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16+ Mature Content

How To Say No: Prologue

by LJF

Warning: This work has been rated 16+ for mature content.

(A/N: Trigger Warning! This story deals with serious sexual abuse. It is not, in any way meant to promote, encourage, condone, approve, or make light of abuse in any shape or form. If you or anyone you know is being sexually abused, call the National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-(800)-656-4673 or the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-(800)-799-7233.)

Her first time was in a hotel room.

They’d gone away on a trip, just the two of them, and she’d been so excited. They’d spent the whole day at the amusement park, and she’d been so happy-- she hadn’t been able to spend much time with him lately.

They went on every roller coaster-- some of them twice-- and he’d held her hand the whole time. She’d never felt more treasured.

“Thank you so much,” she’d told him on the shuttle ride back to the parking lot, “This was the best day ever!” Then she’d stretched upward and kissed his cheek. “I love you sooooooo much!”

“I love you too,” he’d said, smiling.

She’d jabbered his ear off the entire car ride to the hotel. She’d talked about how jealous all of her friends were that she’d gotten to go on this trip with him. She’d spent several minutes trying to come up with a name for the giant stuffed bear he’d won for her at one of the carnival booths. And she’d told him she loved him more than anyone else in the entire universe.

By the time they got to the hotel, she’d been so exhausted he’d had to carry her up to their room.

She’d woken up an hour or two later to find his arm wrapped around her, holding her close. She’d rolled over and seen him looking at her with an expression she didn’t quite understand.

“Hey sleepyhead,” he’d said as she hugged him. It was only then that she’d realized he wasn’t wearing a shirt.

It wasn’t as if she’d never seen him shirtless, but she’d never been hugging him at the time. She’d suddenly felt awkward and let go, moving out of his arms.

“What’s wrong,” he’d asked, confused.

“You’re not wearing a shirt,” she’d said, matter-of-factly. “How come?”

“It’s more comfortable sleeping this way,” had come his repy. “Why don’t you try?”

Hesitantly, she’d pulled off her dress. He’d been right-- the cool air did feel good on her skin. He’d given her another incomprehensible look, flipped the lightswitch on the table beside him, and hugged her again.

“Is this okay?” he’d asked.

Years later, she would look back and see this moment as the turning point. She’d remember every detail-- the darkness that made it impossible to read his face properly, the gentle sound of his voice, her desire to make him happy-- and wonder what would have happened if she had done things differently. If she had said no, would that have been the end of it? Would he have accepted it and gone back to the other bed? Would anything have changed?

But she didn’t say no. She didn’t say no when he’d pulled off his pants. She didn’t say no when he carefully brushed her hair off her shoulder and kissed her there. She didn’t say no to anything he asked her that night, and ask he did. “Is this okay?” he’d asked as he ran his fingers down her stomach. “Is this okay?” he’d asked as he shifted positions so she was directly beneath him.

And she’d said yes. Every time he’d asked, she’d said yes. She’d loved him so much, and she’d trusted him more than anyone else. If this was what he wanted, then of course she would say yes.

They’d cuddled before, of course, and she’d fallen asleep in his arms more times than she could possibly count. But never anything like this.

Suddenly, she’d felt a jolting pain and cried out.

“I’m sorry,” he’d said, “Are you okay?” She’d nodded, too weak to verbally respond. He’d been okay, and so would she.

When it was finally over, he’d pulled his pants back on, hugged her again, and whispered “I love you” in her ear.

She fell slept curled up in his arms.

Her first time was in a hotel room, and she’d never felt more loved.

“I love you too, Daddy,” she mumbled as she fell asleep.

She was six years old.

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108 Reviews

Points: 13147
Reviews: 108

Sun Aug 18, 2019 5:20 pm
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Asith wrote a review...

It's been a while since a story has actually made me gasp out loud. And I suppose that was the point of this, so I'm here to say that it works.
I don't really have much to say, but it feels unjust to leave without saying anything, especially since I'd like to talk about a point that was brought up in the review below me. They say that you didn't detail the setting enough, but personally -- and this may just be me -- I much prefer it with the lack of a defined setting. It shows that sexual abuse can happen anywhere, and anywhen. I think that's ideal for the message here. The title says "prologue", so perhaps you're planning on writing more about the character in the present, in which case an obvious setting will be necessary (which is likely what the other reviewer below me was getting at, whom I do not mean to offend in any way), but for the prologue to stand on its own, I like it this way. I read it as a short story - one with a strong, dark theme that needs to plant itself in people's heads. I don't think holding their hands through the description of the location is going to help with that. And again, the feeling of realising that abuse can happen everywhere is invaluable.
That aside, I just have to say the piece was excellent. My first and second read-throughs were so drastically different; you did a great job of writing a story with a secret

LJF says...

Yeah, my general style is to write vague prologues, often set years before (or after) the main storyline, with just enough information to tease the reader and make them curious for more. Most of the time I don't even use names, and I'll almost always end with some sort of twist or thought-provoking hook. For me, prologues are always the easiest part, and I'll often write them as soon as I get an idea for a new story, even if I never write anything else for it.

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1234 Reviews

Points: 2948
Reviews: 1234

Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:26 pm
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Elinor wrote a review...


Here for this your review as requested.

Oof, okay. You weren't kidding when you said it would be dark. Because this is is a prologue, and you reference years later, I'm assuming this is only the beginning of main character being abused. There's so much I'm curious to know. Where is the mother in the picture? Has anything ever happened like this before? Does she have any siblings? I would name the protagonist as soon as possible too. Also, while I sort of like that it's a reveal at the end that it's her dad, as a reader I'd almost prefer an approach where it's just a father and daughter at an amusement park, so we don't necessarily see what's coming right away until it does.

The main comment that I would give to you is more detail. Not in the assault itself. I think it was handled tastefully, but in the characters, the world, etc. What year is this? There's nothing to specify, so right now it could either be 2019 or 1952. You mention they'd been on every roller coaster, some of them twice... well, if this was Disneyland, there was no way that would have been possible in a single day. And a couple of the run of the mill amusement parks I've been two only have one or two coasters, so I would make sure that the reader understands the setting very clearly.

I would recommend watching the movie "Trust", which deals with similar themes. While the MC is a bit older in that film (14) and her abuser isn't her dad, I think it does a good job of dealing with the mindset of what someone would go through afterwards and how they would justify it when they're that young. Lolita is good too (the 1962 version) but because that film is a bit older nothing is shown and everything is implied, but it still works.

Don't hesitate to reach out if you have any questions! Keep writing. And please feel free to tag me when you post future parts!


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25 Reviews

Points: 73
Reviews: 25

Wed Jul 24, 2019 12:37 am
LJF says...

A/N: I will generally try to avoid being graphically explicit in this story. However, due to the sensitive subject matter, it will be rated 16+ for mature content.

I have a Gumbie Cat in mind, her name is Jennyanydots; Her coat is one of the tabby kind,with tiger stripes and leopard spots.
— T.S. Eliot, Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats