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kirkman's picture
Joined: 2019/03/27





Harriet flinched as a butterfly brushed her nose in passing, a smile bursting across her face as warm rays of sun reappeared from behind a travelling cloud.  The tweeting birds sounded genuinely happy and as a welcome breeze blew through her long twines of copper hair she felt a joy of summer not experienced since childhood, when all had been so secure and carefree, even though she were now just a girl of seventeen.  All worries of college, of family and of her growing disbelief in the world had evaporated with the morning’s dew, at which time she had sprung from bed, speeding through dressing and breakfast, and headed out for a long walk.  Nidderwald, the village she had lived in since birth, was ten miles from the city and surrounded by green pastures and woods.  It was to a substantial collection of trees, dubbed Acorn forest by her seven year old self, that she had almost skipped, frivolity her reigning mood.

            Now she was trudging home leisurely, hungry after what would end as a six mile journey when she got there.  To her left lay a field of golden corn, looking like a sea as the wind caressed it into rolling waves.  Her feet trod along a mud track, built up a few inches above the ground with two lines of flattened grass stretching along it, trodden to either side as though hair in a centre parting.  On the right was a main road some twenty feet away, but this veered away from the forest and so had been unnoticeable when she had been there, its ocean-like roar blending in with nicer sounds.  The forest had flourished over the spring, her fingers still stung from pushing overgrown nettles and thorns out of her path, her nostrils still filled with the scent of flowers and moss. There were apple trees there whose boughs were scattered with the ripe fruits and blackberries hung plump from twisting thorns, a number of which she had eaten forgoing all thoughts of cleanliness.  Scenes had flashed before her of her old dog and her old friend Rosie and the magic worlds they had brought to life amidst those trees. 

She had seen something unexpected there today.  After passing the fallen oak and overstepping “sunshine stream” she had come into the middle’s clearing and found something quite special happened to the rock there.  The large rectangular chunk of limestone, bigger than a man and there for as long as she’d ever known, had been decorated.  Some one had made a picture out of it.  They had, painstakingly she thought, lain twigs and sticks up against it all over, filled in and supported by mud, creating a natural mosaic of, oddly enough, a forest or wood.  It was very well done, minute fallen braches and slivers of bark aligned to create the outlines of trees, of a bridge, which crossed a river made of smudged in bluebell petals, and of two people.  Fallen sprigs of green pine and other foliage had been used as foliage again for the trees and many daffodils must have been sabotaged for the sun which had been forged.  It had made her smile that the two people in the picture were having sex, the man clearly on top as destalked mushrooms acted the breasts of his partner.  She’d wished she’d had a camera with her as it would all have been clearly visible in a photo and was really very neatly done.  Someone else would probably come and mess it up now though. 

A fence drew nearer marking the last phase of the journey, a path of yellow rock which lead through oak trees, a meadow and to gate opening onto the main street of Nidderwald.  She observed someone climbing the fence and watched him as he came towards her, conscious to look away when it was near enough for eye contact.  He was quite a tall man with a wild tangle of brown hair off in all directions.  He was wearing black trousers which appeared to be held up by a bit of old rope and that were, along with his tattered army jacket, covered in mud.  He was not a man, she discerned with lessoning distance but a boy, well a young man, of her age or so.  When it started to become clear that their pupils were engaged she flit her glance upon her feet and pretended to be softly talking to herself, her senses alert and waiting for his passing.  She could feel the approach just seconds away and then with a swish of air his padding footsteps clumped slowly out of earshot.  She wanted to turn and look at him, but thought he might have had the same idea.  What did it matter anyway?  She swivelled around to see that he was already over the sty and then she noticed the five pound note.  It’s back was to a shoot of bending corn, half way up from the ground, the wind holding it in position.  It was flapping about madly and threatening to blow away, so she snatched it between her fingers.  She had brought no money with her, so perhaps it had come from the boy’s pocket or something.  He was almost out of site and she never approached people, especially boys, but she thought she ought to tell him.  Coming out of herself she began to run and was over the sty and gaining on him fast.  She stopped twenty metres short and called  out “hey!”.  There was no response so she yelled again and he stopped in his tracks.  He turned slowly and looked at her bewilderedly.  She gave a nod of confirmation that she was talking to him and thrust her arm forward in the air with the fiver in it.  He seemed hesitant and she suddenly felt very amused for some reason.  She felt at ease and free of nerves which was the opposite to how she normally felt around people especially boys.  He was good looking, she could tell though there was still some distance between them.  He began quick steps towards her, the faintest trace of a smile showing, kind but slightly nervous.  He stopped a metre short of her.

