Aluoch stood at the entrance of the caretakers house where she had been summoned. Her mouth was ajar, she had no words to describe what she was looking at. At first the shock overwhelmed her, then soon after she felt queezy and faint. Kinoti, the caretaker saw her inch toward the ground, and quickly grabbed a seat. Aluoch was speechless, she stared again and then began to cry, she knew she wasn’t helping the situation. But she couldn’t muster the strength to lift herself from the seat to cry away from the pain and discomfort before here.

“Madam, please…” the feminine voice began. Aluoch wiped her face and blew into her handkerchief and lifted her burrowed countenance to the woman.

“I am so sorry. That was unprofessional of me, what can I do to help you?”

The woman shook her head and her stumps for hands. Aluoch’s gut began to turn again; she sniffed and tilted her head back to fight back the tears.

“If I may ask, who did this to you?” Aluoch was devastated.

“They call it long sleeved. In the north where we are raided everyday, a few days ago the raiders used a new strategy. Since there is a lot of drought now, they decided to break the communities which they raid. The women do all the work, so they felt that the best way to stop the community from going on with life after raids is to harm the women. They torched the houses and stole the lifestock and would kill our men and sons. Then they set the women aside rape some and then ask you if you like it long or short sleeves. I said long, they hacked me above my wrists.

Aluoch was fighting back the floodgate of tears which had now burst bank. “I am so sorry, I shouldn’t be doing this, please excuse me.”

Aluoch stood outside the caretaker’s house and wept uncontrollably. It was too much to bear and she couldn’t understand why this woman wasn’t weeping either. It was a devastating tragedy and for Aluoch the thought of having to report on this story irked her. She wouldn’t know if she would be able to downplay her personal biases. It would be tough. Aluoch’s mind was racing as fast the tears flowed down her cheeks.

After about 15 minutes, Aluoch dashed into the house to wash her face and freshen up and returned to the caretaker’s abode.

“Ma’am, what is your name?”

“Felistas. What brought you here and not necessarily to a media outlet? How do you know Kinoti?”

Kinoti shrugged his shoulders, he had no idea who this woman was and how she got to know where Aluoch lived.

“On my way to Nairobi through the help of a relief worker, she directed me to find you. She told me you would find me justice through your stories.” That then became a rather awkward moment of silence. Felistas began to rub her hands together at the elbow.

“My hands itch,” Felistas remarked. Aluoch rubbed her at the elbows gently smiling to comfort Felistas. Felistas smiled in some discomfort, wincing slightly. Her hands at the top of her wrists began to bleed.

“Let’s rush you to hospital.” Kinoti dashed to the gate as Aluoch rushed Felistas to the car and hopped into the driver seat to get her some medical attention. Aluoch was confused, she wasn’t sure she would be able to fight to be as objective covering this story as she always was.


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