“Run! Helena, run.”
“I’m goin’ as fast as I can manage father.”
“Well not fast enough.”
I hate this, I hate running. I hate it when my father calls me Helena. I mean even though that’s my real name it irks me. Why can’t he just call me Isabella like master use to call me. Why does he insist on calling me Helena.
“Helena you are moving far to slow now, hurry will ya.”
I sighed loudly knowing it would bother my father after which I said.
“I’m not moving any faster than I am now. We wouldn’t have to be running like cowards if you would have listened to me. I could have change things; made things better for us both after Mother died! Now I suggest we turn back, stop this foolishness, and beg for are forgiveness while we still can! Just listen to me fa-“
“Stop!” my father interrupted.
“This is the exact kind of foolishness your mom talked before she died. I’m afraid Helena, that like her, you have become weak from all those years as a house slave. I warned you not to listened to that chicken scratch the master, and that little girl of his filled your head with.”
My father stared at me deeply for a moment. Then came toward me on one knee, and placed his hands on my shoulders.
“Now you listen here now girl, you hear. That master doesn’t want you. He was playin’ with your mind, you understand. He don’t love you like he said he do he-“
I cut my father off with a voice trembling with anger.
“Yes he does father, he even call me Isabella like he do his own child. He even said that he wanted me to be his own child. That he’d raise me himself if that’s what it took. You just jealous father, that’s all that is, jealousy. Jealous he want to be my father, and I’m gonna be a free slave ‘fore you ever 'come one!”
With a disgusted look on my fathers face he slapped me across my cheek. I rubbed my hand across my cheek as if to heal it. I looked at my father still on his knee, and saw the tears sliding down his jaw bone.
“Now you listen here! I’m your real father. I was from the beginning, and I’m always gonna be. Aint no other man, white or black, gonna take mine without takin’ my life first. That man did not love you as his own. He simply wants to play with your mind first, and like your mother lure you in. you know what he did to your mother right? He raped her ‘till she couldn’t fight no more. Then whipped her ‘till she couldn’t bleed no more.”
He stopped then gave me that same hard stare then said.
“You hear me, you hear me girl, huh! Tell me now, what exactly the hell you think he gone do to you if you go back,”
He let it sink in.
” now you just think ‘bout that you hear?”
I looked at my father, then spat at his feet, and said to him.
“I pity you, I do, I really do. Good bye father.”
I turned away from my father, and begun to run back to the plantation we tried to escape. My father didn’t try to stop me something told me he was crying aloud, but I couldn’t hear him. My own sorrow was defying. It wasn’t my fault, it was his. Why couldn’t he understand, that master and his people love me, and I can change things for the both of us. Maybe he’ll come to his senses, and follow, maybe.
My father never did follow me back, but I get the feeling others are around me, following me. The closer I get to home, the more paranoid I get. I just hope that if there is any slave catchers in there, they masters. Honestly it would be easier to get back to the plantation on horse, than foot anyway.
As I walk I keep my ears open to see if I can hear the master’s voice, or any of his slavers'. I swear I can hear faint voices, and horse hooves in the distance getting closer to me. Then, all of a sudden in faint whispers I hear people conversing.
“’Ey, boss, why, is that a nigger I see righ’ there in that direction.”
There was a moment of silence then the second voice spoke.
“well jus’ where are ya pointin’ at Gill. I can’t make out shit, is to damn dark.”
This second voice I recognized as masters. I just didn’t know weather to shout out that it was me, his beloved Isabella, or would that spook them to much. I didn’t want to scare them into shooting.
“well righ’ there next to the trees, boss, ya see righ’ a yonder.”
“Gill what da hell ya mean next to da trees now. There be trees every fuckin’ where. ya know what, I jus' call her name see if she answer. Isabella, now if it you out ‘dere answer me now we ‘ready got ya father now ya hear. He nice, and safe jus’ want you come on back home to the plantation now alrigh’. Jus’ say somethin’ if it you now.
I knew it! I knew father would come to his senses I just knew he would.
“yes master dis me Isabella I’m over here can you see me!”
I waved my arms so it could be easier for them to spot me.
“yes we see ya Isabella. We’ll be righ’ over don’ make any sudden movements now.”
I heard them dismounting there horses, and there boots thump as they walked toward me. As they came over I could make out master he was wearing a undershirt, and trousers. His partner was wearing about the same only he had a whip in his hand.
Then my master was a few feet away from me he grinned, and said.
“Now girl ya oughta know runnin’ off like ya did, ya had me worried. Worried I wasn’t gonna get what I been wantin’ for a while now.”
“I know master, I’m truly sorry, I am. I didn’t mean it not one bit. Ill make it up to ya I promise.”
Then master unbutton his trousers, let them fall to his feet, and grabbed me forcefully by the arm. He said in a menacing voice.
“I know you’ll make it up to me jus’ like ya momma did.”
All I could do was scream.
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