I was sitting with the tape recorder at the table in the room where we interrogate suspects at our local police station, ready to capture every word of the interrogation. The door opened and a young blond, well formed, woman in her early thirties was led into the room and was forced to sit down on the chair facing me. Her blue eyes were closed to tiny slits and she was apparently struggling to see. Her left cheek was swollen and showed a green blue color, a sign of a forming hematoma.
They had arrested her after a violent shoot out that left her partner dead only a few hours ago. The only thing we really knew was that very likely the hunt for the most sought after criminals of the past couple of years had ended through a mere coincidence. Someone had seen two people forcing the back door of an optical store and called the cops. Fortunately a patrol car was nearby and they had trapped the intruders inside. As soon as the two crooks saw that they were pinned down they immediately opened fire. The two policemen then radioed for a swat team. Until their swat team arrived the 2 officers kept the burglars in the shop by keeping the back door under fire.
Meanwhile they had discovered that they were dealing with a man and a woman. The woman was wearing strong glasses in a heavy black frame. After the swat team had arrived it was only a question of how much time it would take before they would neutralize the two criminals. The sharp shooters were in a good position. The two criminals apparently had nothing to lose and so they continued to try to shoot their way free.
This however was a vain effort. One of the sharp shooters hit the man. The woman was still in the store and was still firing her automatic weapon. They decided to attempt to capture her alive. Meanwhile the store manager had shown up at the scene. With his keys they were able to open front door quietly so the woman, who was in the optical laboratory in the back of the store, wouldnít notice and they were able to get two men in. They approached the back of the store without a sound. With a small endoscope that they pushed through the gap under the door leading to the laboratory they located the woman and also saw that her accomplice was apparently dead. She knelt beside the backdoor and they saw that she also had her partnerís weapon. As she moved her head sideways they saw that indeed she wore heavy black-framed glasses with thick lenses.
The leader of the swat team thought that it might be possible to make her lose her glasses. This would probably neutralize her and make it possible to capture her unharmed. They only needed a safe way to accomplish this task. The laboratory was quite spacious and the distance from the door to the woman almost 15 feet. If they broke into the room she probably still had time to turn around and open fire, forcing them to kill her.
Their team leader finally got the idea to load a rifle with rubber bullets and shoot off her glasses while the other team outside created a diversion by opening fire towards the backdoor again. Fortunately the door to the lab was a sliding door. It could easily be opened just enough to allow the barrel of the gun through it. As soon they had the rifle in position the outside team began to fire. Once they started the two men from the swat team opened the sliding door to the lab. It was easier than they had anticipated. The woman was distracted and was firing her sub machine gun through the half opened back door. Her head was turned to the left, in partial profile, showing the left side of her glasses and the left temple holding the frames in place. If the bullet hit the frame right under the arm it would most likely hit the lens and knock the glasses off the criminals nose.
It took only a split second to aim the rifle and release the shot. The rubber bullet hit her glasses in the right point knocking them off her face in a violent spin. She froze and lost her gun. In another second they had immobilized and handcuffed her. Her glasses lay shattered beyond repair on the ground. She behaved well because she couldnít see a thing without her glasses.
I was waiting for further confirmation about the identity of the two criminals. It appeared that they were the couple being called "The Modern Day Bonny & Clyde" by all the news media. I waited another few minutes and continued looking at the lady I was going to interrogate. They had also brought me the remains of the glasses she had worn. The black plastic frames were broken right at the bridge that held them together and they had a rather worn and used impression. The right lens seemed to be still intact, but was forced half way out of the remaining frame. The left lens was badly damaged. A rubber bullet was stuck right in the center of the very thick lens. I was sure that the woman sitting at the table must be almost blind without her glasses.
A female officer entered the interrogation room and handed me a slip of paper. I read the information, saying that the woman sitting opposite me was named Carol Hanson. Her partner, the man that had been killed in the shootout, was Curt Rogers. He had a few arrests on his record for minor crimes, but nothing major, and he had not spent any time in jail. Carol Hanson was unknown, and had no record at all.
I had all information I needed for the moment. I began my interrogation. "It looks like you are in a lot of trouble Mrs. Hanson." I started.
She raised her head and her weak eyes made another vain effort to focus. She had given up squinting, as it obviously didnít make her see any better. letting me see the beautiful turquoise Ė blue color of her eyes.