“Hi” he said churlishly and she just smiled for some moments, trying to find the words.  “Did you drop this fiver” she exclaimed almost giggling.  What was happening to her? She  must seem so stupid.  “It’s just I…I found it on the ground back there”. 

His was an awkward twitchy smile, a constraint masking happiness at talking to this girl.  “Erm, it could be” he said.

“You mean you don’t know?” she asked through a giggle, cocking her head on one side.  There was something so harmless seeming about this guy, something endearingly self deprecating that she felt free in her speaking.  He rummaged a hand around in his jacket pocket, bringing out a handful of tatty confetti, all chewing gum wrappers, bus tickets and torn scraps of paper.  She laughed and he looked up at her smiling.  “You ought to clear that out” she exclaimed. 

“I just never get around to it” he mumbled somewhat, a few seconds going by before she deciphered.  Suddenly the handful of rubbish was stuffed back into his pocket, small stray pieces flying into the wind, down to the ground and so he dropped to pick up the visible ones.  This action was greeted with a huge laugh from Harriet and he returned to his height suppressing a desire to laugh himself.  Now he just stared at her, deep into her eyes, smiling all the time.  She simply returned the look and then twitched her face and shook her head after some moments, trying to ask what he was looking at.  Then a slight sigh of amusement escaped him and she started giggling again.  At last he said “yeah, sorry, that must be mine, must have dropped it back there”.  Harriet felt her nipples erect and hoped they weren’t visible. 

A pang of sadness seemed to envelop her of a sudden.  She would give him the money and that would be the end, but how she’d like to talk to him just for a while.  He was different somehow.  He didn’t look like any definable kind of teenager and what on earth was he doing walking all muddy along this track with no belt, but rope holding up his tatty trousers!  That was probably a sign that he wasn’t right and other girls her age would probably have labelled him a “weirdo”.  She remembered secondary school suddenly, with its groups and hierarchy of students.  She had been in her own place, not exactly a “looser” but so far from the popular set and in no real group between.  How false she thought, thinking how she noticed such structures dropping in adulthood, where it seemed people were all reduced to the same level and one of mutual disregard and disinterest.  So it had seemed at the office she’d worked in for the first few weeks of summer, as a receptionist in a division of the law firm her father worked for.

Her eyes had glazed over in dream and she came back to the moment in which she was still looking deep into his eyes.  “Are you all right?” he asked sounded genuinely concerned.  “yes, I’m fine, haha, just got sidetracked”.

“In a world of your own” He half mumbled.  She was enraptured by him again, this odd, attractive guy in shabby clothes.  But now she had to go and so she thrust out the note towards him.  He took it slowly, without her fingers touching his, disappointing her.  “Thank you” he said softly and then smiled at her, but sadly.  She was sad too and as he backed away a few steps she felt herself turning to continue her walk and then the approaching fence was facing her again and she couldn’t even hear his footsteps.  Guys never talked to her at college, nor girls very much.  She thought of home and the dishes her mother would want her to wash and she thought of the miserable rooms of the house and that there was no prospect of doing anything else but inhabiting them for the rest of the day.  Dull dusty rooms.  The front room with its television that she watched but didn’t entertain her, the kitchen full of food she ate but made her feel sick and unhealthy.  She would have a cup of coffee when she got home, but how she hated it, the damage she felt it doing as it slid down her throat.  Bread, butter, cake, chocolate, pasta, pizza. The thought of such food suddenly made her cringe.  Eating in that house, eating so she could stay alive so that she could stay in that little house and listen to CDs and watch TV.  She thought how her exams had gone badly, how she’d have to re-sit them and how she probably wouldn’t get into university.  She thought how she was seventeen years old, all smooth taught skin and glowing hair and how other girls were enjoying it, as were their boyfriends.  Tears began to well and she stopped almost s if commanded, the sudden halt in motion almost causing her to fall over. 

