Pay It Forward Ch. 03byIread2relax©
This chapter is graphic. There is NO SEX in this chapter, because I am trying to develop the characters. Please, read it and understand that this is a fictional story. It is not about anyone that is real. All of the characters are figments of my imagination. I hope you enjoy it. Please vote and comment.
Michal awoke Wednesday morning ready to accompany his mother. He didn't have classes, so he was available to go with her at any time.
Delia wanted to talk to Clementine early, because she knew how hectic a full workday could be. She based this in how grumpy Shaun was at the end of the day when he worked long hours. Shaun and already contacted the retirement home Clemmie worked at to request the time for the meeting. At first her supervisor refused, but when she realized with whom she was speaking, her tune changed quickly.
Clemmie arrived at work earlier than usual. She had liberally applied makeup to cover the fading bruises on her eye. It was mostly unnoticeable. If anyone noticed, no one said anything. She was worried about Darren. When he saw her face, he knew something was wrong. Even with makeup, she could not hide the truth from her baby brother.
She recalled what had happened days before. Shuddering at the memory.
"Clemmie, hey big sis. Glad you made it." Darren hugged his sister.
Clemmie groaned inwardly because his embrace hurt. "She hugged him back lightly, with her left arm. It was then that Darren noticed she favored her right arm. He looked closely at his sister, something was off. She wore too much make up. Clemmie didn't wear makeup. She was hiding something.
"Clemmie, what's going on?" but he knew. Robert had hurt her in some way.
"Nothing Darren, I'm fine. Just working so hard." She tried to change the topic. "How are you doing? Where are your friends Kevin and Gianni?"
Darren didn't fall for it. At this point, Gianni and Kevin had walked in. They knew something was wrong. Darren glared at Clemmie. Fury rolled off of him in waves. "Darren" Gianni ventured to ask, "What's wrong?" his voice was filled with fear.
"Darren, what is it?" Kevin asked, looking from his friend to his sister.
Darren didn't address them. His eyes were trained on his sister. "Clemmie, what are you hiding?" he asked quietly.
"Nothing, Darren, Stop being weird." She answered. Thinking I have to be careful. He can't learn the truth. He'll snap. Gianni and Kevin sat beside their friend, both concerned, Then Kevin looked closely at Clemmie. He noticed her left eye was bloodshot. Her right eye was clear. She seemed so afraid, and it wasn't because of Darren. Kevin began to speak, but Darren spoke first.
"Clemmie, take your jacket off." Darren demanded softly. Clemmie seemed terrified at the request. She was visibly shaken.
"Wait, Darren, she shouldn't-"Gianni tried to intervene when Darren stopped him but holding up his hand.
Clemmie stood. She couldn't hide the bruises on her arm and her brother didn't need the trouble. She should not have come. "Darren, you're tripping, and I'm out." She declared, as Darren reached her and the jacket fell down her arms. She was covered in black bruises. One name escaped his lips. "Robert, Robert did this."
Klaus the floor guard had made it to the group to see what was wrong. He realized the sister was the cause and ordered her to leave. He caught her arm to escort her out when she screamed in pain. He immediately let her go. He had no intention of causing her pain. When Clemmie screamed in pain, Darren attacked. The other two boys tried to pull him off as a female officer came and escorted Clemmie out. Clemmie stood at the window to the visitor's area sobbing, helpless as she witnessed the guards take her brother down.
She was then asked to leave the building. At this point the weekend supervisor had come down and the situation was contained. Clemmie was escorted off the premises and left sitting at the bus terminal. She was so worried about her brother, but there was nothing she could do for him now. I shouldn't have come, she thought. I should have waited at least until the bruises had healed. If anything bad happened to Darren, it's my fault.
Clemmie sat crying quietly, rocking back and forth, seeking what comfort she could find in the cold small space.
When the security officer grabbed her arm, it hurt and she yelled. If Robert hadn't twisted her arm so hard, the guard would not have hurt at all when he grabbed it.
The last thing she remembered was being forced out of the visitor's area as two guards cornered her brother. She tried to call Sunday, but no one would tell her anything or even let her speak with him.
She prayed this didn't cause serious problems for him. He was making such good progress and had even made friends. Kevin and Gianni seemed to really care about him. He often spoke of a Mr. MacGregor, as did the other two young men. They all had great respect for this man. Hopefully, he could help her brother.
