All Nonfiction Bullying Books Academic Author Interviews Celebrity interviews College Articles College Essays Educator of the Year Heroes Interviews Memoir Personal Experience Sports Travel & CultureAll Opinions Bullying Current Events / Politics Discrimination Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking Entertainment / Celebrities Environment Love / Relationships Movies / Music / TV Pop Culture / Trends School / College Social Issues / Civics Spirituality / Religion Sports / Hobbies
- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
I am Avalon Leythri 16 years old, and I will tell you a tale that leaves you to decide my fate:
I walked down the long winding dirt road that led out beyond the market place. My skirt was flowing around me on the windy day. I walked alone. The market had once been a lively place full of warmth, but the spark was gone. Wilted tomatoes hung on dead vines. There was dust gathered all around, and all of the cashiers had scowls on their faces which showed their extreme hatred for pretty much everything.
I glanced down at my shopping list: lamp oil, grain, and rope. These things were scarce. Everything was scarce these days.
I remembered when my papa had worked here. His smile had been big enough to warm up that whole town. As I grew up his smile slowly started to fade away. The secret revolution was all he ever talked about, which was a bit ironic since it was secret! He talked about how corrupt the government was, and how they could even take away our basic rights.
My papa knew that if he was discovered to be a part of the revolution, he would’ve been captured and killed. Even talking out against the government was forbidden, let alone acting against them. That’s why I couldn’t talk about the revolution to anyone outside our family.
The government suspected a rebellion. What they didn’t suspect was that the revolution was so strong that we could overthrow them, provided we armed ourselves with the bombs we’d been working on, but still that wasn’t what I wanted. That wasn’t what any of the women wanted, but the men never stopped and asked us our opinion anymore.
The importance of women had been long forgotten, along with the good old days to which my mind often wandered. Those were the days when people greeted each other happily with a smile, or when we danced together on the streets listening to the sound of flutes, and cooking birds to eat later in the night.
I wondered why we never danced anymore, but it didn’t take me long to remember our controlling society. So right then I decide I would dance. As I danced down the road I earned the looks of everyone in the marketplace. Their stares were cold; they were full of judgment and disapproval.
While I progressed down the road, I saw a glimmer coming from the entrance to the forest. I leapt gracefully along, cutting my bare feet on the rocks as I made my way toward the small shine. I could have sworn it was just my mind playing tricks on me but I started to hear the magical high pitched sound of the flute, the same melody we used to play in the old days. I then saw a man playing on a rock nearby. When he saw me dancing, he stood up. I assumed he would strike me down, since dancing was frowned upon those days. However, before I knew it he had joined me in dance along the narrow forest road.
The shine in his eyes hypnotized me. He placed his arm around my waist then gently lifted my hand and started to twirl me round and round. I felt him spinning me faster and faster, then I felt myself slipping away from reality. I started to feel very tired but couldn’t pull myself away from his grasp. The last thing I remembered before nodding off into the abyss was looking into those mysterious deep-set eyes.
When I awoke I felt a warm blanket covering my body, and my head was laid upon a feather pillow. I realized that I had never slept that well in my entire life, and the old rag of a dress I was wearing had been replaced by a silk nightgown. I had no idea where I was, and I thought to myself about a conversation my papa and I had when I was not yet 8.
“Avy” my father said, “One day you might wake up in a strange place. You may be confused and maybe even scared, but don't worry me darling I’ll come and bring you home.”
I simply replied, “I’ll be there waiting with my arms open wide.”
“Mind you now, don’t be a talking to anyone ‘bout daddy’s work when you're gone, you hear?” He asked me with a slight edge to his voice.
“I would never tell a soul” I replied.
“Pinky promise?” asked papa.
“Pinky promise!” I chimed back.
I assumed that this is what he had been talking about. I was lucky I even remembered that day; it had been more than 8 years ago. Now; however, I knew what he had been talking about. I then realized he had not been talking about his work in the marketplace but the work with the secret revolution.
I felt lightheaded when I realized I had been kidnapped for information about my father’s secret revolution. I wondered if it was the government who was holding me captive, and if so would they harm me to gain knowledge of the uprising?
I then remembered that I had not even lifted the covers off my head to see where I was yet. When I stepped emerged from the cave of my own body heat I found that I was a bedroom quite like my own. The draperies were imprinted with flowers, and the ground was covered with rugs that looked like they imported from far away.
I tried the door and it was not locked. When I opened it, to my surprise there was a small kitchen with a deep sink and a wood burning stove, and behind a small wooden wall there was a toilet with a water basin and cotton towel laid beside it. These were luxuries we townspeople had not enjoyed for many a year.
I then walked to a door laid in the back of the kitchen that had been hidden from my view by the shadows that lingered around it. I was afraid to open it, in fear of finding the man who kidnapped me or someone even worse!
After I calmed myself I slowly inched the door open, it was made of solid metal and hard for a girl like me to pull. Once the crack between the door and the wall was wide enough I slipped through only to find, very strange carriages speeding by and my ears were met with the sound of honking coming from all along the road.
There were tall buildings made of glass that reflected everything happening around it. I felt out of place, there were oddly dressed people rushing around with one of their hands waving to the strange yellow carriages speeding by the hard black road, and the other hand pressing odd little metal boxes against their ears.
There were signs mounted on top of large poles and buildings all around, they had oddly shaped letters imprinted on them. It was too bad I had never learned how to read, or else I may have been able to decipher them for clues as to where I was.
I knew my father would come for me, but I was not sure if he would get here before someone from the government came to fetch me. I started to run as fast as I could, because I knew that it would be harder for the agents to find me if I was not waiting right where they had left me, like a sitting duck.
