“Are you ready?” dad asks me as we get out of the car and I nod. Today was the day I was supposed to be in court. I got to speak for myself today.
“Mike,” I say looking at him and he smiles at me. I see Chris standing next to him and I smile back at him. Mom and Sophia were there with me, including Mrs. Smith, Amanda and David and Hailey and Violet were left with a baby sitter.
“Come on,” Mike says and we enter the court room and I already see Jesse and Jack, already in their suits and fake glasses sitting on the opposition side with their lawyers. I see Jared sitting behind our side and he smiles at me in his suit with his lawyer.
The judge arrived soon.
“Let’s call Mrs. Smith for the stand,” Samuel says and she walks up to the witness box and sits in it.
“Please state your full name,” Samuel says.
“Rosie Smith,” she says confidently.
“And how do you know Raven Rex?” he asks.
“She came searching for a job about 3 years ago, five months pregnant and I took her in. She worked too but I got close to her because I felt like her mother more than her employer,” she says.
“Did she tell you anything about her past?” he asks.
“Yes. She told me that her parents had kicked her out. But she never told me the actual reason until later about her kidnapping and how she was held as an hostage and I paid for her therapy sessions and medications because she was severely depressed, felt worthless and didn’t trust anyone,” she says.
“Do you think Raven has always told you the truth,” he asks and Rosie nods.
“Did she ever tell you about her relationship with Jared?” he asks.
“No she didn’t,” Rosie says. I mean I didn’t tell that to anyone, why would I say it to her?
“So she was clearly hiding something from you,” he asks and Mike stood up and objected it and the judge favored Mike. How could he say that?
“Was Raven ever talking to you about making more money so that she can survive?” he asks.
“Yes. I mean don’t we all?” she says.
“So that means that Raven is lying about her alleged sexual assault and is suing my clients for money,” he says and Rosie raises her eyebrows.
“No. That is now true. Why would a girl lie about her sexual assault?” she says and he goes back to his seat.
“So Mrs. Smith, how would you describe Raven?” Mike asks and Rosie smiles looking at me.
“Raven was the sweetest, kindest and the best person I have ever met. She was always so caring and helpful. She is such a sweet girl. She is like the daughter I never had,” she says and I smile at her.
“Is it true that she is the only person on your will?” he asks and Rosie nods.
“Why did you do that?” he asks.
“Because Raven was there when I needed her and as I said, she was like my daughter,” Mrs. Smith says smiling at me.
“So you believe Raven Rex, is that right?” he asks and she nods.
“100%,” she says and she was released from the witness box. They testified the Greys, my parents and even Chris and Sophia. Samuel was cruel to them about the questions that he started twisting the truth.
“Now we call Jesse Martin to the stand,” Mike says and Jesse sits in the box.
“How do you know Raven?” he asks.
“We went to the same high school,” Jesses replied.
“Did you ever have feelings for Raven?” he went straight to the point.
“No but it was the other way around,” he says and my eyes go wild. What?
“What do you mean by that Mr. Martin?” Mike asks and Jesses straightens his fake glasses that he put on for empathy.
“I mean that Raven was always coming on me and Jack, even in school. She tried talking to us when we clearly weren’t interested in her. Even at parties she tried getting close to her so we felt bad and Jack asked her to prom. During that night, she asked us to have sex with her and she begged to stay with us so that she could escape her boring house. She said that she was tired of her life and she liked ours so we took her in and she had constant sex with the both of us and when she got pregnant, she tried blackmailing us so we let her go and now she’s here,” he says and my heart dropped. What? I had tears in my eyes.
“So you are saying that she begged you to rape her?” Mike says and Samuel objected and judge favored him.
“That’s not rape if she wanted it,” he says and I couldn’t believe what he was saying.
“Then why would the gynecologist you took her to report about seeing bruises, burns, chaffing and cuts on her body?” Mike asks.
“That is because she went crazy when we did nothing to her and she liked the feeling of pain and she did it to herself,” he says.
“Did you ever stay in the same room as Raven and Jack when they had sex?” he asks and Jesse shakes his head.