"Clemmie, I'm glad you're here early. You have a meeting at nine o'clock. I'm not sure why, I was just told by the director. Be there on time." Her supervisor, Ms. Weeks, informed her.
"Yes Ma'am," Clemmie answered. Oh God what could this be about. I come to work on time. Take care of my patients. I even fill in when we are short staffed. I haven't taken a day off since I started. I hope it's nothing bad. I need this job.
At eight forty-five, Clemmie reported to the administrator's office. As she entered, she saw a lovely lady sitting with the most handsome man sitting beside her. It was obvious they were related, but Clemmie wondered who she had to meet with.
"Good morning, Clemmie. Mrs. Kent will be right with you. Have a seat." Then Gladys turned to greet the other people who were waiting as well. "Do you all need anything?"
"No, thank you." Delia answered gracefully. She watched Clemmie covertly acknowledging that she was truly a lovely young lady. It didn't past Delia's attention that Michal was enthralled by the lovely young lady as well. Delia could tell the girl was nervous. The lines of stress on her face spoke of years of worry. Just as she was about to speak, the administrator opened the door and invited all three of them into her office.
Clemmie stood and followed the well-dressed woman and her son into the office, Now, she was even more nervous.
"Good morning, Clemmie. Let me introduce a friend of mine and her son this is Delia MacGregor and her son Michal. Delia, Michal, this is Clemmie, one of the most dedicated assistant nurses that we have in staff. Now I realize this is a private meeting, so I'll leave and make my rounds while the three of you talk." Soon after that Mrs. Kent excused herself.
Wait, MacGregor, I wonder if "Clementine, I'm Delia. My husband, Shaun mentors your brother." Delia started to explain.
"Oh God, Is Darren OK? Are you here because something else happened to-" Clemmie asked clearly distraught at the thought of her brother being hurt.
Wanting to alleviate her fear, Delia quickly reassured her, "No, Darren is fine. Shaun went Sunday and he was allowed to return to his room. He's fine. I'm here because of you, Clemmie. We're worried about you. From the information Shaun gathered, we know something is going on in your life. Whatever it is, Darren has had a major setback. I'm here to try and help. We need to know what happened. Sweetheart is someone hurting you?" Delia asked concerned etched all over her face.
Michal's heart pounded. The thought of someone hurting this young lady didn't sit too well him. He didn't know why. He liked Darren and the other guys, so maybe that was the reason he was reacting so strongly. Clemmie looked away. She was clearly embarrassed.
"Mrs. MacGregor, I am fine. My boyfriend gets angry and sometimes he loses control. That night I pushed him too far and..." she looked away unable to continue.
"He hit you!" Michal whispered. Now he was becoming really agitated. He understood Darren's anger. Clemmie was small. She was barely five feet tall, and weighed less than 100 pounds, almost as small as a child. He could not fathom someone hurting someone so small.
Clemmie flinched at the inflection in his voice. Delia touched his arm to remind him to remain in control. "Clemmie, where is he now? " she asked.
"He's back in jail." She looked away for a second. "I don't know for how long, though. It's my apartment, but he lives with me. I want to move, but he won't..."
Delia looked at the young woman sitting across from her. She'd never met Darren, but he was younger than his sister. This girl could not be more than nineteen or twenty.
"Clementine, listen to me. I will help you find a place. If you really want to leave, let me know and we can help you relocate today. But, you have to take that first step." Delia whispered.
Clemmie looked at her. Eyes so bright with the hope of a promise, she couldn't believe that this lady whom she didn't even know was willing to help her.
Then she remembered how possessive Robert was. If this lady helped her, he might retaliate and cause her family harm. When Darren was out, Robert was afraid to even touch her, but now that Darren was locked up, he felt that nothing would happen to him.
She knew that if anyone helped her; he'd go after them. How manty times had he told her tht she belonged to him. So Clemmie decided to decline.
"Mrs. MacGregor, I can't. This isn't your problem. But thank you for offering. I know you and your husband mean well, but..." she sighed sadly. "Listen, thank you for helping my brother. Darren is a great guy, and he can make it. I'll be fine. When Robert gets out, I'll just have to be more careful." She explained hesitantly. It was clear she didn't believe a word she was saying.
Michal was stunned. She refused the help. What is she thinking? Someone is offering you a chance to get away and you refuse. This is ludicrous.
