Author: Dane Shaw PM
Anna must choose where her loyalties lie. With the British or colonists. Each choice will damn one person she loves, and save another. Will she remain loyal to her home country, England, or side with the Revolutionaries of the American colonies?Rated: Fiction T - English - Drama/Tragedy - Words: 1,560 - Reviews: 1 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 1 - Published: 09-30-07 - id: 2421055
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Standing on the edge of the bank, with the summer warmed waters of the Atlantic swirling and foaming about her ankles, Anna watched the orange sun set into the edge of the world, its eternal shine rippling across the deep blue waters. Things were changing, for better or for worse, and where to stand she had no idea. Before her, out across the expanse of the ocean was her home, England, and behind was Massachusetts, one of the major driving forces behind the changes that would be coming. With a sigh, Anna stepped from the gentle surges of the waves and walked up the gritty beach which had started to cool as the sun set, her green eyes settling on the ships anchored to the docks of Boston. Not more than a year had passed since this same harbor was the target of what became known as the Boston Tea Party.
Gulls cawed their distinct tone over the evening air as she left the beach, the hem of her dress sand covered and damp, her auburn hair heavy with the salty aroma of ocean air. Sitting home had become boring for Anna, she was now restless and eager to occupy herself so as not to worry over events that were only on the horizon, waiting for the next turn of the earth to rise up as the sun does each morning and reveal the next day and what may come. Unrest had been in the hearts of many colonists for a several of years, angry at the taxes set on them by their 'King', King George of England. That emotion made into action as evidenced by the shipment of tea brought into harbor that was smashed and dumped into the water by the Sons of Liberty.
"Anna!" came the voice she had heard for the past seventeen years, mingled with the sounds of the waves and sea gulls. Turning in the direction of the shout, she saw it was her older brother James, running along the sea worn docks and down the beach to meet her.
"Anna, father wants you home." James bent over, placing his hands on his knees to catch his breath. Looking out over the gentle ocean, he wished he had been here that night, to see the barrels split open and the English defied. It was always on the minds of the Boston inhabitants. They knew what would come as a result of the rebellious act, and it was soon coming to be revealed. He hadn't lived here in the colonies all his life, but considered it his home now, and saw just how unfairly the colonists were treated. Brushing his long hair, the same color as his sisters from his face, he smiled at her. That smile contained more than just happiness at completing the task to find Anna, James knew something that his sister did not, and wouldn't divulge what he knew to her either, despite how she might beg.
Turning from her brother, Anna took a lingering glance at the shimmering ocean, the sun lighting up her emerald eyes, "What's he want?" She was not all that interested, not having cared much for her father and his views, having become soft hearted and compassionate to the colonies cause.
"I don't know, he said to find you and bring you home. He said it's important." A shrug followed James's last statement, covering the fact he did know what their father wanted, not setting his own eyes on his sister.
Brother and sister left the beach to walk along the busy Boston streets, with shop owners and customers getting their last hour of shopping in before closing time and the inns and taverns accommodating their regular customers. Nothing was said between the pair as they made their way down the main roads to the outskirts of the city. James, had always been ambitious, and loved to know things that others didn't, and now he was bubbling with joy, while on the other hand Anna was annoyed that her brother wouldn't tell her what was going on, and she knew that he knew. At the edge of the city they walked down a main lane, the dirt route splitting a grassy field riddled bright white tents of the British. These interlopers were a hot topic of discussion among the city folk, wondering why they had to be there. Anna gave them a glance, spying the neatly worn red uniforms of the British soldiers.
"James," Anna started as her green eyes swept over a group of drilling soldiers, "if it really comes to war, how can the colonists have any hope of defeating the British?"
James continued to walk in silence, not wanting to answer his sister and reveal his desire to join the militia, not yet anyways. What would she say, he thought. Neither one of them had been born in the colonies, only arriving here when Anna was the age of six, and himself nine. That was surely enough time to instill in them a sense of loyalty to their home country and look upon the colonists as every other British born man or woman. The fact that they had been born across the ocean was always a subject of ridicule by the other children that were born here, calling Anna and James names and ostracizing them from events the others took part in.
Receiving no answer to her question, Anna lowered her head to watch the path as they walked, the sun now just a glowing semi-circle bathing their backs in its radiance. Their home was settled on a hill a little more than a quarter of a mile from where they currently were, and Anna looked to it with a knot now forming in her stomach as she did. Her father rarely called on her like this, preferring to allow her to return when she wished to, which she usually did shortly after dusk most days. With the hem of her dress now only damp yet still gritty with the beach sand, she stepped up onto the front porch and into the house behind James, the smell of polished wood filling her nose, along with the aroma of cooking food as she pushed past the heavy front door. In a cushioned leather chair sat their father next to the fireplace that was fueled richly with large logs, his spectacles perched on his nose as he sat reading the local paper and received letters of the day, his aged eyes crinkled at the corners as he looked up from his task to welcome his children.
Christopher Annigan greeted his children with a smile, setting down the papers in his hand onto the dark wooden table beside him.
"James, go and see if supper is ready yet." James walked past his father to do as he was asked. Anna becoming rather nervous and wholly curious stood still until her father nodded for her to sit in one of the other elegantly upholstered chairs opposite him. Sitting, she waited and refused to look to her father until he spoke to her, her eyes watching the orange flames that reflected in her eyes lick upwards.
Folding his hands under his chin and setting his own, kind green eyes that Anna had inherited onto his daughter, looking to catch her eye which he failed to do. He shook his head at her stubborn nature. Just like her mother. Christopher took several inhalations of the sweet smelling air of dinner before addressing his daughter, "I feel that with the current state of the colonies, with unrest blazing up and down them, the fragile peace they hold with England will not last too much longer.
Pausing, he allowed Anna an adequate amount of time to respond or to react, which she didn't, only glancing to her father for a moment before returning to her studious watch of the flames. She sat with her own hands folded upon her lap, idly playing with the fabric of her dress while the nervousness she felt before increasing, a heavy knot now settled in her stomach. She wondered what her father was getting at, and why he had called her here, yet before she could voice this question, Christopher continued.
"With that in mind, it is my wish to send you back to England, under the care of your aunt and uncle." He said this in a matter of fact tone, watching his daughter for her response. She wasn't sure how to respond, taking a moment to roll the cloth of her dress between her fingers. Of course she wouldn't question her father's wishes, yet Anna was divided at heart, she wanted to remain here with her father, but also wanted to return to her home country.
Anna nodded to her father, "Of course, I understand." Which honestly she didn't. Surely she knew, just as she knew the sky was blue that war was on the horizon and being in Boston would prove to be one of the most dangerous places to be once the fighting was sparked, but that didn't mean she was necessarily in danger. Rising, she made to go for her room, on the way Christopher informing her of when she would leave, three days.