"For one thing it is Miss. Hanson, not Mrs. I am not married. However I need my glasses," she said." I need them to see. What happened to them?" she asked and you could hear the anger and rage in her voice.
"Your glasses were destroyed during your arrest. A swat team officer shot them off your nose. Since you werenít willing to surrender it was the only chance we had to take you alive." I told her.
"Ha!" she exclaimed, "I never thought those horrible glasses would save my life one day" And those glasses were also the reason we got into trouble this morning. I had torn one contact lens yesterday and we were trying to get new ones for me in this optical store. You know itís kind of risky for a robber to exercise her profession in thick glasses. You saw it today, once you take my glasses away Iím helpless and unable to function".
This was the thing I wanted to hear. I had never thought that my profession would allow me to interrogate a severely nearsighted woman criminal. Almost no one knows my secret desires, that I like women that wear strong glasses, and I try to make sure no one ever does. I was anxious to hear more from Miss. Hanson, as she apparently wanted to cooperate.
"Well Miss. Hanson, right now we have no glasses available for you. This is a problem that weíll face later on when youíre back in the penitentiary." I told her. I looked at the clear plastic bag containing her shattered glasses. They had examined the intact remaining right lens of her spectacles and the printout of a lensometer read, -17.25D x -2.50 x 90į. This confirmed her statement being helpless without her strong glasses.
"Itís the glasses that originally brought me into this whole mess. But since I am here you might a well just call me Carol" she said.
"Tell me more about it," I said, anxious to hear her story.
"OK, OK I have nothing to lose and I will tell you everything you want to know. But can you speed things up a little bit with a new pair of glasses. My eyes are starting to hurt and I also feel a terrible headache coming on." Carol said.
"I already told you that it would take some time to get you new glasses. Your prescription is quite strong as we can see from the still intact right lens of your glasses." I replied.
"My left eye is as bad as my right eye." came her annoyed answer.
I thought about my collection of glasses that I kept in a well-hidden cabinet in my apartment. I was sure to have several pairs of glasses that she could wear and almost certainly be able to see with. The problem was that I saw no way to make them available for her. This was out of the question.
"I'm not going to say a thing until you arrange to get me a pair of glasses. So if you want to hear my story you will do something about getting me glasses" Carol said.
I knew that she was serious and I left her alone in the interrogation room. Back in my office I called the district attorney to inform her about the recent developments in the "Bonny & Clyde Case". She said that she would arrange things so that Miss. Hanson could be fitted with a pair of glasses.
In the meantime they had locked Carol Hanson in the holding cell of our police station. I went to see her and told her that we were working on getting her a pair of glasses.
Later in the afternoon an optometrist from the store that Carol and Curt had attempted to rob arrived at our police station and told me that the district attorney had sent him to fit a prisoner with glasses. We inspected his large briefcase and saw that it only contained a trial lens set. The black tube that he was carrying under his left arm contained a rolled up test chart the same as everybody sees hanging in the doctorís office. After we were satisfied we had him bring his stuff to the interrogation room so he could prepare to test Mrs. Hansonís eyes.
After a while Mrs. Hanson was brought into the room. I handed the printout of the lensometer over to the optician just to give him a rough guess what he was dealing with.
"Oh I see. This is a very nearsighted woman," he said.
Mrs. Hanson sat handcuffed on a chair. Her unfocused eyes were vacantly looking at nothing but a blank wall.
Mr. Winter, the optometrist had opened his trial set and got out the trial frames. He fixed his Snellen chart with four pins to the wall. Then he put the trial frame on Mrs. Hansonís nose. Her left cheek was now quite swollen and the color was deep greenish blue. He was careful not to touch this area as he put the frames on her face. I just stood there and was very pleased about what was coming now.
Mr. Winter knew, from what I had told him, the approximate range of myopia he was dealing with. He got the respective lenses out of his trial set and inserted them in the trial frame. It took him only ten minutes to get a precise refraction on Carol Hanson. Her eyes had gotten worse. The correction she needed now was Ė19.25 x Ė1.75 x 75, and Ė19.50 x Ė2.00 x 90.
This meant that the glasses she had been wearing did not fully correct her. That was the reason why they had to take the risk of breaking into the optical store to get new contacts. I liked seeing Carol with the trial frame on her nose. She was turning her head sideways to try to stop Mr. Winter from taking the trial frame away. But it was useless as he took it anyway forcing her back to her myopic blur.