"Clemmie, you don't have to be afraid. When he gets out, you'll be somewhere safe. I promise." Delia whispered.
Clemmie shook her head once more in refusal. "You don't know him. You don't know what he's capable of." Clemmie said quietly her voice trembling in fear. Then Clemmie asked, "Is there anything else, Mrs. MacGregor? If not, I need to see to my patients."
Completely stunned by her refusal, Delia replied, "No that was it. I'm done. But Clemmie, I'm checking up on you and if he hurts you again, call me. Promise me, alright." as she handed her a business card. Clemmie took the card and put it in her pocket. She wouldn't call. These people seemed nice, and she could not pull them into her mess. Robert would be fine, and as soon as Darren came back home she'd be safe. Clemmie was relieved her brother was alright.
"Yes Ma'am ." She answered as she stood to leave. After she left, Michal lost it.
"Momma, that's it. She says "NO!" and we leave. Come on. Momma, he hurt her. How can she stay there?" He demanded.
"Son, do you think I'm done. I like her, and I am going to help her all I can. But if she wants to leave, she has to make that choice. I can't decide for her." Delia explained.
"Momma, Darren is so scared." Michal explained. Thinking about the fear radiating off of his new friend, Michal had to make his mother understand. "I know you haven't met them, but Darren is the toughest guy I've ever met, and Momma, he's afraid for her. If he's afraid, then she really is in danger."
"Michal, I know. Your father said as much. Listen, we will do all we can, OK. Try not to worry." She comforted her son.
Michal nodded, but he did worry. His life was so easy. He never had a worry. Until his dad started mentoring these boys, he only heard stories about difficult life choices, and now he was witnessing it. His biggest worry was whether to go to Pembridge or Tulane. However, his new friends had much more pressuring issue. And now he'd met Clemmie.
Delia and Michal drove straight to Lang Corp headquarters. They had to talk to Shaun. After meeting Clemmie, Delia knew something had to be done, or that girl's life was forfeit. Michal went with his Mom, because he knew if someone could fix this, then his Dad was that person.
As soon as they entered the building, they were escorted to the head executive suites. Shaun was in a meeting but he'd been alerted of their arrival. A sense of foreboding engulfed him, and he knew this situation with Clemmie was serious.
"Hey baby," Shaun greeted his wife with a hug. He was more than aware of the level of concern etched in her face.
Michal," he acknowledged his son. "How was the visit with Clementine? I can tell something is wrong?" he asked his wife.
"Shaun, she's in an abusive relationship. The man is in jail for now, but you know he'll get out. I offered to help her move, but she refused. She's terrified. I saw it in her face." Delia explained. "I want to find out about this man she lives with. If he hits women, there might be other crimes he's just as guilty of. She won't leave Shaun. I don't understand."
Shaun paused; he knew why Clemmie stayed. Throughout his life, he'd witnessed so many horrible things and he understood that sometimes the victim didn't see a way out. He didn't know who the boyfriend was, but he'd find out all he needed to know in a few hours. Once he learned who the culprit was, he could then deal with him.
"It'll be alright. Let me see what I can find out about the boyfriend. Did she at least give a name?" he queried.
"No, she didn't. Wait, yes she did. Robert, she said Robert, but I didn't get a last name. I should have asked her for his name. How could I be so careless?" Delia castigsted herself.
"It's alright honey. At least she talked to you. You got more from her than I honestly expected." Shaun reassured her as he ehld her close.
Delia exhaled and then continued to explain to her husband, "She said he's locked up probably for the attack on her. Can our lawyers find out anything?" Delia asked.
"Dad, I can call Silas and ask him to check it out?" Michal offered. If Silas could find out about this guy, he could learn how long he would be locked up.
"Great idea Michal, call him. It's lunchtime. Why don't you two go eat and Michal call Silas as soon as you two finish. I have a meeting so I have to stay here. We'll talk when I get home. Oh, and son, see if he can join us for dinner?" Shaun ordered.
Not wanting to keep him from his work, Delia kissed him good bye and she and Michal left.
Back at the detention center, Kersh was meeting with the social workers and judge concerning several of his young charges. The judge was concerned about Darren's meltdown, but Kersh assured him that he was fine. The officials were considering sending him some place for psychological evaluation.
