The meeting between Larissa and Aniyah comes up. Time to see what is gonna occur between them…
It was 8:37 as Larissa arrived at the Legon Police Station. A grim expression was on her face as she stepped out of the car and locked it while walking towards the entrance.
In the spacious and well furnished station, she spotted her colleague seated nearby and waved to him as she walked in his direction.
“Good morning, Mrs. Dolphyne.”
“Good morning, Barnie,” Larissa responded as she met her colleague and shook hands with him before following him to sign her name on the visitor’s list.
As he led her to the room where Aniyah waited, she asked, “Umm, so is there a particular reason why she wants to see me? Has she given you any info on that?”
Barnie shook his head. “She simply insisted that you be here, and that once you are, she’ll give us the full details.”
“Hmmm,” was her simple response as the officer opened the door to them. She still was not very enthusiastic about this whole visit. She did not hold this suspect in the highest of regards, especially regarding how she had attempted to seduce Daniel a few months back, and whatever it was she had to say in her presence, she sure hoped it would be quick, so she’d get back to her work.
They walked in to the room where Aniyah sat, a forlorn look on her face. She had not been in the best of shape since finding herself in police custody. Barnie was working on securing bail for her, but with most of her family members out of town, it was harder than expected.
Barnie took his seat in front of Aniyah, while Larissa sat on the chair nearby.
Aniyah looked up and glanced at Larissa. Their eyes met.
A weakened and stunned gaze met a steely, hardened stare. If there was any message Larissa conveyed with her eyes, it was that she did not approve of Aniyah’s actions in the slightest.
She looked at her lawyer in surprise. “Mrs. Larissa Dolphyne?”
She shook her head, lowering her face. “He was right,” she whimpered to herself. “God, he was right. He was so f***ing right!”
The two lawyers were puzzled by this statement. By this time, tears had begun to fill the eyes of the lady before them. “What? Who?” Barnie asked. “Right about what?”
Head still down, she pointed at Larissa. “He was right. She’s more woman than I ever could or will be. Oh, God, he knew what he was talking about…”
The tears began to run down her cheeks. At this sight, the hard, tough stance Larissa had intended to put on was starting to dissuade even before she fully set it up. She had seen her fair share of criminals breaking down, and had no doubt that a lot of them were just putting up a pity party to provoke sympathy. Somehow, though, her instincts told her that this was no hoax Aniyah was putting up; those tears were real.
Besides, there was nothing she hated more than being used as a tool to deflate the self-esteem of another woman. Many men went weak at the sight of her inexplicable beauty, well-crafted body and queenly aura, and she had learned to live with that. But letting it get to her head and considering herself superior to all ladies was something Mr. and Mrs. Darteh taught her never to do, acknowledging that all women were beautiful in their own ways, and so it always ticked her off to discover some man somewhere utilizing her God given graces to demean another woman.
And it was clear that the words she repeated had really pierced the deepest parts of her soul.
“No, no, no, don’t say that,” Larissa gently protested.
Aniyah shook her head as she sniffed and wiped her eyes. “You don’t understand. As soon as I saw who you were, it just… made sense. Look at you, Mrs. Dolphyne. Beautiful is not enough to describe you. You’re a big-time lawyer. You have a hell of a handsome husband who wouldn’t cheat on you for anything. You probably have beautiful children too. Your life is amazing! As for me, I’m f***d up. My life is just one f***ing big mess. No wonder he said I’m worthless.”
“No, no, Aniyah. Don’t say that about yourself,” Barnie said.
Wiping her eyes, Aniyah looked at the two of them. For a moment, her lips twitched, as if she had something to say. She hesitated, then sighed and said, “Well, maybe if I tell you my story, you’ll get it. I never thought I’d have to tell it, but… what the hell…”
Barnie and Larissa looked at each other, then turned to her. It was evident there was a story to tell.
“It all started when I was seventeen. I lived with my parents in some nice estate. Normal childhood. Older brother who left for the United States quite early. So within the same estate, there was this uncle…”
Larissa shifted uncomfortably at the mention of that. She could already tell where this was going.
“He was my mother’s younger brother. We had a nice connection. I respected him as my uncle. I’d sometimes go over to do some things for him. One Sunday, my mother asked me to go get a bowl from him. I went to find him busy on his laptop. He slammed it down as soon as he saw me. I found it weird why he did that. And when he said he had to wash the bowl and got up to go to the kitchen, I could see he was hard down there. I went to take a peek at what he was doing before I came, and guess what it was?”
Barnie nodded, a solemn look on his face. “Porn.”