"The lenses will be really thick." Mr. Winter told me when they had brought Mrs. Hanson back to her cell.
The district attorney had left him no options. The glasses had to be cheap but functional. The lenses would be regular plastic, with only basic anti reflective coating, in a cheap small brown ladies frame. Despite the small frame size the arms wouldnít fold completely Mr. Winter informed me. He promised me that the glasses would be ready sometime during the following afternoon.
I thought that Carol Hanson would look great in her new glasses. Sure she was a criminal but I canít help it. I have this major attraction towards women that wear strong glasses. The only positive thing for her was that Carol and her accomplice hadnít killed or injured any people during their robberies. They had fired their guns to indicate that they were serious. But all those shots they had fired went into the ceiling or hit walls. Before this shootout they had always been able to get away before the cops reached the scene. When they were trapped at the optical store it was the first time that they had been cornered. Now I was anxiously waiting for the new glasses as well as Miss. Hansonís confession.
At home I checked my collection and looking at all those frames I was thinking about how they would look on Carolís nose. These were thoughts that aroused me quite a bit. I had to be careful to keep my professionalism intact in this case.
The next morning I stopped by the opticians to make sure Mrs. Hansonís glasses would be delivered in the afternoon so that I could begin my interrogation. Much to my surprise Mr. Winter told me that I could wait for them as he had just put the already shaped lenses into the plastic frames. After 10 minutes he was ready and handed me the finished glasses. He told me that if they needed any adjustment he would send someone over to the police station to do it. He placed the finished frames into a cheap looking case made out of clear green plastic and handed them over to me. After I signed the receipt I put them in my briefcase and drove to my office.
As I got there I first poured me a mug of fresh and hot coffee. I found a printout of all the data we had on "Bonnie & Clyde". It looked as if 35 robberies had been attributed to them over the past 28 months. This was quite a lot and I doubted that Carol would even have remembered all of the robberies.
I called the deputy to bring Miss. Hanson to the interrogation room. I looked forward to an interesting interrogation under all aspects. I was also curious how those cheap glasses would look on the convicts face.
20 minutes later I sat opposite Miss. Hanson.
She was wearing orange colored overalls as all convicts do. They apparently had collected all her clothing and turned it over to the CSI squad to examine them thoroughly. She had a nice trim figure and I wondered how she got into all this trouble.
"Do you have my new glasses for me?" Carol asked, "otherwise I wonít say a single word." she finished.
I opened my briefcase and got her glasses out. "Here they are," I said tossing the green case containing her glasses across the table. I had calculated the force of my throw correctly as the case stopped right at her fingertips. Her handcuffed hands reached for the case. She brought it close to her eyes and fumbled it open. She got the glasses out of the case, which fell back to the table with a bang. She unfolded the arms and slid the glasses onto her face. A smile came over her face. Apparently the glasses worked well.
I looked at her and liked what I saw very much.
"So now that you have glasses again, nothing else should stop you from telling me your story" I said.
"It seems that I have no other choice"; she said peering in my direction through her very thick strong glasses.
I moved the switch of the tape recorder into its record-on position. "This is the deposition of the suspect, a Ms. Carol Hanson who was arrested yesterday after a shoot out with the local police" I spoke into the microphone, now turning it over to Carol.
She was still quiet. It seemed to me that she had to find the right end of the thread to begin. Finally she started.
"I grew up in the bible belt" she began. "I was the eldest of four siblings. Our mother died a few months after giving birth to my brother, leaving the four of us, and my father behind. I had to take on the role of mother to my younger siblings when I was only 15 years old. My eyesight was already bad at this time, and I wore glasses but it was still a lot better than it is nowadays. I could function fairly well around our house or in familiar surroundings without them." she started her story. I didnít say anything. I felt that she needed time and that she wanted to talk about everything that was disturbing her.
