Above the Silence

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Chapter Seven

1863

“Die, you will.” She hears the voice at the other end of the door say. Felicia gasps. This man that just spoke is not her father. He cannot be her father. Her sweet, loving father cannot be this man who is threatening to kill the maid. This man is not her father.

She knows he is not her father because the man she called father was never capable of such. The man she loved as her father would not rape and beat their slave maid. He would not treat the maid like this man did. He would not threaten to kill the maid because of…

Please, massa,” Felicia hears the maid plead. “I beg you. Let me keep my child.”

“Your child? I own you. I am taking that thing and selling it the minute it is born. I will not have a bastard under my roof.”

“But it is your child!” the maid cries in anguish.

Felicia hears a smack, followed by the cries of the maid that pierces through the room. She feels the sting on her own face as she hears her father slap the maid once… then twice… then another one.

“You will do as I say. You will not talk back at me. You either do as I say or I will kill both you and your child. And you dare not tell anyone. It is my word against yours.”

Felicia can’t take it anymore. She can’t listen to this anymore. She cannot take another day of him treating the poor girl like this. She had been waiting and listening and hurting for the maid in silence for the past year. Someone had to speak for the maid. Someone had to speak for that child who was going to live the same horrendous life its mother was living right now.

“And against mine, father,” Felicia says as she steps into the room.

“Felicia!” her father calls in shock as his daughter walks in on him and the half-naked maid. “What are you doing here?”

“You may leave, Rosie,” she says to the maid and watches as the other woman scrambles out of the room. When she is gone, Felicia turns to her father, her voice fiercer than her eight years of age. “ You will not raise a hand against her ever again. You will not hurt a hair on her body or that of her child. If you do, I will tell the world who the real father of the child is. I HAVE SEEN YOU ABUSING HER!” She says and without another word, turns to leave the room.”


1963

Every one of them started shivering due to the sudden intense cold. Where on earth had it come from? The whole house was sealed somehow.

Eliot glared at Steve, ignoring the goose bumps that dotted his skin, deep rooted hate reflected in his eyes. “What did you just say to me, nigger?” he asked.

“I didn’t say anything,” Steve replied.

“He didn’t say anything,” Elijah confirmed. “It was them.”

“What them?” Eliot asked, gunning for a fight.

“The people that hold us captive here.”

“Fuck off. And I’m supposed to believe you, nigger lover,” Eliot spat.

“Don’t you ever call me that,” Elijah said as coolly as he could.

“What? Nigger lover? That’s exactly what you are. You won’t take a stand against them. You say you hate the civil rights movement yet you won’t join in to stop them from polluting our cities. You, my dear friend, are nothing but a nigger lover.”

Elijah felt the screws in his head burst loose. Without realizing exactly what he was doing, he landed a solid punch across Eliot’s face, sending the other boy sprawling backward. No sooner had Eliot hit the floor when a pair of arms shot out of nowhere, pulling him away with them. Eliot screamed, kicking, trying to get away from the hands to no avail.

The pair of arms was of a dark hue, slender dolls arms, which were a lot stronger than they looked. The arms were attached to nothing but a doll but they pulled and pulled, dragging a screaming Eliot with them. They dug into Eliot’s skin and they all watched in horror as his jeans got soaked with the blood seeping from his leg. One arm stretched up as well and wrapped around Eliot’s waist and started pulling him down faster. The seven of them screamed their lungs out but none of them dared go any closer to the boy as he was dragged away.

“Help me!” Eliot screamed. “Help!!!”

The doll continued to laugh maniacally as she pulled Eliot, making it a point of duty to hit him against any corner or edge there was. She came to an abrupt stop. Just when Eliot thought the worst was over, one of the arm around his waist moved down to his leg and lifted him up and flung him against the wall. The seven of them backed away even further, almost entering the still shut door.

Eliot crumpled on the floor, limp and almost lifeless. The shock was too much for him to bear. His eyes started to droop shut slowly. There was no hope here for him. This was probably the end of the road for him. None of these cowards he called friends would help him. But in that moment he understood. Even he wouldn’t help if he were in their shoes. He felt the life seeping out of him and he knew that the end was near.

Just as he closed his eyes, he felt a swish over his head and a rush of air across his face. His weary eyes flew open. There was a plank hovering over his head. The grip of the doll on his arms slackened a little. The swish came again and this time, he saw the plank hitting the doll smack on the arms. This time, the dolls grip slackened completely. The doll shrieked loudly but the plank stayed put.

Eliot raised his head so he could see who his savior was. Standing over his head, plank in hand, defending him like his life depended on it was the one person he never would have thought would help him.

Steve.

Eliot’s eyes closed shut.

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