Kersh explained that he was upset because is sister had been injured and the guard on duty didn't handle the situation the right way. The guard, Klaus, was called in. He even defended Darren and dismissed the attack as a simple misunderstanding. Darren was fine, and not a threat to anyone. The judge listened to the two men, and was satisfied with their assessment. Klaus was dismissed to return to his post.
After that issue was settled, they talked about three new transfers coming in. Also, Kersh was informed that Gianni's mother was petitioning for him to be released into her care. Kersh had met Gianni's mother when she arrived with him several months earlier. He watched as she cried as her son was led away.
She worked three sometimes four jobs, but she visited her son as often as she could. She was a good mother, and Kersh could understand that she wanted her boy to come home. The neighborhood she lived in at the time wasn't safe for Gianni. That was months ago, she'd moved to a safer area. Besides, he had MacGregor and him.
Although MacGregor had stayed true to his word, his time as a mentor was almost over. Kersh wondered if he would stick around or go back to his own life.
Kersh realized that Gianni missed his mother. Each time she visited, it was harder and harder on him when she left. The only ones that console him were Kevin and Darren. Those two always sat with him after a visit and they didn't talk, but he knew they were there. Since they'd spent time with MacGregor and he gave them guidance, the boys were slowly changing.
Saturday came quickly and Michal was headed back to WCDC. He had a brand new autographed cap for Gianni. However, he didn't have anything for the other two guys. He wanted to talk to Darren and let him know about the meeting with Clemmie. He could understand his fear. Maybe if he could talk to her, she'd let his family help her.
When he walked into the center, he saw Clemmie waiting. Walking over to her, Michal greeted her. "Hey Clementine. How are you? I'm glad to see you today." He noticed that the bruise on her face was almost unnoticeable.
"Hello, Mike. Um, sorry Michal." Clemmie smiled as she greeted him.
"Hey Sis, Michal." Darren greeted when he came out. "Clemmie, this is Mr. MacGregor's son Michal. Michal, this is my sister, Clemmie."
Michal smiled, "Darren, we've already met."
"Yes, he and his mother came to see me Wednesday." Clemmie answered. Darren froze wondering What the hell? Then he remembered Mr. MacGregor promising to protect his sister.
"Michal. Clemmie, Hey!" Gianni yelled excitedly. Clemmie gave him a big hug. He was followed by Kevin, who was surprised to see Michal.
"Oh Gianni, brought you something." He explained giving Gianni his gift.
"Hold up. This is nice. Thanks Michal, so cool." He answered in awe of such a simple gift.
"Hey guys, I need to talk to Clemmie. Give us a sec." Darren asked.
"Ok, we'll be over there." Kevin answered and the three guys walked off.
"So Mrs. MacGregor came to your job. What did she want?" he asked.
"Darren, she wanted to know if I was alright. I'm fine and I don't want you worrying. Ok." She admonished her baby brother. "Darren, they seem like good people. I like them."
"What did she ask you? You're hiding something, Sis." Darren asked concern lacing his voice.
"She offered to help me move out of the apartment. But you know how Robert is. He'll go after them and I can't allow that." She explained. "I can't let them put themselves at risk."
"How long will he be locked up?" Darren asked. He would be out in a few months when he turned eighteen. He had to get a place so she could move in with him and get away from Robert. He didn't want to end up killing the other man, because quite frankly he wasn't worth going to prison for.
"The DA called me yesterday and was asking questions about the attack. I already pressed charges, and she was sure that he'd be there a while. He has some bench warrants. I have some money saved, but it's not enough to get a place. I'll stay there for now, because I can afford to cover the rent, but as soon as I save a couple hundred more, I'm gone." She explained.
"Didn't you say Mrs. MacGregor could help you move to a safer place a lot sooner?" Darren asked. "Sis, I want you out of there. You know how messed up the courts are. He might get out early. Look, think about her offer, and then when I get out, we can move in together."
"Hey Clemmie, Darren is everything alright?" Kevin asked. He was aware that someone hit her and if it happened again he and Darren were going after the guy.
"Yes, Kevin. It's fine. Darren is being overprotective again." She tried to joke as she rolled her eyes.
"Mrs. MacGregor offered to help her move. She won't do it." Darren explained to Kevin. Kevin immediately took his friend's side. He could not get the sight of the bruises out of his head. He wanted Clemmie safe.