'She Doesn't Mind'

Bess' husband is the horrible murdering Adam Jones. As much as she loves him, she can't help be frightened of what might happen to her, or their daughter, Elizabeth. If she stands up to him, she could put her life at risk, but if she doesn't she might never see her family again.

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1. Chapter 1

All my life, my mother expected me to grow up into a beautiful young women with a loving husband and little children running around our feet, despite living in the slums on London. My mother is very hopeful and imaginative, which is upsetting as we all know nothing good comes to our type.

It's1885, February 13th, a Friday; unlucky they say. I was at my mother's house, where she looks after my younger brother and sister and Elizabeth, my 4 year old daughter. I'm only 19, but I still try and care for her as much as I can. 

"I'll be here when you wake up," I say, kneeling beside her rickety bed which she shared with my 9 year old sister, Victoria. 

"Why do you have to go?" she asks.

"I have to speak to Daddy, but I'll be fine, and you'll be fine, nothing can hurt darling," I whisper. I gently kiss her forehead and get up. "Night night."

I walk into the next room, where mother is cooking over the fire. I sit down next to the roaring flames, embracing the warmth. 

"I hear he's killed another," my mother scolds, as if it's my fault.

"Mother-" I start.

"You'd be better with someone else, and you know it, Bess. Michael's a bad man, what if he loses his temper with you. That's the end of you, me lovlies. Soup?" she says, going to dish some into a bowl. I shake my head.

"I'm still going, we need to talk things over. Don't worry, you've other things to fuss over. I'd better get going," I get up and walk over to the door.

"Wait, Nick want's to talk to you," mother looks over to my 16 year old brother, who lies ill with tuberculosis on the couch. I look at mother, then cautiously walk over to Nick. He'd been ill for weeks, and just been getting worse. He's always been there for me, but I hadn't spoken to him for ages.

"Nick?"

"Bess, when I die, remember me in a good way, ok? I know I've done bad things, but I don't want to be known for that," he whispers slowly. I smile and nod, although there's tears in my eyes. I want to hug him, but I feel I would break him if I did. I would say he was going to get better, but with TB, you never know. He quickly fell asleep and I left leaving no trace of how Nick had made me felt. 

I made my way to the pub and waited for Michael. 

10 minutes later, someone shouted 'He's coming!' and everyone sat still or read the newspaper, but either way didn't make a sound. 

I sighed as he sat down beside me, he gave me a quick kiss on the cheek. I looked back at him, my arms crossed over my chest.

"What's wrong?" he said in his husky voice.

"You murdered someone again. Mother told me. You've got to stop this. Even Elizabeth's scared because she's heard all the rumors. It's not fair on our daughter."

"I can't stop being what I am, Bess. Anyway, Joe will be here in a minute to talk to me about something, so smile chick, this could be a good oportunity for us," he sighs. 

2 seconds later Joseph walks in in his musty old coat which usually carries weapons or drugs. 

"Hello Bess!" he smiles, stinking the place out with the smell of tobacco.

"Joseph," I say, not looking at him.

"Don't worry about her. So what have you got for me?" Michael asks, rubbing his hands together.

"This rich family has moved just up the road from here. They have son about 20 odd, good looking chap, and I thought, Bess might get him to lend her some money, you know what I mean?" Joseph smiles, showing the gaps where his teeth used to be.

"Of course she'll do, she doesn't mind, do you Bess? No, of course she don't!" this time, I was really fed up, so finally stood up to him.

"I will not go around doing your dirty business for you Michael!" he stood up next to me.

"Yes . . . You . . . Will!" he roared. I stared hard at his face, but I still knew the whole pub was looking at us. 

"I have my own mind Michael!" I roar back.

Before I knew it, he had slapped my cheek hard, and I was leaning only on my elbows for support, on the wooden floor of the pub. I gently touched it, and looked up at him. The fury was still deep in his eyes.

He looked up to the rest of the pub's customers.

"All of you, SCRAM!" he shouted, and the obediently left, leaving half drunk glasses of beer, and chairs knocked over from the rush.

Joseph went to help me up, till Michael said 'Leave her'. I just lay on the floor till they had left. 

I eventually got up, and steadied myself, holding myself up on the table.

"Oh, Bess dear, are you alright? I watched it all, should I talk to the police?" the landlady, Mrs Faith asked. She was a plump lady with rosy cheeks and spent her days in the kitchen cooking cakes of all kinds.

"No, I'll be fine, I should be getting back anyway," I smile, turning away from her, still holding the table for support.

"Well alright. Are you sure there's nothing I can do to help?" she asks as I start walking off shakily. 

"Night Mrs Faith," I wave.

I had made my plan, and I knew I had to do it now, while it was dark.

I walked to where he usually was, in the alley way off Kings Grove, starting to pick on some poor unfortunate. I can remember the days when I thought it was cool to be an murderer. I was only 14, and he was 17. It all seems so stupid now. 

He was leaning over the pale cold body of Dave Green, the greengrocer's son. This was my chance. I took out the knife I had in my pocket (mother had always made me take it with me since I started going out by myself, just in case) and stabbed it into Michael's back. 

He screamed with pain. I ripped it out, covered in blood, and stabbed him a few more times, till he finally fell into his victim. Then I realized what I'd done.

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