Jetta, the meaning: black gem. Twas not one of mother's better choices in names. In our family, there was a Drake, Adelaide, James, John, Mary, Prudence, William, Benjamin, Lillian, Jane, Winifred, Samuel and…Jetta. Needless to say, twas a miracle the townsfolk didn't burn me, drown me, hang me or stone me in all of my 16 years of existence. Perhaps it was not simply me with which their suspicions lay rooted. Perhaps it was with my entire family. Normal names or not, it was needless to say that we were nasty, awful children. Every-last-one of us.
Flesh of my flesh, blood of my blood, twas no matter to me. In our household, blood was NOT thicker than water. Truth be told, we waged war with each other due to the fact that the majority of us were rotten to the core. The only member of our family who did not show his true nastiness, was innocent, young Samuel. Last born, after the man we had previously called father abandoned us, and mother had began going through the bottles of brandy.
He was born too small, too pale, too weak. It was a continuous ailment that he fought with, that boy. However, for most of us, twas not a person to be pitied, but to be preyed upon. Tis only I who look out for him now, in his fifth year of life. Telling him stories of fairies and gnomes, giants and elves, and so on and so forth.
Tis Drake who is worst of all, he, the eldest, and only a year older than myself. Being second born would make one believe, perhaps, that they had a certain amount of authority, but no. The only one who crossed Drake was I, and that was usually because the one Drake abused the most was Samuel. For you see, after tending after him so long, I had formed a tender spot in my hard-heart for my youngest brother.
There was never a soul to talk to in Bradbury. As I had said, the townsfolk feared us, scorned and ridiculed us. And so, I spent my days strolling along the edge of the woods, along the stream. Our house stood drooping on the edge of town. Made from the finest lumber of the time-which had been 1520. Now, in 1556,36 years later, it was nothing more than a pile of rotted logs, layered with a heap of matted, germed straw.
It served as more of a prison than a house truly. Never was there a moment when one did not have to be quiet, tip-toeing past mother's room. We all knew when she woke, throwing a glass bottle at the wall, cursing at the top of her lungs. Bringing up another point.
Not only did the townsfolk fear us, they attempted to rid themselves of us. Not that I can say that I blame them. Though ours is not the most elegant or high-strung town, we were the filth that dirtied it. The scapegoats, who received the blame for every misgiving occurring.
They sent us Reverend Northerham. "Our lot" was not a religious sort, though uncommon in that particular time, not impossible. Though most would be scorned or beaten for not attending services each and every week and worshiping the Lord, not one dared beat us. With a family of 14, there was too much fear of conspiracy. Fools that they are, should they have known us, they would have realized, if one in our family was beaten, no one would step in, but many would join.
He came by the house, clutching the Bible in his hands, dressed all in black. I stood outside that day, drawing in the dirt with a stick. He looked down upon me, sniffed his nose (twas just a mite insulting) and proceeded to knock on the door.
I waited, there was a sound of glass shattering, and I got back to work. The door was thrown open, mother stood in more of a drunken stupor than usual. She pointed a dirty, shaking finger in the minister's face,
"What?" she shrieked, like a hag or a witch in the night. I did not watch, I listened, listened to him stutter,
"I c-come on b-behalf of the town. We b-believe that your f-failure to attend services for the p-past 5 years…"his voice died out.
"EXPULSION FROM THE TOWN?!? WHAT IS THIS?!?" she spit in his face,
"Get off m'land! Get off it I say!"
The man stumbled in fear, and she slammed the door. With her gone, he took on a more haughty look. Passing me this time, he stopped,
"You, you are the girl-the girl with the dark name. What is it?" I raised and eyebrow, and continued drawing,
"Jetta!" he said, as though the smart-wit had figured it out himself. He pointed a finger, at me as though he was trying to smite me. I smiled and looked at him with a pathetic air.
"Go back! Go back witch! Demon!" I blinked my eyes slowly, twas not the first time I had been slandered so.
"Go back to Satan child and NEVER return!" I raised my eyebrows evilly,
"Fine then, and I'll make sure to invite you down for tea someday soon."
He screamed and took off down the road. Twas a sight, a tall, gangly man, clutching his hat, and sprinting and screaming. I added, shouting,
"You can be sure the tea'll be hot!" cackling at myself.
Since then, we've mainly been shunned by the town. Actually, tis only my family who is shunned. I, I am preached against, and cursed upon. They know me by my name, a dark name. As I have said, not one of my mother's better choices. She thought it pretty at the time.
She had a nanny Jetta as a child, who had raised her and taught her the proper ways of life. When my mother was 23, Jetta was hung, having been accused of witchcraft. How this should have comforted me, I am truly certain I will never know.
But back to the point, due to my name, the town believed me to be the worst of my family, filled with the most evil. I will admit, that I am an awful child, who does horrid things. However, I do not-under any circumstances-believe myself to be evil. Certainly I am not the worst-horrid yes-but not the worst. All I do, is to counter-act the doings of Drake. Never shall I pick a fight, never.
I held him underwater for so long, because he had thrown a stone, and hit Samuel-purposely-in the eye. I gouged his navel with a briar branch, because he had locked Samuel in the dark for 38 hours. Then-then there was the Burning, two years since, in 1554. When Samuel was 3, and Drake 14, he decided it a fine jest to steal Samuel's bread every night for a week. When Samuel came to find me, he was beaten by the 11. They thrashed him. He found me bruised, broken and all bloodied up. I came after Drake. Finding a stick on the ground, I lit it ablaze. I set it on the sleeping devil's back. Soon all was a massacre. He could not seem to get it out, and all were too senseless to have him roll through the dirt.
I sneaked the bread from all of their sacks, silently slipping it to Samuel, who I ordered to go down by the gully next to the stream. I feared for my own safety, let alone the safety of he, too small to defend himself. Unfortunately, my fear drove me into shelter as well. Tis such a shame I did not witness the scene.
The fools must have lost their minds. To this day, they have burns marking their forearms, legs, cheeks and hands. And Drake…Drake's back never did heal. I knew he would survive, that was the intent. For should I have torched his hair, he surely would have perished in the flames, and I would have gone straight to hell. If, that is, I believed in such nonsense. Yes, awful, nasty, cruel, but not evil.
Ok…so, this is my newest story. Right now it is probably impossible to tell what's really going on, but c'est la vive.
Ok…anyone who is fascinated by this story, please please please, review. It makes me feel better.