I was not the only one in a rush around there though; everyone had seemed to be in a hurry. The strangest part was that no one seemed to notice me. I wondered why they were not trying to get information out of me, or at least doing something besides ignore me.
I found a dark alley that I could slip down to avoid being seen, so I squeezed between the two walls gasping for breath. When I finally reached the end of the alley I was let out in an enclosed area with a couple of shops and a gate blocking off a river where the Geese were resting. I entered one of the little stores, and it was decorated very strangely; there were tall skinny tables covered with checkered cloth, and there was a man sleeping behind a strange counter with a variety of breads and pastries enclosed inside it.
I ducked into some strange booth that was hooked to the wall, way in the back of the little shop. I sat there for hours, and then I started to wonder if anyone was even coming to look for me. I thought I must have really thrown them off track, or they just thought that eventually I would wander back.
After waiting for so long hidden in the shadows, there was a part of me that longed to be found; then there was another part telling me not to move an inch . As hard as I tried to stay awake, eventually I fell asleep. What seemed like a few seconds later I felt someone shaking my shoulder. Immediately I awoke, and gifted whoever was standing in front of me with a punch in the face. I scrambled to my feet trying to get away from what I assumed was someone sent by the government.
He grabbed me by the arm, and I let out a cry help. He stood me up straight and I realized it was the man that been behind the counter. I remember the astonishing realization that he had been in the same building with me all along. He looked very surprised by my actions.
“What’s wrong with you!” he cried out angrily with his hand pressed against his eye.
“I was just trying to tell you the shop is closing!” he roared with a flare of rage in his voice.
I was confused, I didn’t know what he was talking about, so I just ran away before he could get the chance to grab me and bring me in.
I figured I had a good head start on him, and I had slipped down multiple alleys to get away. I jumped at every squeak and rustled. My heart must have been beating 1000 miles an hour. I waited but no one came, and still I sat there afraid that I would be caught if I left. The only time I drifted out of the alley was to scrimp for some food in the dumpsters outside the shops.
I had been alone for so many days I started to hear the continual drumming of my most valued organ, “Tick tock tick tock”. I’d heard stories of people in these situations and I always thought I would know exactly what to do given the chance; I was wrong. I was scared; I didn’t know what was taking Papa so long.
I didn’t know how long I had been hidden. My best estimate was somewhere from a day to 3 months. I sunk into a deep slumber, and then I just kind of woke up in a small room with steel walls, its only contents being a square table in the center of the room.
There was a strange window covering the better part of the wall. I couldn’t see anything in the glass accept my reflection staring back at me with eyes that reminded what pain I was in. Three men slipped in without a sound,.I was startled when I realized that they were standing behind me in the mirror; they were really more of silhouettes than humans.
One of the men pulled out the chair sitting at the table and gestured for me to sit. Appeasing them I slumped into the hard chair. I felt the tension like a curtain enclosing around me. They held shrewd looks on their faces like they knew something I didn’t. They never said a word to me. Not when their boss came in. Not when they were told to get the information out of me, and not when beat me within an inch of my life.
They left me alone I the room, bloody and tattered. I turned on to my stomach to lay my face on the cold ground. The only thing keeping me alive was the satisfaction of never telling them anything about the revolution. It must have been driving them crazy; I then felt a smile start to form on the edge of my lips. Papa would have been so proud of me. With my heart at peace I slowly fell into the realms of slumber, where I was entranced by unimaginable wonders.
I felt the warm sun shining on my face. The warmth was filling up the room like a coffeepot trickling its contents into a tiny cup. I then got to wondering why the sunlight was shining in the room. That thick window had never let any light in on the previous days she had laid in the corner on the cold cement.
I then realized that I was on a bed, how puzzled I had been, so I lifted up the covers that I hadn’t noticed either. I was surprised to realize that somehow I had ended up back in my room, my room! I flew out of bed so quickly that I tripped over my own feet, hitting the chest that I had fallen into so many times before.
“Papa!” I yelled, “Papa, I’m home!” I cried with a tear of joy sprouting in my right eye.I scrambled to my feet, and enthusiastically flung open the door. I saw papa sitting down in our small little kitchen at our half-finished table, just like he did every morning.
“Papa?” I restated inquisitively.
“Good mornin’ Avy darling” he said with a satisfactory smile on his face.
“Papa I’m home after all this time, and all you say is good morning?” I felt the anger curdling my blood, and I had a gut feeling that something was wrong; terribly wrong.
“What are you talkin’ ‘bout honey?” he asked questioningly.
“Papa, someone kidnapped me and brought me to a strange place called New York, and they hurt me just so I would tell them about your revolution!” I said.
“Huh? I don’t know where you came up with that Avy, I don’t know nothin bout no secret revolution, and I just saw you last night!” he cried out with what looked like concern for my mental wellness crossing over his face.
“But Papa, I’ve been gone for months, and I know about the revolution Papa, you told me; remember?” I sobbed with a tear dripping down my face.
“Have you been havin’ strange dreams Avy?” He said with a forced chuckle.
“It wasn’t a dream Papa! I was kidnapped, and you told me when I was little that if something like this ever happened you would come and save me, and now you’re pretending like nothing happened at all?” I said with angrily through my tears.
“What are you talking bout! He yelled once again. “This is crazy!” he said with an edge to his voice.
“I’m not crazy! I shrieked back at him. I’m not I’m not, I know I’m not. I kept repeating it slowly to myself so that maybe I would actually believe it, then the thought I had been trying to keep from crossing my mind finally came; what if it all really was a dream?