John Fish B.Sc. Publishers of Tenby in Wales (UK)

ROWSE LITERARY AGENCY

THERE'S A FINE LINE

by

Teresa Joyce

e-mail: Teresa Joyce

SYNOPSIS

SAMPLE CHAPTER

 

 

 

 

 

 

Synopsis

Beginning to end this story spans over well over 30 years. Itís a tragic story, combination a series of events, that most people would not encounter within their life time. Heartache and violence seemed a way of life, encountering one hill after another. Then someone walks in to change all that had been previous it seemed. As the years passed life seemed to be all that they ever could of wished for, but this was about to change. It would no longer be a hill to climb but a mountain, which became one too many. So how do you deal with being told your husband is having an affair? More than that itís your daughter, could this be true? Standing on the outside with no way to claw it back, what if this was not as it seemed? What if there was a distortion of the facts, deceit and infatuation. Who do you believe? But it mattered none, as the outcome would still be in truth unbelievable.

Sexual acts imposed on someone because they could see no way out, other than to try and protect their mother. The relentless pursuit, which would surpass anything you could imagine. Where blackmail, and hurting others seemed to be the norm. Where shot guns and threats to life were everyday occurrence, nothing would stop you from achieving your goal. A contract had been struck with the devil. Peopleís lives at times in real danger. Self mutilation while in a cold calculated sober mind, a mind that was so disturbed that nothing or anyone could reach it.

It would see the destruction of so many lives, and a complete family unit brought to its knees, far reaching, like the ripples of a stone skimming the water. To try and understand this mind is impossible, because there are no rational thoughts left. The police were just flies to be swotted aside, not unlike you are invisible and above the law. Having knowledge and contacts in the right places, which could make it all go away. Smashing through all and everything that stood in its way. No one was safe. When you look down the barrel of a shot gun and into dead eyes, you have never felt quite as close to hell as at that moment.

For one it would become unliveable, and they would try to take their own life seeking a way out, spending many years within mental health care. Unbelievably the person that should have been there was less than spineless. This in its self would also change a whole way of life. How do you walk out of a heterosexual relationship into a lesbian one? How could this happen? Why? Well thatís not so difficult to explain. When the men around you either fail to support or defend you and another seemed set to destroy your life. Taking that life would have been far kinder, and wished for on many occasions. To date that person is still under the mental health care umbrella, and has lost everything and anyone dear to them.

A more disturbed cold and calculated mind is hard to imagine, even for me, and I was there. Embroiled in what I can only describe as a nightmare, a living hell, that to this day sends a shiver down my spine. Is there a trade off with the devil? Seemingly there is ...

 

 

 

 

Sample Chapter

Where do I begin to write this? I guess I need to go back to 1994 and chronicle events as and when they occurred. At times I will also need to reference childhood. Some relevant history surrounding that time is needed; the reason for this is without the knowledge of past events it would be more difficult to understand. As we precede though this book you will be able to see exactly why it is so relevant, and the conflict of interest I would find myself in as an adult. In truth, maybe I am now trying to heal myself though this process, but I am also hoping that maybe someone will read this book and take some strength from it.

It was not until I sat down to write this that memories I wish I could have left buried hit me full in the face. But you know nothing ever really stays that way; buried that is. You want it to and you pray that it will, but itís always there. You try to understand it; you convince yourself it was your fault entirely; you look into the mirror and you hate yourself. I am remembering times and events that were so very difficult for me to live though, and to be honest at times I didnít want to. Having just passed my fiftieth birthday I now feel ready. Maybe I have now reached a point in my life when I feel a little stronger, so itís time to open Pandoraís Box. What will I find there? Well I guess I am not going to know until I can no longer close the lid. How it will affect me? I havenít a clue, I just know itís something I have to do I need to find some kind of closure.

I feel itís only right that I refrain from the use of names while writing this book, or indeed exact months or years. They will only be given loosely if at all. It will be enough to just to stick to the decades these events spanned over. This is not because I feel the need to hide my identity in any shape or form, but there are still people living that I need to consider. For this same reason I will also not be disclosing my real name. If I were to do so I could be linked by association to others, and on doing so it could cause untold hurt and pain. All of the facts that I am about to tell you were well documented by my own doctor at that time, along with the numerous people I have seen within mental health care over the years. There has been many, all hoping that they can help me put this to bedólay it to rest as it were. To this day that has not been possible for me; the truth is that I am still under that care umbrella fighting to find some peace. When will I be totally discharged? I really am unable able to answer that question.