            It was a beautiful day and she didn’t need to cry.  At least she’d had a nice interaction with someone, that nice boy.  She began to turn around wanting to see him in the distance, knowing he’d be long gone now.  Her heart stopped and she had butterflies.  He was still there, far away but looking at her.  She couldn’t see his eyes of course, his face but a minute pink blur, but it was clear he was facing her.  Had he been watching her?  Hesitantly, almost panic stricken she wondered what to do.  The tears subsided, drying on her reddened cheeks as some kind of opportunity presented itself, some kind of escape from the crap that would otherwise become her day.  Should she go over? She asked, staring at the trodden grass as though it would answer.  She looked back up at him and almost died, seeing he had come closer.  Had he? Then she actually saw him move, coming nearing another two meters.  But two meters was hardly perceivable at such a distance.  His arms were coming away from his sides a bit, as if in some kind of gesture. Was he talking to her?  She took one step in his direction, not a fraction enough to be seen.  But he must have noticed something as he began walking again and this time he didn’t stop after a few seconds.  He came until he was at the gate she had travelled some forty meters away from.  He leant on it, his arms hanging over its sides.  A smile broke out on her face, but she was nervous.  This boy clearly wanted to speak to her and she him too.  She felt her stomach heaving as he lifted a foot to a wooden cross bar and began to climb.  Once he was over he stood nonchalantly, the smile subsiding.  Well, do you want to? He was asking.  She did and she began slow steps towards him as the sun intensified its warmth.  What was she doing?  This was, well, just odd.  She was approaching a perfect stranger as though he were an old friend.  She stopped opposite him, as close as they’d ever been and there were no smiles this time but a mutual piercing glance.  “Erm..” he began, speaking softly.  “Do you wanna go for a walk or something?”.  The butterflies in her were intense, it felt as though something were pushing on her stomach, as though a wind were dragging it ever back into an ongoing expanse.  “Yeah, ok” she said, her breathing heavy enough for him to hear it.  He smiled then and so did she.  “Which way?” he asked. 

“Oh let’s go to the forest down there, even though I’ve just come from that direction”. 

“That sounds cool” he said.  They climbed the fence and walked side by side, no one speaking but both wanting to.  It was nice, the free unspoken knowledge that they wanted each other’s company.  There was no domination in it, no submission on either side, no false respect, no pandering.  She felt so happy she couldn’t explain it, nor did it need explaining.  She decided to talk, someone had to. 

“Well, who are you?” she giggled, “what’s your name?”  He glanced at her, happy she was directing a conversation.  “Jack” he said simply and she heard his voice properly for the first time.  It was deep with a warm, muffled rasp to it.  His accent wasn’t discernable.

“Is that it?” she laughed, growing in confidence, awestruck on realising she’d just prodded him in the arm in playful fun.  He couldn’t contain a joyful laugh.  “What else is there I should know?”.

            “What’s your name?” he enquired, ignoring her question.

“Harri” she replied, her eyes as bright and wide as those they stared into.

“Short for Harriet?”.

“What else?” she mocked.

“Of course” he mumbled.  “So you live around here?”.

“Yeah, in a crappy village down there” pointing to Nidderwald.

“What’s so crappy about it?  It’s beautiful countryside around here”.

“I…don’t know..its just crappy”.

He laughed inwardly.  Had she felt he was challenging her in some way? He couldn’t always be sure the way other people’s minds worked.

“What college do you go to?” she wanted to know.  “Are you from Waiton or something?”.

“No, I’m not from here. Just passing through”.

“Do you have friends here or something? Where are you from?”.


He was certainly vague and a new feeling descended on her.  She liked him as much as before, but an oddness about him was becoming more apparent.  A good oddness though, she liked it, but she wasn’t quite sure what she was feeling. 

“So you got friends here or something?” she repeated.

She couldn’t discern anything from his gaze at that moment and he simply said,

“I have friends everywhere…or maybe nowhere”.

They strolled on in silence and then she stopped.  He continued some paces before turning back to her.  He looked apologetic. 

“Oh, you have to go?” he asked.

“Well I’ve got work to do and stuff, so I guess I should go really”.

In a flash he was close to her again, without her having noticed his movement and words were pouring out thick and fast.

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry.  I didn’t mean to be weird or anything.  I’m sorry, I-I’m not very good at talking to people sometimes, oh I don’t know- I’m just tired today. I’m sorry If I was rude or anything- it’s ok if you want to go, well of course it’s ok, but I like…I like talking to you-”. His sudden emotion subsided as a series of cackles began to pour out of her.

