Chapter 1 - Impressions
Thoko couldn't stand it any more. Something had to change. She was never a weak person. Why had she let the situation get this far?
She straightened her spine subconsciously as she decided to change things. She looked around the bathroom as if to get her bearings. She looked at the shower stall and how the grime was beginning to build at the corners of the glass doors and wall.
She looked at the mirror. At first her eyes only focused on the edges of the mirror and how the glass reflected itself along the edge. Then she looked at the rest of the bathroom through the mirror; the toilet seat left perpendicular in a haughty salute of indifference, the broken bits of glass on the floor under the medicine cabinet next to the door.
Through the glass the blood looked like a design on the cracked mirror. With a small amount of alarm she noted that the broken shards on the floor were represented by their absence on the actual mirrors by green strips of paint. She hadn't thought he had slammed her against it with such force.
She raised her hand to the back of her head. It throbbed with an intensity that reminded her of the look of hatred on his face. So cold, distant and unfeeling he had been as his hand gripped her throat and forced her head against the glass with such force that he had choked her in the process.
She took a deep breath and looked herself in the mirror. He hadn't left her face bare of bruises this time. He had broken the skin on her right cheek, her lower lip and her skin was turning a purple-black.
He did a pretty good job of trying to kill her she
thought to herself. She looked at her reflection hard, with no sympathy. "This will never happen again," she told herself firmly.
She nodded at her reflection. Wincing as her hips protested to the movement she limped to the door. She wanted to rest against the door frame but she was afraid to find out what else he may have hurt.
Her left hand was at an odd angle from her left wrist. Oddly it didn't really hurt much. It was like a really bad sprain. She touched the skin gingerly on the top of her wrist and it felt like she had lit the whole hand on fire.
She crossed the hall and went to the phone that sat on top of the little cupboard next to the bed. She called security and told them that she had been harmed and was calling the police. She then called the police and stated she wanted to file a complaint, a grevious harm had been done in her home.
When she finally made it down the stairs and into the foyer a security officer arrived. After taking one looking at her he asked if she could walk. She nodded. The man in his late thirties cleared his throat. He looked undecided for a minute before looking her straight in the eye.
"Ma'am, I am required to take you to the Medical Center for review. I can ask them to send an ambulance or drive you down. It is up to you."
He had a pleasant voice with a barely distinguishable drawl that could have been Georgian or any of the south eastern states east of Texas. She asked him if he'd be so kind as to escort her, her voice almost taking on the exact same lilt his had when he had spoken to her. He nodded and waited for her to walk out and lock her home.
As they reached the sedan she saw he had parked in reverse in the driveway. He hurried past her to open the door of the security car for her. He was gentle in assisting her into the car and ensuring she was belted in. Swiftly and with a slight furrow of his brow he sped out of her driveway and into the road towards the Medical Center.
Had she been paying him more attention she would have noticed the nervousness of the man. He had put on the lights but kept the siren off. He drove well over the speed limit.
The only time he paused in speaking to her was when he was on the radio. Had she been less injured she would have heard the name he referred to her as and known her cover was blown. She heard sounds and those sounds didn't register with any meaning.
The questions he asked her were simple and easy to answer. She was annoyed at first but with his encouragement kept answering until they reached the medical center. If she had been a little more alert she would have seen how badly he parked the car.