Bewilderment, shock, betrayal, anger, hate all coursed through Laura. She was unsure of what to do. Her boyfriend still in pain tried hard to get himself off the floor, I had hit him really hard, foot and arm right in his groin and face that a part of him must have thought of getting me back.
Rape? Woody? How? The three words he heard Laura say. He asked himself also when. He came here to meet Laura’s best friend but this crazy person?
He remembered vaguely how his friends cheered him on, it was his turn to prove himself. The things peer pressure does to people! And it all came back to him.
Another strike across his face brought him to the present, all this happened in what felt like seconds that he suddenly realised Laura was crying hard and asking him questions. You? Rape? I trusted you with my life she was saying and you did this to my best friend? He tried to hold her but the look of disgust she gave him made him realise how bad a move that was. Where had Sheila gone he finally asked Laura? And she started to run out the door to find her friend but he stopped her midway. “I’ll like to come with you”. At that moment, she didn’t think of anything but finding her friend and was grateful somewhere in her heart not to venture out alone into the dark.
They had no idea where to look, Laura was crying and could hardly see through her blurry teared eyes. She was confused, where does her allegiance lie she asked herself. They walked through alleys, looking everywhere on the road and there was no sign of Sheila. On the way back home after an hour of searching, Laura was trying not to panic when they spotted Sheila at the door. She ran to hug her friend. They were both crying and I apologised to Laura for turning her wonderful boyfriend into a monster in a matter of minutes. As if being controlled, we both turned to look at him. He had his shoulders hanging down and Laura’s words were like darts…"start talking"!
"It was two years ago, a group of friends of mine and I went to Ondham on holiday but that was before you and I met. We had all set out to have crazy fun and be naughty at the same time. We did some stupid things that I regret to this day. I never thought my past would haunt me, not like this. That night we had a few drinks and were on our way to a club, we saw this hot girl walking by and taunted. She walked on so confidently without turning back that one of us said we had to teach her a lesson. Like the drunk bunch of idiots we were, we cheered him on but nobody saw what was coming. They went for her and kept taunting her. At that point, I asked them to let her go but instead they all turned on me and said I was always the one to opt out of everything but not tonight. They all dared me to have a go and she saw me, she looked me in the face, she saw how I loathed the idea of doing that, I battled so hard with my conscience but decided to be stupid for once in my life. I am sorry we did that to you Sheila, I am sorry I agreed. I have had some days of torture and just when I was beginning to move on, I meet you and you happen to be Laura’s best friend whom I had heard so much about."
Both crying, Laura shouted “go away and I never want to see you again”. He knew not to protest or say anything at that time and complied. We went inside and hugged ourselves hard, crying and comforting each other. "Why didn’t you tell me Sheila? Why? I wish I had sent his picture to you when you asked. We decided we’ll just wait and meet both boyfriends when we visit but this has turned out to be a nightmare, I am so sorry Sheila". I on the other hand was inconsolable, all the feelings I worked so hard to suppress came back and the taps in my eyes were suddenly flowing.
And then I hear the most irritating words ever from my best friend “I love him, I love him so much that even now a part of me wants to look past what happened to you Sheila but a part of me is completely betrayed. Is a man who cannot resist peer pressure, one who accepted to rape an innocent woman worth being my boyfriend?”.