Some would call you a prostitute. Others would call you a downright whore. As you rolled out of the superfluously decorated bed, you called yourself a survivor. Of course, you had never meant for things to spiral downwards as they had. It was a series of bad events, one after another.
Growing up, you had no father. Well, none in the sense that you had never actually met the man. Know doubt he was still alive somewhere, most likely getting his kicks in a whorehouse somewhere. Two weeks after your seventeenth birthday, you mother was diagnosed with an advanced stage of cancer. She became so ill that she could no longer work, and the chemotherapy only made her worse. The two of you used you life savings to save her. As what could only be considered a miracle, the cancer disappeared.
Then, only months later, it returned in full force.
You found her lying unconscious on the living room floor and raced to the phone to call an ambulance. The doctors found that the cancer had made its silent and fatal move up to her brain. She had over fifteen, tiny, malignant tumors scattered throughout her skull.
At this point, you had missed too much school to graduate. So you dropped out to be with your mother. She was given so little time, and you watched her deteriorate until she could no longer get out of bed. She was put in Hospice care to be made as comfortable as possible. Soon, she couldn’t speak. When you walked in the room, she ceased to recognize or even acknowledge your presence. Then, she began hallucinating, moving her hands in front of her as if to play the piano, one of her hobbies since childhood.
Then, one night, she went to sleep with you sitting in the chair next to her bed, holding her hand. At exactly 3:08am, you remembered the nurse coming in to check her vitals. She began with blood pressure. She found none. She dropped her stethoscope and checked for a pulse.
So much effort put into saving her, and she was gone. However, reality didn’t set in until you returned home after the funeral. Sitting in the living room where you had found her on the floor, you noticed the house was profoundly silent and dead. No smell of cooking coming from the kitchen, no sound of the piano echoing off the walls, no voice of your mother asking how school had been. There never would be again.
Still in a haze of raw emotion, you realized that almost every penny you had saved was gone. On top of that, debts had accumulated over the months. Possibly worst of all, you were a minor. They would throw you in a foster home or worse. Your father was you only living relative, and from the stories your mother had told, he was an abusive, alcoholic, drug-abuser. There was no where else to go.
You had run straight for the file cabinet that contained every remotely important document to ever enter your household. You spent the rest of the day, the following night, and the day after that reading every paper, changing every date that had to do with your age, and destroying what you couldn’t forge.
After that, you slept, though not for long. Job searching was next on your list. Not expectedly, there weren’t many options for a high school dropout, but you had to have an income. Every bill imaginable was months behind, on top of the medical bills, the cost of the funeral, and the fact that your mother hadn’t had a substantial income in months. You barely even had money to buy food.
You found a job as a waitress within a week. With a better than average body, a cute face, and a wonderfully-feigned bubbly personality, you made rather nice tips. However, the inevitable happened. First, the car was repossessed. Now, you had no way to work. Second, the most valuable items of the home were taken — the computer, all of the matching furniture your mother had saved to buy for a couple of years, the dining room table, and anything else they could put their hands on. The only thing you managed to save was all of your mother’s jewelry, and that’s because you hid it in the nooks and crannies of the house. Things of lesser value were left, items like pots, pans, silverware, and an old lamp that was too worn to be worth anything.
Last, they took the house, your home since you were born, and gave you 48 hours to pack up what little you had left and leave. Never had you felt so alone and vulnerable as the day you stood in from of you home and knew it was no longer yours.
As a smart move on your part, you hadn’t even tried to chip away at the debt or pay the bills. It was a waste of money. With only a waitress’ salary, you would’ve lost everything anyway.
You immediately grabbed a paper and luckily found a studio apartment. It was cheap, and it at least came with a couch and a TV that got the basic news stations, along with a kitchen, so you could live off of instant ramen and cheap TV dinners for a while. Best of all, it was within walking distance of work.
But, having no seniority, hours were hard to come by. Everyday, you checked the papers for another job, but came up with nothing. Eventually, the money began to dry up. What was worse, the small diner you were working at was closing down. The owner had come out one afternoon and announced that you all had three weeks.
The day after, you began serving a man, a curious man in a business suit that returned every day after that for a week. He was short and seemed to be on his way to getting rather rotund. Stranger still, he requested that you be his waitress each time. You thought he was a stalker. He had to be.
However, when your shift ended one day, you exited the building, and he approached you. You were on your guard.
“I’ve been watching you work here. You are quite a beautiful young lady, if you don’t mind me saying,” he said, his smile wrinkling his face more than it already was.
“If you have a point, please make it,” you answered politely. “I’d like to get home.”
“Home alone, I assume?”
On the inside, you were shocked. Had this man really been stalking you? You tried to conceal it in you expression.
“Please, my dear, you needn’t be alarmed. You see, I make my living very simply, and in my experience, I’ve learned that lonely girls such as yourself have a certain air about them. I’ve also noticed you walk to work, meaning you must live somewhere in the area, and there aren’t any particularly nice places around here. If I do say, the area around here is very much declining into a slum.”
“Again, make your point.” You crossed your arms and began glaring slightly.
“You are beautiful, lonely, and rather poor. My point is that I make a living in scouting out girls such as yourself.” He reached into his jacket pocket and brought out a card. It had nothing but a number on it, but you placed it in your pocket all the same. “I can make certain that you are well paid, luxuriously dressed, and have a very nice place to reside.”
You blinked at him. “How?”
“It’s simple. You would only be called on by the wealthiest and most exclusive of the city’s inner circle to perform certain services.” He said this all with the most pleasant of expressions.
You were immediately furious. “You…” you fumed. “You want me to be a fucking slut.”
“No, my dear. Sluts aren’t paid for their work. You will be.”
“No.” You turned around. “I won’t.”
“You may say that now, but a day will come. I’ve seen dozens of girls just like you. You entertain these notions that you will somehow manage in this world. You retain your optimism until you wake up on day to find you have no running water, no electricity, and no food in the refrigerator. You will see.”
You had heard enough and refused to let this man carry on. You walked off, head held high, hoping to God that he had no idea what he was talking about. You really hoped.
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Beware of errors. I'm popping vicodin like House. I hope to have the next chapter up soon.
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