Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

Destroyed Morality

It was a bit after the majestic sun had arisen from its hiding place under the moon, that the fair skinned men came and infected our land. They came in a group of twenty or so with their enormous temples that skimmed the ocean. We approached them with splendorous gifts: beads, corn, jewelry…as a peace offering and welcoming to our land. They accepted all that we gave them, and took some of the men in my village, one being my brother. I wish they had taken me. I cannot wait until they arrive back home so my brother can tell me all about it. Our emperor believes that they have come from another world, above the skies. He says that they came here to enrich our knowledge and show us a new way of life. I’m excited to have their culture washed upon us.
The fair skinned men have returned back to our island; however my brother and the others did not come back with them. They want to explore the land that we live in so we allow it. I have never seen men in such a delight, as they were when their sight gazed upon the gold temples in our city. Our emperor is letting them stay awhile in our land before letting them head out again in the endless ocean. We had a feast that night. All week we have been cultivating corn, bean, and squash, so they would realize the richness of our culture. My father even went out yesterday to hunt. He returned with ten deer which were cooked for the feast. It was a good thing that we had brought so much food because the men ate everything. I thought they would have exploded because of all of that food. It would have taken weeks for our entire village to consume it all, while it took twenty fair skinned men one meal! It seems as if they are enjoying themselves.
Today when the men woke up they said that they were very, very sick. They told us that it was a disease that consumes the gods where only gold would suffice it. Our emperor ordered everyone in the village, even the women, to collect all the gold that they could find for the men. I hope we have met their necessities.
The men that came to our land many sunrises ago are still sick. They ordered us to wear necklaces of copper each day. We are only allowed to take the coin off if we have brought them enough gold for that day. It’s very tiring to fulfill the desires of these fair skinned men. I work from sun rise to sun set and eat very little. It has been days since I have had enough food and my stomach is constantly grumbling. Sometimes the men will hit me with their whips when this happens and they force me to work harder. I cannot wait until they are gone so we will be able to resume our normal lives once again. Our emperor tells us that they won’t be here a lot longer; however during their time here, it is our duty to give them what they need because it is a blessing that they have come to our land.
When I woke up with the sun this morning in my family’s hut, my sister was gone. My parents and I asked the entire village if they knew where she had went but nobody knew. It wasn’t like my sister to try and run away from even the most difficult task, she was much stronger then me. I was sure that she did not run away. I believe that one of the fair skinned men took her away from us but I wouldn’t dare to even suggest that to anybody in my village. They all think that the fair skinned men don’t want to hurt us. I’m scared for my sister and everybody else in my village, even myself. The men are very strong, even though they do not work. They have advanced weapons. One time a boy in my village went to pick up one of the men’s sharp weapons and his whole hand started to bleed. They made him work even with this injury while they laughed at his stupidity. Even as much as I want to defend everyone in my village I don’t think I could risk my life for it.
Today a lot of the older people in the village had a sort of cough throughout the day. It was very strange. I feared for them because the legends that the elders used to tell us, told of a horrible disease that wiped out entire villages because of its strength. None of the medicines that the doctors knew of could cure it and it ended with the death of millions. It started with a cough.
In the middle of the night my mother woke up and started to cough for a very long time. I didn’t think anything of it because all I wanted to do was to get back to sleep so I would be able to work hard tomorrow, for the fair skinned men. I knew that if I stayed up all night I wouldn’t be able to work as hard, and they would be angered. Her cough continued on throughout the night. I wondered why my father wasn’t waking up to see if anything was wrong, I also knew that I should too, but nothing happened just the continuous, harsh, beat of her sick cough. The sound waves pounded themselves inside of my skull until I was faced with the constant torture of her minuscule cough. It was never ending, which angered me. I felt as if she may be doing it on purpose, to force me to not get any sleep which would lead to my death by the fair skinned men since I wouldn’t be working hard. As all of these ideas were wedged into my brain, I realized how obsessed I was with pleasing the fair skinned men. I saw how weak my village was. We have come under the complete and utter control of these humans, as equal as ourselves, and they did it without any constraint from us. In my village, it is our nature to give to others and assume the same would be given in return. We haven’t received anything in return. The fair skinned men saw that in ourselves and used this weakness against us, by manipulating us into their slaves. I also knew that I had to escape because if not, I’d lead a life of hard work and turmoil. The only way for my survival and the rest of my family would be to abandon our village and try to find life in a new paradise, because this one has turned to ruins.
