Finding your Voice

The First 48

I have to admit I was shocked to hear a voice on the other end of the phone. I almost just deleted it, but something told me I should listen to them all just in case he, she, they finally said something. And he did. The voice came over the phone dripping with venom. It was slow and slurred and scary. My heart sank into my stomach and a veil of dread washed over me as I listened “You bitch, who do you think you are, you think you can get anyone you want don’t you? You think you can just waltz in and act like the bitch you are……” and it went on and on and on. Now clearly he didn’t know me cause I did in fact NOT get any man I wanted! I hung up the phone and my instinct was to immediately erase it, but I knew I had to keep it. Not just for proof that I was not insane and making up that this guy was nuts, but in case I went missing and they had to track my phone pinging it off cell towers as I lay in the back of his car taped up and gagged going to some remote cabin his late grand pappy left him. Jesus. What the hell is going on? I text my neighbor two doors down asking her to ask her police officer husband if there was anything I could do. Apparently I would in fact have to get threatened or actually kidnapped in order to be protected. Fantastic. I didn’t sleep at all that night and I laid there waiting for the phone to ring again, but it never did. The next night came and went and no phone calls, but the anticipation of a phone call kept me up anyway. A few more night went by and no calls and my guard started to stand down and I finally thought I could sleep. Then, night eight the phone rang in the middle of the night and it made me jump. I watched as it went to voice mail hoping that that stupid symbol didn’t pop up. Seconds later there it was. That tiny, flashing envelope telling me he was there, waiting for me. I pressed in my voice mail code and listened again in horror at the things he began to say, terrible, horrible, terrifying things. “You are such a bitch, I know where you live you know, I know where you’re from, you can’t hide from me forever…..” Hide? I hadn’t even thought of hiding. Where would I hide? Under my covers? This was way past creepy and weird and was now in the terrifying and maybe even under the guise of the show The First 48. I needed to do something NOW, but they don’t give jilted women like me guns and I was incapable of stabbing someone cause I don’t like making a mess. On the ninth night, nothing. Tenth night- nothing. A few more nights went by and there was nothing. Then I was getting ready for bed one night and my bedroom faced the street. I lived on a corner and there was a street light right outside my window. As I went to close my blinds to undress I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. Was there someone out there? Now I lived on a very active block with families and kids, close to an elementary school and a high school so there was always someone outside, but this was different. I could see the outline of a man just out of beyond the glow of the street light standing with his legs spread apart and hands in his pockets, his head slightly cocked to one side, but I couldn’t make out who it was. Now before I go and call 911 I thought maybe it’s someone just waiting for their dog to finish pooping. Maybe it was a teenager stopping to light a cigarette. I knew it was him though. I just knew it. And I wasn’t sure what to do. I went to look outside again and he was gone. Then the phone rang. I gasped out loud and almost came out of my skin. Hands shaking, I answered the phone and surprisingly I was instantly enraged “You sick bastard get the F away from me and my house. I swear to God I will kill you myself.” Now I may be all of 120 lbs. and fragile and not very threatening looking, but I am wily and unpredictable which makes me dangerous or at least that’s what I’ve always thought. I started screaming things into the phone my mother would have slapped me in the mouth for saying out loud, but my adrenaline was pumping and I couldn’t stop myself. Then the phone went dead. And after a few minutes of silence and me pacing my house I began to calm down. It was quiet for a while. I checked all the locks, looked in on the kids, got the dog and got back into bed. I turned off the light, took a long deep breath And then the phone rang again.

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