"For a girl as young as I was it was not easy to be forced into such a responsibility. I was young and I wanted to have a little bit of fun time for myself. My father was very religious and any difficulties that occurred had to be taken as Gods will and accepted as such. My dad was very strict and wouldnít allow me to go to any dances in the neighborhood. At about the same time I realized that my glasses didnít work as well as before. I was having more trouble seeing in the distance, especially at school. The writings on the black board got quite blurry. My father even refused to drive me to the nearest town to have my eyes checked. I was lucky that there were still some of my late motherís old glasses around. Before my mother died I had found them in the back of a drawer where she had kept her personal belongings. When I had first tried some of them on they were all still way to strong for me. But now I was able to wear the weakest pair of them. This confirmed my worst nightmare. I had the same bad eyes as my mother had. So now I wore one pair of my motherís many glasses and things went back to normal, at least as far as my eyesight was concerned." Mrs. Hanson continued.
I had just listened so far without interrupting her. Now that she had begun to tell her story she seemed to be unable to stop. I was just as curious to hear about her eyesight as I was to hear what had caused her to slip into her criminal career.
She had taken off her glasses without stopping to talk. She had brought them very close to her eyes and inspected them, and then she put them back on. This was just wonderful for me to watch.
"One day after school I met Curt. I had seen him around before as he worked on a nearby farm and as a part-time job he also looked after the school garden. He asked me to go to a dance the coming weekend. I decided to tell him the truth; that I would like to come, but that my father wouldnít let me because I had to take care of my two younger sisters and my brother. Curt said that he felt sorry for me and that he would see if he could do something about my problem. At home I had all of my work finished and my homework for school was also done. So I had the nerve to ask my father if I could go to this dance on Saturday afternoon. Of course he said no. I felt so angry. I was 16 years old and I was the only girl in class that was never seen at a social event outside school. If he wouldnít let me go, this time I would go without his consent. I didnít say a word and secretly made my preparations to leave home Saturday afternoon to attend the dance. But my little brother Johnny must have leaked something to my father. When I tried to sneak out of the backdoor of our house I was caught by my father. A fierce argument followed and I wanted to leave him standing there arguing and swearing. His religious education and behavior seemed to have vanished completely. As I wanted to get past him, he stopped me dead by taking my glasses away. I couldnít see and so there was no way for me to get away." At this point she paused for the first time in her deposition.
She went on telling that she somehow found the way to her room upstairs. When she awoke the next morning she found her glasses on the nightstand where she usually put them when she went to bed.
Carol Hanson continued her story saying: "I knew then that I would only stay in that house until I finished school. Then I would leave my family to live on my own. And so I did it. The moment I finished school, when I was 18 years old, I packed my few belongings together. Amongst them were the remaining 5 pairs of glasses my mother had left behind and all her diaries, which I had not yet read. Now that my new life was about to begin I would read them. I had packed my things in a rucksack and left home very early Sunday morning before everyone went to church. This gave me a good head start. I had been able to save a few hundred bucks over the years, without anybody knowing. I got the first bus that left and was westward bound. It was a new driver and so he didnít know me, which was good. After a 10-hour drive the bus reached itís final destination. I got off the bus. It was a good feeling and everything was so different from home. The air was different and the land looked different from home as well. It wasn't as flat but was more on the hilly side now. Across from the bus station was a small nice looking motel. I got a room there for the first night. I didn't think about the family that I had left behind for a moment. I had given them enough over the years since my mother died. Now I wanted to start my new life. In the evening I looked at the other 5 pairs of my mothers glasses. I found out that there was one pair I could see better with than I could with the ones I had been wearing. The other 4 pairs were still too strong for me.
Carol, alias Bonnie, was talking like a waterfall. It was just the kind of confession that I wanted to hear. I didnít dare interrupt her. I knew that she had told me only a small part of her life so far. If she wanted to tell me all of her life, which was my impression that she wanted to, this would well continue into the next morning. At this moment the recorder stopped. The tape had reached its end and I turned over the tape. Bonny had stopped as well, as if she was waiting for me to turn the cassette. I asked her if she wanted a little break. She gladly accepted and I called the deputy to bring us some coffee. While we were waiting I called the district attorney to inform her that our suspect was cooperating fully. Miss Hanson who heard this short phone call gave me a sad little smile. Meanwhile our coffee had arrived and I started to ask Carol a few questions about what she had said so far. I didnít start the recorder again just yet; I simply made a few notes about what she was saying.
"So you had never been able to get your eyes tested properly over all those years?" I asked.