“Ok, ok! It’s all right” she choked out between giggles.  “Your unique!” she exclaimed. He was weird all right, but so benign.  There was some kind of desperation about him that she identified with.  He was funny and she couldn’t help sniggering but then she stopped when he said quite firmly-

“your beautiful”.  A quiver ran through her and she looked away from him, her mind trying to think of how she was to respond to that.  “Oh, sorry if that’s a weird thing to say” he began.  “Didn’t mean anything by it, anyway there’s nothing wrong with saying that.  You are beautiful and you know your beautiful and any man would think the same and I, personally, don’t think there is anything wrong with me casually proclaiming it!” he was dancing about as he said it, trying to bring her out of any discomfort the remark might of caused, and she was laughing again.  What a strange day this was becoming with such a strange person.  They walked on, at ease now and trees began to surround them.  The sun had grown steadily hotter and the forest provided some welcome shade. 

“Anyway” he started, “what are you studying at college?”.

“haha, ok, that’s a random question. French, politics and history”.

“That’s quite a mix.  Hmmm, what do you think of politics then? As it’s practised in this day and age?”.

“Errrm....that’s a strange question.  I don’t know really” her eyes squinting, gasps of amusement issuing from her lips.

“It’s terrible I think.  It’s not about the principles of politics these days”.

“What do you mean?”

“Well, it’s become about- when people talk of it, it’s become about the way in which it is practised rather than the way it ought to be.  All the tradition that has developed in it, the channels people have to go through in it, the whole culture is all that’s discussed.  The ideas themselves, the quest for humanity’s progress etc has been forgotten so people instead focus on the colour of John Prescott’s tie”.


“You know what I mean? I didn’t explain it very well-”

“No, I think I get you.  You mean, like, that people-“

“Never mind, let’s talk about something less depressing.  I love you hair.  So ginger”.

Loud laughs followed, both intoxicated by the strangeness of the situation and the odd attempts at conversation.  Still, at least he actually asked questions and had opinions.

“….thanks” she said in reply to his statement. 

“I hope you didn’t mind earlier when I said you were beautiful”.

She looked down as they drifted into this territory, but she was at ease and her reddening cheeks revealed her pleasure.  “It’s ok” she said.

“It’s just, it’s  just” and his voice was quietening, “it’s just you are and, I think it should be said”.  Her chest could have exploded with butterflies and emotions were churning.  She looked at him longingly for a moment.  The way he’d said that was so tender.  He actually meant it.

“Right” she began, “Ok, not everyday someone just says that to you! Not sure what to think about it really”. 

He just smiled at her, looking away and then back and they continued the walk.  Where were they going?  They were deep into the trees now and crickets and birds were chirping loudly.  Twigs snapped and crackled here and there, as creatures stirred unseen. 

“Yes, very nice hair indeed” he again proclaimed in a silly sounding voice.

“You already said!”.

“Can I touch it?” he wanted to know.  What now? She thought.  He came close to her and she spontaneously backed away a step but he closed the space between them.  “Can I?” he asked again, drawing his hand to the side of her downward turned head.  She turned her eyes toward him revealing a mixed expression and he brought his slender fingers to her cheek and began to twine loose strands of auburn around them.  He felt her breath against his hand for a second, coming out in little sharp gasps. 

“Ok, that satisfy you?”.

“beautiful and soft” he cooed before removing his hand.  They stood staring at each other again, as they had done so much already.   She could feel herself moist now and the flurrying had not subsided in her stomach.  His eyes said nothing, all the muscles of his face relaxed and then he came to her once more.  His lips trembled, unsure of the words they wanted to form.  “Can I…”, but his voice trailed off. 

“What is it?” she asked hesitantly, almost impatiently.

“It’s nothing, you wouldn’t appreciate it”.  She felt that she might not as well. 

“…Well, just tell me, just ask me”.

“Can I kiss you?”.  She wanted to get away now.  Looking into his deep brown eyes and seeing his full lips, she wondered how it would feel.  Good, but she didn’t know him and this was too much.  She was out in what some people would call the middle of nowhere with a guy who looked like a tramp.  Walking backwards carefully, she avoided his gaze and said evenly “I don’t know you.  Your really nice, but, I can’t…I just can’t”.  She could sense him coming closer again and she gasped as her back came up against a thick tree trunk.  She lost her footing and tried to regain balance.  A strong grasp enclosed her wrist and he pulled her from a fall.  He didn’t let go of her wrist and she was forced to look at him.  “I’m sorry” he began.  “Your so beautiful, I just want to kiss you, just once”.  His tone was self assured and the word’s he’d said before came not from the same place.  “Look, I have to go now.  It was nice meeting you.  Let go of me please”.

