For the first time in her life, she actually felt vulnerable. All the way to the doctor’s door, she felt alone. She wanted to get her revenge on her father, on Dr. Perry, and on all the men who’d ever hurt her. She entered the office and was surprised to see no other patients or the receptionist. Instead, she found Dr. Perry at the receptionist’s desk looking through some files.
“Hello, Dr. Perry,” she said.
“Madge,” he said awkwardly. “Come in.”
“You don’t look so good,” he said.
“I don’t feel so good,” she said.
“You have a cold?”
“I don’t know, but I feel like crap all the time.”
“Well, come in, then. Let’s take a look at you.”
They both walked back to the examining rooms. She sat on the examining table. Dr. Perry looked in her eyes, nose, and throat.
“Doesn’t look like there’s anything wrong,” he said.
“I need a letter instructing me to stay on bed rest. I’m fighting for my life and getting my husband back. I’ll make it worth your while. If everything pans out, the Calhoun family will be richer than anyone in this county.”
“So, your husband knows about your trickery. You should be grateful he hasn’t filed charges against you for fraud.”
“He can’t prove anything now, and he knows it.”
She stared at Dr. Perry. The man was a mouse.
“I suppose you’re right. He can’t prove whether you were or weren’t pregnant. He can’t prove whether you had a miscarriage or not, but he can prove the child you’re carrying is his, if in fact it is his.”
“What’s that supposed to mean?” she asked, feeling her temper rising.
“Just what I said.” Dr. Perry held up both hands. “But I don’t want to fight, Madge. Just forget about it, okay? Some of your father’s society brothers are coming to town. You better thank your lucky stars that you don’t have to entertain them this time.”
Madge flinched. Chills coursed through her body. On her first visit to his office, Madge was physically abused and two months pregnant. He never found out who had raped her, but folks around town accused him. At that point, he was her doctor. His abusiveness came much later.
Madge looked at him sternly. “Those days have long since passed. I’m not a helpless teenager anymore.”
Dr. Perry had treated her in his office for several months. It was during one of those visits Madge began making erotic overtures to him. Even still, he was the adult in this situation. He always had a special love for teenage girls, which Madge had discovered the hard way. Now, years later, he was her doctor again. He was still afraid she would notify the authorities about his past conduct, and that suited her just fine. While residing in Chicago, his behavior had almost cost him his medical license. He’d moved his practice to Georgia to keep the scandal out of the newspapers in his hometown.
“You were an impressionable young girl who thought she was a woman of the world,” he said. “I’ll always remember those times.”
“I’ll always try to forget them,” Madge said, a wave of despair almost overwhelming her.
Madge didn’t know which man—her father or Dr. Perry—was worse than the pedophiles who’d abused her. Dr. Perry should have reported it to the authorities, and her father had the power to stop the abuse. Instead, they had both abused her more. She felt dirty whenever she allowed herself to recollect those terrible days of her youth. She pushed her emotions down.
“Can I have the letter? It’ll help me get back with Quincy.”
Dr. Perry nodded. “Yes, I’ll write the letter for you. In this case, I think it’s not too much of a press on the truth. You do look terrible!”
“Thanks a lot.”
“Don’t mention it.”
“I also need more money,” she said.
Dr. Perry sighed. “Haven’t I given you enough already?”
Madge didn’t respond to his condescending tone. Instead, she stood up in the examining room and raised her dress up. She didn’t know why she did that. Something dark and dangerous inside her just suddenly took hold of her. “You better be nicer to me!”
“You don’t have to do that, Madge.”
She dropped her dress.
“I was only thirteen years old!” She fought back tears.
“I know,” Dr. Perry said softly. “But you and I both know that, when you first came to my office, you were well versed in making love. Whoever showed you the ropes wasn’t me. You better talk to your father about a loan. I don’t have any extra money.”
