Emmeline Lucy Newland walked down the empty street of Brunswick, Maine. The street seemed to only hold a faint echo of what it had used to be, she remembered. A mere three years ago, the street had been filled with people rushing about, vendors yelling their prices and shop door's bells jingling every few seconds. All the city had come together in various grand houses later that night, the women and girls in their finest gowns and silks. Pearl necklaces and diamonds glinting in the candle light, and in the many chandeliers. July fourth, three years ago.
Emmeline could still remember what it had been like to be twelve. To finally be allowed to come to a party with her mother. She recalled her mothers fine, red silken dress. The ruffled neckline, sleeveless top. Bodice that fit to a T and voluminous skirt. Black slippers, and a large ruby broach. Her mother's hair had been pinned up in an elegant updo, a few blonde ringlets cascading down her neck. Her father and twin brother, both in their finest black suits as well. She remembered how Ethan had wrinkled his nose at the suit so much.
Her own gown had been a pale violet with white lace lining the neckline and edges of the sleeves and the bottom of the dress. The sleeves were fitted and went to just above her elbow. The bodice was modestly fitted, and the skirt had a mild volume. She had gotten a brand new pair of creamy colored slippers for that day, Emmeline reflected. Along with a new pearl necklace and a matching pair of earrings. Her dark brown loose curls had been left down, with a lilac headband in her hair.
That had been a month before her mother had died. A year before the Civil War had broke out. Her brother was enlisted. She still had no clue where he was. While she was left to tend to the family business with her elderly father. Emmeline had gotten her looks from her father, except her pale skin and freckles. Her father and her had the same dark chocolate brown, loose curls. They also had the same pale golden, large eyes framed by long, dark lashes. The same full, rosy lips and red stained cheeks. She was tiny, however, which was another difference between her mother and herself. Her mother had been tall and elegant. Blonde haired, blue eyed, tall and graceful, curves in all the right places, very social, beautiful singing voice. Emmeline had no singing voice. She knew that all to well, growing up with a mother who's voice could woo angels. However, her astounding knowledge and aptitude for playing the piano and horseback riding very much made up for that.
While most girls her age had had minor education, their mothers preferring them to be extremely well mannered, Emmeline's mother had paid a tutor to extensively teach Emmeline and Ethan in mathematics, history, languages, grammar, literature, politics and music. Both of them had flourished wonderfully. Of course, they had learned and excelled until their education stopped at the age of thirteen, where their father had taught them for a year. But, when the war started, the whole town went downhill.
Emmeline, or Emmy, she preferred, continued down the dusty cobbled street until she came upon a turn and a street sign that read Federal Street, and continued down that street until a large building that read the number sixty-three. She knocked on the door and called out, "Auntie Harriet?" She called out. A woman opened the door, and their stood Harriet Beecher Stowe. Author of Uncle Tom's Cabin. Emmy had grown up around her.
"Emmy!" She exclaimed and herded the girl into the house. "Why what in the world are you doing here? Not only is it getting chilly out, and besides the fact that night is falling, you know that it's dangerous to be out these days." She scolded.
"I had to say good bye to Lilly." Emmy said simply, referring to a slave that Harriet was currently hiding. Lilly was a measly twelve year old girl who had escaped a large plantation in the Confederacy. She had stayed to recover for a month, and in that time the two had become quite good friends, but Lilly had to escape that night, before the city was attacked, which was quite likely.
After a nod from her Auntie Harriet, Emmy rushed down a hidden staircase into a blocked off part of the basement, before taking a hidden staircase to a partially collapsed part of the attic where a bed, dresser and small bathroom were located. Emmy was immediately enveloped in a hug. "Here." Emmy said simply, shoving a handful of bills and coins into Lilly's hands. "For the trip, and you can exchange it when you've finally escaped. Along with that, she took a picture out of the big bag hanging on her shoulder and gave it to Lilly. "So you won't forget me." She added. Lilly smiled. It was a picture if the two girls from about two weeks back, dressed up in old dresses, scarves and hats.
"Are you going tonight?"Lilly's broken English broke the silence that had been going on for a few minutes. "Are you leaving?" She asked.
"Yes." Emmy spoke simply. "I need to get out of the god-forsaken place before its swamped by the Confederates and I'm trapped here forever. I'll find my brother, or I heard I have a cousins in Maine, New York and California. I'll go somewhere like that. I'm taking my horse that Auntie Harriet's been boarding, Midnight. Then I'll ride. I have lots of money and supplies on me. I'll get somewhere." Lilly nodded. "I must go now. So I'm far enough away if anyone tries to look for me. Good bye for now, Lilly." And then Emmy was gone.
The tears that were running down her face gave her more of a reason not to say good bye to the woman who was an aunt to her, though not biologically. She rushed into the back stables and saddled up Midnight, and took some of her other hidden bags in the stable. She changed from her casual light green smock dress and slippers into a pair of riding pants, a loose cream colored long sleeved shirt, a dark brown riding cloak and dark brown riding boots. She finished it off by tying her curls into a ponytail with a ribbon holding it up, and hid it under a dark brown cap. Her bangs still hung in her eyes, but she figured that it was boyish enough.
With that done, she tied her bags onto the saddle and climbed on. And then off she went, riding into the night.
The world was blurry and all too bright, or so it seemed to Emmy after three straight days of riding with only two meals. She was trying to get far ahead wit has little supplies as possible, and was just finally getting ready to admit that sleep was necessary. She finally slowed Midnight down and they slowly picked their way into the forest on the side of the road. Her father wouldn't have thought she could make it that far, anyways, much less that she would sleep anywhere other than a hotel. She found a small break in the shrubs and trees, and tied Midnight to a tree, before giving him some water and letting him graze from the ground. Meanwhile, Emmy ate an apple and a piece of beef jerky before curling up in her sleeping sack and closing her eyes.
About five hours later, Emmy guessed by the sun's position in the sky, she was awake and they were back on the move. Emmy decided to keep close to the road, but just enough in the forest that she couldn't be seen. And they rode throughout the rest of the day in just that same way.