa’s visit Cherry combed my hair for the first time and got me dressed up that everyone thought I was the prettiest girl in the house. My cousins were green in jealousy but my aunt’s lover popped his evil eyes out at me and smiled in delight. I thought  uncle Marcel cared about me because after the funeral he started to treat me really good better than his children and even my aunt. He always took juices for me and gave me food to eat. We became friends at least so I thought until his big hands were walking all over me and I felt uncomfortable.
His words became a scorn. What did he mean when he says, “my private parts are getting fat,” and then he feels me over until I felt strange? Then he wanted to put his finger into my private part and begged me to suck his private part like lollypop. He said it was a live sweetie made for the lips. He made horrible sounds and made movements that made me scare. Sometimes white stuff like milk came from his private part and he looked happy. He treated me nice and gave me a lot of food and money for the streets.
“Big John, how you take so much interest in Jackie?” my aunt argued,  “I am going to beat the shit out of that devil child to leave you alone.” I stood there and watched her face twisted into anger. Her voice frightened me. “Don’t but me John.”
“Come on Michelle, we have more than enough to share,” roared Big John . He smiled at the short thick woman and shook his head.
“Cherry live here too, and it is not your responsibility to give Jackie anything while Cherry is out partying all over the place,” Michelle shouted. “She and I can’t live here, that devil child will have to go.”
“Oh please, the girl is innocence,” Big John chuckled, “It was Cherry that found your bed.”
“I don’t like that wild child at all, she is a liar kid,” the woman scuffed, “she has got to go.”
“Why?” shouted Big John.
“She is part breed, she is a product of lust. They never lived together,” the woman cursed. Big John raised his hand and slapped her twice to silence. Her eyes popped out at me because I screamed at her words, “she isn’t Papa‘s child?” She had a look like she was going to tore me into pieces.
“Who is her father then?” Big John demanded. “Someone once told me that Grandpa could not be my father because she looked so much like St. Francis.”
“Her mother must have been changing beds so often that she ended up a family ram or a bastard of the church,” the woman argued. “Her blood has to be shed to break the curse from our life.”
“You want to kill that child,” asked Big John.
“Jackie, Jackie!” my aunt exclaimed as Big John grabbed her.
“I want my grandfather!” I screamed. I ran to the other part of the house. The house had eight bedrooms. I shared a room with one of my cousin that one year younger than me.
“What’s wrong with you, lazy child?” my other auntie asked. I have two aunts living under the same roof.
“Marcel hit auntie,” the frightened girl breathed heavily.
“Shout your mouth, before I blood you up,” Cherry shouted. Cherry left that evening with a man in car. At 2a.m. in the morning I was awaken by rumbling sound from the door. It was Cherry. I stumbled out of bed and crawled to the front entrance fighting sleep from my eyes to find Cherry cursing and staggering drunk.
“What the heck took you so long to open the bloody door?” she argued. Jackie’s face went blank as her mouth plunged with a puzzle, “what?”
“You will know in due time,” Cherry cursed. I help her to the sofa and ran toward the room and plugged my fingers into my ears. I tried not to blame Cherry for half the things that happened to me although she knew and never did anything. That’s why I’m so angry at everyone even her. And my grandfather died when I needed him the most. He was my father and everything that a little child could need. Right now I’m in tears. I can’t talk about this any longer ok. Little did I realise that my life was turning for the worst.


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