I knew nothing about Domestic Abuse prior to my writing this story, However, when I did start doing Research I discovered that it is far more prevalent than I imagined. Many men, especially during the era in which the story is set ~ the late 1960's or early 1970's - actually believed that they had some sort of God Given right to own, punish and chastise, even torture, their womenfolk. What went on behind closed doors was nobody's business but the man's. Even today, although any Society that does the same is pointed at in self-righteous indignation, many men still feel the same way.
The Revelation ~ A Short Story from the Pen of Ralpapajan
The second part of a short series of short stories that deal with Man on Woman abuse that led up to the first Battered or Abused Woman's Shelter in 1971.
These are the three other stories that make up this series
They should be read in this order
The Abused ~ A Short Story from the Pen of Ralpapajan
This is the first in a series of four
The Sanctuary ~ A Short Story from the Pen of Ralpapajan
This is the third in a series of four
The Abusers ~ A Short Story from the Pen of Ralpapajan
This is the last in a series of four
In which a Man has his own character revealed and sees himself for what he is; a dissipated scion of an ancient family who has been spoilt by too much money and pleasure seeking without responsibiliy.
I slept like a log which was strange for me as I normally toss and turn on the first night in a strange bed.
When I woke up it took some minutes to orientate myself. This bedroom was the only one facing the Crescent and the curtains were open. It was still early and in the gloom I could only just make out the time on my watch. Nearly seven. I started to get up and then my memory kicked in. There were three guests in the Master Bedroom!
The memory galvanised me into action and I was soon up and dressed in my faded blue jeans and a golf shirt. I had dressed down when I started living at the Club. I found that girls were suspicious of men who dressed to well when they professed to be on a working holiday.
A thought came to me. I didn't want to go back to the Club. I didn't want that dissipated life any more. It shook me to the core. I thought about Sparrow in the next room. Was it her? No, not really; I thought of her as my daughter. Another shock. I was nearly 36. She was half my age and could indeed be my daughter. I thought back at my wasted life. Thank God I wasn't on drugs. Everything else but never drugs.
This young woman ~ I could hardly think of her as a girl though she truly was that; a girl who had lost her childhood ~ had, by showing me her own simple faith, transformed my own thoughts in an instant.
I got changed. I tossed the cheap faded jeans and the cheap golf shirt into a corner, then dug around in my suitcase for my only good clothes. A pair of black trousers I had made for me in Bond Street along with the white, Egyptian Cotton shirt from the same tailor, black underpants and black socks. I looked in the mirror and saw a rather good looking, though too pale, face, quite strong, though with the signs of dissipation around the eyes and mouth, surmounted by the shock of gold blonde hair. Hazel eyes, a remnant of my Ancestors, the Celts, who came to this fair land from Eastern Europe, stared back at me. The aquiline nose that I thought was aristocratic tended to be a bit too large in my opinion and the eyelashes too long. But all in all I was satisfied.
After brushing my wayward mop, and deciding to visit a barber as soon as possible, I took out my tie, the one I had made in America called by them a bola or some such with the Wolf's Head, taken from my Family's Coat of Arms, fashioned in solid silver and mounted on a jet enamel background. My hands shook slightly as I placed it around my neck, pulling the leather thongs up to allow it to nestle in the V of my shirt's collar. The cuff-links followed and my hands were shaking even more. As I dressed, it seemed as though my entire being was changing. I was a different person now from the member of the club. My handmade shoes followed and then the Turkish Leather hand tailored black jacket.
Quietly I opened the door to the Master Bedroom and was content to hear three sets of snoring coming from the huge bed. I closed it as quietly and made my way downstairs to the street and along Nevern Square to the Earls Court Station and the small shop that opened early and stocked a supply of groceries.
After buying cereals and some more instant coffee, bacon and eggs, milk and a few tins of this and that I went back to the flat to prepare breakfast.
It was the frying bacon that woke them all up. I was concentrating, for I am the world's worst cook. After all how does one learn domestic skills when he has been pampered by a domestic staff who looked after his every whim? And when I went on the Hippie Trail to the Himalayas we just threw things into a stew pot. I was the oldest there and the kids I was with thought I must be a Guru. All I went for was of course the experience and that I got plenty of.
My thoughts were a million miles away and I was startled to see a reflection in the chrome of the kettle. I turned and saw three faces, one bruised and battered, the other two angelic staring at me from around the door frame. All three mouths were open and I couldn't help thinking of a sparrow and its brood in a nest. I guess I must have looked funny to them, dressed in my finery with jacket replaced by a feminine looking apron,decorated with Panda bears on a bright red background, sleeves rolled up and cursing the gas stove for being too hot and my own lack of skill with the utensils.
I gestured for them to come in and they did so. She was in the black track suit, for after all she had no other clothes. I had put her wet ones into the washing machine together with mine but had forgotten all about them. the kids though were wearing hand towels wrapped around their tiny bodies almost as kilts and secured with large safety pins.
She saw my eyes widen with surprise and looked downcast. "I'm sorry," she said, "they wet the bed. So I took their clothes off and the only thing I could use were the towels.
"I am sorry," she repeated.
I laughed and said in what I hoped was a jocular tone, "And good morning to you three!"
She looked up at me and asked, somewhat hesitantly, "You aren't cross with me?"
"For the bed wetting, of course not. For not saying good morning, yes."
She looked bewildered and then gasped out, "I am sorry. Good morning."
She looked contrite and I hastened to reassure her."Stop apologising. You have nothing to be sorry about. I am the one who should be apologising. I have house guests and am serving some cereal that is probably made of cardboard and some completely ruined bacon, eggs, sausage, tomatoes and mushrooms served with burnt toast that I cooked too soon and that will probably be stone cold by the time you are ready to eat it."