"Yes my father wouldnít let me go to the doctor. Before I had gone to the annual checkups with my mother. But since her death I havenít seen a doctor. On the other hand I was lucky enough I still had all of my motherís glasses. The pair that was shot off my face yesterday was the last pair that was left. And I needed stronger glasses, because my distance vision with these glasses hasnít been satisfactory for the past few months. I was using contact lenses all of the time when I was out with Curt on a job. But when I couldnít wear contacts I had to wear my mother's outdated glasses so my eyes could rest from the contacts." she said.
Carolís glasses fogged up a little as she took a sip of coffee out of her mug. She set the mug down to the table and waited for her glasses to clear and continued with her story. I had finished my notes and switched the recorder on again.
"At the motel room I first showered and cleaned up. This felt so good. I sat there and started to feel a tiny bit of remorse having left my family, but it was gone as soon as I thought about my new freedom. I had run away from home because this was the thing I always wanted to do. But if I had thought it over long enough I might have decided there was another way. Now I was sitting there with the few things that were valuable for me. My motherís glasses, her diary a little bit of underwear a spare pair of blue jeans, two blouses some soap, my toothbrush and of course my money. The money would allow me some time to think about what I was going to do for a living. I had always heard of San Francisco and flower power. It was kind of romantic to think about when you were forced to stay at home against your will. So I wanted to go there and once I was there I would find one way or another to find some work. The next morning found me at the Greyhound bus stop. It was better than I had thought. The next westward bound bus would leave in 1 hour. The ticket was a reasonable price and so I bought it. I went to the waiting area and sat down. There was still some time left before the bus was leaving. I took out the first diary of my mother and started to read. She had started writing her diary some time after I was born. It was strange when I began to read it was like my mother was talking. Her voice seemed to be so near.
"I turned a few pages and came to an entry where she wrote about a planned visit to the eye doctor and that my father had always found one excuse or another for not driving her to town. So far he had appeared to have been very kind and helpful towards my mother. This was strange. Why had he postponed the visits to the eye doctor? I remembered the excuses he had made when I had asked him to bring me to the doctor. I closed the diary. I was curious to know what was going on, but I was also frightened about what was coming. This was all so strange." Miss. Hanson paused for a while.
I wanted to ask her a million questions but I decided to wait.
"I donít know if what I told you so far is of any relevance for you. So far everything I have told you has had nothing to do with why Iím here now. You must tell me if you are not interested." Carol said.
"Oh no Miss Hanson, go ahead please, it is important to know you very well. I must know some background information to consider all aspects of your case." I said. The real truth was that her story was too interesting for me and I wanted to know it all.
"Can I have some more coffee?" Carol asked.
"Sure, here you go." I said upon pouring a refill in her mug. Again I was fascinated to see her glasses fog up when she brought the mug to her lips to take a sip. Again she waited until her glasses became clear before she stared to speak again.
She adjusted her glasses and continued. "The bus arrived and I was glad I had worn a pair of glasses stronger than the previous pair. It was less strain for my eyes to see the number of the bus. With the previous pair it wasnít very clear. I boarded the bus and took a window seat. On the bus there were only a few other passengers. I didnít pay much attention to anyone and I drifted away to a shallow sleep. You know, the kind of sleep where you are sort of sleeping only with one eye. Every now and then I woke up and looked out of the window. The countryside outside the window was quite nice. By now we were approaching a mountainous area. But the fast moving objects by the side of the road were too much for my bad eyes. So I fell asleep again. I woke up again as the driver announced that we would reach a service station were he was going to refuel the bus. He said that he would stop for about 45 minutes and that there would be plenty of time for us to use the rest rooms and get some coffee and something to eat. So we all left the bus. The bus wasnít full; there were only about 20 passengers. I had been sitting in the back of the bus and so I was among the last of the passengers to leave the bus. The group moved towards the small restaurant building of the service station. One guy ahead of me seemed to look familiar to me with his medium length brown hair and his athletic slim built. As he moved his head sideways I was sure that it was Curt."
At this point Carol paused for a while ant took a sip of coffee. Now it was going to get interesting I felt. Carol took off her glasses and rubbed her eyes and massaged the back of her nose that now showed distinct marks of indentation from her glasses. She rubbed the areas behind her ears, too.
"Do your glasses need to be adjusted? I can call the optician to adjust them for you" I asked.
She looked at me bare eyed and said, "Yes maybe thatís a good idea. The arms hurt a little bit behind my ears and they cause me some kind of itchy feeling."
