Fingers beating out a tune on the steering wheel, the scruffy-chinned Shaggy wannabe slowed us to a stop at the side of the road. Confused, I turned as red and blue flashing lights screamed by the bright blue Kia Soul carrying me home.

“Whoa. Three cop cars.” An ambulance speeding by interrupted the driver’s awe. “Ambulance. Hope that’s not gonna delay us too much.”

“It’s gonna delay whoever needs them far more than us, don’t you think?” My derisive chuckle filled the car. Our eyes met in the rearview mirror.

“Yeah, you got me there, man. Ma’am.” He grinned at my wry expression. “Sorry…miss. Better?”

“Even my Mama would kick your ass for calling her ‘ma’am,’ Danny.” I made a point of using the name the app gave me.

He shook his head and told me, “And my Mama would have my head for calling her anything else.”

I shook my head with a grin, staring up at the night sky. Stars twinkled through the trees. Memories of happier days shimmered at the edges of my mind.

Cars whizzed by, making up for time lost while waiting for the emergency vehicles. One, a light-coloured hatchback, slowed beside us. The driver looked over. Our gaze met. He grinned, eyes shining in the glow of the streetlights. I gulped, wondering if he noticed me. I sank back in relief as his car left us behind.

Danny took us past houses, set back from the road. They flashed by, moving closer together as we sped towards the city. A city, and a home, I dreaded returning to.

Its been nice to escape for a while. My reflection frowned. I hated to think of my home as a prison, but it’s what it was. Not just for me, either. I needed to remember who the actual victim was and why I was doing what I was doing.

A couple of lefts. A right. And we stopped behind a minivan. Last in a long line of cars. Inch by inch, we crawled along the dark, oddly familiar street.

I sat up, back rigid, panicked eyes widening as we passed the large garbage cans on the other side of the white picket fence.

Frantic, my eyes scanned the houses we passed at a snail’s pace. I recognized it now. Knew why it looked familiar.

“Hey, those must be the cop cars that passed us earlier.” Danny pointed up ahead. I followed his lead and caught sight of four cop cars, a firetruck, and an ambulance in the driveway of a large manor home coming up on our right.

Two police officers stopped traffic, directing a black hearse up from behind us and into the home’s driveway.

Eight-inch letters on the passenger door proclaiming CORONER identified the vehicle.

“Whoa. Someone must’ve died. I’ve never seen a dead body before.” A shiver ran down my spine at his words. “Wonder what happened?”

He craned his neck, trying to discover what was going on as we crept along the road. Past the driveway of the large house. I thought I’d never see it again.

“Holy shit. That’s a dead body right there.” Quiet, reverent, his voice rang through the interior as if he’d screamed it, one hand pointing out the window to the gurney carrying a black body bag.

I followed his gaze, but I wanted to glance away. My eyes looked past the end of his finger, although I needed to ignore what was going in that driveway.

But I didn’t.

Nope. I looked over. Witnessed the body sliding into the hearse. Knew it was wrinkled from soaking in a hot tub too long. Water he’d been sitting in bloody from two gaping slits in his wrists.

I rubbed my icy fingers, clasping them in my lap. My eyes roamed the scene in the driveway as Danny recited a running commentary of what he saw to me. I gasped as my eyes met jade green ones, narrowed in anger. He brushed ebony hair from his eyes. Hateful smirk on his face, he nodded to me.

His promise of see you soon, gorgeous, as loud as if he’d called it across the street. Dread ran down my spine.

“Come on, Danny. I’ve got a date to get ready for. Can we get a move on?” Desperate to get away. Unable to tear my eyes from his. I stared out the back window until I couldn’t see him any longer. His brilliant green eyes haunted me all the way home.


Danny sped off as I ambled up the driveway, sidling between my lipstick red Mustang and Ivy’s electric blue Rav-4.

Shit. Jules is having a dreadful night. My heart sank when I saw Ivy was still there. The sound of my sister, mid-psychotic episode, slammed into me as I stepped into the not-so-quiet house. These are happening more often these days.

I dropped my purse onto the front hall table. Kicked my heels under it. Grimaced at my worn reflection. Bare feet slapping against the cool ceramic tile, I padded into the kitchen.

Ivy’s placating tone, raised to be heard, squeezed my heart. Julia’s screams shattered it. Daddy leaned against the counter, Mama in his arms. They clung to one another. Daddy looked at the ceiling, tears in his eyes. Mama’s were closed, lips moving as she prayed with all her might.

Not that prayers did any of us any good. I haven’t prayed since the night Julia came home from the hospital, the last time anyone answered my prayers.

“How long this time?” I dragged a hand down my face, swallowing a lump of anger. They didn’t answer. They never did.

Julia changed that night. Irrevocably. Those assholes got away with destroying a beautiful light meant to guide a generation. Instead, she sat wilting away in a dark room.

