It is 1992. I am 14 years old and member of one of the most successful youth theatre groups in the UK. There is a fair amount of buzz about us. The previous year we had won an award and performed on the National Theatre of London. I was not part of the as I’d joined after the fact but I most certainly wanted a piece of it.
I’ve told you a little about acting throughout primary school and then that YT was my everything. I knew it was what I wanted to and be part of for the rest of my life, or at least until I could begin a family. I’d worked it all out in my head.
First of I would flourish at Drama school. Go swiftly from little to biggest fish. Get noticed at end of year performances by several top-level casting agents. I would be the ingenue of the theatre world. Destined for big things.
So YT was the stepping stone but one I absolutely loved.
Back to ’92 and I would spent a fair amount of time with our company director Reg∗ who was 36 and his girlfriend Sally∗ who was 19. They became a bit of a surrogate family to me. They knew my home life was the pits and took me under their wing. I kind of felt like their 2nd child. You see, Reg also had a little boy Teddy∗ who was about 6.
One Saturday night Sally was going away for the night. There was no issue about me hanging out at their house with Reg whilst she was away. After all I was this child of 14 that, as a couple, had been trying to provide me with at least short periods of stability. I loved being in their home. I feel safe. I loved their family life and the good company. I felt special and included. But , for some reason deep down, that fact the Sally was going away for the night excited me. I idolised Reg. I hung on his every word and thought him the wisest man in existence. I still live my life with much of his values although stopped thinking him an infallible man god, many MANY years ago. (More of that later…)
So here I am at Reg’s house on a Saturday night. Just us. His son is away too, at his mothers. I can’t recall there being any plan for me to go home. This is how I remember the evening going; excuse me whilst I cringe in the corner here.
Reg and I were sat on the couch just pretending to watch some show or film. He was reading a paper I think and I had my head resting on his lap. I could try to tell you there was nothing unusual about that but it was unusual. I’d never done that before – with him. My mind was racing but I’m sure it was wanted so I didn’t move. I just intensly watched the tv, not taking in a second of it.
He began to stroke my hair and I could feel what was happening having an effect on him. I turned over and we kissed. I felt like we’d orchestrated the whole evening, with Sally and Teddy being away. I have the overconfidence of a young teenage girl who was kissing her YT leader and not being pushed away.
He got up to go to the bathroom and I quickly took off my bra and stuffed it in my bag.
When he didn’t come back downstairs I took that as sign to go upstairs and find him. I found him sitting on his bed. I began to walk in but he quickly stood up and begged me to stop. We kissed again. I was trying to persuade him. He used sentences like;
I’m us using all my will-power here!
This can’t happen.
I’m too old for you (Never you’re too young for me)
He never mentioned his family.
He made me go and sleep in his son’s bedroom for the night.
Please Kelly, you’re killing me here. I’m a weak man. Blad de blah.
I didn’t sleep a wink. I was fired up.
In the morning he made some breakfast and I decsended the stairs with the confidence of a much older woman. I wouldn’t even be a woman legally for 4 years.
Reg apologised for the night before and said it couldn’t happen again. I smirked at him and replied; ‘It’s inevitable’.
Later on he would tell me that was the moment he knew his was fucked.
(to be continued)