Chapter 1: A Crane Broken
Friday March 3rd 1996
She was walking from the gym back to her dorm. Her steps were light and she had a smile on her face. Her hair, which fell about mid-back, was woven into a slack French braid and was swinging with each step she took. Practice had gone very good and she was happy with what she had accomplished. Her smile got even wider as she thought of her boyfriend of almost three years, Tommy Oliver. She loved him and he loved her. They were each others everything. She would do anything for him and him her. Kimberly Hart was indeed very lucky to have a gorgeous boyfriend so devoted to her, that waited patiently for the day that she would return to him and her home town. She was so caught up in her thoughts, that she didn't notice the figure behind her until it was too late. She had just turned the corner, about a hundred yards away from her dorm door, when she felt someone behind her. She turned her head to see who it was, but before she could make out the person, she felt an excruciating pain in the back of her head, and then the world went black. The last thing she saw before she blacked out was a pair of familiar blue eyes, looking back at her.
She woke up with her hands tied to a chair and her mouth gagged. She tried to make a little noise, but when that proved useless, she tried to move to see where she was, but found that her eyes were covered.
"Oh don't move, it'll hurt your hands," a voice said. She brought her head around to where she thought the voice came from.
"Oh don't worry," the person said, "You're safe for now." Why didn't she like the sound of that? "Ok, I'm going to take the gag out and the blindfold off," they said, "Do you promise not to scream?" scared at what they would do, Kim nodded. She felt a pair of hands at her face and felt the gag and blindfold being removed. She blinked to adjust her eyes. She then lifted her head and gasped as she saw who was standing in front of her, "Michael," she whispered.
"Hello Kimberly," Michael said. Michael was the assistant coach for the girls' gymnastics team. When she had first arrived, he had sought her out, and they became friends. When she realized he wanted more than friendship, she let him down gently and told him she had a boyfriend that she was very much in love with. At the time, it seemed like he had accepted it, so she had put the entire thing behind her. But now it seemed as though that wasn't the case.
"Michael, what's going on?" she asked, "What are you doing?"
"I'm taking what's mine Kimberly," he said with a smile. When Kim heard those words, she felt a chill up her spine. She knew then what it was that Michael had planned to do, and it scared her. Her heart was pounding with fear, and she shivered. She wished she had gone out with the others. She had every night, since they were on spring break, but she declined tonight, and now she regretted it.
"WH-what do you mean?" she asked, hoping the fear she was feeling wasn't visible in her eyes.
"I mean, Kimberly," he said, his smile disappearing, "That what I want, what I've always wanted was you, and now; now I can have you."
"Michael, please don't do this," she pleaded, desperate to get through to him, "Just let me go and we can forget about this. You don't want to do this Michael."
"Yes, I do," he said, now pacing the floor, "Ever since you came here and I met you, I fell in love with you. I became your friend, I got close to you, learned everything about you; to show you that I was perfect for you."
"But then you had to go and ruin it," he snarled, "NO, you had a boyfriend. Do you know how it felt to hear you talk about him? Everything out of your mouth was how 'Tommy did this,' or 'Tommy did that.' I got so sick of it. You were my girl. And now, now I can finally take what's mine."
"Michael, look I'm sorry that you felt that way," Kim started, "But I love Tommy and I—
"DON'T SAY HIS NAME," he shouted. She jumped. He started pacing again, this time muttering to himself. Kim looked on, trying to figure out what he was thinking and how she was going to get out of there. 'Tommy, I wish you could help me right now,' she thought. She watched Michael as he paced and started twisting her wrists, trying to loosen up the ropes. 'I have to keep him distracted, but how do I do that? Oh man, what am I to do?' she thought, 'Here goes nothing.' "Michael, you said you fell in love with me," she asked, "Why? Out of all the girls, why did you choose me?"
He smiled as he considered the question, "Because, you're very sexy, and you smile a lot, and you care about others."
She shivered even more when she heard, but she had to keep him talking. She tested her wrists and found that they were becoming loose. So she started speaking again, "Come on Michael, I mean there had to be other girls that were like that."
"I didn't want other girls," he said harshly, "I wanted you."
"But…" SMACK! Whatever she was going to say was cut off by the hit. She felt her head snap back from the blow.
"Now see what you made me do?" he said, "I didn't want to hit you."
"If you don't want to hurt me then just let me go," she said. She was scared. The last time she was this scared was when Zedd had stolen her power coin. She didn't know what Michael was capable of, but she knew that she needed to get out of there. She fought putties, and tengas, but she had never encountered something like this, and it scared her. She continued working on the ropes until she felt them give way. Without drawing attention to herself or her hands, she looked around to try and figure out where she was and how she was going to get out of there. She didn't recognize the place so she asked, "Michael, can you tell me something? Where are we? I mean, if you wanted me for yourself…"
"You're right," he said," There's no way I would take you where people could interrupt us. This building hasn't been used in a long time. It's the old gym. No one is going to know where we are. We have all the time in the world. When I'm done with you, you're going to forget about all about Tommy Oliver." 'Oh God, he really means it. I didn't know he was so sick. I have to get out of here; but how? ' She looked around to see if she could find something and spotted a board not too far from her feet. 'That should work,' she thought. She waited until his back was turned towards her and then made her move. With him distracted, she slowly got up out of the chair and grabbed the board. She slowly and quietly made her to him. When she was behind him, she raised the board. Michael was turning back, "Well, Kimberly are you—
SMACK! Kim hit him across the face with the board. She dropped it, and then ran to where she thought the door was. She was running when she heard him get up. 'Oh no, I didn't hit him hard enough. I've got to get out of here.'
