Battle Cry (Kyler England) - Helen
She remembered the night with crystal clarity. Everything felt like it was going to shit; she couldn't seem to get any support from her boss or her staff; even Sean was of no real help. She knew she shouldn't have gone to Nikki's cell after lock-up, but instinct told her that the tall lifer would provide the comfort and support she desperately craved.
Though she adamantly denied it at the time, the feel of Nikki's arms around her and lips upon her own was her salvation. Lying in bed that night, she didn't feel so alone any more.
All Out of Fight (Kyler England) - Nikki
I'm exhausted and confused but I can't close my eyes. Half my day spent in the back of prison transfer truck, shipped out of Larkhall, only to be returned to the same hell hole. I can't concentrate enough to read. When the key turns in the lock, I freeze, and yet I know it's you somehow.
You pause. You apologise, but the words aren't really registering. What do you mean you've resigned? It's not fair. You are nothing like Fenner. You care. And then you kiss me. Oh God.
But you leave, and I'm here alone. Again. This is shit.
Wish this Love Away (Gabriel Mann) - Helen
My heart still beat erratically long after you left my office. Why did I think I could control this conversation? It should have been simple: arrange an invigilator for Nikki's Open University exam. But then it became about that kiss.
You made me feel things I'd never felt before and it scared me more than it should have. I close my eyes and I can still feel the press of your lips. I had told you that even if I was attracted to you, it wouldn't work. I'm your jailer.
Even though I tried, I couldn't wish this love away.
Turning Tables (Adele) - Nikki
During a supposed drugs search, the bloody screws chucked my books to the floor like they were nothing. But in a place like this, there were so few possessions that we could have in our cells. Books were a lifeline; they provided insight and freedom to a world outside that I'd been cut off from by my own doing.
Then you came around. Said something about how it shouldn't have happened like that. You were so determined to get drugs off the wing. Did you really think I would use drugs? No, books were my escape. I was pissed off.
Rolling in the Deep (Adele) - Shell
Bloody bastard screw. Thinks he can get away with pulling that shit on me? I'll show him, won't I? When that gangster's moll said Betts & Fenner was shaggin', I figured it was my chance. If he thinks he can 'ave a laugh at what my Dad did to me, he's got another thing comin'. Fenner's nothing but a friggin' wanker.
Came into my cell and tried it on wiv me. But I was expectin' it, right. Grabbed the broken bottle under me bed and cut him open like the pig he is. He never thought I'd pay him back. Wrong.
Hanging By A Thread (Jann Arden) - Nikki
As I lay on my bunk in the near darkness, the tears fell harder than they had for some time. More alone than I had ever felt. At least when I shared a cell with Barbara, there was someone to bounce my thoughts off of. Oh, who was I kidding? More often than not, the older woman was an anchor to my fragmented sanity in this place. Sometimes more than Helen. Barbara, like Monica before her, was more of a mother-figure to me than my own mother had been.
The prison riot was over, but not the one of my heart.
Girls Like Me (Mary Chapin Carpenter) - Nikki
I stare out the barred windows of my cell, taking in your form as you stroll through the gates, briefcase and coffee juggled in hand as you attach the keys to your belt, and a smile crosses my face as you glance up in the direction of my cell. My heart lightens as you smile back. I must seem a lovestruck fool, and perhaps I am.
I must be. The words, 'even if I were attracted to you, Nikki...' reverberated in my brain, refusing to acknowledge the rest of the statement. Hope, where there had not been. I smiled.
My Skin (Natalie Merchant) - Nikki
The starkness and chill of the punishment block did nothing to ease Nikki's anger. 'Who the bloody hell did she think she was?' The damned new Wing Governor was no better than the screws in her employ if she thought Carol's miscarriage and near death was a 'tragic set of circumstances'.
She sighed as said Governor opened the door to her cell. An eyebrow raised as she saw the petite Scot ream the officer for Nikki's lack of clothing. Perhaps Miss Stewart had some humanity in her yet. Certainly her pleas seemed genuine. But Nikki had been hurt too much before to believe.
Nothing Without You (Vienna Teng) - Helen
In the darkened security lighting after lockup, Helen stood in the atrium of G-Wing's towering presence, hugging her arms to herself. Most of the inmates' cat-calls had settled for the night but the oppressiveness hung over her like net.
As with most things in Larkhall, even when mad at her, Helen's thoughts often drifted to Nikki Wade. Love was such a complicated emotion; what she once thought to understand, she realised she had barely touched the surface. What direction she had was now useless. There were no signposts that she recognised. She was adrift. Nikki was an anchor.
Nothing Without You (Vienna Teng) - Nikki
In the pulsating thrum of bodies and music that encapsulated Chix, Nikki felt like an alien in a former familiar environment. Where once she had thrived in such circumstances, it now threatened to overwhelm her. Despite the few older friends she had made that had stayed, most of the patrons were much younger, and couldn't really understand what it had been like for her, imprisoned for years; that loss of freedom, of dignity. She needed to escape the confines of the club.
When Helen found her, she was sat on a nearby stoop, arms folded around her knees, dried tears on her cheeks.