February 20, 2020 at 1:31 pm #106760
I watched in horror as the men kicked, and punched her again and again. “Stop! Stop hurting her!” I cried, struggling to get away from the two men holding me to watch the horrible scene.
Again, the man’s fist slammed into her jaw, and another cry escaped her bleeding lips. She laid crumpled on the ground, bleeding and bruised.
Tears brimmed in my eyes. “P-please!” I choked on a sob. “Hurt me instead! Just please stop hurting her!”
The man glared at me. “Shut up boy! She’s a worthless nothing!” He struck her again in the head. With a small cry she slumped to the ground unconscious.
Tears poured down my face, blurring my vision. “GRACE! No!!”
I jerked awake, gasping for breath. Looking around franticly, the walls of my small shack came into focus. I sat up quickly my heart slamming in my chest.
That had never happened. Grace dreams were always good and happy…never horrible nightmares. What if…what if that’s how she’s really treated? What if there’s someone over her as cruel as that man? I shuddered at the thought, those dark eyes, the grin, as if he was so much enjoying the pain he was causing her.
She’d already been through so much. I bit my lip, trying to fight the pictures in my head, but I could see it all as clear as glass. Grace screaming for them to let her go, as they pulled her towards their big black van already packed full with kids. Mom crying. Dad struggling to hold my kicking and flailing eight-year-old self from trying to attack the man.
I could hear it all too. Dad whispering to me “N-No…No, Nate. Violence will make it worse. They’ll take her either way. You have to stand strong like a man f-for h-her.” And the way his voice flattered at the end. Mom’s pained breath inbetween her sobbing echoed in my head. Grace’s muffled cries as the van door slammed shut. The bangs as she hit the window as they drove off, as if she could still escape from their clutches.
I remember the rip of pain that I felt in my chest, as I saw my little sister get torn out of my life, as I was being held back to stop them from doing so. As the van disappeared in a cloud of dust, I had turned around yelling “You must hate Grace! How could you let them take her away?!”
I now, 10 years later remember the things that my 8 year old self didn’t see, or acknowledge the existence of those things. The way they tore her favorite belonging off her neck, throwing the heart of gold on the ground. The guns at the men’s side. The pained expressions on my parent’s face, showing how much this was killing them. That they were screaming and shouting for them to let her go on the inside.
My dad was right to hold me back, I probably would’ve got myself killed trying to stop them, and then they would’ve still taken her.
I quickly wiped my hand across my eyes. And if I had died, she would be forever alone, with no one to take care of her.
The form of the man who had dragged her away ten years ago came back to my mind. Hard, and quick to strike out or yell. And then the man in my dream. Harsh, cruel, and striking out just for his pleasure.
Was that the kind of people she’s with? If so, she has been forever alone and no one to take care of her. And now she is alone, with no one to take care of her.
The words of my father echoed in my head ‘Stand strong like a man for her.’ But this time it wasn’t a whisper, it was louder, a command.
I pressed my lips together and sat up straighter. She didn’t need me in the sometime future, she needed me now.
I got up, and started packing my things, letting the determination push away the sleepiness. Stand Strong. Stand Strong. Stand strong for Grace.
“Money, locket, pants, shirts, socks…” I said each this checking it off of my mental checklist as I put the less important things in my back pack, and the more important things in the small satchel I could carry close on my side. I needed to go by a store to get food for a while, and water. Maybe some gloves? Winter was drawing near. Maybe a jacket for Grace.
Store? “Oh…no.” I glanced down at the newest envelope full of money. This was a months’ worth, and the month isn’t over. I can’t leave yet…but Grace needed me.
I could take the money–he did give it to me early—and I’m sure Mr. Collin’s wouldn’t mind… I felt a nag in my stomach. How could I do that after all that they had done for me?
I made up my mind, throwing the last remaining’s in my back pack and zipping it up, I would go by the Collin’s house and give him back the extra money. Plus, that would help with buying stuff. The best shop to get it from would be his store.
Zipping up my backpack, I put it on my back, and put my satchel bag over my head. I walked out the door opening with the same familiar squeak. I let my eyes travel down the ally way, then back to my shack.
I had been crying, I was cold, and I was running from the footsteps behind me. Social workers, or doctors who had told me I had to leave and make sure I didn’t have the deadly germs of yellow fever that was still on our house.
I rubbed my thumb against the outside wall, that was worn from years of hard weather. “Thank you.” I whispered. “Thank you for hiding me, and protecting me on that day three years ago and from then on. You who looked so wobbly and weak, like you would cave in at any time stood so strong for me.” I pulled my hand away and turned my back on what had been my home.
I walked towards into town, the first signs of dawn showing. The cloud coverage moved back, as if to let you see the lightening colors of pink and orange. It was like a promise, that the thick clouds of doubt and fear would soon move back and uncover the beautiful promise that she would be found. And like the sun coming up, the finding would brighten everything, and warm everyone.February 20, 2020 at 1:51 pm #106768Emberynus The Dragonslayer@emberynus-the-dragonslayer
Really sad!! But I like it just the same!
Sold souls and dead promisesFebruary 20, 2020 at 2:19 pm #106776February 20, 2020 at 3:31 pm #106782Veraza Winterknight@kari-karast
@katthewriter Ooooooh. *sends them more hugs* I like it muchly.
"You can dance with my henchman."February 21, 2020 at 1:26 am #106860
What about this?February 23, 2020 at 10:55 am #107091
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