So what is my purpose or intention? It is hopefully to rid my head of the demons, which seem so reluctant to leave, and not to cause new ones in others. So I reiterate once more, thatís not my aim. It may be the case that if it is ever printed, someone will pick it up and recognise themselves in it, but that will then be their choice how they receive it and deal with their own emotions. The point I am trying to make is that recognition will not be forced upon them. How this book will turn out? I have no idea; I am not a budding author. Itís not even something I have even ever thought about as a career. It may never leave the hard drive of my computer, but if it does, hopefully I can at least make it readable and find some escape for myself. This is a true story, but you will never know just how many times I have wished and prayed that it wasnít. They say that there is book inside of everyone just waiting to be written, be it a fairytale, fact, or fiction, so this is to be my offering and all written on fact. In some cultures they think and believe you know if the devil crosses your path, and if this was not him it was a very close relative.

Chapter Four

This chapter for me will be the hardest thing I ever hope to write. It has taken me days just to return my PC and try to do so. I know I have to write this and in doing so, I will leave myself wide open. It will be like walking back into the lionís den. Neither is it trying to hide my shame, because even to this day I rightly blame myself. I expect anyone reading this would also take that line. I am not going to stretch this out more then I need to do so, but the facts have to be digested so you can formulate an image of the madness which was to ensue for yourself. Sitting here at my PC I can feel the palms of my hands sweating; my heart seems to be beating just that little bit faster. How can I write this down? But I know I have to. There needs to be an end to this and I have to try to reach it, without destroying myself in the process.

I was under no illusions that kiss would be the end of it. Of course it would not be, I was not that stupid, and I had given up trying to pretend it was not happening. What was the point? So the next time he told me that there was work waiting next door, I just got up and went. He had engineered everything cleverly, and in some sick kind of way I admired his strategy. We went in and I proceeded up the stairs to the second floor. I could hear him below locking the door after us, then hearing his footsteps on the uncarpeted stairs. The only way I was going to get through this was to try and take myself out of my body. To pretend I was somewhere else. This was not me, how could it be? There was this voice inside me; it was telling me that I could hide. What did that mean? He came through the door and crossed the room to where I was standing. Before I really had time to take a breath he was all over me, pushing me backwards. I tripped and fell into something. What was it? Then I remembered that was where the desk had been situated. He fell on top of me and started kissing me, pushing his tongue deep into my throat. I felt the need to be sick. It was making me gag. Within a split second or so it seemed he had his hand up under my top, grabbing at my breast and ripping painfully at my braóit was digging into me so painfully across my back. I told him that it was hurting me and he responded by saying "take the fucking thing off then". I reached around to undo it from behind, but he seemed unable to wait and once again he was pulled at me. Grabbing both my bra and my top, he tossed them both across the room. He had moved down now to my tummy area, he was kissing me everywhere, biting, it was so very painful. I could feel his hand on the button of my jeans; everything was going too fast, I had to slow it down.

If only I could convince him that it would be better to take our time, it would then give me breathing space. But even if successful what would that change? I had to try. I lifted his head up with my hands and asked him to take it slow; that there was no rush, that we had all the time in the world. I asked him to kiss me; I had to make him think that it was all his idea to slow it down, convince him I was a willing participant, but that it would be nice to take our time. My mind was desperately screaming for answers, for anything. I said the first thing that came into my mind. I said we were at the start of a new relationship and the slower it progressed, the more worthwhile it would be. I just did not know how he was going to react and it seemed a lifetime, before he responded. He stood up and took a step back, telling me that I was a bitch and that I had wanted this all the time. My head was in turmoil scrambling just to keep up, but if I were to pull this off I had to seem genuine. Okay he was listening, now what? I told him that of course I did, but it had to be done the right way. The right time and the place would make it much more pleasurable for both of us. I had been trying to fight my emotions for a long time without any success. It was working. I could see that he was thinking about it, and praying that I was right. He seemed to soften. I could see it in his face, sitting back against the desk he said that I should have told him and that I had been wrong in not doing so. I was holding my breath feeling completely dizzy as I answered that, yes, I had been wrong in not doing so. Crossing the room he retrieved my clothes, and throwing them at me he told me to get dressed. Then he hit me with a bombshell as well as a slight snigger. He told me that we were not leaving just yet. I had worked him up so I had to deal with it. I stood there as he removed his belt from his jeans, pulling down both his jeans and underwear. I just looked at him standing there; I was starring at his penis, but why was I? But I could not look away. He told me to come over to him, that we were going nowhere fast, and not until I had dealt with him (i.e. masturbation, but those were not exactly the words he had used). I crossed the room in a sort of daze, took him in my hand, and proceeded to do so. When it was over he pulled up his jeans and, kissing me on the cheek, he left. I felt violated. I went to the bathroom to wash my hands, but no amount of soap and water would every make me feel clean again. Of that I was under no illusion.

