Terrified: The heartbreaking true story of a girl nobody loved and the woman who saved her by Angela Hart

Terrified: The heartbreaking true story of a girl nobody loved and the woman who saved her by Angela Hart

Author:Angela Hart [Hart, Angela]
Language: eng
Format: epub
ISBN: 9781509805501
Publisher: Pan Macmillan
Published: 2016-03-09T16:00:00+00:00

11

‘It’s too much to take’

On Hayley’s advice, I decided to wait until Vicky got home from school before telling her about her mum’s death. I was in full agreement that it would be better for her to hear it at home, rather than in the school environment, and Hayley gave me some advice on how to handle it, as she had to travel to a social-worker conference that afternoon and so couldn’t come over to help.

‘Just stick to the few facts we know, and don’t be drawn in to any speculation or attempt to answer questions you aren’t sure of the answer to,’ Hayley said. ‘Make sure Vicky’s sitting down and tell her you are there to support her, and that you will do everything you can to help her deal with it. As for her father, let’s leave that until another day.’

It turned out that just a few days before Brenda’s death, Hayley had discovered Vicky’s father was alive and living in the UK, albeit many miles away from us. The Army had an address for him, and Hayley was planning to write an initial letter to Vincent to ask if he was happy to make contact with Vicky.

‘In the circumstances, I think it’s best to wait for his response until informing Vicky that he is alive,’ Hayley said. ‘Let’s deal with her mother’s death first.’

It was nearly 5 p.m. when Vicky returned home, as she had netball practice after school. Michelle wasn’t home yet either as she also had an after-school club on Mondays this term, but I expected her back shortly.

‘I’m starving!’ Vicky declared when she walked in the shop. ‘What’s for tea?’

‘Oh, hi, love. Er, chops. Listen, I need to talk to you. I’ll come through to the house with you now.’

Vicky looked at me suspiciously as I turned the shop sign to display ‘closed’ and led her up to the lounge; my thinking was that when Michelle returned and found the shop shut she would walk straight into the kitchen, so it was better if Vicky and I went upstairs, where we could talk in private.

‘What is it?’ Vicky asked, sounding agitated. ‘Please don’t tell me they’ve made a mistake and I have to go back to her!’

‘No, Vicky, it’s not that,’ I said as we entered the lounge. ‘Sit yourself down on the settee, and I’ll tell you, love.’

Vicky obliged, though worry was now filling her face and I wanted to get on with this as quickly as possible.

‘There is no easy way of saying this, but I’m afraid . . .’

‘Is Lorraine all right?’ she interrupted. ‘Oh my God has she done it again?’

‘It’s not Lorraine, she’s fine. It’s your mum, Vicky. I’m very sorry to tell you this, but she passed away, last night.’

‘Passed away? You mean died? My mum’s . . . dead?’

Vicky’s mouth fell open and then she immediately froze, a look of sheer terror etched on her face. For a split second I thought she was going to say something else as she appeared to move her lips ever so slightly, but no sound came out.



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