He looked at her without expression.  His glance flitted away and then back to her eyes.  “No” came from his thick lips.  “I’m afraid I can’t”.  His words were measured and stated calmly, without aggression.  “I just want one kiss”.  He brought his left hand to her cheek and cupped it gently, stroking his thumb along the taught flesh.  Her body was ablaze with differing sensations.  “Please let go of me” she said and she could feel her cheeks burning.  She wanted to cry, to show him she was scared, but the tears just wouldn’t come.  She was worried.  He didn’t seem so respectful now, so benign and she wanted to get away, yet even if she did, she knew she would always look back on him with longing.  She was lost in these thoughts and she had become numb to his grip before she felt soft breath against her face.  She couldn’t smell it or him particularly, he seemed so clean despite his mud-caked garb.  He was right in her face now.  It should have felt uncomfortable but it didn’t, though it still scared her.  He didn’t seem human.  Up close he was like a statute come alive, as though he could do anything a human were capable of, but the action would have no meaning for there were no motive behind it.  Of course he were human and he was bad, he was bad for not letting her go, he was bad for getting so close like this- his lips met hers. 

She couldn’t take it in at first, but was just aware of flesh on hers, of a force pushing against her.  Then she willed herself to feel and sensations became clear.  He was pecking her lightly, on her nose, her cheeks, her forehead.  His breathing was heavy but seemed controlled and directed, like music.  He whispered something, but she didn’t hear it.  His lips were on her neck now and she felt warm sucking sensations.  She was not aware of where she was but focussed her eyes on the trees around her.  Birds were calling to each other all around and midges hummed and danced.  Her body felt as though it were not her own and yet she could still feel.  It was as though she had melted into a fleshy puddle of electrical activity, a twitching mass of unpredictable shudders, with no consciousness able to decipher their pleasure or pain. 