“No. When I was with Raven, Jack walked out and I did the same,” he says, cold faced, showing no emotion on his face.
“Did Raven ever cry asking you to stop?” Mike asks.
“No. No she didn’t,” he said so simply and coolly but I remember crying every day, asking them to stop. I even promised them that I wouldn’t say anything to anyone if they let me go but they didn’t.
“Why didn’t you ever tell anyone about where Raven was?” Mike asks.
“Because-,” he stopped, thinking about a reason to come up with.
“Because you had kidnapped her and held her as a hostage while you repeatedly raped her. Telling someone about it would put you in prison, right?” Mike asks raising his voice and Jesse was shaking out of fear.
“You are accusing me of something I didn’t do,” Jesse complains with his voice shaking.
“Oh, you know you did it. We just have to prove it. You brutally raped Raven over and over again, even after she begged you to let her go. You even teamed up with Jack and physically assaulted that young woman for two years, never showing mercy and you have the audacity to lie and change your story?” he says raising his voice and no one dared to even speak.
“Your honor, he is accusing my client,” Samuel says standing up.
“No more further questions your honor,” Mike says sitting back down calmly but everyone could see that Jesse was terrified. The court session was cut short since the time for our hearing for the day was over.
“How can he say that?” I say looking at Mike and tears just fall down my cheeks so fast. I couldn’t believe it.
“Raven, we will win. Trust me,” Mike says and I nod. As we walk out of the court room, I see bunch of activists holding up signs which read ‘Justice for Raven’ and ‘Go to hell Jesse and Jack’. There were so many people chanting it that I was shocked.
“I can’t believe this,” I say and the press comes up to me for my word.
“What happened in there Ms. Rex?” one asks and all the microphones pointed at me. I couldn’t speak. I was too shocked to speak so I just walked out as Mike spoke to the reporters and sat in the back seat of my dad’s car as mom sat in Sophia’s.
I was shaking as dad drove me home. He didn’t see me at the back but I was shaking with tears streaming down my face. I couldn’t believe what story Jesse had made up. Why did he make it up when he knew what he did to me.
“Raven?” dad says as he opens my door but I couldn’t move. I felt like I couldn’t breathe. Something was suffocating me. My heart was pounding, my whole body was sweating, trembling and shaking. There was tightness in your throat, I started getting chills. I felt like I was going to be sick.
My stomach started hurting along with my chest. I started getting headaches and dizziness all at the same time. My whole body felt numbness but I had a tingling sensation at the same time.
I could hear dad screaming for Sophia and mom but he felt so far away. I felt like I was dreaming. This wasn’t real. Soon I closed my eyes and everything went blank. It was darkness at once.
“Ray? How are you feeling?” Sophia asks as I sit up and see that I was in my room. It had gone dark outside but I remember it being day before I woke up.
“What happened to me?” I ask and she hands me a pill and some water.
“We were coming back from court and you had a panic attack,” she says and I sip on my water after taking my medicine.
“I was so scared. You started trembling and shaking. You weren’t responding and you suddenly fainted. Dad and I brought you to your room and you have been resting ever since,” she says and I nod. My throat felt very dry.
“Hailey?” I ask and she smiles.
“She’s downstairs with mom,” Sophia says.
“Can I hold her? I want to sleep with her tonight,” I say and Sophia nods going downstairs to get Hailey and soon she entered with my daughter and Hailey started smiling and calling out to me as soon as she saw me.
“My baby, I’m here,” I say as she hugs me really tight and I hug her back. I missed her so much and after my panic attack, I thought I would never see her again.
“Mommy, I love you, Mommy” she says and a tear falls down my cheek as she holds my hand and looks into my eyes. I noticed how similar Hailey’s and my eyes were. It was the same exact color. Even Sophia and I didn’t have the same colored eyes.
“Will you sleep with me tonight baby?” I ask and Hailey nods so I cover her with my blanket and rock her to sleep on my chest.
“Thank you so much Soph,” I say and she smiles while walking out of my room.
“Good night Ray,” she says turning off the lights.
“Good night Sophia,” I say as she closes the door and rub Hailey’s back before I drift off to sleep.