“Yep! My uncle was deep into porn. It creeped me out big time. The next day, when my mother was out and my dad was at work as always, he came around, saying he wanted me to make some food for him. He was acting all creepy and someway bi. Before I knew it, my uncle, my f***ing uncle, had his arms around me, saying he was deeply attracted to me. I told him this wasn’t right. He wouldn’t listen. He started to kiss me. Take my clothes off. Finger me downstairs. Suck my breasts…”
Larissa flinched. How these stories disgusted and infuriated her!
Aniyah shook her head, a small wistful smile on her face. “Yeah, disgusting. Hm. But this is where it gets messed up.”
“So I felt so traumatized by what he did. But afterwards, he sat with me, helped me put my clothes back on. Then he spoke to me. Told me that he’s sorry if I was taken aback by that, but he just couldn’t help himself, and that I was just too sexy to resist anymore. Then he told me he enjoyed it all, and asked if I did same.
“I couldn’t answer at the time; the shock was too much. But after he left, I found myself… thinking back on what he did… and… there was this voice convincing me that I… it was good. Real good. So I sent him a message telling him ‘Yes, I liked it’. And that’s when things went downhill.”
“I don’t know what entered me from then onwards. All I knew was that I loved it when Uncle Steve came over or I went over, and he did those things to me. Whether it was us making out or being pleasured by him, I enjoyed every flipping minute of it. My wardrobe started changing; sexy short skirts and blouses showing lots of cleavage. Anything to turn him on. He loved it. Triggered him every time. It was crazy. It went on for three months, and nobody knew what was going on. I knew it was sick, I knew it was unacceptable, I knew it was flat out wrong. But I didn’t care. I just loved it. All of it.
“Then came that one cold Tuesday morning. Parents were out as usual, and I wanted to surprise him. So I put some saucy top, and some tight hot pants, and I went to his place.
He wasn’t home. Small thing, I guess. But then, as I was leaving, I saw a piece of paper on the floor. I picked it up. Saw some writing at the back. And this is what it said.
I’m sorry. I can’t do this anymore. I’m gone. Don’t look for me.
Barnie and Larissa shook their heads in amazement. This was one crazy story.
“Uncle Steve just bailed out. Ran away. Just like that. I was crushed. Hurt. Furious. How could he pull me into this… this web of illegal bliss and just leave me and run off? We called his line till he eventually disconnected it. Till date, I’ve never heard from him.”
The police officer sitting by the door shook her head. Even she was pretty taken aback by all Aniyah was saying. As to whether she thought it was a lie or not was known to only her, but she was quite amazed at what she heard.
“So, with inflamed desires and no Uncle Steve to quench them, I was forced to go out there and get them quenched. And quench they did. Ishmael was the first one to actually have sex with me. Injected me with a love for the act. After that night in the hotel, I was hooked. God! All I wanted was some good sex. Didn’t care who it was with, I just needed it. My parents found out, and they were horrified. Told me to stop. I refused. Packed out of their house and found myself sleeping at a few homes before one man bought me the house I live in.”
“I kept sleeping around. Visiting the offices of my partners just to give them blowjobs. Getting dollars for being so amazing in bed. It was the way I lived, and I had no regrets.
“Then… I met him.”
Aniyah’s face darkened at the mention of the pronoun. No prizes for guessing who it was.
Her voice, which had been normal throughout, began to quiver. She swallowed hard and shut her eyes as she continued. “I met him in a restaurant. He said he loved the sight of my cleavage. That I was so sexy, and he wanted to get down with me. I agreed. And it was one of the best nights ever.
“But…,” she trailed off, visibly hurt by the painful memories that followed that one amazing night. Barnie reached out and touched her hand.
Her body beginning to shake, she went on. “But… there was something about him. He was very unpleasant to me when we weren’t having sex. No friendliness in the least. I confronted him about it one day, and he got nasty and said horrible things to me. So I… I ended it with him. And… and…”
A sudden bout of heavy breathing overtook her, as the unpleasant memory of that fateful night struck her like the bat she used to pummel her aggressor to death. Larissa moved to her side, placing both hands on her shoulders. “Shhh, shhh, easy, honey. Take your time. Take your time.”
Her breathing back to default after a few seconds, her head went down again, as the tear glands began to work again. Her voice breaking, she slowly said, “Th-th-that night. That night I saw you and your husband in the restaurant… I went home… he came after me… he demanded I have sex with him… and I refused… and he… he-he… he slapped me…”
Larissa’s skin was crawling at this point. She couldn’t believe what she was hearing.
“…ripped my clothes off… raped me…”
These words came out in a whimper so pathetic. Aniyah’s lawyer, with his glasses on, looked crestfallen.
