Somehow I'm Alive (part 6)

This part isn't as interesting as some of the future parts, but I hope that you like it either way. The reason I included this part is because it's important to the rest of the story.

Without this part some of the other parts to this story might not make any sense. A new character is introduced in this one, so be prepared. Please leave comments.

Created by: Topaz

  1. ***Ryan's Point of View*** My room in Akmal's home is very cozy. It's surprising that a man as aweful as him can arrange and decorate a home so nicely. My room is decorated with a color palet of tan and forest green. The bed spread, curtains and wall decorations are forest green while the carpet and sofa in the corner are tan. If he wasn't a plantation owner I'd suggest that he go into interior design. He'd probably make more money at that then he would as a secret plantation owner. Think of how much money he'd save by not buying slaves! I take one look at the wall clock and swing my legs over the side of my bed. It's 12:30. I should probably go to the kitchen and make myself some lunch. I never realized how hungary I was until now. Before I walk out of my room I throw on some clothes; nobody sees me in by boxers except for me. As I dig around in my backpack for some clothes I come across my bible. Hopefully my mom won't find it. Of course, it's not like she'd search through my things anyway. She pretty much ignores me unless I'm needed for kidnapping or computer hacking perposes. On the bright side, she did teach Saphire and I one useful skill; we can fluently speak Arabic. I've got to admit that it has been a huge help to me during our many trips over here.
  2. I go to the kitchen and make myself two sandwiches, and then get a huge bowl of fruit. I wish that I had some sourcream and onion lays right now, but there aren't any chips in this place. I go sit down and the table and dig in. Before I'm even halfway through my food Saphire sits down at the table next to me. Great. What could she possibly want?! "Ryan, you'd better go see mom. She said that Akmal has something that he wants you to do, and that you'd better do it." I sigh. "Can't this wait until I'm done with my food?" "Ryan, all you seem to care about is food!" "Hey, how do you expect me to maintain my 6-pack and my abs without a balanced diet? This just doesn't happen by itself!" "What are you talking about? It did just happen by itself." "Yeah, I know. I'm just messing with you. I love my 6-pack so much." Saphire rolls her eyes at me. "Just go talk to mom." I shove the rest of my first sandwhich in my mouth, then head for mom's room. Can't a man eat without being interrupted?"
  3. ***Jaslina's Point of View*** Okay. I have never worked this hard in my life and I still have three hours to go. When Rayla said that we take care of the man's children, I thought that she meant he only had two or three, not seven! I can hardly remember all of their names. All of their names are Arabic. Most of them are little brats accept the four year-old and the seven year-old who are sweet. After making sure that they eat all their food, we put the four little ones down for naps in their rooms on the second floor. We had to read to the little girls; Badi'a, two years, and Safiyyah, seven years. We read three stories in order to get them to sleep. Actually, I think that I remember their names perfectly now. Here they are: Badi'a (girl), Habibah (girl), Talal (boy), Safiyyah (girl), Fatin (boy), Ghazi (boy), and Mahir (boy). I've never heard so many foreign names in my life! Also, we've got to learn all of the children's' names (even the ones older than me) or I get fifteen lashes. Frankly, I really don't want to get fifteen lashes.
  4. That was just the children. We also had to clean the entire first floor. At first it didn't sound so bad, but then I saw how many rooms there were. All of them were so beautiful, yet, at the same time, it sickened me. They got to live in these big gorgeous rooms and the people that clean these big gorgeous rooms get to live in these tiny little huts that are hardly livable! Just let me describe these rooms to you. The family room had furniture that was wicker and bench like. They all had yellow cushions and pillows with red and darker yellow designs on them. The only piece of furniture not wicker was a dark yellow love seat. The carpet was brown red and had yellow rectangular designs on them. When I describe the family room this way I admit that it doesn't sound that incredibly beautiful. However, I bet that you haven't seen the inside of Master Akmal's house either. Next are the bedrooms. There are five of them on the first floor. Each one looks like a hotel room. The only difference is nothing technical. Each room has a different color bed spread. Two of the children sleep on the first floor. Mahir's room is a dark blue. There is a dark blue bedspread, dark blue cushion for his chair, and dark blue for his walls. There is a lot more than that to his room, but I don't feel like explaining in detail his room. It has a door that leads to the porch too, which I'll now add to my description of it.The only other person that sleeps on this floor is Talal. His room is a deep shade of brown red. Since Talal is the oldest, he has the biggest room out of the children. It has its own bathroom, a love seat, a chair, and an entire wall of shelves filled with books. (Strangely, half of them are in English.) Oh and not to mention, two swing-out doors that lead to his own back porch. Now that is customized.The other three bedrooms are guest bedrooms. (Although, I don't know what guests would be able to find this place.) The last two rooms on the bottom floor are a huge kitchen and the dining room. The dining room comes complete with full size curio cabinet and crystal chandelier.