“I hate them, Daddy.” Venomous and cold, my gaze brought my father to his knees.

He shook his head. “No, baby. Don’t let them take anything else from us. We’ve given up enough.” He wasn’t wrong. The monsters who took my baby sister from us left a cloud of sadness surrounding our home. It grew denser and more pervasive every day.

Daddy couldn’t convince me to change my thinking. Not now. Never. I knew what needed doing.

And I was doing it.

“They’re not taking anything from me, or us, ever again, Daddy.” He gasped at the evil glint in my eye. My pious, compassionate, and forgiving father saw to my soul in that moment. He crossed himself, much as I’d done several times in the last week.

I shook my head, ignoring the despair etched in the lines around his eyes. He recognized the truth I felt in the depths of my soul. A reality he ignored, and I embraced.

There was no saving my immortal self. No redemption for the wickedness I’d done. No forgiveness for the sins I’d committed.

I turned to go upstairs, one hand on the railing, and Daddy whispered, “My darling girl, what have you done?”

“What needed doing, Daddy.” Shoulders back. Head held high. Serene smile on my face, I revealed the darkness in my heart. “What no one else would.” I trod up the stairs to help Ivy calm Julia down.

Quick peek into my bedroom. I smiled at the peaceful, serene space. Satisfied everything was as it should be, I pulled the door closed with a muttered, “Stay asleep, love. Please.”

A sleepy sigh was my only answer. It was enough. I turned away and headed to Julia’s room.

Her screams shook the house. Something hit the wall, crashing to the floor. I thanked my foresight at having every breakable object removed from her suite.

Ivy’s voice, even and soothing, wafted out to me. She was working every angle, trying to talk Julia down from the proverbial ledge she perched on. Julia was inconsolable.

Daddy’s voice carried up the stairs to me. “Samy, we’re going to the diner. Grab a coffee and a cinnamon roll.”

And you want me to call you when shes quiet, and its safe to come home, right? I sighed, resentment over how Daddy and Mama walked away from Julia and her troubles settled into the pit of my stomach. They couldn’t cope with it, with her, so they washed their hands of her. Of it all.

She deserves better, Daddy. And you know it. They both knew it, but were so entrenched in their faith, their beliefs rendered them powerless to help her. Or maybe just unwilling.

The Church of the Risen Angels, the religious organization they forced Julia to join with them when she was a senior in high school, renounced Julia after what happened.

Brother Abram, self-proclaimed spiritual leader of the bogus church, told them Julia was unclean because of what happened. That she was unworthy of their love and help. He claimed her actions led to her victimization at the hands of those monsters.

And Mama and Daddy believed him. I’ve never been sure who I hated more when they turned their back on their youngest daughter. My parents or Brother Abram. They’ve done nothing to help Julia survive, or seen a reason to help her. It’s been me and Ivy every step of the way.

I shook my head in disgust as the front door closed behind them. Daddy’s ancient Silverado roared to life, clunking down the street towards the neighbourhood diner. With a sigh, I slipped into Julia’s room, nodded at Ivy, and took stock of the situation.

My beautiful baby sister stood in the middle of her bedroom, devoid of all furniture. Clothes strewn all over the floor. Books torn, their pieces littered the patchy, bald carpet. Tendrils of smoke drifted up from the metal garbage can by the window.

Ivy, tears streaming down her face, stood by the door. She turned tortured eyes to me. My heart ached for her. I pulled her in for a hug, rubbing her back.

“What happened, Ive?” I watched Julia over her lover’s shoulder. “What set her off?”

It took her a minute to gather herself, then she explained, “She was sitting, staring out the window. Like always. Then, maybe an hour ago, she started panicking. Like she did in the beginning.”

Julia walked to the window, pulled her hand back, and punched it, screaming, “Leave me alone! Leave me alone!” She dropped to her knees, head in her hands, and sobbed.

“Tell me the rest, Ivy. I need to know.” Chest constricting, my heart ached for my sister and her lover. Lives suspended by a horrific event that should never have occurred.

“I stood beside her and saw a guy standing down on the sidewalk. He was looking up at her window. Like he knew her.” Ivy chewed her bottom lip and pushed away from me, shaking her head. “She knew him, Sam. She was trembling. Terrified.”

Julia curled into a ball on the floor. Her defence pose. When she couldn’t cope anymore, she curled up into the fetal position. It was how the cops found her a couple of hours after her attackers left her to rot.

“The guy left. Just got in a car and left. Weirdest thing, Sam. Truly.” Ivy picked Julia’s favourite blanket, a fleece quilt Ivy made her for the birthday before her attack. Her description made my skin crawl.

“Did you get a look at him? Or the car?” I ran my shaking hands through my long, dark hair, finger-combing the tangles out. Eyes closed, I could see those haunting green eyes staring back at me.