"KIMBERLY," he yelled out, 'YOU REALLY SHOULDN'T HAVE DONE THAT. WHEN I FIND YOU, YOU'RE GOING TO REGRET IT." Kim ducked around a board as she continued trying to find her way out. She looked back and saw Michael getting up and coming after her, "No." she spotted the door and made her way towards it. She was a few yards away when she felt him grab her from behind, "NO, LET ME GO YOU FREAK!"
"Now Kimmie is that anyway to talk to your lover?" he chuckled.
'What? Is this guy for real?' "My lover?" she asked, kicking her feet out, "You were never my lover and you never will be."
"Well, I guess I'll just have to change that," he sneered. He threw her to the ground and fell on top of her. She started kicking and punching anywhere she could get. He ripped at her clothes and tried to kiss her. She turned her head and the last minute and got a slap to the face for it, "You little bitch, denying me what's mine?"
"Please Michael," she cried, "Don't do this. Please, just let me go."
"Can't do that," he said, "You're mine now and I plan on taking what I want." With that he started ripping at her clothes again. When she tried to fight him, he punched her in her stomach, knocking the breath out of her. He told her to be quiet, not to talk or he would kill her. He placed one hand over her mouth, and ripped at her skirt and unbuttoned his jeans. Kimberly tried to fight him off but he was too strong for her. She fought with all her might, but it was no use. She couldn't do nothing but scream silently for help as he raped her repeatedly. She got one of hands loose, and punched him in the face. He cried out in pain, and moved off her body. She cried as she staggered to feet and tried to run again. She didn't get very far however, before he grabbed her again and threw her back to the floor. He started kicking and punching her all over her body. When he was done, she laid there hurt and bleeding. She could barely move as the pain was too much. The last thing she heard him say was, "Talk and I'll come back and do it again, but this time, I'll kill you too." With that he left, and she succumbed to the darkness.
She woke up fifteen minutes later, dazed, bleeding and disoriented. Tears running down her face as she thought about what happened. She dragged herself up, and limped towards the door. When she got there, she opened it and after making sure no one was there, she crept towards her dorm. She got herself up the stairs and into her room. She dropped her keys, and headed straight for the shower. She stripped all her clothes off, and dropped them on the bathroom floor. She stepped into the stall, and sat down on the floor with the water beating down on her. As she sat there, she started sobbing; harsh, heart-wrenching sobs that seemed to come from the pit of her soul. After the shower, she got into bed and tried to sleep. Her sleep was fit full as she tossed and turned all night. The next morning she woke up and didn't even try to move. She just laid there in bed. She needed someone to talk to but every time she picked up the phone, she got scared and hung up. She kept to herself for the next two days, never saying anything to anybody. About two days later (on Wednesday), she sat down and sent out an email to her dad. She told him what had happened. Later that night, she was on her couch crying as she replayed the messages that her parents' left her on the machine;
"Well, it seems like you finally became just like that whore of a mother of yours. I always knew you two were alike, now I know. You have a boyfriend and you go and spread your legs like the slut that you are. I think you were asking for it; always parading around in those shorts. You're kidding yourself if you think that that boy Tommy is going to want anything to do with you now," her dad said while he laughed.
"Kimberly, darling, I got the message from your father," her mother's voice said, "Please tell me it's not true. Tell me that didn't happen. Pick up the phone sweetie, please. I don't want to believe that that happened to my daughter. Not you, tell me it's not true. I can't believe it, I can't accept it, I'm sorry, I just can't. Goodbye Kimberly."
She couldn't believe her dad could be so cruel, or her mom could just let go like that. And then what Michael had said yesterday about her being used and damaged goods and that Tommy wouldn't want her again. It hurt, and she was starting to believe it. They were right, why would Tommy want to be with her after all that? 'It's my entire fault, I let myself get raped. The others would be so ashamed of me. A former power ranger and I couldn't stop him from raping me. I can't take them saying that. I can't handle hearing Tommy say he doesn't want me anymore.' She went to bed, and her dreams were filled of the rape, of her parents' message, of Michael, and the worst of it all; Tommy saying he didn't want her anymore. She woke from her nightmare, tears streaming down her face. 'I can't take it. I have to let go.' Her choice made, she grabbed the stuffed tiger that Tommy got for her and tried to go back to sleep; knowing that in next few days, everything would change again.