Two months into the sentence, what I had been dreading finally came. He woke me, in the middle of the night. Told me to keep my mouth shut, or he'd shut it permanently.
I rather liked my mouth and the things it could do, so I stayed quiet. That night was quite possibly the worst of my life. Beating the one when Maggie and I's parents died.
I shouldn't have been so honest with the guy I later reflected. Should have told him I was in for mass murder or something.
Admittedly I don't know the french word for homicide, but with enough charades, I think it may have been believable.
I told him this the day after and he laughed at me. He said it wouldn't have changed anything, I think he meant it as a compliment but it made me sick.
The rest of the inmates seemed to know what had happened that night, and a few gave me shifty looks. I was here for three years. Three whole years.
Three birthdays, three Christmases, three Easters. The thought made me want to curl in a ball and cry. But everyone watches each other. Every minute of everyday.
And if the rest of the prisoners aren't watching you, the guards are.
The french word for homicide, it turns out, is in fact homicide.
I later found out that the man who had raped me's name was Georges. He didn't ask for mine, so I didn't tell him. A week later, I turned twenty one.
As I tried to fall asleep, I thought of Maggie, celebrating her birthday alone in her cell. How had our lives gone so wrong in such a short time? I wanted to cry again.
I had told Georges it was my birthday today a few days before. He had nodded and wished me a happy birthday.
He came over to my corner of the cell again that night. I could hear him walking over but I pretended not to. I knew he liked it when he thought he'd surprised me.
I wanted to tell him that it wasn't exactly a surprise when he came to visit me every second night, but when I began to mention our night time activities he'd punch me.
Now he didn't need to resort to violence. Nowadays he could give me a look and I'd be putty in his hands.
The stare he gave me, the control he had over me made him feel like my uncle. He'd always tried to stop me doing what I wanted to.
Maybe I should have just listened, and I wouldn't be in such a mess. Now that I had turned twenty one, the court said I was allowed visitors. I hoped to God my Aunt and Uncle didn't turn up.
It would be too humiliating.
They didn't show up, which was a huge relief, though a little disappointing. They didn't care enough about me to visit. My uncle was probably burning his way through my money as he usually did.
I wondered if they'd gone to visit Maggie. They probably had.
It was Christmas Eve of the same year and I had been incarcerated for over six months with no contact outside the cell. I had finally made some friends.
Georges didn't count, though we did sit together most days, talking about what we were going to do when we were let out of here.
Georges of course, was in for life, but he had hopes of escaping one day. A man named Jacques joined our conversation occasionally.
Jacques was the polar opposite of Georges, but they got on well enough, and they both seemed to like me too so I wasn't complaining.
Jacques had stolen a diamond bracelet to help feed his family who were poor and hungry. He'd been given five years by a lenient judge.
Jacques talked about his family a lot and I liked to hear about them. His wife Anais and their three children, Fleur, Robert and Jacques Jr. They sounded wonderful.
They all had hair the colour of the setting sun, Jacques said and were the best people on the earth. I in turn told him about Maggie and what I could remember about my parents.
Jacques said he'd like to meet Maggie one day and he told me where his family lived so that I could find him when I got out.