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  • Zoe

Vindicta : A woman's revenge

Fluorescent lights burned my teary eyes. The white sheets beneath my naked body stiff like paper. I shook, uncontrollably but I could not move. The sounds of the hospital rang through my ears. Morphine and anesthetic filled my body which felt more like a shell than a body at all. An empty, cold, shell.

I drifted into a drug-induced sleep. When I woke, time was indefinite. I slid my hand between my legs and silky blood congealed between my fingers. This was his only remanence now. Dark, warm blood. As I sobered, the emptiness somehow grew inside me like cancer. I recounted a conversation I had with my mother as a child,

‘Baby, one day a man will take everything you are. Then you will understand me.’

Her cigarette burning between her fingers. Her breath heavy with wine.


‘I understand’

I buried my head into the stale pillow and drifted back into a medicinal sleep.

When I woke again two doctors stood like soldiers at the end of the bed. Their faces as sterile as the room.

“Mrs Domican, how are you feeling?” His eyes studied the chart clutched between his hands.

Weakly I propped myself onto my elbow and stared vacantly at the two men. My shaking hand found my throat as I tried to speak.

“Your throat is very bruised Mrs Domican, it is reasonable that you may have trouble speaking for the next few days.” The Doctors eyes now meeting mine.

“Your injuries are quite extensive, four of your ribs are broken, as is your left clavicle. Your nose was broken and there is major bruising to your sternum and neck. The MRI of your brain showed no damage or bleeding thankfully. However, we regret to inform you that we were unable to save the baby.”

Even though I knew I had lost him, the words burnt my ears like hot iron. My heart pulsed ferociously, and tears swelled in my eyes. I breathed sharply and swallowed hard hoping it would prevent the tears from falling.

“We will be back for rounds in a few hours. If you need more pain relief or have any questions in the meantime, the nurses will be able to help you.” He placed the chart back over the end of the bed and headed towards the door. My eyes locked with those of the voiceless doctor. He gave me a quick, detached nod and followed his college.

The room was pressing in around me and the only thing I could hear was my heartbeat. Light and fast like footsteps fleeing into silence. I curled into a foetal position and cried myself back to sleep.

“Mrs Domican?” A sweet voice woke me from terrible nightmares.

My eyes adjusted to the harsh lighting of the room. Next to the bed stood a tall, voluminous woman with beautiful long blonde hair. Her hand on mine felt warm and comforting. Reaching behind her she pulled a chair over to the bed and nestled in. Her brown eyes kind, like melted chocolate.

“My name is Rosalie; I am one of the hospitals registered Psychologists.”

My brows creased quickly in confusion.

“In light of the accident and the loss of your baby Mrs Domican, your doctor and Met Pol think it would be best that we keep you in our mental health ward for your own protection.”

My body retracted from hers.

Her Welsh accent was thick, “I know this must be a lot to process, I want you to know that I am only here to help. You don’t need to go through this on your own. Is there anything you need or is there anyone I can call?”

I shook my head quickly, my eyes staring at her cold and lifeless. The only person I would want her to call was dead. The truth cruel and unforgiving.

“Mrs Domican” her hand searched for mine, “I cannot imagine what you are feeling, the loss of not only your husband but your unborn baby as well is unimaginable.”

She paused, her eyes encouraging me to say something. Moving her chair away from the bed slightly, she stood up, somewhat disappointed in me or herself.

“The accident you have experienced was incredibly traumatic, but I want you to know that I am here when you are ready to speak, the hospital has my number. I hope you are able to get some rest Mrs Domican. The nurses will escort you to the mental health ward within the next few days and I will see you then.”

I tried to smile, I appreciated her efforts but the emptiness within froze my face, like a cold stone statue.

We are all different. Accept and be proud of who you are rather than wishing you were more like someone else. Good mental health for all.

I read and reread the words on the poster, over and over and over again trying to drown out the words of the patients in group therapy.

“I’m sad, I don’t like the way I look”

“My parents didn’t love me enough”

“I use alcohol, so I don’t have to feel”

The emptiness that consumed me had turned into a red, burning rage. I didn’t belong here.

“Mrs Domican, would you like to share today?” The group leader asked, almost condescendingly.

I shook my head sluggishly, eyes fixated on the poster. The group continued to discuss their feelings as if it would pull the sadness from their bodies and disperse into thin air. Time moved slowly like a snail edging up a wall.

“Thank you all for sharing today and remember life is a direction, not a destination.” The group leader smiled largely, baring her yellow crooked teeth.

Returning to my room, I was stopped by a young nurse. Her face bright, kind and youthful.

“Mrs Domican, you have mail today.” She smiled sympathetically and her small hand touched my shoulder ever so slightly.

I liked Evangeline. She didn’t press me to speak like the other nurses and she bled this aura that was pure and ingenuous. I followed her to the nurse’s station and was handed a crisp white envelope reading, Nieve Domican in beautiful cursive writing.

Clutching the envelope tightly in my cold, bluish hands I headed to the hospital gardens. The overwhelming smell of lavender filled my nostrils, sweetly suffocating. Peonies covered the grounds like spattered paint against a green canvas. A charming swing seat stood delicately in the far corner of the gardens, covered in pink rambling rose. Settling into the swing, I closed my eyes, soaking up the warmth of the afternoon sun.

Dearest Nieve, I hope you are surviving your time at Nightingale Hospital. I wish that circumstances allowed me to come and visit. I want to tell you everything is okay, but I know that for you, it is not. I miss David more than I thought possible and I can only imagine how much his death saddens you.

Affairs are proceeding again as per usual. After the accident, we were slightly stagnant. The product was hard to move under police investigation. David’s death has caused ripples in business relationships – Nieve, I have found the man responsible. It has taken me longer than I would like to admit but I now would like to put the ramifications in your hands, if you’re willing to bear them. If you do not wish to oversee the consequences, of course, I will handle the matters as necessary.

I sincerely hope that your discharge comes soon. In the meantime, I will continue to communicate with you through letter. If there is anything you need, just say the word. My loyalty is forever to you and David – god rest his soul.

Best wishes,

Thomas Crawford.

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