Self Pity – Version 2

As I sat in the unblemished hospital bed, surrounded by the people I loved, all I could think of was how ugly my new baby daughter was. Any other woman would have cooed over her for hours… well, that was exactly what my mother was doing now. I grimaced in disgust as the thing in my arms scrunched up its tiny face, and then relaxed again. The nurse saw my look of revulsion and began to move towards me, but I held up my hand, signalling for her to stay put. I had to do this, I had to confront my past, and I had to succeed.

The name I had given my newborn baby was Bryony– Bryony Pity Redfield. I had seen the name Pity in one of the many baby books that Mum had shoved under my nose, and I had decided that it was the perfect second name for my daughter. Dad had argued with me at first, saying it was a cruel name to give her, but he settled down once I had decided on Bryony as her first name. Dad's mum had been called Bryony, and she'd died somewhere around the middle of my pregnancy. I looked down at Bryony Pity, and the choice of name was even more successful, as the only thing I felt for her was pity. Pity for the way she'd been made, pity for having that monster as a father…

I probably should have had an abortion as soon as I'd found out I was pregnant. I knew he was the father… well; it couldn't exactly have been anyone else. I was fourteen years old, still a schoolgirl; it wasn't as though I was even interested in guys at the moment. I had decided to keep the baby because I didn't have the heart to get rid of it, to murder it. Hurting someone innocent would have made me as bad as him… worse even. And I couldn't give her up for adoption that would make her lose her father and her mother.

"Oh Kizzy, she's so beautiful…" My mum said, beaming with joy.

I didn't answer her. Beautiful was not the word to describe Bryony Pity, especially not with those icy blue eyes… they were from her father, and every time they turned to look at me, I shivered. They kept staring, accusing me of bringing an unwanted child into this cruel world where innocence gets taken so easily…

Thoughts of my future were whirling around my head. I'd already had to drop out of school to save myself the embarrassment of telling my friends what had happened to me. I had no job, no money… Mum and Dad had offered to pay our way until I was able to find a job, but I knew that I would have to buy my own place as soon as possible. I'd hate to burden my parents with my past.

Really, all I needed was my knight in shining armour to come and take me away to a place where I wouldn't have to worry about what people were saying behind my back. Fat chance of that… the one guy who had been interested in me had been Damian– Bryony's father. And interested was an understatement. According to him, and the Judge who had given him the prison sentence, Damian Winter had been stalking me for around six months before it had happened. Six months, and I hadn't noticed him watching me, watching and waiting…

Well, he'd waited six months before he decided to approach me. But he wasn't the kind of guy to bother with flowers and chocolates, or even to both asking me out. He'd chosen a day when he'd known my parents would be out, that I would be alone in the house. But he hadn't counted on my 'sixth sense' – as the police had called it when they had interviewed me. I had seen him walking up the path to my house, and something had clicked inside me. Instead of answering his knocks, I had hidden behind the sofa in the hope that he would just go away. But he had waited too long to just give up, so he tried another tactic: speaking to me through the letterbox.

"Excuse me? I have reason to believe there is a gas leak somewhere inside your house."

At his words, my breath caught in my throat and I had realised that if I was being stupid by not answering the door, my family go to sleep one night and not wake up. And it would be my fault. With these thoughts, I had dragged myself up from my hiding place and moved towards the door. The man heard me coming and let the letterbox door drop with a loud smack, so that I could open the door. I had a hard time getting the key to turn in the lock; my hands were shaking that much. As much as I tried to ignore my feeling of dread, it sat in the bottom of my stomach and refused to go away, however, I finally succeeded in opening the front door, and found a young man stood outside. He was older than me, probably in his early twenties, with short black hair, and striking blue eyes. His skin was quite tanned, and he wore blue overalls which didn't suit him, I remember thinking that he looked as though he belonged in a movie rather than working for a local gas company. I felt my heart flutter, but I wasn't sure whether it was from admiration of this handsome guy, or from sheer panic.

"Can I help you?" I asked, my voice betraying my nerves. I saw something flicker behind his eyes, but wasn't sure what it was. Later, the lawyers would tell me that it was triumph. He'd gained entry into my house and from then on, it would be easy for him to get what he wanted.

"Local gas man," he answered, flashing a white card so fast I couldn't read what it said. "I just need to do a check on your meter to make sure you're not losing gas."

"The meter's in the kitchen, under the sink," I said, moving aside to let him in. However, as I closed the front door and tried to go back into the living room, he grabbed my arm, making me turn to face him. At this point, my body began to shake as I realised what I'd known all along… this man wasn't here to check the meter.

"Kizzy Dallas…" he hissed in a way that made me shudder in fright. "You have no idea how long I've been waiting for this day…"

I looked at him in total disbelief, wondering if I'd imagined him speaking. But the tightening grip on my arm told me that I hadn't imagined anything.

"Pardon?" I heard myself say.

"You heard. I've been waiting for you, Kizzy… and now that I have you, you're going to be mine."

I tried to take a step backwards, but he still held tightly onto my arm. The pain told me I wasn't having a nightmare and that I wasn't going to wake up…

"Get out of my house… now! I'll start screaming! I… I will!"

Damian just laughed and began to drag me upstairs, talking as he went.

"I bet you never realised you had an admirer, did you? I was so discreet… so subtle, but I've been watching you for a very long time…"

I wasn't all that interested in what he was saying. I was too busy trying to twist myself out of his grip… it wasn't working though. He was too strong, no matter how desperate I was.

"Let me go…" I finally said, both my voice and my eyes pleading. "Please…" But Richard didn't hesitate once and continued to drag me upstairs, reaching the top and turning left towards my bedroom. I suddenly felt severe disgust rising in my stomach towards this man who knew which room up here was my bedroom. He was right about one thing – I'd never seen this man in my entire life, how could I have known he was watching me? All I knew was that I couldn't allow him to take me into the room we now stood in front of. In an attempt to stop him, I threw myself to the floor and began to pull myself backwards, away from him. Damian flung me an angry look but my attempts were no use and he just pulled me into my bedroom in one swift motion, causing a shooting pain to run up my arm.

"Kizzy…" He said in a low voice, smirking down at me. "Get ready for the best time of your life…"

I was on my bedroom floor at this point, tears running down my cheeks and sobs racking my body. Damian didn't care and continued on with his plans…

As I told my story to the court, I'd broken down in tears at this point, unable to go on. But the people around me knew what had happened in my bedroom and didn't need reminding of it. My mother had started screaming towards Damian; calling him a monster and a perverted demon… no-one stopped her.

And all I could think of, as I sat there, sobbing, with no-one to comfort me, was that the whole thing had been my fault and the whole thing had been my fault, and that pregnancy was the punishment that had been delivered to me…