are, Leslie.” Lynne shrugged. Leslie looked out at the small motel-like
house. “Jim got this for us on a friendly discount.”
“How friendly were you?” Leslie asked.
Lynne glared at Leslie. “I meant his friend!” She yelled. “Come on!” Leslie climbed out of
the car. She walked up to the house.
“Ya like it?” Leslie jumped at the voice behind her. Jim was standing there, admiring Leslie’s beauty.
“It’s okay.” Leslie shrugged. “It’s gonna be our home for now. So I guess I’ll
have to manage.” She started up the creaky, dusty steps to the house.
Lynne opened the door and swapped the spider webs and dust out of the way. “Well….home sweet home.”
Leslie rolled her eyes and walked to the back. She went to a small room.
“Like your new room?” Lynne asked, coming up behind Leslie.
“What? My new room? I don’t think so! This is the size of Marie’s closet!”
“Well Marie has money now, doesn’t she? Let’s unpack everything and then go get cleaned up for dinner.
Tomorrow you start your new school.” Lynne walked out of the room.
“New school? Where?” She yelled, but was returned with an echo.
After everything was unpacked, Lynne and Jim went out for some Chinese takeout. Leslie used the time to collect her
thoughts. She sat on the front porch and watched the rats play in the yard and the bums walk down the streets. She pulled
out a picture out of her pocket. She looked down at the adorable little six year old boy and cried.
“Bubba. I miss you so much.” She whispered and kissed the picture. She walked into the house and lay down
on the couch. She put Bubba’s picture to her heart and was off to sleep. Off to another nightmare.
Chuck continued to hurt and violate Leslie’s small body. Leslie cried silently, under Chuck’s hand.
“Bubba! Bubba!” She cried. Just then, a small peep was heard. Chuck seemed like he didn’t hear it,
but Leslie did. She looked over at Bubba and saw him sitting up in his bed crying.
“Go to sleep!” She tried to yell. “Go Bubba!”
“Les…Leslie!!!” Bubba cried out. Chuck jumped and looked over at Bubba.
“Go on to sleep, Bub. Everything’s okay.” Chuck forced a smile.
“Uncle Chuck! You hurt Leslie!” Bubba cried.
“No, no, Bubba. We’re playing a game. It’s okay.” Chuck tried. He jumped off of Leslie and
got himself together. He walked and sat on Bubba’s bed.
“It’s okay.” He whispered and tried to hug Bubba. Bubba pulled back and grabbed something on his
table. He swung his hand across Chuck’s face.
“Aaaaghhh!” Chuck cried in pain as he fell off of the bed. He rose up with his hand over his cheek. Blood
was on the floor and his hand. Leslie looked at Bubba. He had their father’s small pocket knife that he left Bubba in
his hand. Bubba continued to cry, grasping the knife with all of his might. He let out a scream and plunged at Chuck. He continued
to stab Chuck until Chuck threw him onto Leslie’s bed.
“No!!!!!!!!!” Leslie cried. Chuck rose up again, blood flying everywhere. He spit blood onto the floor
and ran out of the room. Leslie pulled Bubba up to her.
“Bubba Joe loves Leslie Janine.” Bubba whispered. They always called each other by their first and middle
“And Leslie Janine loves Bubba Joe.” Leslie cried.
“Why he hurt you, Leslie?” Bubba cried.
“Shhh. I don’t know. We’ll tell Mommy and we’ll never have to be scared of him again. Okay?
We’ll stick together.” Leslie whispered to Bubba.
“Forever?” Bubba asked.
“Forever and always.” With that, Chuck came back into the room, one hand behind his back. Bubba clutched
the knife harder and Leslie hugged Bubba harder.
“Uncle Chuck has a surprise for Bubba.” Chuck grabbed Bubba from Leslie and threw him on the floor, knocking
the knife far under the bed.
“Bubba!” Leslie cried. Chuck walked closer to Bubba. Leslie jumped from the bed and kicked Chuck in his
crotch. Chuck groaned in pain and bent down on the ground. Leslie crawled to Bubba and hugged him. They embraced each other
in a corner of the room. They started to tremble with fear when Chuck looked up.
“Forever and always?” Bubba asked, again. Leslie was quiet. She was too scared to speak. “Leslie
Janine? You promise?” Bubba tried again. He crawled in front of Leslie, his back towards Chuck. “Promise?”
Leslie watched Chuck pull out his surprise.
“Promise!!!!” Bubba cried.
Leslie woke up to Lynne shaking her. “Come
on Les. Time for dinner.” Lynne held up a Chinese takeout box.
“Okay.” Leslie swallowed hard. She
wiped the sweat from her brow and took off her soaking wet top.
“Hope you like your new school. It’s supposed to be one of the top schools in the area.” Lynne smiled
as they ate their dinner.
“I hope so.” Leslie whispered.