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Erika was sixteen years old. She lived with her sister in the bottoms. Erika was pregnant by her boyfriend Darrel. Erika did not like the Bottoms. She wanted her and her sister to move. She thought it is a bad environment for the baby and she wanted to be somewhere where they didn’t have drive by’s everyday and where they didn’t have drug addicts on every corner. Erika’s life had taken a turn for the better She used to take pills and get high everyday after her mom died, and even more after the incident that no one other than Erika and Devon Jackson knew.
Erika had flashbacks about this incident every night and whenever something reminds her of that day. Her flashbacks made her so upset and scared that she cried every time she had one. One night her sister came home around two or three in the morning.
Erika asked, “Where have you been all night?”
Brittney replied, “None of your business Erika, I’m grown I can do what I want.”
Erika knew that it was not somewhere she should have been. She didn’t want to upset her sister so she left it alone. Ten minutes later she hears her sister in the bathroom crying. She went in to make sure her sister was okay.
Erika then asked, “Are you okay sis?”
“I’m fine go away,” Brittney yelled.
Erika calmly said, “I’m not going away, I know something is wrong!”
“No I’m fine,” Brittney replied.
Erika asked, “Where exactly where you?”
“I was at Devon’s,” Brittney nervously said.
At that moment Erika knew exactly what Brittney had been doing. As soon as Brittney said that Erika had another flashback. This one was worse than the last one. She saw herself back in Devon’s room, after the party he had thrown a year ago. She had taken a couple pills and she was high. Devon took advantage of that and took her in his room. The next thing she knew he was pushing her on the bed and trying to unbutton her jeans. She pushed him off her and he smacked her and tied her to his bed. She tried to fight the whole time but he was much stronger than her and she was already high. She tried to scream and he hit her this time and as he did her head hit the back board and she went unconscious for about ten minutes. When she became conscious again he was still on top of her. She kept trying to fight him but he would hit her every time she did. Afterwards she got dressed and walked out the door, he grabbed her and told her if she ever told anyone the truth he would kill her and everyone she told. She ran to her sister and that’s when the flashback stopped.
Erika asked, “Why would you do this to yourself?”
“You have no clue how hard my life is right now! I have to take care of me, you, and your baby. And we barely have enough money for me and you. I just needed to do something to get away from all the stress.” Brittney argued.
Erika strongly said, “I have been through that already and trust me drugs are not the answer to your problems, they just make everything worse and they make you even more depressed than you already are.”
Brittney unsure of what she was saying said “I know but I feel like I need it.”
Erika walked out and went to meet up with Darrel. She got to the corner store where she was meeting Darrel. As she was waiting she began to think about everything that had just happened. She began to wonder if she should go back and talk to her sister. Darrel walked around the corner and touched her stomach.
Darrel happily asked, “How are my babies today?”
“Okay, but a little stressed,” Erika replied.
Darrel strongly reminded her “That’s not good for the baby!”
Erika said with a nervous look on her face “Yeah, I know but my sister is doing drugs now.
Darrel, comforting her, said, “I’m sorry, did you talk to her?”
“A little but then I walked out,” Erika said.
Darrel replied, “Okay.”
Erika zoned out and had a small clip of a flash back where she was trying to fight off Devon.
Darrel, with a worried look on his face asked, “Are you okay?”
Erika, snapping out of it said, “Yeah, I’m fine.”
Darrel, reassuring her said, “Okay, but if you need to talk about anything I’m here for you.”
“Yeah I know thanks for being there for me,” Erika said.
Erika and Darrel went to Darrel’s house. Darrel was making the bed for Erika so that she was comfortable.
“Are you comfortable?” Darrel politely asked
Erika said with relief, “Yes, thank you.”
“You’re welcome,” Darrel replied with accomplishment.
Erika said “You always make me feel safe when I’m with you.”
“Well, that’s kind of my job isn’t it?” Darrel said with confusion.
Erika replied “No, it’s not your job but its something you should do, and you do a good job of it.”
Darrel with a sense of accomplishment again replied “Well that’s good.”
Erika thought for a while. She felt safe with Darrel but was she really safe? Was she safe enough to tell Darrel her secrete? They fell asleep after that. The next morning Erika had a bad feeling. Erika told Darrel “I need to go check on my sister to make sure that she is okay!” Darrel said “I understand,” and let her go.
Erika got home and was looking for her sister. She yelled her name twice and got no answer. Erika went back to her sister’s room and she saw her in bed with Devon. Erika carefully went in and woke her sister up. They walked in the living room to talk.
“Why is he here?” Erika asked with anger.
Brittney replied “because you left and I needed someone to be here for me.”
“But him of all people? You couldn’t have asked one of your friends like Angel to come over?” Erika asked.
Brittney asked with tension in her voice “What is so bad about him Erika? What do you have against him?
“He is a drug addict and he is going to get you involved in all of that,” Erika replied.
Brittney said “Erika I am 26 years old I am more than capable of making my own decisions.”
Erika walked off to her room. She thought to herself, great now my sister is dating the guy who raped me. Then she started having flashbacks again. She started crying and she couldn’t stop. When she finally did she called Darrel and she asked “can I come over?” and he said “Of course you can.” When she got there he had noticed she had been crying.
Darrel, worried, asked, “What’s wrong?”
Erika, crying again, said, “My sister is dating Devon now!”
Darrel, confused, asked, “What is so bad about that, I mean I know he is a drug addict and all but other than that I don’t see a problem.
“I wish I could tell you but I can’t,” Erika, crying even harder, said.
Darrel said, “You can tell me anything.”
“No, I can’t well not this anyway,” Erika replied.
Darrel said “No matter what it is you can tell me I’m not going to judge you.”
Erika broke down and started crying even harder. She told Darrel about getting raped by Devon. Darrel was mad and tried to go and fight Devon. Erika had to explain to him that he couldn’t do that because of what Devon said.
Later that night they went back to Erika’s. Erika and Darrel walked in the door and saw Brittney on the floor crying. Darrel picked her up and her face looked like she had just got jumped.
Erika asked her, “What happened?”
“Devon was here and he said he wanted to go in your room and I said no and he got mad. Then we were in the living room and he tried to take my pants off and I said no, not right now and he got even madder and hit me. I told him to get out and he hit me and smashed my face into the wall and then he walked out”. Brittany Replied, but before Erika could say anything Darrel was out the door. Erika called him and asked him what he was doing.
Darrel said, “I’m going to go find him, Erika after what he did to you and now your sister. I can’t let that go.
Erika, worried, replied, “But you can’t I told you what he said. He’ll kill all of us!”
Darrel, calmly said, “He’s not going to have the chance to.”
Before Erika could say anything else he hung up the phone. Erika didn’t know what else to do so she called the cops. Luckily the cops got to Devon’s before anything horrible broke out. When the cops walked in Darrel was standing in the living room yelling at Devon. Devon was in the kitchen yelling back at Darrel. The cops grabbed Devon and put him in handcuffs. The cops took Devon to the cop car and they questioned Darrel. Erika told them about her being raped and Brittney told them about him hitting her. Devon went to jail for rape and assault against a women. He was sentenced to twenty five years to life.
Six months later Erika had her baby. Darrel, Erika, the new baby Ashley, and Brittney all moved out of the Bottoms. Erika got what she wanted and they were now living in North Carolina. They have a beach house and Darrel loves his job. Erika hasn’t had a flashback since the day Devon got arrested. Brittney is now dating a man named James and she has been drug free for three months.