It wasn’t coming off. The scalding shower water and the abrasive washcloth combined turned my skin and irritated; but to my disappointment what seemed like a million bloodless cuts would not disappear with the flow of water. There weren’t any cuts, bruises, or broken bones, but if black sharpies were dangerous, I wouldn’t have made it home. I hadn’t been in the shower over an hour trying to disinfect wounds. What I was doing in my eyes, was far worse.

I thought I was safe, that they’d never find me. I had allowed myself to enjoy the heat of the sun and get lost in my book. The gentle waves from the lake washed onto the rocky shoreline, birds flew about in the emerald green trees above me. Lying down in the plush grass, I fit right in. I had an entire summer day to myself; peace, quiet, and no worries, a deadly combination to when it comes to keeping your guard up. As the hours passed and the sun gradually made its way across the sky, I heard a branch snap. Considering I was sitting in a forest by a lake, I didn’t concern myself. It could have been anything, but I would never expect it to be him. I never thought that reacting to a single branch snapping would have kept my views on everything the same.
In a few moments time two pairs of rough, strong hands gripped my wrists and I cried out in terror. A different hand shot over my mouth and a sickeningly familiar voice whispered in my ear, “Don’t move, as long as you don’t move, you’ll leave without a scar.”

Without a scar, not a scratch? Coming from the guy who had tormented me for months? There’s nothing more that I hate then liars, I had thought to myself. “Get your hands off me.” I muttered and spit on his hand to get him to remove it from my mouth. Disgusted, he narrowed his eyes at the gooey saliva on his hand and furiously wiped his pants.
“Don’t let her move,” he growled, “ and both of you don’t even think about letting go.” I closed my eyes and prepared myself for a nasty punch. But felt only the cool tip of a marker being scrawled over my skin. It felt like hours as the marker traveled over every inch of my body writing the same word over and over. Only when I heard him and the boys crash off into the woods did I dare open my eyes.
STUPID was written in permanent black marker, covering the entire surface of my skin. My eyes brimmed with tears as images flashed behind them. Teachers speaking slower around me, my parents telling me to ‘step it up a notch’. Suddenly I was a little girl again, heading to the family consular. I didn’t even try to cover my tears around her, what was the point? She knew everything about my family and I. I saw her leaning forward, touching my arm and whispered “Shannon, do you even understand what I’m saying?”

I bolted through the woods, my eyes on my body the entire time. As soon as I got home and prepared myself for a boiling hot shower, I stared in the mirror and I felt destroyed. Everyone could read my body, see my flaws written across me. I was a broken building that had been vandalized by the meanest gang in town. And I couldn’t even keep my eyes open, how stupid. As I looked at my own reflection one more time, I knew this would be one more story, that I would never tell.
That day shaped who I am. Every moment of it. Even after a three hour shower and scrubbing away my skin, I still felt that I had stupid written on me 73 times. And I knew it would be a scar that could never heal. I wish I could say that I learned some important life lesson from that day, I wish I could tell you my heroic story of how I went to the police. But all I managed to do was keep my mouth shut, and keep scrubbing. But that day, something in me clicked. Like a series of broken gears that have just seem to begun turning like they should, I’ve finally decided to tell my story. Do I regret keeping it to myself, not fighting back? No, it taught me that people are always going to want you to do just that, but it’s the fact that I didn’t and could still move on, that makes me proud of who I am today.
bigeyesseemore bigeyesseemore
22-25, F
1 Response May 21, 2012

That is so sad, i feel so bad for you. People are so mean and horrible. You are so brave for telling your story, maybe it will help you heal somewhat. You are correct in saying people are just looking for you to do something about it, but you should tell someone. Just so that they don't come after you again. You are strong and courageous just for being here, and a wonderful person.

Thank you so much, I've been telling more and more people, and the guys that did it moved away so its alright now. But thanks so much for the support.