I went back to the office and I could not shake the feeling that everyone in the room was up to speed. Were they looking at me? I thought I heard them whispering. I could not get the picture of what happened out of my head; I couldnít concentrate on anything other than what had just occurred. I collected my belongings, made my excuses and left. It seemed like I was driving for hours. I had a class to teach later that day, but there was no way that was going to happen. I rang and told them that I was unwell, which was not too far from the truth. I drove home picked up a bottle of brandy, and proceeded to try and drink my way through it. What was I going to do? This was madness; I was on the road to inevitable destruction. We had passed go in a game I'd never wanted any part of.

How could I turn back the clock? Rewind time? I couldnít. It would only be a matter of time until, once more, he would what to progress towards his ultimate goal. But that was only ever going to happen over my dead body. I wouldnít let it get that far. I would find the strength somehow.

I considered so many things, but nothing seemed to be the answer. It was a waiting game until he felt the need to move forward as I knew he would. It came much too quickly for me. Arriving for work one morning, once more I heard those words that I had come to dread. He announced that there was work piling up next door. One thing I could never quite understand, no one other than him had keys to the office. Why didnít anyone question this? If it seemed odd to me, why did it not to others? It was a place of work after all. The keys to the yard where the equipment was stored were readily available, but not the offices. Something was different. I was walking there as if it was a normal thing to do, no one was there dragging me there. Theoretically, had I accepted it? Or did I feel I had no other choice? That fighting him was useless? The reason for this complacence seemed to escape me. Nothing seemed to compute anymore. As we climbed the stairs I could feel myself starting to panic and a feeling of dread hung in the air. I was desperately trying to work out how I could contain it as before, and not to let things progress onwards. Was it going to be possible? We entered the office he grabbed me by both arms, instructing me to take my jeans off. God how could I do this? I said that we were still moving too fast, he replied that we werenít and to do as I was fucking told. I started to cry, trying to reason with him, to seek out his better nature or judgment, but to no avail.

This is so painful for me to write, but I have to do so in order to make it clear that I was not a willing participant, in any shape or form. I just felt I had to do everything that he was telling me and that it was not for me to question. So what was I then? I still canít answer that one, I felt so lost and needy, it was all in the mix along with the need to protect those I loved. He had told me that I wasnít doing anything wrong, but how so? I was questioning my sanity at that point and I still do to this very day. I was fumbling in the dark, carrying the weight on my shoulders alone. Please donít think here that I am excusing myself, trying to pass the buck, because that is something I will never do. I have lived with those demons ever since. After I was naked from the middle down he removed his own jeans. I could feel myself drifting off. It felt just like an out of body experience. It was not me who was standing there, it was someone else entirely. I went through the whole process in a removed state, only doing as I was instructed, nothing more and nothing less. By the end of our time there he had invaded my entire body. I was once more instructed in the art of masturbation, while he had my breast in his mouth while pushing his fingers up inside of me. How long were we there? I canít answer that, but no one at all seemed to miss us. The only thing I could hold on to was that intercourse had not taken place. He had touched me on every part of my body, but mercifully I had escaped that. Once again that day I took an oath that it would never happen. If I had to endure this until he came to his senses, then thatís what I would have to do. But he would never put his penis inside of me no matter what. I would jump the nearest bridge first. I prayed that someone eventually would see that all was not right, and that would bring it to an end. Not enough to feel the need to ask too many questions, just a passing odd remark that would hit home. Any more than that would run the risk of my mum being hurt, but it was such a fine line between the two was it even achievable? I was walking on a tightrope, struggling not to fall and there was no sign of solid ground in sight.

For the next few months this was how it went. We would go next door and engage in everything except for intercourse. I see no point to dwell on this longer then needed, itís enough to say that I was doing what I was told and he was doing as he pleased. Further mention of the sexual acts that passed between us are self explanatory, and to my mind not to be laboured on. We would still go for lunch, but nothing sexual took place on those occasions. He never tried to push me into intercourse; he always stopped short of that. Why? Maybe it was just one step too far for even for him.