  5. Now we are in the kitchen preparing dinner for nine people. The two youngest girls have food allergies so we have to make all of their food differently. After this we need to clean up the kitchen and mop the dining room floor. Then we go back to our cabin and do the work that needs to be done there. I feel like I'm living in the 1800's in the U.S. I had no idea that those people had it this bad. It feels like I'm living their lives. Rayla and I step outside of the kitchen to take a breath. "You've done this kind of work every day for the past five years?!" I ask. "Yep, and I never had a day off." says Rayla, "I'm to the point where I'm used to this. I still hate it though." "I see why." I say. We hear footsteps heading in our direction. "Oh gosh!" exclaims Rayla, "The mistress is coming. We need to get back into the kitchen. If she sees we're taking a break, she'll have our hides!" We turn to go back in, but we've already been caught. The mistress is a tall Saudi Arabian woman with a thick accent and poor English. She wears a veil and a cloak like all the women in this region of the world. "You take break? There no breaks here!" she points at me. "I not see you before. Husband buy yesterday?" "Yes. I'm new here, ma'am." I say. Man, even with bad English this lady's mean! "What name?" "Jaslina. My name's Jaslina." "Jaslina, you work in garden. We short one person." She turns to Rayla. "Rayla, work in kitchen. Akmal and sons want food." The mistress walks away, leaving us. What now? "She wants you to work in the garden in the back yard. Follow me. I'll show you where it is."
  6. ***Ryan's Point of View*** "Mom, what is it? I just want to eat my food!" I'm expecting a cold response from her. Instead she points to a comfy looking chair in the corner and says, "Sit down, Ryan." A bit surprised I follow her instructions. After a moment of silence mom finally speaks. "Akmal has taken quite a liking to you, my son." I don't know what to say. She has struck me speechless. For once in my life she isn't yelling at me! Eventually I say, "What do you mean?" "I mean that he looks upon you kindly. Because of that, he wants you to start joining him and his family for dinner in the evenings." "What about you and Saphire? Aren't you two invited?" "No. Only you. He says that after being raised by a woman all your life that you should start enjoying the company of some men." I silently laugh to myself. This is why mom isn't yelling at me. She's so shocked that Akmal likes me better that she won't yell at me. When something shocks my mother she never yells. It's like she's completely unable to raise her voice. I like moments like this. "Wait," I say. "Does he want me to join them this evening?" "Yes. He'll come up to fetch you when he's ready." I'm so happy that I could jump for joy. I'm allowed to leave the attic now. I won't have to be trapped up here for the whole summer! I can keep a closer eye on Jaslina! I reel back at that last sentance because it totally took me by surprise. I guess I care more about her than I thought.
  7. ***Jaslina's Point of View***"Ouch! Another cut in ten minutes. I wasn't made for this!" I've been in the garden for three hours now. It's seven o'clock in the evening and I still have an hour and a half to go out here. For seven o'clock it's still exhaustingly hot out here in the garden. The mistress put me back here by myself. She said that she wanted me to pick all of the thorns off of the flowers so little Badi'a doesn't hurt herself. I must admit that telling Badi'a don't touch the flowers, sweetie, would've worked out better. With my cut finger in my mouth, I go to empty another basket of thorns into the large barrel. For some reason, they keep all of the thorns. These people are strange. Now standing up, my vision is suddenly blurry and I see two of everything. I try and shake it off. For a second it actually works, but it doesn't work long. I hear someone coming up behind me and trying to talk to me, but I don't hear what he says. Before I know it, I'm collapsed on the ground; however, I am still very alert of my surroundings. I'm just too tired to move. I can feel and hear someone kneeling down beside me. I know that he's a boy when he pushed my hair aside and talks. It's a deep masculine voice. "Darn, I hope that she's okay." he says. Apparently he has water with him, because he dumps some in my half-opened mouth. Swallowing, I sit up and open my eyes.
  8. I take in the image of a tan, shirtless boy around my age. He has messy, dark-blonde hair, and pale blue eyes. For a boy my age, he is the most muscular I have ever seen. He is also barefoot and wares black pants with a lot of holes and snags in them. "Huh? What happened?" I ask more to myself than to him."You just fainted," Said the boy. "It's a good thing that I had water with me. Are you okay, Miss?""Yeah, thank-you. I guess all I needed was water." I say"Yes, in this heat I'd suggest that you try to get a lot of water." He helps me up by the hand. "My name is Landon. I don't think that I've seen you around here before." "You haven't. Master Akmal just bought me yesterday evening. My name is Jaslina.""Jaslina. I like that name. So, Jaslina, would you like some help? I'm done in the fields for today." "Sure." We work together until sundown. Actually, we did a lot of talking too. Now I remember what Rayla said to me this afternoon. This teenage prodigy that she was telling me about has got to be Landon. He is nice, sweet, smart, and caring. Landon is all of the things that the California boys aren't. We exchanged the stories of our kidnappings too."How did you manage to get here?" I asked him. I had just finished telling him my story."Mine is a lot less complicated than yours," Says Landon. He breaks out into the story.
