Romance Fiction posted November 20, 2011 Chapters:  ...39 40 -41- 42... 

This work has reached the exceptional level
Anna learns she's not at fault.

A chapter in the book Lonely Hearts Meet

Part two, Chapter 13

by barbara.wilkey

Anna is a young mother striving to find a way out of an abusive marriage. She meets a stranger, Troy. Troy fights his own demons. Can they help each other find love, or are their struggles too much?
Anna released a deep breath before she and Troy entered the red-brick building. Inside, Troy led her up a flight of stairs and down a long hallway. Anna heard voices.

Troy paused at an open door and checked the number. "An abused spouse support group meets here." He glanced at his watch. "It starts in about fifteen minutes." He moved aside as a woman entered the room. "I think you should attend. If you want, I'll stay or I can wait in the car. It's up to you."

Anna turned and walked toward the stairs. "I don't need a support group. I'm doing fine." She stopped and turned toward him. "Your parents have been a big help."

"Anna, at the park you jumped when you heard a loud muffler. You're always looking over your shoulder. I know you lived through Hell, but ...." He hesitated. "You need help."

Anna watched another woman walk into the room. "Do you really think it'll help?"

"I do. If you don't feel comfortable, you don't have to return." Anna stared at the door, while Troy continued, "Do you want me to stay or leave?"

"I'd better do this by myself." She entered the room.

"I'll wait in the car." Before Troy left, he stood outside the door until the meeting started.

About forty-five minutes later, Troy watched ten women leave the building. No one else came through the door. He waited; no Anna. After a few minutes of staring, Troy walked to the building. He paced outside the door, peeked in and scanned the hall, but saw no one. He decided to enter, but paused when he heard sniffling. He moved toward the sound and found Anna sitting on the stairs crying.

She looked at him. "It wasn't my fault. None of the beatings were my fault."

Troy sat beside her and put his arms around her, guiding her face to his chest. "I know."

"I spent almost two years believing if I was a better wife and mother I wouldn't get beaten. The counselor explained how it isn't our fault." She pulled away and hit the railing beside her. "That bastard! He took my self-respect."

Troy held her tighter, and she continued crying.

A few moments later, Anna's eyes met his. "I'm sorry. Your shirt's all wet."

"You don't need to apologize. It's an occupational hazard of being a nice guy."

A slight grin erupted over Anna's lips. "You're joking again."

"It made you smile." He squeezed her a little tighter. "How long were you sitting here before I came in?"

"Not long." She turned and glanced up the stairs. "I hid in the bathroom until everybody left. I was embarrassed and didn't want anybody seeing me."

Troy wiped a tear. "I understand." He paused. "What do you want to do? We can sit here until they lock the building. I can take you home so you can be alone for a while. We can go to my parent's or we can drive around. It's up to you."

"I don't know what I want." She leaned her head into his chest. "All I know is I want this feeling of," she paused, "I don't even know what the feeling is. I just want it to stop."

"I'll sit with you until you decide."


Dad turned 80 in Sept. and Mom turns 80 in Feb, so the whole family is getting together for Thanksgiving at their house. My brother and his family, we've talked on the phone but haven't seen each other in 11 years and this will be the first time in 10 years I will have all my boys and their families in one spot. I may be on the site for awhile in the evenings, but won't be home until next Sunday.
Thank you for reading my post. Please understand this is part two of chapter 13 of a much longer long. It's about 2/3's of the way complete.

SAFE (stop abuse for everyone)

National Domestic Violence Hotline (800)799-7233
Each state has it's own hotline number.

The scars of domestic violence and abuse run deep. The trauma of what you've been through can stay with you long after you've escaped the abusive situation. Counseling, therapy, and support groups for domestic abuse survivors can help you process what you've been through and learn how to build new and healthy relationships.
After the trauma you've been through, you may be struggling with upsetting emotions, frightening memories, or a sense of constant danger that you just can't kick. Or you may feel numb, disconnected, and unable to trust other people. When bad things happen, it can take a while to get over the pain and feel safe again. But treatment and support from family and friends can speed your recovery from emotional and psychological trauma. Whether the traumatic event happened years ago or yesterday, you can heal and move on.

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