I was still under the doctorís wing at that time and not sleeping, I could no longer keep this secret to myself. I had to talk to someone, so I made another appointment with my doctor. I had made up my mind to tell her what was happing in my life. I could not keep everything inside any longer, or I would go completely mad. I had booked a double appointment because I needed more than the allocated ten minutes, and I was aware that it would still not be long enough. But I could tell it in short hand; I did not what to pick the bones of it, or start pulling it all to pieces. If I could just say everything hurriedly, get it all out without too many questions, it would help. I didnít know what this would achieve. I just had to tell it to someone, just be able to say it out loud. I walked into her office and just started talking. It was like I could not stop. All the months I had not been able to say anything, but right now there and then it was like a dam bursting open. When I finally stopped to take a breath I felt lighter, like a great weight had been taken from me. I had been walking around, carrying this enormous weight alone, and someone else now knew. Maybe at last I would get some help. Sitting there listening I could tell by her face that she was finding this all very hard to believe. The odd thing was so was I, and I was doing the talking. Yes the words had been spoken, but it still seemed so unreal. There was no quick fix, what did I think she could do? It was a case of her giving me more tablets, along with telling me I should go to the police. Asking if my husband knew about all this? And not understanding when being told that he did but had done nothing. How could I expect her to? I had trouble understanding it myself, so she had no hope in hell. What do I do from here? Yes I had shared, but nothing had changed. My doctor could not understand why I would not take it to the police. How could I explain my reasons? The years of hurt my mum had endured would mean nothing to her, it would just be a case of a black and white, and who could blame her? Not me. So I took the pills and went back out there to resume my life, such as it was. As I was leaving a thought ran though my head that at least itís been documented, but what did that matter? I could never use it against him.

Time seemed to pass by unchanged for some months. Our time in and out of the unit next door and our lunching together, visiting my doctor with an update and collecting more pills. She continued along the vein that I should contact the police, but it was just not an option. I am sure she never really understood why and I could not explain. My talks with her somehow had me delving deeper into my memory and it was all just so odd. Something was there, but what? Maybe it was just my mind playing tricks on me? That was not out of the question with the situation as it was. God, something was there, but the voice was talking too quietly whispering. My little brown girl, pigtails, what the hell did it mean? Jesus, was I losing it?

One evening I had a call from my mum, saying that she and my stepfather were thinking of a holiday, renting a villa in the sun, and the place they were looking at had loads of room. They had talked and had come up with an idea. We could all come along; we would only have to find our air fare costs and some spending money. She was really excited and I knew she needed a break, but two weeks around him. What could I say? Over a period of the last four or five years me and my mum had took to going away together for the weekend. She was not only my mum, but also my best friend, and as such I enjoyed holidaying with her. I felt utterly relaxed in her company until now, but with everything that was going on around me I felt that it was not even an option. My own feelings were so mixed up. Could I do this and still be able to shield her? There are no manuals on how to deal with these things; everyone seems to know the answer, but only after the fact. I hadnít the answers to anything. As my husband worked for my stepfather taking holiday at short notice would not be a problem. I stood there dumbfounded with the phone in my hand. What do I say? If I say no she will want to know why? I was well and truly on the spot. I said I would have to speak to my husband first and ask his opinion. She then told me that it was not a problem as it had already been done. It did not take many guesses as to who that person was. That he had more than liked the idea; once again I was two steps behind.

The next morning I arrived at work I went straight to his office. He told me to shut the door and to sit down and I asked him what he thought he was doing arranging something like that. Could he not see that it was not the right thing to do? It would be like pushing it all into my mumís face. Okay she didnít know what was happening, but I did, and I really did not want to be put in that situation. As always it fell on deaf ears. Did I not want a holiday? Would I deprive both my husband and my son of one? Once again behaving like your dad, so true to form. I asked him how he thought this would work; there was also another member of my family going with us. How could I relax? He must be out of his tiny mind. He then delivered his punch lineóI would go, and that I had no choice. If I did not then he would tell my mum everything. Tell her we are having an affair and that it had been going on for months. What was he saying, how could he do that? It was not even the truth. He had seemingly forgotten to include the blackmail. The pressure he was putting me under, the lies and the deceit, what was going on? It was nothing remotely resembling an affair! God, the reason I had endured this entire fucked up situation, all I had done in order to stop that from happening. He told me that nothing would happen because my mum would be present, so why was I so upset? Relax, take the holiday and to just chill out. I donít think I have ever hated anyone that much as I did him at that moment; it was a game of strategy controlled and weighted all his way. I would have to go that maybe it would be okay. It made sense, because as he said we would not be alone. Time spent away with him and my mum together may even turn out be a good thing. He would see just where his real feelings were and it would stop. We could just get on with our lives. He had promised and people were there, so what could he do? I was to learn on that so called holiday just how wrong I would turn out to be. His promiseóhe never even knew what the word meant, and I would never underestimate him again.