I took the phone and called the optician. Mr. Winter told me that he could be there just after 3 pm. I switched off the recorder and told Mrs. Hanson that I would give her a break to relax and that we would see each other again when Mr. Winter had arrived. Then I called for the deputy to bring Carol back to her cell.
The interrogation was about to reach the interesting part. Although Iím always very interested in any glasses related stuff. I also try not to mix job and my "hobby" too much. Iím a good cop and now the story had come to the point where she meets her accomplice for their future crimes. This certainly interested me, maybe more than the glasses aspect, at least for the moment. I made a few notes on my pad of some of the questions I had to ask her. Anyway this woman fascinated me. What would have happened if she had met me instead of Curt? "Oh stop it Wayne." I shouted at myself, "just a little more professionalism, please." I had to control my thoughts. It was unacceptable to develop too much sympathy for the suspect in a number of major crimes. It would be after 3 pm before Mr. Winter arrived. So I had still some time left to go out for a little snack in the nearby coffee shop. It would do me good for me to clear my thoughts.
I entered the coffee shop and sat down at my usual table in the corner from where I could overlook the entire place. Sally came over and poured me my usual mug of coffee. I ordered a ham and cheese sandwich and the soup of the day. I took the local gazette from the hook, which of course was full of "The Modern Day Bonnie & Clyde". A good part of the story covered the shooting off of Bonnieís glasses. I had finished reading the article when my food
arrived. I returned the paper and started eating my lunch.
I had finished my soup and was on the second half of my sandwich when a tall, well-formed blonde woman arrived at my table. She wore oval golden wire rimmed glasses with moderate Ė6.50D lenses. It was Sharon OíConnor, the district attorney. We had dated a few times a number of years ago, and had a short, intense relationship. We had drifted apart for no specific reason but were still very good friends. Occasionally we spent a night together and it still felt good. Maybe the reason was that we knew exactly what was involved. We didnít have to prove anything to each other and this meant our occasional romantic meetings were still loaded with passion.
Hi Wayne" she greeted me, "I have just enough time for a coffee with you before I have to return to court. How is Mrs. Hanson collaborating?" she asked.
"She is talking like a waterfall now that she has glasses." I said to Sharon.
"What an idea to shoot her glasses off. You know Wayne how helpless I am without my glasses and I have only a prescription of Ė6.50D in mine. It must have stopped Carol Hanson dead in her tracks when her glasses got knocked off." Sharon said with a chuckle.
I could only agree with her and I told her what I had learned so far during the interrogation of Carol
"OK keep me informed. Iíll call you this evening. I think itís time to go out for dinner again." Sharon said as she got up from the table.
"You know you can call me anytime. As soon as I finish the interrogation Iíll send the typed draft over to your office" I said. It was time for me to go back to work as well and I left the coffee shop a few minutes later.
Shortly after I returned Mr. Winters arrived, and he carefully adjusted Carolís glasses. Then Carol continued telling me her story.
When Carol met Curt in the bus station Curt had already begun a life of crime, and the police were looking for him, but only by his description, as they had not yet identified him. Curt convinced Carol that they should rent an apartment together in the city, which they did. For a while everything was fine. Curt even bought Carol a pair of contact lenses, and Carol was thrilled to be able to see everything so well without having to wear her mothers old thick glasses. Carol thought that Curt had found a job, as he would go out every day, and return in the late afternoon. She did not question him as to what he was doing.
In reality Curt was robbing drug stores, and convenience stores, and any other small place that was likely to have a reasonable amount of cash and even drugs on hand. One day a robbery went bad, and Curt had to run to the apartment before he was caught. But the police were hot on his tail. Finally Carol found out what had been going on, as Curt was forced to tell her. When Carol didn't want to leave the apartment and run with Curt, he told her that he would tell the police that she had been his accomplice all along. So Carol was forced to run with Curt. Now the police were looking for 2 people.
After Carol thought about it for a while she threatened to leave Curt, and tell the police that he was the lone criminal. Curt took away the contact lenses that he had purchased for her, and locked her in a room at the old farmhouse in the country that they had rented. He left her in the locked room wearing a much weaker pair of glasses than she needed to see properly with, so that she was unable to do anything more than sit in the room and read. The only time that Curt would let her out and make Carol wear her contact lenses was when he was going to rob a bank, and Carol had to drive the getaway car.