Ivy shot me a curious look, then confirmed my worst fears. “He was tall. Dark hair. Got into a white or yellow hatchback.” Head tilted, she studied me. “Why, Sam?”

Goddammit. I froze. An icy bucket of water spilled down my spine.

Images of jade-green eyes ran through my mind. The narrowed look Jax shot me at The Pit. The foreboding expression as he passed my Lyft on the drive home. Hatred as we stared at each other when I passed the house I’d left Nelson at. They found him. I could only hope I was diligent enough.

Gaze unwavering, my blue eyes on my sister from another mister, I pulled myself together. Ivy didn’t need me to fall apart on her now.

“It’s nothing, Ive. Honest.” I settled beside my sister and pulled her close. “What else did she say?”

“Well,” she closed her eyes, swallowed hard, and spoke, “she told me what happened that night. Finally.”

Before Ivy could say anything else, Julia stirred in my arms. She leaned back to look at me. Pain and terror shone in her haunted blue eyes. Fingernails dug into my arm. It hurt to see the broken woman before me.

Voice raspy from disuse and months of silence, hoarse from sporadic screaming fits of fear and rage, Julia told her tale. Lifeless. Indifferent.

Two guys danced with me sandwiched between them. Bought me drinks. Invited me to join them and their friends.

I was drunk. Really drunk. 

The two guys Id danced with, and their two friends, took me out to the parking lot. They forced me to my knees and took turns fucking my mouth. My lips were bleeding. They were so brutal with me.

Once theyd finished laughing as I gagged on their cocks and their cum, they fucked me. Repeatedly. Doggy-style. Up against the big oak we were under. One held me while another fucked me. 

The things they said to me. Called me horrible names. Told me I was a woman and needed a cock to be complete. Said I was only half a woman and should die because I liked pussy. 

The black-haired one told me I needed to be taught a lesson, as two of them shoved their cocks inside me at once. He pinched my nipples, laughing when I screamed in pain.

Dont know how many times they fucked me. Eventually I just…checked out. Next thing I remember is waking in the hospital.

Ivy and I both knew she’d endured much more that night. Things they did to her were disturbing. Traumatizing. It wasn’t just their cocks they used on her. They used any implement that could fuck her, including a tire iron and her own wedge-heeled sandals.

Julia watched my face as I absorbed her words. Her eyes clouded over. Worry over what I would think of her pushed tears from her eyes. Nothing she said was news to me. I’d never told her I read all the police and medical reports. One perk of fucking a deputy that loved your lips wrapped around his dick.

“Don’t you worry about a thing, Jules. We know what they did. What they think they got away with.” I kissed her hair as the doorbell rang below us. “And trust me when I say they didn’t get away with shit, okay?”

She reared back, eyes narrowed, mouth open and ready to respond when the doorbell rang. Unusual during the day. Unheard of after seven at night.

My heart pounded in my chest. Hands went clammy. I stood in slow motion, waving Ivy away from the door.

“You stay with Jules. She needs you right now.” I shot Ivy a wink and padded out the door, closing it behind me.

A noise from my bedroom caught my ear. I listened, hand on the doorknob, until the sniffling and whining settled down.

Sure hope whoever this is doesnt stay long. I touched the door, hoping the room stayed peaceful a little longer.

Ball of dread settled in my belly. Chill ran up my spine. Something was a-foot. I didn’t like it.

Not one bit.

Steps faltered as I approached the front door. Worry licked at the corners of my mind. I tried to see who it was behind the frosted glass.

Chain engaged, I pulled the door open and gasped. He grinned, leaned one hand on the doorjamb just above my head, and gave me a long, meandering once-over. Pink tongue darted out to lick his lips, and he settled on my eyes.

“Hello Livvie… or do I call you Sam at home? Remember me? Jax.” Luminescent green eyes bore into my blue ones. I swallowed hard. He waited a beat and then said, “As you saw tonight, they found Nelson in the hot tub. Where are they going to find Kyle? Any ideas, Sam?”

His emphasis on my name pulled me from my stupor. He slammed his palm onto the door as I pushed it closed.

“Now, is that any way to treat a friend here to visit your sister, Sam?” Fearful, I pushed the door harder, and he snapped, punching it. Sound of splintering wood tore the chain from the old wooden door.

He burst into the house, slammed and latched the door behind him. “Now, where’s Julia? I’d love another run at her pussy.”

Something hit the door upstairs. Jax laughed. Eyes bright with a mix of desire and a fiendish glint. He turned and ran up the stairs. Two at a time. Until he stood before Julia’s suite and spared me a glance over his shoulder, then threw the door open.

“Hello, gorgeous. Ready for more?” Teeth shining, he flashed her a grin and took one step forward.

Hands to her head, Julia fell to her knees, sobbing. Hysterical.



For all installments of “Revenge on a Platter,” click here.

Previous installments:

  1. Part 1
  2. Part 2
  3. Part 3