Fallen Heights 4
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Dead Again by Asa
It all felt like a dream.
I felt like I was staring down the wrong man. I felt like I was in the wrong place.
I must have been dreaming, I thought to myself.
He just stared at me, as the shock all over my face was impossible to hide. I couldn’t muster the words to speak. This was the Pastor I had just seen in church a few hours ago!
Here he was looking at me expecting me to perform sexual acts on him. I just sat there; speechless.
He smiled and didn’t say my name; all he did was pull his zipper down. I knew what it meant. I gathered myself and tried to imagine him as any other client.
With each moan, I felt something deep inside me die a painful death. I almost wished I could stab him with an ice pick.
This man was a disgrace to everything but who was I to judge him?
After all, I was part of the same worship team at the church and here I was. But this was a married man with a spiritual flock of children to lead towards holiness.
I began to see the world for what it was on a different level.
All the things I went through growing up with my mother were hard and I always assumed that it was just how things were supposed to go but this, this made me terrified of humanity.
This same man would stand in front of a congregation the same weekend and preach to the people. A liar. A total liar.
But I continued to suck. Nibbling and sucking harder than I normally would, I wanted him to just cum so I could get out of there.
I was sucking hard and he neared his climax. I was not going to allow any of his seed in my mouth. Somehow that just felt like a graduated level of stooping low.
I rolled his balls in my hand as he neared and then I pulled my lips off him as he ejaculated all over his pants. He seemed angry that I didn’t catch it all in my mouth. I pulled the door open and bolted out of the car. I didn’t run.
This time I was too shocked at what had happened to run.
I heard the door slam behind me and then his car drove past me into the night. I could not believe it.
I sat down at a table a Denny’s restaurant open 24hrs and just tried to replay all that I had seen in the last few days.
. . . . . .
I had ordered some food at the Denny’s but I couldn’t eat it.
I had stayed there till sunrise. When I got home, I snuck into my room and lay down on my bed.
I never felt so dirty in my life. I could not believe how much I hated myself.
Not because I followed through with it but because there was not a second while he got in the car where I considered stopping.
I kept replaying it back in my head. This was supposed to be the father of our church; the leader of the flock. I just couldn’t understand all that had happened and how I had allowed myself to be involved in that.
I could have gotten out of the car but I didn’t. I could have confronted him but I didn’t. More than anything I felt like I had fallen so far beyond morals.
Why was the pastor on the street at that time of the night and in that neighborhood?
Nothing was making any sense but I was old enough to know that I couldn’t say anything especially since I was the “hooker” girl in the town and he was the revered man of God in the town. I was trying to navigate all of the last 12 hours in my mind. I was trying to make some sense of everything.
I was so tired.
My mind was replaying everything. Somehow I kept going back to my phone call with Ms. Lecia the night before. Why didn’t she come to get me?
I suddenly felt like I couldn’t trust her. I knew what Ms. Lecia was capable of.
Over the years, I had seen it first hand. Girls suddenly being moved, losing their government services, out on the street. I knew that if I went up against her over this issue, I could end up on the losing side.
I was stepping out of the shower when Ms. Lecia knocked and let herself in before I got a chance to respond. She walked in as I stood there in my towel and water dripped down my face.
I was looking at her as she sat down on my bed and said,
“Jade darling, how are you?”
I felt her words tickle down my spine. I swallowed hard and said,
“I’m fine Ms. Lecia”
“How was last night?”
she asked as she scanned the room.
“It worked out”
she smiled and said,
“So you have something for me?”
“Yes ma’am. It’s in the bag”
I pointed to my bag sitting on the table. She got up and walked up to it. Picking it up, she unzipped it and began to fish inside for the money. I stood there frozen as my body air-dried.
She pulled out the bundle of money I had placed in there. I made no money the night before. The Pastor hadn’t paid anything and I was too nervous to ask.
I had placed some of my money there. My stash had taken a significant hit but at least she was getting her money.
She turned around and said,
“Aren’t you going to put your clothes on?”
I moved and headed for my closet. I had my back turned to her as she counted the money and then I heard her say,
“So, anything interesting happen after I spoke to you last night? Anything noteworthy?”
I knew exactly what she was talking about but I didn’t turn around as I tried to put on a flat affect. I slowly turned around and said,
I turned back around as I heard her inch closer towards me. A few seconds later, she was breathing down my neck behind me. I tried to steady myself and then she said,
“That’s good and let’s keep it that way. You know Jade, sometimes interesting things happen to people and they feel the need to share and then it can hurt them. We wouldn’t want anything to happen to you, right?”
I nodded. But I knew it was a direct threat.
I knew exactly what she meant. It was a “rock the boat and I’ll pull the rug out from under your feet” threat.
