(I may have posted this story before, I cannot remember and it doesn’t matter, it’s a question of conscience, feelings, and a particular burning remembrance in my heart.)
[a short story from ~ burning woman~ by Sha’Tara]
A black hood is pulled over her head and tied around her neck.
She is propelled into the interrogation room down a flight of four cement steps to fall blindly against a metal table leg.
Grabbed from behind, she is roughly pulled up and her wrists shackled to a bar above her head.
Through the torn blouse and knee length skirt her flesh shows deep bruising and bloody cuts.
She hangs motionless . Silent.
The interrogator’s voice is harsh, cutting,
“You are accused of treason. How do you plead?”
“You must answer me.”
“Make her talk.”
Torture. Moans. Gagging. A scream escapes the hooded prisoner’s lips.
Silence, except for the prisoner’s halting breathing and low moans.
“Are you a traitor to the state?”
“Again I ask: Are you a traitor?”
A sigh but no answer.
“Make her talk.”
More torture. More screams. No pleading for mercy.
They tie her ankles to keep her from kicking.
Blood drips down her legs and bare feet;
falls to pool on the cement floor that has accumulated same on many previous occasions.
“You are accused of sedition against the State. How do you plead?”
Short gasps, moaning. No audible word.
A high-pitched moan, no verbal answer.
“Make her talk!”
Scream! Scream! Long, piercing blood-curdling scream… loud moan and silence.
The interrogator stands up from his chair and walks around to face the woman. He looks at her bleeding and shaking form for several seconds. He unties the hood and pulls it from her head.
“Oh God, no! … NO! This cannot be happening!”
“Father,” whispers the girl through her broken face, “you assured me you never tortured prisoners. I had to know if you were lying to me. At least I am not dying in ignorance. I forgive you…”
Her head drops forward.
“Get an ambulance here — now! Unshackle her, lay her on the table, get blankets, get water, cloths, move!”
From the shadows the attending physician comes forward, checks the prisoner’s pulse and the severity of her wounds and pronounces a physician’s most dreaded words: “She is dead sir.”