“Stop” she said but she didn’t know if he had heard.  She had to stop this, she had to bring herself back under control.  His kisses became more distinct and her senses regained direction and meaning.  His hands were gripping the tree trunk, wrists resting on her thighs and she felt momentarily safe.  He would stop this soon, if she stayed still and just waited.  Thoughts entered her as though not her own.  She often wondered what thoughts were exactly.  Were they impulses that came of their own accord and their meaning imposed by words?  Were they shifted, distorted and battled by other thoughts- feelings imposed by an upbringing, like shame and guilt?  There was a voice inside her, a feeling that told her to enjoy this even while others willed her to get away- telling her that this event had a very clear meaning and that appropriate action needed to be taken.  She felt her head turned sharply and he was looking deep into her eyes, his breath course and coming straight into her face.  She felt his heaving chest subsiding and things seemed to be calming.  He was crying, tears had slid down his soft cheeks.  She took in his face in detail.  His head was quite round and his deep set eyes lay under thick black brows.  His eyes were a kind of turquoise with rings of amber around the pupils.  Beneath his medium sized nose was a line of whispery hair and similarly it sprouted from his chin.  He wasn’t as hairy as a lot of boys.  He couldn’t grow a beard.  His skin was smooth and quite boyish, but combined with his attitude, his aura- there was something mature about him and he seemed like a man.  “I’m so sorry” sounded fast from his lips.  “I didn’t mean to disrespect you.  Your gorgeous you know, you make it all worthwhile.  Always know that whenever someone is with you, their experiencing pleasure.  They, just an object like a tree or a stone, are experiencing pleasure- they are pleasure when their with you.  Your…so beautiful…I’m sorry”.  He had fallen against her, his head resting on her neck.  She felt a desire to hold it in her hands and stroke his hair, but gradually an anger started to build inside her.  He’d just completely gone against her and she had to get away.  “It’s ok.. T-thank you, but now I’m going to go, ok?”.  She managed to slide out from under him and then he let himself fall to his knees.  He lay down on his back against a bed of pine cones, twigs and wishing sticks.  She stared at him and wondered what to do.  She wanted to walk away, but it was odd with him just lying there like that.  His eyes were closed and he mumbled he was sorry again.  “Look I’ve got to go.  I’m going to leave now” she said loudly.  He showed no sign of hearing, but he must have.  He was mumbling to himself and then laughing and smiling every few seconds, his features gesturing as if he were in an actual conversation with someone.  She began to walk away backwards, glancing around every once in a while to make sure she didn’t hit a tree.  She could hear his soft mumbling and gradually it faded as did his image.  She felt like a boat floating away from the harbour, as another lay dormant, moored into the side.  She got further and further away until she couldn’t see him any more, but she continued to face his direction.  She stopped then and sat down the stump of a tree.  She felt nothing now, not scared, not excited, not joyful, but nothing.  What was wrong with him?  Was he psychologically damaged?  She ought to have an idea, she did psychology.  She gazed at his direction.  He was quarter of a mile away now and it was about another quarter of a mile to be out of the trees.  She couldn’t leave him like that, leave the situation like that, leave this human being who was so different to any others she had ever known to become some obscure memory of a day, of a set of emotions not able to be properly categorised.  But she had to leave.  He might have raped her.  He didn’t seem like a rapist though, like an evil, ugly old pervert you’d find in a dark alley.  Girls at college often said they’d been raped at parties.  It was odd though because they didn’t seem to care and when one said it to another, that other would say the same thing after the next party had taken place.  Liars she thought.  She heard twigs snap and crackle and she promptly got off her stump and began to walk.  She would never see him again and it was probably just as well, but she could tell he was a hurt human being.  He wasn’t a bastard, or a cheat or someone who stepped on other people and she silently wished him the best and hoped he’d be happy.  She felt a kind of sense of pride, a sense of wellbeing as if a realisation had dawned on her.  She felt natural, out here with the trees and the flowers and the pine cones.  The light was growing and now she could see where the trees ended and then she’d be on the path again and back to Nidderwald in a heartbeat.  Poor Jack.  Laying there like that.  Who was he, where was he going?  The sound of rusting leaf under her foot was soothing as was the sound of the breeze and of the birds.  There was a pulse to the forest, to nature and life and she felt as if she had tapped into it.  She heard a thudding growing in her ears and tuned in to it, trying to decipher what forest sound it were.  It was someone running- heavy, thudding footfalls.  It was someone running from behind her.  It was must be “Jack”.  She began to run herself, the edge of the trees only twenty meters away now.  The beat became louder and louder and soon she could hear panting breath other than her own.  Worry enveloped her and she tripped on a stick falling over.  She thought he must be right behind her, but it seemed there was distance enough for her to get back to her feet and continue the dash.  Ten metres now and in the very distance, from between two trees, she saw a dog running in the corn field.  She was almost there when she was pushed down onto the floor.  Her face fell into the dry dirt and her eyes saw ants scurrying too and fro in a maze of twisting wooden stuff.  A woodlouse hurried passed her nose and disappeared somewhere.  Then she was turned around and she saw his face again, cast in desperate seriousness.  She didn’t know what to say and she were actually crying now, no sound but just tears.  She tried to smile at him, maybe it would help somehow.  He was astride her, his legs either side of her waist and his right hand pushed her shoulder into the ground.  She gazed only at his face and the corner of her eye saw his shaking, automated shoulder, his other hand fumbling around with something.  A blue blur then flashed before her eyes and something soft hit the ground some yard away.  A bit of rope.  Material ruffled and muffled and for a moment both of his hands were away from her and he pulled down his pants.  She wasn’t looking, but it was obvious enough.  Then his knuckles turned against her stomach and his fingers were pushing the button through on the hole on her denim skirt.  Now he bounced a bit, awkwardly pulling her skirt down and trying to get it under and away from him, whilst staying atop her legs.  It was done and then his hands were on her pink knickers.  She heard a long rip and felt sharp material momentarily cutting into her sides.  She closed her eyes and felt breath and rough kissing bombarding her neck.  His muffled rasp was whispering, but she couldn’t make out the words.  She began to sob, eliciting more whispers from him and his right hand massaged her shoulder gently, all the while the rest of his strength held her down.  Then she began to struggle.  She thrust her body up and down, battering back and fourth into the ground, hoping to strike him away but it was no good.  She felt wet, slippery flesh against her stomach- his penis.  She heard the slap of it against her tummy and back to his own and then his head ducked away from her for a second her legs were no longer pinned down.  She kicked them hard into the air, hoping to strike him, but his torso were between them already.  His hands gripped hand onto her wrists, forcefully holding them to the ground and she quivered and convulsed as something touched the lips of her vagina.  She lay still, all muscles quivering with the strain.  She didn’t want to damage herself.  She had never had sex and it would hurt.  She gasped as her lips widened and hot wetness pushed inside her.  Electricity was flowing right into her bowls and her legs began to shake and tingle.  It continued until she felt skin stretching inside her and a light pang which grew and then intensified and then stopped.  It stung but died away as warmth and rhythm grew inside her.  She cried and sobbed, but he continued to kiss her, now her face and with his right hand he squeezed open her mouth and licked her tongue.  She hit him hard with her left hand on the back of the head but he didn’t do anything.  Then she gripped his shoulder blade and dug her nails in until she was sure blood must have been drawn.  She heard him gasp and his pain was confirmed, but he stayed as he was.  She saw blood on her nails and then stuck a finger into his ear and pinched it with all her might and then began to jam her fingers back and forth hard into it, trying to get them right into the hole and puncture an ear drum, but he shook his head to the side and pinned her arm back down at the bicep.  It was so hot inside her and she felt wetness dripping onto her thighs.  Her stomach felt like it was going to explode, not butterflies but swarms and swarms of wasps coursing through her, stinging her with electricity.  He slowed and quickened, slowed and quickened.  He stopped for a second and she felt him pulsating deep inside her, so very deep, before continuing with the pace.  The pang built and built and a moan escaped her lips of its own accord.  She was being raped.  She’d battered him and drawn blood but he would not stop.  Flesh was throbbing and glowing with heat and she groaned in anguish as the hotness grew and grew.  He thrust faster and faster and she felt his tightly stretched torso between her thighs.  The churning in her was tormenting, growing and growing until her back arched into the air as warmth rocketed through hr tummy, sending tingles of fire into every tendon and nerve.  She heard a squelch and he was out of her.  He was off her then and she stared up at the tree tops, the sky above a soft blue.  She heard scraping and ruffling and then footsteps breaking out into a gallop.  She heard them for some two minutes, getting quieter and quieter before vanishing completely.  Her mind was back and her body began to ache.  The sting came back slowly inside her and a wave of tiredness descended on her.  She was naked she realized and madly rolled over, straining her body to do so.  Frantically she searched out her clothes and dressed without thinking about it.  She tried to stand up then but it hurt and she lowered herself again and lay down.  She closed her eyes and saw disjointed images flashing across her mind.  Looking into the blackness she let pictures emerge, the most random things.  Polar bears, roller coasters, an old man, fantastic landscapes and slowly consciousness left her.