Madge felt the doctor owed her for her silence. “You’re a sexual predator. I finally realized that you’ve turned a forbidden corner and you think raping a child is normal. What would the parents think if they knew you were a child molester? So I’m warning you. You better find me some money and write the letter!” Madge clenched her teeth together.
“Why don’t you go see your estranged husband?”
Madge seethed with uncontrollable anger. “I’m going to tell the authorities you’ve been molesting several of your young patients for years!” She saw sweat gathering around his forehead.
Being in a toxic and dysfunctional environment, Madge decided to use her sexual knowledge as a weapon against all the men she encountered.
“That’s a damn lie!” he said quickly. “By the time I saw you in my office, you had long since lost your virginity.”
“That’s not the point, and you know it! If I spread the word about you being a pedophile, your reputation and medical practice will be ruined. I have evidence I didn’t tell you about, Dr. Perry. I have photos.”
The rage on Dr. Perry’s face made her laugh. “What? You were all humble before, but now you’re mad? Be mad at yourself, you pervert!”
“We had a sexual relationship, but don’t accuse me of forcing you. You seduced me!”
“What judge is going to believe a thirteen-year-old girl could seduce a grown man! You’re more delusional than I am!” Madge never knew how to put her problems in perspective. The times she raped Quincy and Adam had given her a heady rush, and the act had felt completely normal. Her whole sexual outlook was lopsided.
“If you have photos and you show them to the police, your father and I would be sharing the same prison cell. He told you it was a special game both of you played. So don’t preach to me about who sexually assaulted you!”
Madge slapped the doctor hard on the face. “You don’t know anything!’
Dr. Perry gawked. “Who do you think told me about your sexual behavior? Your father! With your mother dead, he needed you to help him entertain his out-of-state cronies. Your mother was his scapegoat for years. You just picked up where she left off. Your father was the sicko in this scenario.”
“You know nothing about my mother!” Madge knew her father let his business associates use her young body for their pleasure. Her father hadn’t sexually abused her, but he had participated in voyeurism instead. Calhoun never set boundaries for her. All the abuse had screwed up her outlook on life, and in the time since she’d encountered Quincy, that fact was becoming more obvious every day.
In her adult life, she tried to control all her sexual encounters. She thought that, by being mean, she could get her power back. She’d suffered mental and physical abuse since her childhood. “My father hid his strange behavior for a long time. When I got in my teens, he passed me off to you.”
Madge hated that part of her life. Her father had never had any respect for her. “My father used my body and never served one day in prison.” Madge didn’t recognize she had the power to change her thinking in a positive way.
As she’d grown older, she’d never grasped that she could make a difference in her own life. She should have sought therapy for the devastating memories of her abuse. But she’d taken the wrong pathway.
“Dr. Perry, as a doctor, you should have reported him to the authorities. The decision you made to use me sexually sealed my fate. Now I have the power to keep you in line. So never get it twisted, because I do own you!”
“God gave us all free will. You chose to do destructive things for revenge. Who do you think is the one who’s hurting the most? You had a choice to change your direction, but you decided to be destructive instead. It’s your fault your life is all screwed up now.”
Madge screamed. “I was a child! You didn’t care!” She began crying hysterically. “You owe me, and I’m here to collect.” Madge’s mind was in constant turmoil. She knew her actions were crazy, but she needed power to help soothe her wounded spirit. “The abuse can stay be between us, but you’re going to pay for my silence. How could you not show a little compassion for the little girl you molested?” Tears continued to cascade down Madge’s face.
“Your father didn’t get caught because the wife people thought he had was my sister, playing a role to keep his incendiary behavior from being found out. By that time, I enjoyed using your body as much as your father did!”
“I’m going to expose you! You’ll never be free of me!” Madge reached out a second time to strike him, but she doubled over in pain. She felt her water breaking, and the baby was about to be born.
“Oh, God! My water just broke!”
Click Follow to receive emails when this author adds content on Bublish