The girl lay down for the night. Sandwiched between her two sisters, the oldest of the three. Well into her teens, her body showing signs of approaching puberty.
She looked up at the night sky. Not a star in sight. Dark, voluminous clouds had overshadowed them completely.
Little did she know, of the dark, dark shadows soon to overwhelm her too.

The family struggled to survive. Her mom, a daily wage laborer, worked hard carrying bricks at the construction site some distance away from their tiny shanty.

Their dad did nothing but drink away all her income. The girls managed with the chores, bringing water from afar, struggling to keep the wailing infant quiet all day. He wailed of hunger all the time.
They went hungry in order to feed him.
"What a dreary existence," she murmured to herself.

She heard a sound. She opened her eyes. And quickly blinked them shut. It was someone approaching the bedside.
She pretended to be fast asleep. She was scared. She felt hands tugging at her white petticoat. They were rough and hairy. Hairy? She opened her eyes slightly. Her dad!

Before she knew what happened, his hands were all over her. Terrified to even open her mouth, she just lay still.
Thankfully, he soon went away. He reeked of alcohol.
Morning dawned. She hadn't slept a wink. Horrible night! Should she confide in her mother? No, she'd die of shock. Her sisters? They wouldn't comprehend.
As she mulled over these thoughts, he passed by her. Glaring, brandishing a knife.

That night he was at it too. And the next night. The knife had subdued her into silence.
One night she couldn't take it any more. For when he appeared, drunk as usual, she jumped up with a kitchen knife. She had hid it under the pillow.
He retreated. He didn't bother her the next few days.

Her mind refused to work. She went about blankly doing her chores, dreading nightfall. Was she being targeted, being the prettiest of the three?

There was a knock on the door. Her friend, Dilip. He came in with a strange woman, who smiled at her. There was an exchange of cash made. Soon our girl made good her escape from prison to liberty. So she thought.

For soon she realized, it wasn't to a lucrative job in the city, the stranger took her, but a dingy, shady brothel. She tried and tried to fight off her captors. They overpowered her. Tied her hands and feet, starved her days and nights, till she finally gave in.

Soon, she got used to it. Catering to umpteen customers nightly, weekly.
And to think she had thought the nightmare at home was over.

Months passed. One day she had some visitors over. They wanted her to act in a movie. She was thrilled. Money changed hands again. Between the pimp and them. She was now free. She would become famous.

The same day, they began shooting. A few guys with camera and stuff like that. The place seemed tiny. She didn't seem to mind.
She was fine till a voice ordered her to strip. "What? Of course not." she refused.

They beat her black and blue till she relented.
She was filmed each day. The movie made, sold in the market fetched good returns.

Years passed by. She's still at it. At least they look after her well. Feed her, clothe her. She has enough pocket money for luxuries..sometimes even to send home to her sisters and mother.

She doesn't mind it now.
After all that she had gone through, the beatings, the shame ..
Her body had grown accustomed to being used and abused..
She's beginning to enjoy it....

P.S..A true story

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