The Pastor had obviously spoken to her and it was clear to me that if our interaction ever came to light, I was going to be the fall person. Ms.Lecia was going to protect herself and the Pastor.
In those short sentences she uttered, it was clear to me that in everything she did, I was always collateral damage and sacrificing me was always possible to her.
She would do it in a heartbeat.
“You’re going to church tomorrow right?
I need you to give some money to the Pastor. Tell him it’s a donation to the church building fund”
I said okay.
She rubbed my back and walked out of the room. I knew in that moment that I had to get out and I had to get out fast!
I put my clothes on. Reached for the rest of the money in my stash.
A few clothes together and my computer in my backpack and then I waited.
About an hour later, I heard her leaving the house. I rushed out the door and headed down the stairs. I went by the dining table and there was an envelope addressed to the Pastor. I picked it up and rushed into my car.
My next stop was a coffee shop about 15 minutes away from the house. I needed to talk to someone. And I knew just the person.
It was about an hour later when I had finished writing one of the longest emails I had written in a while. It was addressed to my therapist. I had been banking on her confidentiality.
Most importantly, I was banking on forcing her to break her confidentiality. I had detailed all the events of the last two days to her and in there, the final few lines in my message forced her to break her professional silence. It read,
“…… I have always teetered between what was right and would keep a roof over my head but with the events of the last 24 hours and my conversation with Ms.Lecia this morning, I am fearful for my life and my safety. I don’t know what she is capable of at the moment but I am also not hoping to have to find out the hard way. I don’t feel safe in her home, so I am leaving.”
I closed my laptop. My hope was that with everything I had told my therapist over time, she would talk to the police who would put out a protective detail for me and force the social services department to protect me.
My drive to the hotel I would lodge in was short. About 30 minutes later, I was settling into my room. I had some candles on the shelf and I bought a ton of alcohol.
I needed to alter my state and I needed sleep. The first glass was Hennessey and Apple Juice with Gatorade. I felt the first kick.
And then I looked at the time, it was a little after 5pm. I wouldn’t wake up till the morning.
. . . . .
Life by Efya
My plan had backfired. It blew up way more than I had ever intended.
Overwhelm was on another level.
I had spent the entire day trying to comprehend the magnitude of what was happening.
I could not breathe.
Wherever I turned seemed to have my face on the screen.
My cry for help had set in motion a thorough examination of the system from Ms. Lecia to all the other foster homes in the area.
Everyone was being looked at, Ms. Lecia was being paraded on the television as she was arrested and the home was closed. The Pastor was also taken into custody while there were scenes of protests outside the church with people calling for it to be shut down.
One news station said that my case could potentially render many girls homeless as they began to explore their placement arrangements. Girls would be pulled from homes that they felt were not providing the most care.
I never intended for any of this. I truly just needed their support and a safe place to live. I was still trying to figure out how I got to this scary and lonely place.
My Facebook and twitter pages were flooded with hate. People called me names and compared me to the scum of the earth. I somehow felt like I was in a fish bowl and everyone was looking in on me.
I could feel the walls closing in on me.
There was no one to turn to.
Zoey had sent me this nasty text message that really got to me.
I tried to shake it off but it really got to me. I know she said it because she was hurt by the developments but her words really cut. I began to question all of me.
All my life, I had searched for my identity. For someone to love me completely and now, this life I had, however messed up was the closest thing I had to that.
And now it was being taken away from me.
In secret, my life had been difficult, people had turned me down and I had no one but the hope of a sister in another home, the hope that one day we would be reunited.
Life had dealt me a difficult hand after the other but I tried to remain strong but there was only so much more I could hold out for.
There was not a single place that wasn’t talking about the social services scandal that I had uncovered. Every thing was magnified.
They had my tweets online, some of my friends from school gave interviews about me. There were speculations about my person and everyone seemed to have an opinion.
No one was talking about the real me. The loving side of me or the resilient side of me, the fighter in me. Nothing of that sort was discussed.
I slowly watched any hope of me building a life in my community vanish. But there was something in me that continued to believe that it would pass. So I tried to stay strong.
I was staying in a hotel on the outskirts of town, somewhat away from all the media coverage around the house. I had returned from a walk where I had cried my eyes with no answers to all my problems.
I walked into the Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant to pick up some food. I was sitting on the couches at the front of the restaurant scrolling through my phone when a family walked in. The daughter looked at me while her family waited to be seated. She kept glancing over at me like she recognized me from somewhere and then right when they returned to call them to be seated, she looked at me in the face and pointed at the television as she said,
“I know you. You’re the girl on the T.V”
I turned around and true to it, there I was. In full high definition, my face graced the cover of the community’s resource for gossip and empty digest. I looked back at the girl with my face flushed with regret. She didn’t know exactly why I was on there; she couldn’t have, as she didn’t seem more than 7 years old.
