One in three women and one in four men in the U.S.have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner. Seventy-four percent of people in America personally know someone who’s a domestic abuse victim. If you’re into numbers like Gillian, the main character in Becker Circle, that’s more than 9.5 times the population of Texas. Wow.
Fewer people seek help from domestic situations around the holidays. The experts suspect people want to enjoy the holidays so they try to get through it the best they can. After New Year’s Day, hotline calls and shelter walk-in visits increase as people seek to start a new life.
The good news is we always have a way out. In Becker Circle, Gillian orchestrated a scheme to graduate Harvard early and move out of the apartment she shared with her abusive boyfriend while he was away for the holidays. She didn’t care where she ended up as long as she had a job waiting for her, and it was far away from Boston. She brought with her an old car, enough money for the apartment deposit, and a fierce will to be strong, independent, and never let anyone control her again. Help from her best friend, quiet moments connecting with her deceased mom, and her own inner strength and determination helped Gillian successfully escape to her new beginning.
Fresh starts almost always come with doubts, but those doubts are rarely worse than what already happened. Like Gillian, we’re never alone. There’s always help from friends, family and co-workers, local police, and organizations like Hope’s Door New Beginning Center.
Here’s a scene from Becker Circle about how Gillian grows stronger in her fresh start.
“That’s what I hear.” I pour another round of shots. “Be right back. Just going to deliver these.”
On my return, I run into Bradweiser coming from the bathroom. “Give me a hug.” He opens his arms and squeezes me. It’s uncomfortable. When he loosens his grip, he slides around where his arm wraps around my throat. Tight.
I gasp for breath and my tray crashes to the wood floor breaking the somber near silence.
Everything rushes back. The night Connor left huge bruises on my neck then dragged me across the floor by my hair. All because I wasn’t ready to get engaged.
This time I’m not afraid. I’m ready to fight. Feet firm on the ground I wrap one leg behind Brad and slam my knee into the back of his. His knee bends and I twist out of his tight hold.
“What the hell are you doing?” I pick the tray up off the floor and step back to a safe distance, my heart still racing.
“I’m sorry,” he begs. “I’m so sorry, Gillian. I just wanted to hug you.”
“Gillian, are you hurt?” Steve asks, stepping between us with Joey right behind him.
“I’ll make it up to you. The best restaurant in town. Sunday?”
I don’t care how much Brad’s sleepy eyes beg, it’s not happening. “I don’t think so, Brad.”
“Brad, time to go home.” Steve leads him to the door. “I’ll close out your tab.”
Rule seven of my new life—violence is a deal breaker. No exceptions.
About the Author
Addison Brae lives in Dallas, Texas on the edge of downtown. She has been writing since childhood and continues today as an independent marketing consultant. She addicted to reading and enjoys jogging in her neighborhood park, sipping red wine, traveling the world, collecting interesting cocktail recipes, binge-watching TV series, vintage clothing, and hanging out with her artistic other half and their neurotic cat Lucy.