Title: PERFECTLY BROKEN
Genre: YA memoir
Word Count: 66,000
At fifteen-years-old I’m a spitfire of a girl who’s as quick to throw a punch as I am to steal a kiss. When I’m kidnapped and raped, I put up one hell of a fight.
Set free, numb and in shock, I go straight to the police. Three days later the serial rapist is caught. Still it’s not enough. Fear and rage are my closest companions and I teeter-totter between the two. While preparing for trial I put on a brave face for the world, but the invisible scars leave me incapable of being touched. The first boy who tries almost gets a cheek full of knuckles.
A summer foreign exchange program to Spain comes at the perfect time. With the court date months away, a break from the pressures of the trial is exactly what I need. A gorgeous Spanish boy pursuing me was not in my brochure though. I try to resist his dreamy eyes and lickable teeth, but all my girl parts go beep, beep, beep every time he looks my way. The walls I spent all year building come crashing down as I learn to laugh again, touch again, love again. Now, torn by my desire to stay with the boy I love, I dread returning home to face my past. I know my case is the only solid one they have against that madman, but it means saying goodbye to Pedro. I have to decide what is more important—protecting my heart or protecting other women from a monster.
I know at any moment he’ll kill me. His scorching breath is on my neck. His odor is imbedded in my nose. It’s only been minutes since he crawled off me, but the rape keeps replaying in my mind, torturing me over and over again.
He’s had me in his clutches for at least an hour. Or maybe it’s been ten minutes.
Time seems to stop right before you die.
Why am I still alive? What more- I stop myself. I won’t think about how he plans to kill me. And besides, I refuse to die in whatever way he’s chosen. I’m certain I won’t live much longer, but there is one thing I can do, if escaping is out of the question. I will not be going home to my family tonight, but I will send them my killer, my rapist, or rather his DNA buried beneath my fingernails when they find my dead body. At the first sign he’s done with me, I’ll strike. I know the second I claw his face off he’ll end my life. So I wait, patiently, for him to try to kill me.
The car stops. This is the moment.
He lets go of my head and snarls, “If you tell anyone, I’ll kill you,” then reaches across me and thrusts open the car door.
I see my escape and move so quickly I topple out backwards onto the curb.
Daylight is almost gone, granting me just enough luminescent to see my surroundings