She was crying out for help yet she’d never made a sound.
Even at the ripe age of 10.
Looking back it’s easy to see she’d already given up.
Her soul already shattered.
Her will already broken by an alienator determined to win.
She’d already given up.
We were the ones that refused.
Losing her was our destiny.
The further away things are the clearer they become.
A typical Thursday after school.
October 14, 2010 to be exact.
She’d “mistakenly” gotten on the wrong bus and was headed to our home.
She was “confused” although Mary was more grown up than most adults I’d met.
Jack’s cell phone rang.
Is Mary to be dropped at your house today? Her siblings got on a different bus.
Unfortunately, no, Jack replied.
Protocol forbid Jack from taking Mary off the bus, so he followed it all the way to the alienator’s.
Mary’s cold empty eyes stared back at him the entire way.
She knew there was no hope.
She knew she’d be punished for her last effort to escape.
She was running away.
And our hands were tied.
The next day at the counselor’s office, Mary’s “self portrait”- a dead girl crying.
Picture: Mary 10 years old taken 10/29/2010