Aniyah’s sobs suddenly grew in intensity as she recounted the inhumane and heartless manner Adamtey forced himself upon her. The forceful way he hammered her, totally unbothered about the pain he caused her. The agony she endured at his hands. The abusive words he showered upon her after he satisfied himself…
“He raped meeeeee!” Aniyah wailed, crying out loud before suddenly launching into a rabid scream, falling to the ground as she yelled out, “HE RAPED ME! HE DESTROYED MY LIFE! HE F***ED UP MY LIFE! AHHHHHHHH!!!”
Larissa, who had rushed to sit on the floor with her, held her tightly as tears came out of her own eyes. She had witnessed a number of breakdowns, but this had to be the most soul-shattering she had ever witnessed. Holding on to Aniyah, the pain the girl experienced was far too tangible to be unaffected by it. Her screams were so heart-rending; those memories were sharp daggers digging right into the wounds left by her violation.
“Aniyah! Aniyah! It’s okay! It’s okay!”
Holding her tight, Larissa tried her best to calm down the frantically weeping Aniyah. Her face was tear-stained as she looked up at Barnie, who had taken out his handkerchief to wipe his own tears. This was no small breakdown. Even the police officer by the door, who had opened it to let other officers who heard the screams know that everything was under control, had the most morose of expressions on her face.
“He raped me! Told me I was nothing! Threatened to do worse if I ran away or reported him!” she continued in the midst of loud sobs.
Sorrow and anger gripped Larissa. How could this man have been more than just a belligerent politician? How dare he inflict such pain upon this young lady?
“Then one night… he said I was useless… he didn’t want to have anything to do with me again… threw me out…”
Larissa shook her head. How disgusting! After messing her up, you just discard her like some tissue. God, some men are just unbelievable!
Her wails reduced in intensity as she grew limp in Larissa’s arms.
“I was so hurt… I just wanted to get back at him for all that he had done… and he-he, he called my pain trivial. Trivial! HE F***ED ME AGAINST MY WILL AND CALLED IT TRIVIAL!! GOD, I LOST IT!!”
“Easy, baby, easy,” a still very shaken Larissa attempted to hush, holding her tight as she shook her head. This was just insane.
“Please… just let them lock me up… I’m f**ked up… this worthless life is over already…”
“Aniyah. Honey, listen to me,” Larissa started, holding Aniyah’s face to hers, “you are not worthless. You are beautiful. You have a purpose. And it is not over for you. Even in prison, it’s not over.”
Aniyah shook her head. “No, no, no, it’s over. I just wanna rot in jail… like the waste of matter he said I am…”
Larissa’s grip around Aniyah’s face strengthened slightly. “Ani, you are not a waste of matter. You are special. I’m so sorry you’ve had to endure all this, I really am. But please, don’t give up on yourself. You are not what he said you are. And you can start over. Please.”
Aniyah remained silent, her void of expression.
A fresh batch of tears ran down Larissa’s face as she stared deeply into Aniyah’s eyes. She didn’t think she’d come in here caring for Adamtey’s alleged killer this way, but with all that had been said, she couldn’t even begin to stick to her initial Iron Lady plan. She just wanted to see this girl get the help she rightly deserved, even though she undoubtedly did the wrong thing in killing Adamtey.
“Aniyah, please, I beg you. Promise me you’ll get help. Promise me.”
Giving in, Aniyah nodded mechanically and murmured, “I will.”
Sighing in relief, she hugged her tightly, sobbing as she spoke. “I’m so sorry, Aniyah. I’m so sorry you had to suffer at the hands of a monster. I wish to God I would’ve known this; we would’ve found another way out. I promise you, you are not worthless. You are not just an object. You are a beautiful human being. You are enough. And in spite of what you’ve done, it’s not over. No matter how it ends, there’s still hope.”
Wrapping her arms around the older woman’s waist as they rose to their feet, Aniyah let go again. This time, however, sobs of relief rocked her as she remained in Larissa’s embrace.
Maybe, just maybe, this was the reason why she had had that inkling to have her come around. It hadn’t come along the way she had wanted it to, though.
Her main plan was to tell Larissa how Adamtey was lusting after her. None of this had been planned. The revelation of her backstory. The sudden breakdown. But this was what it had led to: a powerful, tender lady speaking words over her she didn’t know she needed so desperately, as dark times lay ahead of her.
Sure, it wasn’t magically healing her of her trauma from all the abuse Adamtey inflicted. And it most certainly wouldn’t make the events ahead any smoother. But… it just felt relieving to be loved on at that moment. Given how she was already shaping up to be a very unpopular figure in the country already, her heart appreciated this wonderful woman being there to lift her spirits. Even if for a little while.
Well, that was one hell of an intense episode! Who knew she had all that stored up in her locker? Poor Aniyah…