So, since Carol was stuck in a locked room able only to see well enough to read she began to read more of her mother's diaries.
"I was still very troubled about what I had read in my motherís diary and I didnít dare continue reading it. Than one day in our apartment, while I had nothing to do I took the first booklet out and continued where I had stopped several weeks before. It was the same feeling as I had the first time I read it. I felt my mother so close. I don't have the diaries here for you to read, but I can tell you approximately what she wrote if you are interested." Carol said
"Sure, tell me everything. I have lots of time." I said.
"This is approximately what she wrote: I had a violent argument with Peter this afternoon. He knows that my glasses are far to weak for me to see properly, but he still refuses to take me to the doctor. He says that my bad eyesight is God sent and that we shouldnít take steps against his will. He even punished me by taking my glasses away saying that this is a way to fulfill Gods will. I was terrified. This was not the loving and caring husband that I had married. Later I found my glasses on the kitchen table. After this I stopped asking him to take me to the eye doctor and I found another way to get there. Our neighbors son Tom brought me to town shopping every once in a while so I would visit the eye doctor during one of those occasions. Whenever possible I would leave my glasses at the optician and they would put new, stronger lenses into my old frames. This took several days and so I had to wear some of my strongest old glasses for this period of time. I didnít want Peter to know I had new glasses. But occasionally I had to get new frames because my old frames wouldn't stand another change of lenses. Sometimes when he was in a bad mood I would take off my glasses and face him bare eyed." Carol said.
"He was not a very nice father then." I said
"No, he certainly wasn't. But now I could tell that apparently I had inherited my motherís bad eyesight. I knew that I was following more or less her pace of declining sight as I had been able to wear all of her glasses so far. It meant when my distance vision got bad after a year or less of wearing an old pair of mommyís glasses I could switch to another pair of glasses she had used. At this time I still had 2 pairs of glasses that were still too strong for me. This meant I still could go on for a couple of years if my eyes didnít play tricks on me." Carol told me.
"Did you still have any pairs of your mother's old glasses when you were caught in the optical store?" I asked
"No, the last pair I had of hers were the pair I was wearing when they were shot off my face I had continued reading and found out that my mother was very concerned about another pregnancy. Her Doctor had given her his strongest advice not to become pregnant again, first because of her eyes, because he feared a retinal detachment and second because she had had problems with her placenta during her last pregnancy. Fortunately they had been able to stop the severe bleeding that occurred during the last two weeks of pregnancy when she was due to deliver my youngest sister Johanna. Then I was really shocked when I read this entry: "Today Peter has searched my purse and found out my well kept secret. He found my birth control pills. He was furious and started beating me. I was fortunate enough to be able to remove my glasses in time before his fist hit my face. If I had still had them on when he hit me they surely would have broken and could well have damaged my eyes. After he left me alone my face was so swollen, that my glasses didnít stay in place. "
"I still remembered that day because my mother pretended that a box had fallen off the upper shelf in the cupboard hitting her in the face. Now I knew that I was right in suspecting that my father had beaten her that time." Carol continued.
Then a few monthís later I found this entry:
"I haven't taking my pills for three months now. Peter hasnít touched me ever since. I hope he leaves me just this way. I probably wonít survive another pregnancy."
Two weeks later there was another entry:
Peter raped me in our barn. He was so mean. He grabbed my glasses and threw me on the floor. It was horrible. If I get pregnant this is very likely my death sentence.
"And as I now know only too well this last pregnancy was indeed the cause of her death. I still felt some remorse that I left my brother and my sisters alone with my horrible father, but I realized that I was better off being away from him. Unfortunately I had gone from one bad situation directly into another one." Carol said.
Carol continued to tell me her story. She wanted to try to escape, but Curt told her that if she did run away he would find her and kill her. Then, after Carol had participated in enough robberies that Curt was convinced that she would also be charged and convicted if they were caught, Carol was forced to participate by coming into the bank with him. The machine gun that Carol was waving around and firing in the air was actually loaded with blanks though, because Curt didn't trust Carol to not shoot him in his back. They got away with quite a large sum of money, and Curt was able somehow to spot the dye packs that the banks placed in with the bills to damage all the money if that package of bills was opened. Finally, Carol ripped one of her contact lenses, and that is how they ended up in the optical store.
