By Tracie L
"So why the Prison Service?"
Helen took another sip from her pint as she smiled across the table at Dr Waugh. "Why not, the Prison Service?"
He laughed a little hesitantly and clarified, "I'm just surprised that anyone would choose it as a career"
"You did?" Helen smirked
"That's true, but only after eight years in hospitals and private institutions."
"So after eight years of presumably successful and rewarding work you suddenly developed a burning desire to work with women prisoners? I would have thought that could be construed as a negative career move?"
Helen found herself smiling at the Doctor as he squirmed slightly under her scrutiny. "I have always been fascinated with mental illness, neurological imbalance and in particular the effects of long term incarceration on these conditions, I've written several papers for online journals. This position is perfect for me, I hope to begin clinical tests and trials as soon as possible."
Helen leaned back in her chair and thoughtfully took another drink, it was difficult to pigeonhole the man before her. She found him attractive and yet somehow repellant. She couldnt put her finger on it but was fascinated non the less by his obvious interest in herself and in the lifers unit as well.
"I'm not sure I want to see the prisoners subjected to experimental trials, they may be in cages Thomas, but they're not lab rats you know." She smiled to take the edge off her comment.
Thomas quickly sprang to qualify his statement, "God no, obviously any research I do will be completely consensual and will have to have approval from the Governor and yourself of course, I'm not a Dr Frankenstein." He smiled charmingly at Helen, "I hope you don't think that I am?"
Helen Laughed, "No, Sorry Thomas, I'm just a bit protective about the lifers group, I've worked hard to have the needs and concerns of these women addressed, I certainly don't want anything to jeapordise that."
The Doctor placed one warm hand over Helen's and smiled into her eyes. "Believe me Helen, I will only ever support what your doing for those women and I hope we can work together to improve their situation, If you will let me?"
Helen smiled back, her eyes wandering down to the hand on her own, she allowed the familiarity and couldn't help admire the fine, but strong, bone structure in the hand that held her own.
She finished her pint and smiled at the man opposite her. "Buy me another pint, Thomas, and you've got a deal"
"A pleasure m'Lady" He stood and with a slight flourish, moved toward the packed bar.
Nikki stared at the bunk above her, the flat surface swimming in front of her eyes, she closed them and lit a cigarette. "God the same view for the next ten years, maybe I should paint the bottom of your bunk, or something, before I go mad and punch holes in it"
"Well by all means, start painting." Barbara peered over her glasses at Nikki, before returning to her diary.
Nikki chuckled around the cigarette in her mouth and closed her eyes again, picturing Helen Stewarts face before her and her fist smashing into it. "Hmmm, yes, a nice deep red, blood red even." Nikki imagined Helen's lip splitting open and as she held her neck in one hand she caressed the side of her face with the other. "I like red." She pulled Helen's bleeding face toward her and then slowly ran her tongue over the bleeding lips, sucking and licking, savouring the taste of salt and the anguish in Helens eyes. "Yep, a deep, deep red, would be very nice."
Barbara smiled and sighed, at least Nikki was interested in something other than her hatred for Helen Stewart. She suddenly had an inspiration. "I'll get some paints for you from the art room, yes, I'm sure I could smuggle some in for you." Barbara smiled impishly at the reclining inmate, who rolled over suddenly and smirked.
"Why Barbara, your not picking up any bad habits are you?"
"I might be" Barbara responded proudly.
Nikki laughed making Barbara's heart lurch, it had been so long.
"Well at least your getting something from this place, you can add petty theft to your resume, now."
Barbara flicked her hair theatrically and replied haughtily, "I hope to add forgery and arson by next month"
Nikki guffawed and then rose suddenly from her bunk and stretched her arms above her head as she eyed the door.
"Well while you're improving your future prospects I'm off for a wander around the block, see ya."
As Nikki left, Barbara smiled happily to herself, feeling for the first time in months that there was hope for Nikki after all.
Nikki had wandered straight to the phone, she clutched the phone card tightly in her hand and glared at the phone. "compulsive, that's what this is." She mumbled to herself as she pushed the card into place, grabbed the phone and punched in the memorized numbers. She trembled as she waited for the line to connect.
Helen stumbled up the stairs to her apartment and giggled as she fumbled her keys in the lock.
"Oh dear, I'm a little bit pissed."
Thomas laughed as he grabbed Helen's arms from behind, trying to steady her, "Rubbish, you're a bloody lot pissed"
"Is that your medical opinion Dr Waugh?" She swung around suddenly and eyed her colleague, "or are you speaking from personal experience?" Not waiting for a reply, she swung back to the door and succeeded in opening it.
