I’m afraid that your mouth is red, just under your nose where Chatter ripped the duct tape away, it couldn’t be helped. Chatter did right, if he’d pulled it gently, then it would have been far worse, but you have a square clown mouth for now.” I frowned at that and raised a hand to touch my mouth, the skin wasn’t only sensitive to touch, it hurt like a bitch.
“Bruises?” I croaked, wondering what was wrong with my voice.
“You have a bruised cheek and a black eye, several on your legs where you fought them tying you up. Your lips are split and puffy, and there’s a severe bruise on your vagina,” Doctor Gibbons said gently but bluntly.
“Did they rape me?” I asked. Chance stiffened at my side, and I glanced at him as I felt tears well up. Oh no, I didn’t think they had, but twice Tommy’s blows had stunned me, but Chance’s reaction frightened me.
“They did?” I whimpered.
“No sign of sexual trauma was found Clio, you did state to Chatter they hadn’t raped you.”
“I did? It’s muzzy after Tommy punched me in the mouth,” I frowned trying to make the memories clearer. Chance went even stiffer.
“What’s wrong?” I asked puzzled.
“Clio, I’m Detective Emilio Hawthorne. You don’t remember Chance or Hellfire finding and rescuing you?” the other man asked, studying me carefully.
“I keep having snatches of memory, a man cutting my arms free, Chance being there and then being gone. Sounds and smells, a loud voice roaring, fighting…” my voice broke, and I glanced at Chance’s knuckles. They were bruised, and the skin broken. No, oh no!
“He didn’t mean it, whatever Chance did, he didn’t mean it, he was protecting me. You can’t arrest him for saving me, you can’t!” I babbled beginning to get upset. I clutched Chance’s arm hauling myself upright.
“Clio,” Leslie said, her hand to her mouth in distress.
“Don’t let him take Chance, Leslie, please don’t. It’s my fault, I was stupid, don’t arrest him,” I begged, and I swear I saw compassion in Detective Hawthorne’s eyes.
“Clio, sweetness, Lio won’t arrest anyone. He’s a friend, and Lio’s here to get your statement. He needs to understand what happened so he can charge them,” Chance soothed his free hand, stroking my hair and back. My eyes were wide as I turned to the Detective.
“Promise you won’t arrest him.”
“I won’t, but Chance may face assault charges. With the circumstances, Chance will get a pass, no one could blame him for what happened.” I choked back a sob; I’d got Chance into trouble.
“Sweetness, I’d do it again. Can you give Lio and his partner Phil a statement? They need to know exactly what happened from the time you were taken,” Chance said. Carefully he shifted me over on my bed and climbed up next to me and wrapped me in his arms. That felt so good. Chance swamped me, and I should have been afraid, but I wasn’t, I felt safe and warm and relaxed. I realised everyone was waiting for my answer and nodded.
“I got to get back Chance, no doubt in the time I’ve been gone, Rage or one of their women have done something. It’s a good job we’ve got Doc Paul,” Doc Gibbons said, and Detective Hawthorne snorted.
“Doc Paul’s run ragged looking after my cousins and our crazy assed females,” Lio grinned. That sounded like a story, actually two stories I wanted to hear about.
“Yeah, I’d have come anyway, even without Doc Paul, but I need to get back. No doubt the female Hawthorne’s have burned Rapid City to the ground by now,” Doc Gibbons grinned and wrote something down on a pad. He tore it from the pad and passed it to me.
“This is my number sweet girl, if you need me, call me any time. If you lose the number, don’t worry, Chance has me on speed dial.” The man gave me a gentle smile and left.
“He doesn’t work here?” I asked. Leslie took his space and sat down at my side in a chair. Her hand reached out and grasped the one Chance didn’t hold.
“No, Doctor Gibbons is a friend of Chance’s cousin, Drake. Chance called him, and he came as a favour to Chance,” Leslie replied. There was a scrape as Detective Hawthorne pulled a chair and sat at the end of the bed. Another man walked in carrying his own chair.
“I’m Detective Phil Gold. I’ll be conducting the interview Clio, are you okay with that? Chance and your friend Leslie can stay if you wish.” he said kindly, and I nodded. Chance tightened his grip and then relaxed.
“I’m going to record this Clio and take notes, it will be easier for you. Start with Friday, what did you do?” Phil asked.
“After I visited the bank to pay my money in, you’re aware of that?” I received nods. “After, I went to a burger bar and picked up groceries so I could bake. I thought I was being followed but couldn’t see anyone, it was strange. When I got home, the feeling intensified, but I made it upstairs without seeing anyone. I let myself in and began to bake brownies and cupcakes.
The timer buzzed, and I was removing the trays out of the oven when there was someone behind me. He put a hand over my mouth, and I dropped the trays. I tried to fight him, but he was bigger than me. Ron dragged me out of my apartment and into his, and that’s when I realised it was Ron. He slapped me across the face, and I fell to the floor.” I stopped talking, remembering the horror when a near-naked Ron had hit me.
“You’re doing okay, Clio, take your time,” Phil coaxed.
“Ron dragged me up, and we struggled as he tried to pull my clothes off, he was insanely strong, and he won. I was so scared when he stripped me to my underwear, I thought he was going to rape me. Instead, he dragged me into his bedroom and tied my arms to his bed. Ron sniffed some drugs and then fell to sleep, leaving me there all night. My arms hurt so much.” My arms and shoulders still hurt; Doctor Gibbons hadn’t mentioned them.
“You’ve got strain injuries on your arms and shoulders, sweetness, being tied up that long will hurt. Doc wasn’t worried, he said to take it easy and you will,” Chance promised.