Disclaimer: I own nothing.

Author's note: thought I'd give this one a bit of a revamp, which is almost like updating (there is a chapter four on the way). Its either that or study for my 50 exam tomorrow…


Jackie looked nervously down at her shoes; she couldn't help noticing how shabby they were, scuffed and dirty. Mummy would have scolded her, Mummy, Daddy. Tears rose unbidden to fill her eyes. She could hear footsteps approaching, the wooden floors, rare these days, echoed terribly, she'd noticed that when the lady had brought her in and bade her "Sit and Wait!". The footsteps were coming closer and Jackie couldn't stop the tears that were starting to choke her from spilling over. Mummy. Daddy. She curled into a ball and started to quietly sob…

A slight whistling was the only warning of the blow that was aimed at her, Jackie cried out in shock and pain; four more blows followed the first, then a voice.

" There will be no crying in this institution!" It spat.

Jackie raised herself up on trembling arms; she looked up into a pinched, white face, and knew in her heart that these would not be the last blows she would receive at St Maria's Institution for Unclaimed Minors.


Shivering in terror Jackie clutched the starchy white blankets to her chin, she could hear the slow ponderous footsteps she had learned to dread coming up the stairs.

Please not tonight, not us, not tonight, go away. Keep going, pleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleasepleaseplease…

Jackie's silent litany was interrupted by the sound of the door opening.


At the start of her third year at The Institution Jack had found out that there was more to fear from Father Roberts then his whisley cane. She had finally found out why the older girls did not laugh, or talk, or play. She found out why the pretty ones hid during the night, in the cupboards, the bathrooms, sometimes even in the roof, anywhere they could find. And she found out what Sophia's warning had meant.

"Never be alone, Jackie. Find friends, but never trust 'em." She had said, "Never tell a soul, Jackie, what happens in the night. And when He comes for you, don't dare scream."

Sophia was gone now; she had died during the last bout of fever to sweep through the orphanage. Between moaning and screaming she had told Jackie this, and now she finally understood. The footsteps traveled past her bed and Jackie didn't dare let out the sigh of relief that was in her lungs. He could still come back, when he'd finished. The footsteps had stopped. Jackie could hear sobbing start at the end of the dormitory, a soft voice was talking. The creak of a mattress sounded like a gunshot in the still air of the dorm. The sobbing was louder now. Jackie rolled over and tried to block out the sounds she knew were coming.


Jackie stared into the darkness, her terror had turned into panic, panic into blind fear, and blind fear into shock.

God nooooooooooo… Her mind wailed.

…………………….

He was coming closer now; she could hear his footsteps, hear the door opening. Words streamed through her mind, a prayer, as if the Lady would care. God never showed his face in this Hell.

O Mary, my Mother and my Lady, I offer You my soul, my body, my life and my death and all that will follow it. I place everything in Your hands…

Jackie tried to stifle the scream that was building in her chest; her hands clutched the thin mattress that was her only protection against the sharp, rusted springs of the cot. They were still coming.

O my Mother, cover my soul with Your virginal mantle and grant me the grace of purity of heart, soul, and body…

The footsteps had stopped.

Defend me with Your power against all enemies, and especially against those who hide their malice behind the masks of virtue…

The sheet was pulled out of her numb fingers and she felt the cool air of the dorm brush against her toes.

Fortify my soul, let pain not break it. Mother of grace, teach me to live by God's power.

"Amen." The confirmation slipped almost unheard from her frozen lips.

She could feel long fingers pulling up her nightgown. Up. Past her ankles, goose flesh swept her body. Up. Past her knees. She started to sweat, clamminess had broken out on her skin. Up. Past her hips, terror was preventing her from crying out. Up. Over her budding breasts, nipples ridged with fear. Up

O Mary, a terrible sword has pierced Your holy soul. Except for god, no one knows of Your suffering. Your soul does not break; it is brave, because it is with Jesus…

Her cotton knickers were pulled down around her ankles and a hand was placed across her mouth…

Sweetest Mother, continue to teach me about the interior life…

A hand was stroking her body, harder and harder, words, to low to hear, were whispered in her ear. Pinching, groping fingers played over her breasts and moved down her abdomen…

May the sword of suffering never break me…

Jackie felt her legs pushed up, and then open; a harsh groaning sound was coming from above her…

O pure virgin, pour courage into my heart and guard it…

Her legs were wretched wider, the springs of the bed moaned as another body crawled onto it. Jackie gripped the rusted frame of her bed; in her terror she didn't notice the pain in her palms, or the blood dripping onto the floor.

Amen…

Jackie broke out of her paralis, and forgetting all else, she screamed…


If anyone is still with this story, thank you. if you would like to let me know your opinion on the changes, please review.