"Entrée DoKtor" Helen grinned as she slid into her hallway, arms akimbo in an abortive attempt at a curtsy.
Thomas entered, closing the door behind him. "Lovely." He smiled at her.
"Thanks." She smirked unsure exactly what the Doctor was referring to. "Want a drink?"
"I have to work tomorrow" he chastised.
"So do I, come on, live a little" She punched him playfully.
"OK but just one."
"Done" Helen lurched forward into the Kitchen. "Living Rooms to your right, make yourself at home."
Thomas entered the room and after a cursory inspection, settled down on the lounge.
The phone beside him began to ring.
"Um, should I answer it?" He yelled
"No let it ring."
The answering machine clicked, "Hi, I'm not in right now, please leave a message and I may get back to you."
Thomas chuckled at the desultory message, he waited for the caller's voice, as Helen walked into the room. She handed him a Gin and Tonic and paused to look at the phone.
There was a hollow silence, the caller obviously waiting on the other end. Thomas looked questioningly to Helen who shrugged and then suddenly picked up the phone.
Nikki listened to the message and closed her eyes trying to absorb the tones of Helens voice as she pictured her lips moving to create the words. When the message ended, she waited, unable to hang up, her heart beating wildly as she imagined Helen, listning intently to the silence. When suddenly.
Shit, Nikki's stomach lurched and her knees threatened to buckle.
"Hello, Who is this?"
Nikki could feel Helen's impatience, she breathed out slowly, a shuddering sound down the line. There was a pause.
"Nikki" so softly, she could barely hear Helen's voice.
"Nikki is that you?"
Nikki choked back a sob and slammed the phone down.
Why, why, why couldn't she let go of this? She smashed her fist against the wall and then spun on her heel and headed for the showers.
Helen replaced the phone with a sigh, her light hearted inebriation quickly morphed into maudlin self pity.
"Who's Nikki?" Helen jumped, Thomas, in her misery, she had forgotten he was there.
She tried to compose herself. "Nikki Wade, one of my lifers" She sat down, trying to look casual.
"Do your lifers make a habit of calling you at home, at night, or is it just the one.?" He had tried to make the question appear off hand but Helen could feel the burning curiosity behind it.
"Oh, Nikki is a special case, I am helping her with her appeal and her education." Helen shrugged and gulped down her G & T trying to appear nonchalant.
"How did she get your private number? I though that information was completely confidential?"
"Yes, I know, directory services I think."
"Why didn't she answer you or leave a message?" He probed "I'm sorry, just curious."
He smiled disarmingly and Helen shrugged. "She is a little obsessive, she came to my Flat one night in fact, after a break out attempt." Helen quickly shook her head as Thomas reacted with alarm.
"It was fine, she's harmless really, she was distraught about her appeal and was desperate to talk to someone."
Thomas was leaning forward, plainly intrigued. "Doesn't her calling you and not talking constitute harassment, I assume, since you new it was her, that she does this often?"
"No, no she is just a bit confused, lots of inmates are" Helen was beginning to feel uncomfortable and wanted to change the topic from Nikki Wade as quickly as possible.
"Yes of course" Thomas seemed to be watching her intently, "but I'm intrigued, sounds like Nikki may need some counseling, I would love to have the opportunity to speak with her, do you think she would see me?"
Helen shrugged trying to remain off hand. "She might, She is a reasonable person, highly intelligent, bit of a leader, you know, I didn't mean to infer that she was mentally unstable or anything."
"Of course not Helen and I wouldn't dream of making any assumptions based on your observations. I am a professional."
"Of course you are." Helen smiled then suddenly stood up. "I'm actually getting a bit tired, maybe we could call this a night and do it again some other time?"
"Um, yep, yep Ok, I'd like that Helen." Thomas stood, frowning slightly. "I hope I didn't offend you in any way?"
"No of course not, No." Helen smiled as she walked him to her front door.
"Thanks for a great evening." He said smiling at her, "I hope we can do it again, soon.?"
"Sure" Helen smiled
"Great, Friday night then, say 8:00 pm?"
"Ahh, OK, why not."
"Great See you tomorrow."
He left and Helen locked the door behind him with some relief.
Nikki stood silently under the stream of hot water, her eyes closed against the droplets as they dripped into her mouth, which moved sensuously. Her hands where alternating between clenching and stroking, the air in front of her face.
Return to Bad Girls Fiction
Return to Main Page