Chapter 1

        A flash of white, then darkness. I screamed at the world for letting this happen to me.The rain pelted my tear stained face and filled my mouth with a sweet, fresh taste. I tilted my head back farther, trying to obtain more of the liquid into my mouth.  I was stuck, under the dark brown earth, stuck and couldn’t get out. 

          I screamed until my voice went hoarse and I couldn’t scream anymore.  My throat was bone dry, even though the wet rain slid down it. Slowly, I could begin to see a faint light above me. It glowed dimly and I knew it had to be the moon. Another flash of white and then a deep rumbling that shook the ground echoed beneath me. 

          My eyes flashed in anger for the one who had done this to me. As soon as I broke my bonds, he would never see the light of day again. He would experience the pain and suffering that I felt and then we would see who was laughing. I had done nothing to him, and yet there I was, stuck beneath the hard ground in a water drain.

          I screamed again, hoping someone would hear me but knowing that no one would. Finally I stopped, letting the warm tears flood down my cheeks and into the puddle I was standing in. The rain continued to fall and the water level rose. I knew that if no one came soon, I would drown.  

        My tears continued to fall and the water level continued to rise, now coming up past my knees. Eventually, the tears stopped flowing and I assumed that I had none left to shed. The moon grew brighter in the sky and I almost laughed in the relief that I could finally see. Around me, the dirt walls began to sag from the rain and soon they would collapse, maybe to bury me alive and suffocate me before I drowned.

        The water was chest height now and I soon began to give up any hope that I had of someone finding me.  Then the strangest thing happened.  The sky flashed white one more time then faded off into black. Even the moon was gone. Then suddenly, it lit up brightly, the sky was blue and the sun was out. The rain had stopped falling which meant I wouldn’t drown after all. I smiled and laughed in delight.

        A shadow crossed over the drain and my heart almost stopped. It was a person! They looked down with a look of surprise and concern, then lifted the grate off and pulled me out. I fell on my knees and began to sob in relief, laughing the whole time I did. The man just stared down at me, a look of sympathy on his face.  Finally I stopped and rose to my feet unsteadily. He helped me get my balance then stood back with a questioning look on his face.

       I explained to him how I had been a servant in the home of Hesper Milton and only done what I was told. Then a couple days ago, he came home drunk and began to beat me and my mother. I had stood up against him, to protect my mother, and he had grabbed me by my shirt collar and dragged me into a carriage. We had travelled for hours before the carriage driver brought us to a halt. Then he had pulled me along and behind a patch of bushes so the driver wouldn’t see us. Hesper then stuck me into the drain and sealed the grate shut so I couldn’t get out.

     I sobbed the whole time I told the awful story and the man placed an arm around my shoulders as I cried. I tried to stop but I just couldn’t and he stood there patiently as I cried into his shirt. When I finally calmed down, I pulled away from him and wiped the final tears from my face. He took my hands in his and looked me in the eyes.

       “I will help you take revenge,” he told me, “Even if it means death,” My shoulders sagged in relief and I thanked him thoroughly. He smiled down at me and placed his arm around my shoulders, leading me away from the drain and to a carriage that was on the road. We got inside and he instructed the driver to take us to the Milton house. The driver nodded and urged the horses to go.

          We rode for an hour before reaching the gated entrance of Hesper Milton’s large house. The man told me to wait in the carriage for a moment while he went to talk with Hesper. I agreed, not really wanting to face Hesper again. He left the carriage briefly and went up to the front door, knocked hard and stepped back to wait. Almost immediately, the door sprung open and my mother stood in the doorway. I almost leapt out of the carriage before remembering that Hesper wouldn’t be far behind. I was right, for not two seconds later, Hesper’s tall and lanky form appeared at the door. I shrunk back into the cushioned seat, not wanting to be seen.

         The man began to talk to Hesper in low whispers and that was my mother’s cue to leave. She disappeared from the door and I leaned forward just a bit to try and make out what the men were saying.

        The conversation ended and the man strode back to the carriage and opened the door.

 “It’s safe to come now,” he told me and I exited. He led me up the stone steps to the front door and Hesper glared at me. I shrank back a little but the man pushed me forward.

     “Go on,” he urged and finally I stepped in through the door. I turned back to look at the man and just managed to see that Hesper and him shook hands before I was shoved out of the way by Hesper. My heart sank. The man had given me back to Hesper and now I would never get my revenge.

          Hesper grabbed my arm tightly and I cried out from the pain. His eyes bored holes into me and I tried to disappear. He dragged me along the hall and down another corridor. I knew where I was going and I dug my heels in, protesting. Hesper, being larger and stronger, pulled me along easily, even with the added resistance. My arm stung and I noticed that he had dug in so hard that I was bleeding. I cried out hoping someone would come to my aid but all I got was a slap across the face, so I stopped.

           Finally, he dragged me around the corner and down three sets of stairs before stopping in front of a large oak door. He brought out a set of keys and unlocked the door. The door opened with a groan and Hesper threw me in ahead of him. I hit the stone floor hard and the breath left my body, leaving me gasping. He strode over to me, a cruel smile on his face.

     “Now I’ll make sure you never leave this place,” he told me. He grabbed the manacles that hung on the wall and placed them securely on my wrists, tightening them until they pinched the skin on my wrists, making them bleed. I cried out in pain and he laughed. With one last triumphant look, he slammed the door and locked it firmly from the outside. I heard his footsteps recede and then I sank down against the wall and placed my head in my hands. I began to sob once more, gut wrenching sobs. I had been rescued then betrayed by my rescuer. The chains shook as I sobbed and finally I gave up and lay down on the cold floor, knowing that I would never again see the light of day.

The End

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