"You could put it in the warming drawer," she suggested with a tentative little smile.
"Warming drawer? What's that?"
She pointed at the bottom of the stove. "There. That handle. Pull it out and you will see it is a drawer."
I did so and it was.
"Now switch on the heat." As I stared at the array of knobs she added, "The third one along." I twisted it. "Now put the platter in and put the plates into a sink full of hot water. They will be perfect when we are ready. And why are you using instant coffee when you have an amazing percolator?" I looked around in a daze. "That one that beautiful machine is a coffee maker."
"From now on you do the cooking," I muttered under my breath.
She heard me. "I will, I love cooking. I can understand that you know nothing about cooking here on earth living in Heaven as you do." I frowned at her and she raised her voice in exasperation. "Don't deny it," she said, I saw your portrait by that old painter, Raphael. I have heard of him. I saw his paintings at an exhibition once. You can see that painting is old."
I groaned inwardly. That painting had been commissioned by Harold after he saw one the original in Malta. It was of a Knight in armour with my coat of arms instead of the Crusader's Cross and had been painted by a friend of Harold's who was practising his own style of painting. he had aged the portrait and out my face with long billowing blond hair in place of the helmeted Knight's. My father was furious with him, more so when he saw the title painted onto the frame "The White Knight" and the signature Rafael in the corner at the bottom.
"I'll have no forgeries in this house, "He had shouted." When Harold had told him his friends name was spelt with an 'f' not 'ph' and it was, therefore not a forgery or even a copy, he wouldn't listen so Harold had taken the painting home and hung it on his own wall.
Breakfast went down well, all things considered. Sparrow and her kids wolfed the food down alarmingly fast.
"You didn't eat yesterday, do you?" I demanded.
She shook her head. "Nor the day before."
I was aghast. Where did you spend the night before last?"
"In a doorway. At the church. Then I just walked all day yesterday and went back to the church last night. I thought they would let me stay indoors but he didn't. He wanted me to be in the right place to meet you! If I had stayed there I wouldn't of."
I winced at the syntax error but said nothing. I also winced at the reference to being an angel. Strangely I felt my face go red.
She looked at me and suddenly asked me, "Robin, you call yourself, how old are you?"
A twinge if regret hit me and my immediate thought was that she was like all the others that I had been avoiding all my life - the gold-diggers who saw only my money and titles. At the club they just saw me not the wealth. Then common sense kicked in. She actually thought I was an angel and who would be setting her cap at and angel?
"No I mean your real age. You are obviously more than 500 years old. Raphael lived then and so did you. And only an angel can be so innocent that he blushes like you do."
This was beyond my ken. How to disillusion her?
I changed the subject.
"I am going home today," I told her, "I must see how the Manor House is faring. But before I go I will get you new clothes and enough food for a few days."
She looked downcast and I realised that she had remembered her situation.
There were tears in her eyes when she finally looked up at me. "I have no money, no home, they'll take my children away from me and give them to him."
I almost glared at her. "I do have money, too much money. So forget your worries. You have been through hell. Now you can leave that hell behind. It will take time but you'll make it. You will see. And I will be around to support you every step of the way."
She sniffled but didn't say anything.
I moved to the small table near the door where the mail was to be stored and picked up the pad there then grabbed a pencil. "Now," I said sternly, "make a list of the food you need for a few days. I will go and get it and then when I get back with I expect a list of whatever clothes you need for you and the kids. I only need the sizes. I will go and get that stuff and bring it back. Then I will be off."
"What happens after the few days? Where am I going to live?"
"Here for at least six months. My Housekeeper will arrange deliveries of food each week and fresh milk daily. I will visit you daily until you are well and then several times a week." I paused, not sure how to go on, then told her. "I have a doctor friend from Oxford. He will be coming to see you." Her eyes flared with alarm. "No need to worry. he in Harley Street and will not tell anyone anything. You need looking at and so do the kids. It will be tonight and I will be here as well." I hoped that Miles would be free but would persuade him somehow.
"You say you are not an angel," she said, staring at me. "If you aren't, then how can you arrange for all this?"
"Because, I am a Viscount and very, very rich."
She looked puzzled, so I told her the story of the portrait. Then I explained the car lights on my hair and at last, I could see the acknowledgement in her eyes.
"But why? Why did you help?"
"I have no idea," I told her brusquely. "But I will tell you one thing. You have done more for me just being you in the mess you are in than I can ever do for you."
She stared at me but I could not explain.
I took the list from her and left quickly after admonishing her to lock the door and make sure it was me when I came back. "Don't let anyone else in, you hear?"
I was only half an hour and bought a lot more than was on the list. Probably wasted, I thought. If she needed it she would have asked for it.
The Founder of Logotherapy ~ Viktor Emil Frankl
An explanation of this brank of Psychotherapy.
Logotherapy ~ an explanation
The Viktor Frankl Institute
Logotherapy today has spread all around the Globe and is used extensively to help the individual discover his or her Purpose in Life. I was introduced to it by a very good friend of mine who is a student at University in South Africa. I feel that she must e one of their star students for I have been privileged to read a small amount of what she has written, She was the main reason for my research into this entire subject. Please take the time to look at both videos and this site for this, too, could change your life as it has done for thousands of others,
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I always appreciate positive feedback about my stories. Please feel free to comment.
Thank you Panny for your kind words.
What a lovely story of human compassion and love for a fellow human in distress and her two small children! Thank you for sharing your amazing talent and the kind words mentioned after the video's. Logotherapy is the greatest healer I have ever come across and I'm grateful that you included it here!