But I knew and her mother knew as she shielded her away from me. I felt my heart crumble into tiny little pieces. This was not what I deserved.
A part of me died in that moment. The walk back to my hotel was the longest ever.
I knew I had given up. I just had nothing left to give.
I had lost my appetite for the chicken wings I bought and more importantly, I had lost my appetite for life.
For whatever reason, that interaction with the girl had gotten to me. It had cut deeper. I think in her innocent eyes, I felt myself as part of the evil in the world. Stories like mine would affect her. And then all I could think of was my younger sister, how could I ever face her again?
How could I ever try to tell her what was right from wrong?
I couldn’t take it anymore. My heart was racing. My head was pounding.
I could feel the cold hitting the back of my ears. My stomach was in knots.
My knees wobbled.
My palms became sweaty.
My gulps became harder. My breathing became shorter.
My eyes began to water. The tears began to flow.
I stopped right at the overpass. Looking down as cars disappeared, I pictured every hope I had of a normal future vanishing. Suddenly I was filled with rage, towards my mother and towards God. I knew what I was about to do was not right but why was he allowed to put me through all this?
It was often said that he only tested you with that which he felt you could handle but this was too much. It wasn’t fair. This wasn’t fair.
The hand I was dealt wasn’t fair.
The tears began to flood my eyes. I couldn’t breathe. I just wanted it all to be over. I placed the food down and climbed on the ledge.
My mind flashed back to 72 hours ago when this particular chain of events started and I reached for my phone. I typed out the message to my sister;
“No matter what, remember I love you. You are everything and so much more. I love you and I’m sorry”
I dropped the phone over the ledge and heard it smash on to the ground. And then I let go.
The lights went out shortly after.
To some it can seem somewhat unfair that Jade eventually paid with her life after everything she had been through. In a way, I wrote this story to give credit to those that life deals the hardesr hands but try each day to make the best out of it.
There are many people like Jade out there, backs against the wall and having to do whatever possible to just stay afloat. Be thankful for your journey but also take it as a lesson to appreciate that of others. There will be Ms Lecia’s trying to use you and people like the “Pastor”, publicly screaming for your success but secretly only another tool to pull you down.
This story highlights resilience, determination, pain, struggles, hopelessness and above all, it shows that no matter what it is you build up, it can all crumble quickly so try to live right.
Jade might have jumped but you dont have to. Reach out to someone who loves you and together, reach for greater heights.
Thank you for reading and commenting. You are highly appreciated.
Lookout for my new series next week. Name will be dropped on Wednesday.
© 2014 #WhatTheHeckMan
14 thoughts on “Fallen Heights 4”
I had tears in my eyes. The story was beautiful. Thank you Sanmi
wow i was not ready for that end at all. very emotional and a bit different from many of your endings. this was effortlessly executed.
Wow…. Im taken aback. Some have got it real bad but we have stay strong. The story is also a reminder to avail ourselves to others. We all need to help each other with our struggles. We all need to get through this life. Thanks for enlightening your audience with these lovely pieces.
Initially I felt Jade had a way out because I felt she had the pastor but unfortunately the only person I thought she could turn to, turned out to be her worst nightmare. It’s really sad that Jade couldn’t find a way out and had to resort to suicide. Like you said living right is important, there is always a way out even if it means facing the shame and embarrassment and starting from the beginning, there is always a way out. A really enjoyed reading this story because it’s realistic and enlightening. Thank you and the music 👌
Great work again dear.. This left me in tears.. It’s so hard when people go through a lot and have no one to turn to at the end, I cn relate to jade in some ways but I’m happy that I was able to find myself eventually.. Thank you Sanmi
I’m left in tears that she had to die after all she had in life… We can all relate to her in different ways but the good thing is that we have people who stand by us and support us.. Thank you so much for this, it’s not only entertaining but also a reminder of how hard life can get and how we have to stand strong and help eachother.. Great piece dear
wow, incredible story. I loved this.
Great piece Sanmi.
😮😫😥😥 JADE !! Nooooooo *wipes tear * … great story and lessons Sanmi
This was one of those times I had hoped for a happy ending. I was really wanting someone to come save her from the ledge.
There are so many versions of Jade in this world. Be kind. Don’t jump. Keep getting up everyday.
I honestly did not expect that ending. 😦..However, I appreciate the message. Even when you’re going through the roughest of times, choosing to take your life is not the answer. Like you said, turn to those around you who love and appreciate you. Beautiful message.. A little morbid, but beautiful nonetheless.
The end…I sure wasn’t ready. Quite thoughtful and different from most endings of your stories. Well written!!!
…….. I don’t….. I can’t….. Jade!
This life and its twist and turns!