After a few rainy days, there was finally some rare sunshine crept in this small town north of Manhattan in September of 1780. A man with floppy blond hair bound by a blue hair band, wearing a navy blue coat with khaki waistcoat inside, led a team of six soldiers who had similar outfits to his, all marching foreword. As they stopped outside a splendid house, a woman with her queen style hair up and wearing an elegant crimson dress stepped outside the gate to welcome them.
“Your Excellency. General Washington. Welcome!” she bowed gracefully, “ To what do I owe this pleasure?”
“I would like to have breakfast with your husband, Mrs. Arnold.” The man bowed a bit and said it with a polite smile.
“Please come inside!”, Mrs. Arnold replied, opening the door enthusiastically. However there was a slight nervousness or apprehension in her eyes without others’ noticing.
They all went inside the ostentatious house. Mrs. Arnold started to make some tea for them while holding a baby in her left arm. General Washington was seated in a vintage, but luxurious, chair with no expression on his face which was, however, just a clever concealment of his impatience.
“Will he be much longer?”, he finally decided to ask.
“Any moment. I’m…I’m sure.”, Mrs. Arnold answered awkwardly.
Suddenly an interrupting sound ruined the atmosphere “Your Excellency.” A man dressed like a captain gave General Washington an envelope with a special wax mark seal. General Washington opened it and said “Thank you, Mr. Austin Roe.”
As he was reading, his brows frowned and his lips trembled with wrath. “Did you know?!”, shouted General Washington to Mrs. Arnold.
“N..No! He wouldn’t.”, stuttered Mrs. Arnold.
In their chaotic shouting, the baby cried out loud. Mrs. Arnold comforted him by tapping him on the back. General Washington stared at the baby fiercely. Shortly after, loosening clenched fists, he left them alone, then gave an order to his soldiers who were in the house with him: “Soldiers! Capture Benedict Arnold. That bastard was plotting to give West Point to the British!”
Instead of a frontal attack with the British, General Washington came up with a brilliant idea.
Changing his clothes into more casual ones and spreading some mud both in his face and clothes, General Washington fled to West Point fort’s gate followed by his own soldiers shooting at his back. “Help! I am a deserter!”, General Washington shouted and waved at the opponent’s soldiers on the opposite side.
British soldiers, all red military uniforms, held rifles in their hands and pointed at this unidentified man at the gate.
Under the disguise of outfits, General Washington called out: “Don’t shoot! I am going to help you win the war!” and the American soldiers’ acting. The British opened the gate and let him in without any suspiciousness. Then he was led by a solider to a fancy house which belonged to the British army.
“I need to see General Arnold.”, General Washington said to his guide urgently.
“For what reason?”, asked his guide contemptuously.
“It is related to covert information. You are not authorized, I am afraid.”, General Washington replied in a serious tone.
The guide seemed convinced and went off to inform General Arnold.
General Washington was thinking about the words he was going to say when facing General Arnold, rehearsing them in his mind over and over. He still denied the truth that his most brilliant general and trusted friend betrayed him. At the very moment of knowing his betrayal, even General Washington himself did not know if he was angry or extremely grieved.
A familiar footstep sound drew General Washington back from his recalling. A man in a red uniform with a walking stick hobbled close to him and said “John said you asked to see me?”
“Yes..Yes sir,”, General Washington lowered his voice, in case General Arnold found out his true identity. “ I am a loyalist and it was General Clinton who sent me to you.”
“Is that so? I have not heard anything from him.” General Arnold replied it with a slightly suspicious tone. Meanwhile, General Washington put his hand on the back to search for his gun discreetly. “Who are you again? ”, asked General Arnold
“Head up. Show me your face!”, shouted General Washington pulling out his gun and shooting the other soldiers, leaving only General Arnold alive.
“Geo..George? I knew it was you. How did you…”, scared as he was, General Arnold still acted like he was calm and collected.
Looking around the room, General Washington stared at him then pointed his gun toward him.
“Why?”, Washington queried.
“Why?”, General Arnold sneered, as if it was a preposterous joke.
A gunshot rang off, under a scarlet light shining from the sunset.