Speak A Little Louder
SPEAK A LITTLE LOUDER
SPEAK A LITTLE LOUDER
By: H. C. Chipangura
The lovers still loved. The Birds still chirped. The earth still spun on its axis and continued to orbit the sun. The stars and galaxies continued to twinkle in the night sky. It seemed nothing and no-one cared that her, Maria-Morgan’s, life had ended.
She had her head turned to the window. All she could see was the top of trees and the oblivious blue sky. The birds which were making an awful nerve wrecking racket in the trees could not be seen, very well camouflaged by the leaves. She looked at the table beside the bed. There, on it, against the fruit basket aunt Mavis had brought, was propped the picture of the blessed virgin mother.
Causing herself a lot of pain as she reached out and knocked it off the table. How could her mother have brought that stupid picture? How was a drawing, a mass produced drawing, of some stupid bitch who died eons ago, meant to help her? What use was it? Where the hell was the blessed virgin when she was being attacked? Where?
She could barely remember the attack. But her mind had somehow recalled, in startling clarity, the emotions attached to it. Pain, fear, hopeless and helplessness. All amplified and magnified in the strange frightening dreams which she could never remember clearly on waking.
She looked out the window. Why did she keep looking? The view had not changed the whole week she had been looking at it. She would have to remember to ask the nurse to draw the blinds. God this place was so boring, she thought. "Ha! God!" she said out loud with a sniger. Tears began pouring out and she wiped then away using the sheet.
The sound of the door opening, like most unexpected sounds made her start. She did not notice visiting time roll around. It was her parents, Bianca and George. Unfortunately when she started she had turned towards the door. So she could not feign being asleep. How she could have loved that than having to listen to these two prattle on endlessly about things and people which meant nothing to her.
"Ah MM! You are awake. Thank goodness, ‘Bianca said rushing to her daughters side, ‘How are you feeling baby? Its just that most of the time we find you asleep! What great good luck!"
She kissed Maria-Morgan as George did in turn.
"How are you doing darling?" They said in unison.
How am I doing? How am I doing? Well lets see. I was stabbed, raped and left for dead in a dumpster mummy and daddy. How the fuck do you think I'm doing?
"A lot better."
"Thats good." George said squeezing his daughters hand.
It took all his strength to keep a hold on his temper everyday. Some animal had hurt his daughter and the god damn police still had not done anything to find him. "The investigation is on-going sir." "On-going?" What the hell did that mean? What was he and everyone else paying their taxes for if they could not do their job! It was hard for him to look at Maria-Morgan without wanting to cry. He turned away.She seemed shrunken and aged. Her once sparkling eyes were dull and had a glazed over look. If he ever got his hands on the bastard that did this.
Maria-Morgan nitived his turning away. So he could not stand to look at her? Was she that disgusting now? It was not as if she had asked for this. She hadnt been walking around with a large noen "PLEASE RAPE AND STAB ME" sign! She wanted to pll her hand away from his and used propping herself up as an excuse to do it.
Bianca was busy replacing the flowers which were on another table at the foot of the bed. More daises! Bianca always brought her fresh daises. Yes, sure, she had liked daises once upon a time. But she had not giveb them a seconnd thought since she was six. She was now seventeen for christ’s sake. What were daises in the face of what she had suffered, what she was still suffering.
How she despised them both and their stupid daises.
Bianca was trying to arrange the daises nicely. She hoped they would remind Maria-Morgan of a happier time. Like the time she had gone from to visit her mother when Maria-Morgan was four. How Maria-Morgan had cried and cried because there was no daisy at the breakfast table. She, Bianca, had scoured the town until she had found a shop selliing artificial ones. Everyone had said she and George spoilt the child and it was time they had another chilld so they could curb Maria-Morgans "excesses". But she had not minded. Maria-Morgan was happy and they had their breakfast in peace.
Bianca ran to the little bathroom to get some fresh water for the new daises. And to dry her eyes. She thanked God and the blessed virgin twenty-four-seven for bringing her baby back to her. It had been touch-and-go many times but Maria-Morgan had finally woken up. She would do all she could to help her daughter.
They stayed with their duaghter the whole visiting period. Going on and on about home, school, work, family, bla bla bla...
Only Louisa, out of all her so called friends, had come to see her. And where was Andy? They had applied the same schools. They had planned on living together. They had made sure to apply only to schools close to each other just incase the unthinkable, their being accepted to different schools, happened.
Her parents had said nothing about Andy. Andy who had had diner at their house often and had even gone away with them for e weekend holiday. Now they were acting like he did not exist. During her first three visits Louisa had been reluctant to talk about him. She had insisted that the only thing to be thought about was recovery. But finally she cracked. It seemed Andy was now dating one of her "friends", Amy. She and Amy had been in the same clique all through high school. Maria-Morgan knew that Andy had tried to get with Amy befor her. But Amy had not given him the time of day. They had hooked up two years ago. The others had even laughed at her, Amy included. SLowly Andy had come into his own and they all noticed him. But it was too late, he was hers. And now when she needed him he was with Amy!
She had long stopped listening to her parents. Caught up in thinking about Andy and Amy.
"Well sweet-heart we have to go now. We know how hospital food is,’ Bianca said reaching into her basket, ‘So we brought you some sweets juice and doughnuts. I’ll put them next to the fruit, whuch you havent touched! Please try to eat a little something sweetheart. Okay."
They kissed her and finally left.
She took the doughnuts. They had brought her assorted ones. She chose a jelly doughtnut and bit into it. Oily and sweet. She had missed these.
Goerge and Bianca went to Dr Moyo’s office. He had these huge comfortable leatherarmchairs for his visitors. But Goerge and Bianca never managed to relax when they came to see him. They would sit on the edgeds, bolt upright.
"I have sent Dr Aslam to look in on her and she advised counselling."
"But she seems so much bett..."
"Yes her body is healing well but she has suffered severe physical and mantal trauma. She needs help to deal with and hopefully get past it. Maria-Morgan needs her family and friends. But she also needs a trained professional."
"Well... If you think its best Dr Moyo." George said as he and his wife looked at each other not very sure.
"Okay. But we would also like her to be able to see Father Chando?"
"Of course. She was after all raised in the church. And I would also like you both to get some counselling too. Proffessional he..., ‘They were about to protest and he put up a hand to silence them, ‘I know you are thinking you do not need it. But I think you do. Here is the name and address of a centere. The New Hope Centre. It helps victims and their families. Its a nonprofit making organisation and I really believe they can help you. Call them, go check it out and if you still feel its not for you or Maria-Morgan then we will look for something else?"
The New Hope Centre was better than they had expected. They spent over a week making daily visits befor they brought it up to Maria-Morgan. Who insisted she was okay and did not need some strangers picking through her mind. But they gently insisted and she finally gave in.
They had attened the one-on-one, the couples and the group counselling sessions. They were going to attend the family one with Maria-Morgan. The centre had helped them bring up issues that they had not been able to talk to each other about. Issues they had dreaded facing personally. The group sessions had shown them that they wernt alone.
As they drove to the New Hope Centre, some weeks later, Maria-Morgan’s heart burnt with resentment for theses people who had the audacity to think they knew what wasbbest for her. It had happened to her not them. She would just humour thm by going to the place. Next to her on the car saet were the inevitable daises. Snd stuck on the dashboard was a picture of the ever serene blessed virgin.
She leaned her head aganist the window and watched the trees, cars, buildings and people going by. At least it would be a change from the hospital room.