As I lowered myself into the warm soapy water,  I remembered how his hands travelled down my body.

How long ago was it? Six - seven years? I can never remember exactly. My mind plays tricks on me like it doesn't want to remember; because that would be too painful.

Remembering and memory. Words that reverberate softly on the lips; but can initiate so much anguish and pain. Like his touch soft and pleading as he stroked my body - feel how much I love you as I caress your skin. Softly stroking my skin until each nerve ending was sensitized to his touch.

I'd never known what it was like to be desired until i met him. How alive my body had felt - like a light had been switched on inside. He told me I was beautiful - me the original ugly duckling! I told him he was drunk, but thanks anyway. He loved to breathe in the smell of my hair and nuzzle into my neck - all the time touching me with his hands. Stroking my back, arms and thighs until I was trembling and begging him to go further.

Then suddenly things changed.

I keep trying to pinpoint the exact time but my mind won't let me. I keep on digging around in it's darkest corners and just when I think i've found someting it slips, silently secretly further away.

I can remember the first time it happened - they say you always remember the first time!.

We were kissing and his hands were working their magic. Feel how much I love you. I was begging him to go further and suddenly a blinding pain in my left eye. I hadn't even realized he'd pulled away from me, because sometimes he would stop kissing me until I begged for more.

This time I was laughing and begging him not to stop, when I heard it. like a wooden meat hammer hitting raw steak. And  I felt it, oh boy did I feel it! I was screaming and asking him to stop what he was doing with those beautiful hands, those lovely hands. He told me to stop screaming or it would get worse.

I shut out the sound and closed my eyes to shut out the sight - and just let him do it. It was easier to pretend it wasn't happening to me; I simply shut down. And those hands kept on hurting me over and over again. Inside I was crying because he'd ruined everything, those hands that had made me feel so beautiful, so alive and so desirable, now made me feel worthless and ugly , so ugly.

I tried to find a reason why he'd turned something so beautiful into something so ugly; and all the time the sound of those hands hitting flesh, skin, my skin. My skin that he'd loved and caressed and kissed, he'd now blackened with bruises and reddened with blood. He'd made my skin look so ugly, I looked ugly. Swollen, mishaped, bloodied and raw.

And he covered his face with those hands and he cried.

Those beautiful hands - now bloodied and ugly, shut out the sight of the thing he'd made ugly. Then I cried too because remembering and the memories of those hands was too painful.

The End

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