After Carol told Wayne her story, Wayne did some investigating on his own. He found the farmhouse where they had been living, and sure enough there was a room that could be locked only from the outside. He called for forensic testing, and it was discovered that Carol had been the occupant of the locked room. And, when they examined the machine gun that Carol had been firing at the other officers at the optical store standoff, it was discovered that indeed she had been shooting a gun loaded with blanks. Wayne went to Sharon, the district attorney, with what he had discovered.
"I understand what you are saying Wayne." Sharon said." But she still kept firing the gun at our officers. Why did she not surrender immediately? If she had I would believe her story better."
"It is like the "Stockholm Syndrome" Sharon. Curt had been holding her in captivity for better than 2 years. Once he was killed she simply panicked." Wayne replied.
"If I buy this story, she was still involved in the robberies, simply by her presence. She will have to do some time Wayne. There is no way out of this." Sharon told him.
"What is the least amount of time you can offer her defense attorney?" Wayne asked.
"If she pleads guilty to being an accessory to all the robberies, I suspect we can get away with a ten year sentence." Sharon said.
"So, what does this translate to?" Wayne asked.
"Prison for two years, parole for a further eight, during which she has to be electronically monitored for half of this time." Sharon replied.
"What about one year in medium security and electronic monitoring for five, with her remaining on parole for another five?" Wayne asked.
"The first offer was a pretty good one Wayne. But I can sweeten it a little. We will put this into the courts for prosecution, and we will set a trial date for a year from now. Then she will spend her time waiting for trial in medium security. Then we will accept a plea bargain just before the trial date. She will be sentenced to ten years, with eligibility for parole after serving two years, but we will recommend that the time spent in custody counts as a year. So she will actually only serve a year of real prison time. Then she will have the electronic monitoring for four years, and straight parole for four. If she has someone reliable to live with for the first four years I am sure I can sell that to the judge." Sharon replied.
"I think she will go for that Sharon. Will you put a memorandum in her file with the plea bargain offer, and give me a copy in case something happens to you Ė like you get a promotion, or you become a judge, or get married and leave the District Attorney's office or something?" Wayne asked.
"Why are you so concerned with what happens to her?" Sharon asked, and as she did so, a light bulb went on in her head. "It's her glasses isn't it Wayne? It's all right, you can tell me the truth. I know that it was my glasses that attracted you to me, and hers are so strong and thick, just the way you once told me you liked girls glasses to be."
Wayne hung his head, a little ashamed that Sharon could see right through his motives. "You are right Sharon, but she is really a nice girl, and she is very pretty."
"Your secret is safe with me my friend. You are one of the few guys I have gone out with and have broken up with that I still like and care about." Sharon said.
So, I went back and arranged a meeting with Carol and her attorney. Her attorney, who was a public defender, was amazed that I had been able to reach what he considered a sweet deal. After he left, I remained behind to speak with Carol in private.
"So, what is in this deal for you Wayne?íí Carol asked.
"I have discovered that I am quite attracted to you Carol. I am hoping that once you are released we can get to know each other better." I replied.
"Right, and I am supposed to believe that you are attracted to me wearing these coke bottle glasses. Come on Wayne, tell me the truth." Carol said with a sarcastic laugh.
"Believe what you want Carol. The only thing I will ask from you is that when you are to be released you will come and live at my house while you are on the electric monitoring part of your sentence. You will have your own room, and you will have the run of the house. If I canít make you believe that I am very attracted to you within the first year, then you may go live wherever you wish." I told her.
Carolís eyes sparkled behind the thick lenses of her glasses.
"You know, I think you just might be serious. Do you also want to be allowed to visit me in prison?" Carol asked.
"That was going to be my next request. I would love it if you put my name on your visitor list." I replied.
So, Carol was convicted and sentenced without a trial, and she ended up in the state pen for another year. I went to visit her faithfully every weekend, and I was waiting at the gates for her on her release. She has been staying at my home for a few months now, and while we have not ended up in bed together, we have become quite good friends. I have purchased Carol 2 new pairs of glasses, and she is even more appealing to me wearing them than she was with the old cheap brown plastic frames that the state purchased for her. I like the way things are going, and I think we might just end up getting married.
Specs4ever, with much of the story being written by Andy.
Started August 2007 Ė Finished August 2012.