  9. "I was eleven. I went to the mall with my mom that day. She was in one of the women's clothing stores and I got bored. I heard that this awesome new remote-control car came out so I went to go see it."On my way to the toy aisle, I saw a couple of kids there from my fifth grade class with their mother. I thought nothing of it. I always saw people that I knew in the mall. Of course, seeing them at the mall was odd. It was very odd, actually. They claimed that they weren't allowed to go to the mall. Even though that seemed weird, I still thought nothing of it."Anyway, ten minutes later I was off in the toy aisle playing and the pretty little girl with the long, wavy, black hair came up and spoke to me. She said her name was Sapphire and that she and her twin brother saw me before and wanted to hang out. I said "What the heck," and followed her. That was the dumbest decision I ever made. My mom always told me never to go off alone with anyone, especially if something seemed strange. "All the signs were there that something bad was about to happen, and I ignored every one. Sapphire led me into a dark alley where I was drugged. I was out for five hours after that. I woke up on an air plane and was sold to Master Akmal two days later. This is where I've been day after day without leaving for five and a half years.""The White-dressed Woman has been kidnapping for over five years?" I say, "How has she not been caught yet?" Now I'm very confused."Have you ever heard of Sally Craimberg, McKrayla Dreschenson, or Marie Janice Taylors?" asked Landon."They all sound familiar. I think that Sally Craimberg was on America's Most Wanted.""All of them were on "˜America's Most Wanted' and they were all the same person," says Landon. "That is how she never gets caught. She changes names every so often. When she becomes too well known as one person, she changes her look and becomes another person. She has been doing this for ten years. It was three years ago that she started dragging her kids into this."I pause. Landon is a genius. "How do you know all of this?""She and her kids visit sometimes and share this information with Master Akmal and the Mistress. Sure they talk to each other in Arabic, but that doesn't stop me any. I've been speaking Arabic for four years now. Not that the Master knows that or anything."
  10. Yup, this is certainly the guy Rayla was talking about. "Jaslina!" I hear Rayla yell from the outer part of the garden. (The garden is split into three parts. There's the outer, the second part where I'm at, and the inner part.) "It's finally time to quit.""Okay!" I yell in response."Ah, so you've made friends with Rayla. Do you share a cabin with her?" asks Landon. "Yeah, her and Tammy. I haven't met Tammy yet though. "Rayla enters the second part of the garden through a white arch with a man-made stream underneath it. She looks up and catches a glance at Landon and her entire expression changes."Landon, when did you get here? I thought that's you'd still be in the fields with the other field slaves." says Rayla."I was told to leave early." says Landon. "They said they were down a couple of slaves.""Oh. I was gonna introduce you to Jaslina, but I see that you've already met her." "Yes, and it's been a pleasure. Well I'd better go. See you guys later." Now Rayla is all the way in, and Landon is exiting out the arch. I watch Landon as he turns the corner and heads for the boy's slave quarters. He is so incredible."Well, I see already that your first day has gone well." says Rayla.I don't know whether she means it or if she is only teasing. "It's gone well to an extent. Passing out wasn't all that pleasant; however, getting help after gaining my strength back was great.""He helped you?" asked Rayla."Yes, and let me just say you were so right about him. I didn't think that anyone could be as nice as Landon."Now we are on our way back to the girls slave quarters. I thought that the people here would all be mean and bitter. Now I know that I was terribly wrong. I know that I haven't met everyone yet and that there probably will be some bitter people; however, just knowing that I have some allies here makes everything better. Don't get me wrong. I still miss my mom, my friends, and even my brutal school. If I could've imagined anything in the world happening to me, it would never have been this. This is so crazy that I still don't believe it myself.Now I realized we're outside of our cabin and that I've paused. "Jaslina, are you coming inside? It's time to make dinner." "Yeah, I'm coming." I follow Rayla inside of our cabin, preparing myself to end my first day here.
  11. ***Ryan's Point of View*** It's almost time for dinner, so I went to my room to change. As I was changing I decided to look out my bedroom window. It ends out that I have a clear view of the garden; I can't believe that the garden was there the whole time and that I never noticed it. As I look out the window I notice Jaslina talking to a tall, handsome blonde boy. (I'd like to say that I'm the more handsome one, but don't even get me started on that argument!)I know who the boy is the instant I look at him; Landon. I remember him. It wasn't a pretty kidnapping. That was the first time mother decided to use us at all. After that kidnapping she didn't use us again for years afterward. I can't stand Landon. I don't know why, but he doesn't seem like the right person to trust. Why is Jaslina talking to him anyway? As I'm watching them talk a brown haired girl walks up to them. I don't know who she is for sure. Saphire and I didn't help with her kidnapping. Anyway Landon stays and talks with both of them for a second and then he leaves. "Ryan!" my mother shouts. "Akmal wants you to come down now!" I take one last glance before walking away. I sure hope she's careful.

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