This morning, I woke up to find my mother in a dangerous fever with red lumps all over her body. I tried to awaken her without any success. My father wasn’t anywhere in the hut and I was scared for the fact that I was losing everybody in my family. Every single string that formed a web unto which prevented me from falling into the deep hole of insanity was breaking and it was the teeth of the fair skinned men that tore them to shreds. And through it all I crumbled into myself, as all of the stress and agony formed into water and escaped from my tear ducts out of my body. My life had become uncontrollable, which was unbearable to me. Right now the only desire that I had was to lie here, in this state, and stay this way for the rest of my eternity. For once, ever since the arrival of the demons had occurred, I finally felt a state of serenity. Footsteps removed me from my weeping. I looked up to see my father, however he wasn’t the man that I had once knew. He wore the indigo cloth that the fair skinned men dressed themselves in and held the tool that they used to end our lives. When his lips parted, the tongue of the fair skinned men spoke, which was foreign to me. He gestured angrily for me to leave the hut, no sympathy in his eyes. I tried to find the father that I had once knew under this deception but he was completely transformed. I walked outside and heard the loud noise signaling that another soul has departed from our existence. The voyage that I was about to commence would have to be traveled alone.
By now I knew that I was truly alone, with no one to confide in but the depths of my soul. I have also lost my faith in the spiritual presence before me. I couldn’t understand why our Gods have allowed this destruction of my village to last for so long. I hated all of the confusion that surrounded me, it had become intolerable.
A week has passed since I had last written. The fair skinned men have kept us so busy recently. Not only do we have to work, but also learn from them. I see people all around me becoming completely absorbed by their culture; I do not want to be like that. What we mostly learn about is their language and religion. It seems like their duty to replace it with our own. My own tongue is becoming a dark grey color as I speak more and more of their language. I feel that soon the whole surface, as well as beneath it, will be dirtied like the ones of the fair skinned. However there is one thing that these men can not take away from me, which is my faith. In their belief system they tell us that if we don’t complete the work and follow the orders of the fair skinned, then we shall anger their only God and be sent into the fiery hells of Satan. The only way to achieve grace from God and prolong our trips to hell is to keep him happy. They tell us that we could go to a place like Heaven, the paradise that they will arrive at. I don’t understand this biased religion of theirs because it seems as if the ones who will be sent to the arms of the demons will be the fair skinned men themselves for their actions to my people.
I’ve been planning my escape for awhile now. It has become difficult and tedious to form these ideas. It has to be perfect so I shall ensure a chance of my safety. Nobody has attempted to run away before but I can only imagine the punishment that would result. Originally, I had thought that the easiest way would be to leave while they were sleeping, with the assistance of the dark shadows and my knowledge of the land, I would have an advantage and an easy escape. However, now with my father watching my every move, that plan would be impossible. I was sure that he knew of my intentions, but whether or not he had told the fair skinned ones, I had no way of knowing. All I knew was that I had to go at the perfect moment. If I did not, I’d become a slave of my enemy for a lifetime.
We worked today. I was so frustrated because they took away our emperors’ power and made him work with us! The one man that I had learn to respect and had some hope in to save our lives had becoming the man beside me in the mines. It was horrible just to look at him. As a child I always remembered him by the miraculous, decorated gold crown upon his head. He was considered to us, one of the gods on Earth. I became disgusted with the fact that he had to complete this dirty work with us. When we were working he gave me a nod and winked. It was such a quick action that I thought that I had imagined it in the blistering sun. But as the sun began to decline and our meals were being presented to our feet, as scarce as they were, he dropped a rock onto his foot. I use the word “dropped” there for the sake that I saw him do it; I was staring right at him as he crushed his own bones, causing severe pain to himself and gave that same nod and wink. At first I was astonished, I couldn’t believe that this would happen. How could he have known? Was it that obvious upon my face? And as I stood there dumbstruck, my legs started moving and I sprinted into the forest. Of course everybody saw me do it, it was in broad daylight. However I knew I was given a couple of extra footsteps. Those in which, could save my life. After a few moments in the foliage, that was my second home, I heard the screams of the fair skinned as they chased me down. Their unusual tongue pounded in my brain and if I had paid better attention in the classes, I may have been able to decipher some of the words. I took a wrong turn about one mile in, which caused my foot to get stuck in a log as I tried to figure out where I was. Panic washed over me because I knew they were right behind me and in a few seconds I would take a journey to the hell that the fair skinned men described. My ears detected a familiar grunting as I turned around and faced my annihilator. It was the man who had once been my father. I was certain that this man would kill me in an instant; it would be like stepping on an insect, no harm done. But maybe it wouldn’t be so easy if I dup deep and found the man I once loved. I yelled at him and told him to kill me in my village’s tongue. His skin began to darken as he considered what he should do. I kept a stern stare to keep the pressure on him. My life was in his hands, it could go either way and for some reason I wasn’t scared. Finally, he put down his weapon and ran in the other direction.




Join the Discussion


This article has 1 comment. Post your own!

bec said...
Nov. 25, 2008 at 1:53 am:
so long but beuatiful and inspirational and thoughtfully written : )
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback