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“Okay Miss.” Click goes the tape recorder. “Now tell me everything that happened.”
The look in her eyes told the whole story. There was no need to ask. It was no use asking anyway. Her mouth was unable to move, let alone ready to let go of the experience that she had just under went.
“Miss could you please tell me what happened tonight?” The man continues to ask her the same question over and over as she sits in silence. The woman in the navy blue uniform paced behind the 2-way mirror as the girl stares into it seeing only her reflection. Her thoughts begin to race faster as the pictures fly past her eyes. The footsteps behind the mirror get louder and louder, matching the pounding of her heart. The mirror becomes almost translucent. The woman begins to pace faster and she becomes frantic. She begins to pull at her hair, softly at first and then with more force, almost painfully.
“Could someone please go tell my mom to calm down? She’s giving me a headache.” The young girl said as she continues to stare at the mirror.
“How did you know your mom was in there?” the man says acting as if he could finally act like a police officer.
The girl looked at him and rolled her eyes. “Wow. I wonder who hired you.” She said as she looked back toward the mirror.
“Okay. I’m done with the little brat.” He said as he stomped out. The girl breathed a sigh of relief and set back in her chair. As soon as she shut her eyes and began to relax, a new officer came in, but this time it was someone she was a little bit more comfortable talking to; her mom’s partner, Officer Ed Rainsford.
“Ed!! Thank God it’s you. I’m ready to get out of this place.” She said as she stood up from her seat.
“Sit.” Ed said in a stern voice as he pointed to her seat. “I know you don’t want to, but we have to finish this. The sooner we do, the sooner you can leave.”
She sighed as she sat back down on the cold, gray, metal chair and scooted up to the matching table. Ed sat in the chair at the edge and pulled out a pad of paper and a manila folder. He opened up the folder and shuffled through the papers.
“I love what you’ve done with the place Ed. It’s really contemporary.” She said as he was ruffling through the papers. He looked up and smiled his half smile which immediately went back to a stern look. “My bad.” She said putting up her hands.
“It’s fine. I just want to get this over with; same as you and your mom.”
“Did you get her to stop pacing?” she asked annoyed.
“Yeah, but we practically had to tie her to the darn chair. Woman’s got nerves like Jell-o.”
She giggled and then looked at Ed. “Why can’t my mom just do this interrogation thing? She’s a cop too.”
“Yeah I know, but you’re her kid which automatically makes it against our rules.”
“That’s dumb.” She said as she crossed her arms. “Okay. Can we come on with this?”
“Yeah Yeah. Okay, uh, state your name please.” Ed said as he turned on the recorder.
“State your age and your date of birth.”
“I’m 15 and my birthday is January 1st 1994.”
“Now Ms. Cooper, could you please explain to me what happened tonight?” Ed said looking at one of the police reports that she had filled out.
“There’s really not that much to tell. My mom was here interrogating someone for another case and I was home alone watching TV.”
“Okay, well you’re not here because you decided to watch TV. What happened next?” Ed said cracking a joke to lighten the mood.
“Well, I was upstairs and I heard a noise downstairs so I got up and walked downstairs because I thought it might have been my mom, but when I got down there I didn’t see anyone, so I yelled hello.”
“Okay, then what?”
“I walked around and didn’t see anyone, so I went back upstairs and when I walked into my room, there he was.”
“And whose he?” Ed said scrunching his eyebrows.
“I don’t know. A criminal I’m guessing. I don’t know any other reason he would be in my house.” She said sitting back in her chair and crossing her arms.
“Okay, so what did you do?”
“I screamed and then I ran downstairs and locked myself in the bathroom. I pulled out my cell phone and I called mom. I told her what was going on and then she sent like the whole team and half of the SWAT. ”
“And that was it? He didn’t touch you or try to hurt you?”
“Nope. That’s it.” She said as she looked down at her classic black and white Converse.
“Sam, that’s not all. You’re not telling me something. Spill, what happened?”
“Nothing Ed, that’s it. That’s all that happened.”
“Sam, don’t make me do this. You have to tell me everything. I want to catch this guy. It’s okay. Just tell me.”
“ED!! Nothing happened. It’s okay. Drop it.” Samantha yelled.
“Samantha. Tell me now. I don’t believe your c***. I know you better than anyone else. I know when you’re lying.”
“I don’t want to talk about it.” Samantha said looking down at her shoes again.
“You don’t really have much of a choice Sam. You need to tell me.” Ed said setting his hand on hers.
“It isn’t any of your business Ed. Leave me alone.” She said as she snatched her hand out from underneath his.
“Sam.” Ed whispered to her. “Look at me.”
Samantha stared at her shoes for a bit longer and gradually lifted her face to look at his. Her eyes met his and tears began to swell within her eyes.
“Sam, tell me what happened.” He whispered to her once more.
She began to sob quietly and hung her head.
“Sam. Did he hurt you?” Ed asked quietly.
She shook her head and continued to cry softly. Her head seemed to sink lower and lower.
“Sam.” Ed said as her picked her face up to look at him and then took his hand back when her face met his. “Did he rape you?”
She began to sob uncontrollably, yet still very softly and she nodded her head, as if to say yes, in shame.
Ed sat back in his chair and then shot straight up and picked Samantha up out of her chair and cradled her in his arms, as if she were a baby. She continued to cry and scream into his blue and brown checkered flannel. Through the wall, Ed could hear the muffled weeping of his partner as he held her daughter in his arms. What was to be made of this unbelievable situation? Ed slowly began to sink to his knees as he held Samantha and he too, began to weep because of the pain that his partner and her daughter would have to hold inside of them for the rest of their lives. The secret that they will have to keep and the lies they will have to tell to cover it all up to make it seem like it never happened, will damage them emotionally forever.