Tea Leaves and Green Jade

Family Crisis, Burden, and Bigger Problems

Match Twenty: Family Crisis, Burden, and Bigger Problems:


At seven o'clock, I received a knock on the front door.

"Yes?" I asked, rubbing the sleep out of my eyes. "I'm coming. I'm coming. What is it?"

"My lady!" Hark shouted on the other side of the door. "We need your help! Something bad has happened!" The words took their time reaching my brain. I opened the door with a puzzled look on my face.

"Hm?" I asked. Hark and Lili had panicked looks on their faces. Lili looked like she had been crying while her husband's hands shook. I glanced at each one of them back and forth.

"What's the problem?" I asked. Hark grabbed me by the shoulders.

"It's my daughter!" he cried. "She's been attacked!" My mood changed to dead serious.

"Okay, come inside," I said in a low voice. I led them into the house, closing the door behind Lili.

Szu's parents calmed down once I served them tea. "Here," I told them. "Drink this."

"Thank you," Lili murmured. She grabbed the cup and took a drink Hark took his time with his tea. I sat down at the table and waited to speak.

"Okay," I said. "Take your time. Explain to me what happened." Hark drew in a breath and gave the story to me the best that Szu could. All of the color drained from my face.

"Did she get a good look at the guy's face?" I asked.

"No!" Lili yanked.

"Have you called the police?" I asked.

"What do we tell them?" Hark asked. "They won't take her seriously." I shrugged my shoulders.

"We still have to try," I said. "I mean she was a virgin and just starting high school too." I couldn't think with the sad eyes my "aunt" and "uncle" were giving me. It kind of hurt too. I knew a personal problem along this line would pop up sometime, but I didn't expect to be blindsided by this. We didn't even have much to go on and I didn't know how to deal with a rape victim. I clutched the table as I pressed my lips together.

"Okay, I'll talk to her," I said. They were about to speak when the phone rang.

"Excuse me," I said, bowing my head. I got up and walked back to my room. "Hello?" I asked when I answered my cell phone on the dresser. A puzzled look came over my face.

"What?" I asked. "Slow down. Slow down. Now just start over and tell me what the problem is." It only took about five minutes on the phone before I got dressed and rushed straight out the door. How the hell did this happen?!

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