Later, her eyes opened and she could stand and so she walked. She had lain in the forest for hours, twig and leaf still strewn about her hair as she climbed the gate and emerged onto the village main street.  Her clothes were rumpled and coated in dry mud, but other than that undamaged.  Nothing was going through her mind.  She had been raped and it had happened in a simple and straightforward way.  There was nothing to go over and her mind was not inclined to try and put its automatic buzz into words.  It was turning into a beautiful evening- cool air and orange sky.   Two young boys scuffled about each other on the pavement, yelling excitedly and jostling for possession of some object.  A middle aged couple cruised towards her before turning into the local pub as she passed.  She looked in the windows to see the clinking of glasses, course, unrestrained laughter bellowing out into the courtyard.  Five minutes and she would be home.  She passed the mini supermarket and some part of her half considered going in and buying some sweets.  Peering in through its sliding doors she almost fell over on the impact and suddenly felt a hand on her shoulder.

“Whoa, are you ok there?  Mind how you go”.  The man she had bumped was about fifty, his face all craggy shapes behind a mass of greying beard.  He was looking into her eyes and then lowered his gaze.  A smile came onto his face suddenly and was immediately suppressed.  He looked at her square in the eyes, his own containing a kind of sad triumph and he told her, “I think you need to go home now, ok?  You go to your mother now, do you hear? Ok, on your way”.  He was gone, footsteps disappearing fast.  Harriet became aware of her muscles aching throughout her body and a headache started to build from nowhere.  She suddenly wanted to sit down and thought she might faint.  She realized an old woman was eyeing her from across the street and a voice from behind her made it known that someone else was coming to ask how she was.  She looked down at the dirty tarmac and saw a thin stream blood flowing quite confidently from between her legs.  Then she ran all the rest of the way home.