Holding Back | Teen Ink

Holding Back

April 25, 2018
By xXCaraXx BRONZE, Croydon, Pennsylvania
xXCaraXx BRONZE, Croydon, Pennsylvania
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Things haven't been going so well since the British took over New York a few years back. I mean, I don't like the British being here because I don't think think the British is treating the colonies fairly. I've heard some things that the Patriots have said about the British, and I gotta say… They sound like they're a pain in the butt to a lot of people. However, my parents would disagree.
       My mother and father are Loyalists, which means they're loyal to Great Britain. I can't mention anything about how I'm secretly rooting for the Patriots, because they probably won't welcome me in the house anymore. But what I also don't like is slavery. My parent's own two slaves, Terra and Elizabeth. They're sisters, one is quiet and shy and the other is loud and snotty. They've been in servitude to my parents since I could remember. They actually have another sister, but they were separated from her when my parents bought them. I appreciate Terra and Eliza’s service and all, but I’ve overheard them planning to escape.
     “Mother,” I started. “What happens to slaves that run away?” I watched as my mother poured herself some tea, and she slowly drank it without looking at me. While I was waiting for her to finish her cup of tea, I continued to read a book I randomly selected from the bookshelf a few days earlier. Mother put her cup down and cleared her throat. “It depends if they are caught or not.” She replied. Terra slowly walked in with a tray that contained all sorts of food, and nervously set it down next to Mother. I looked up from reading to see an annoyed Eliza storming out of the hallway with my sister Enola. Eliza left her standing in front of the table and went to the kitchen. Enola just walked right into the table and fell over, so I helped her up and set her on the chair next to mine. Enola was blind, and it was my responsibility to help her find her way around the house. “Well… What happened to slaves that weren't caught?” I asked.  Mother finally glanced at me, then began eating the food Terra provided her. “Then they aren't caught. Slaves that were caught were punished…” The expression on her face turned from bored to curious, then she asked, “Why do you ask?” I turned away from her gaze and began reading again, while mumbling, “No reason.”
       Enola just stared into space like she always does, looking as if she's thinking about something. I sometimes wonder what she thinks about every day. Then all the sudden she blurted out, “Someone is offering to help slaves that want their freedom.” And here we have something else she always does; randomly blurt things out for no reason, and what's weird is that all the stuff she says is true. Eliza nearly dropped a bucket she was holding when she heard Enola, and Terra just nervously glanced at her sister. “I personally don't see the point in helping runaway slaves. All they'll ever get out of it is a bayonet driven through their heads.” Mother stood up and walked back to her room, leaving almost all the food untouched. Terra slowly went to fetch the tray Mother left, and said, “Do you think it is possible for us to escape this place…?” I wanted to say yes, but with the British patrolling the city and all, it seemed unlikely. “Hopefully.” I said. “They're actually picking up slaves tonight.” Enola randomly said. That sounded nice and all, but I don't think it’s possible for them to escape tonight. I think it'd be wiser to wait, but Terra and Eliza would disagree. “We should hide all the bread and say we ran out.” Said Eliza. “Then we should ask our master if we can both go out and buy more.” Answered Terra. I did in fact heard everything they just said, but I cared about those girls. They were taken away from their family and Mother and Father treat them like garbage, so the least I can do is not tell my parents.
         Later that day, Eliza and Terra slowly walked towards Father, who was busy counting his money at the table. Again. The two stopped next to the chair he was sitting in, and Eliza cleared her throat. Father looked at the two a few seconds later, then said, “Oh, you two. What is it this time?” Father’s stern tone made the two pretty nervous. Terra didn't want to say anything, so she looked at Eliza as if she was telling her to explain to Father what they wanted. Eliza nervously looked at Father, who seemed to be getting impatient with the sisters, then said, “Oh, well… We… Just ran out of bread!” Father stared at the two in a mixture of confusion and seriousness. “Didn't I let you two buy bread yesterday?” He asked. Eliza began sweating, then slowly began to respond. “Y-yes, but… Madam ate it all.” Father looked down at his money, then said what sounded like an insult towards the two girls, then gave Eliza a few coins. “Make it quick.” I watched the two slowly walk out the door from the living room. I just hoped the two actually thought this through.
         A day had passed, and they haven't returned. Father has been cursing silently to himself all morning and hit Mother for supposedly eating all the bread in one day. I just hope they made it out safely. I walked outside to get Enola, and she was sitting down near the gate holding a newspaper. “They were dragging the bodies of two slaves away earlier.” My heart dropped. It couldn't have been Terra and Eliza, right? I grabbed the newspaper out of her hands and read it. One paragraph caught my eye. “Two teenage negros were found last night, their lifeless bodies floating near the dock. Cause of death is unknown, but officials believe that the two girls slipped and fell into the water, later drowning.” I stopped reading. I couldn't bear to finish the paragraph. “They were very brave.” Enola slowly said.
         Around dusk, me and Enola walked to the same dock Terra and Eliza died in. I was carrying a doll Terra made a while ago, and Enola held Eliza’s favorite flower. I dropped the doll in the water, and instructed Enola to do the same with the flower. We, well I, watched the items slowly float away.

Similar Articles


This article has 0 comments.

Wellesley Summer

Smith Summer

Parkland Speaks