Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/view_item/item_id/1836678-Dew-of-hope
by Lillie
Rated: E · Draft · Family · #1836678
Heres the very first few paragraphs of it... feedback would be amazing!
Russia, 1916

Russia had no room for Jews. Thats what they always made us believe, anyways. When the war came, it was clear that war had no room for innocent people; only for destruction, terror, and avenge.
Then suddenly, It wasn't only the other countries against each other. It was our own country against itself. We tried not to pay it any attention; Papa told us to go on with life as usual, to forget the chaos surrounding us, but I was always on edge. I tried to convince my family that America, the land of dreams, where the roads were said to be paved with gold, was much safer.
"I was born in Russia, I will die in Russia!" Papa declared whenever the topic was mentioned, and that was that.
It wasn't that Papa was irrational or ignorant. No, my Papa--- Galron Robinto--- might have been the wisest man in our shtetl... along with the Rabbi. The only man Rabbi Yezikiel went to for advice was my papa, and the only man Papa asked help from was the Rabbi.
The thing about Papa was, he was very traditional---and proud. Even when Mama's sister, Aunt Chana, and her family came to live with us, fleeing their shtetl that had been destroyed, Papa would not budge.
It wasn't only the safeness of America that had me so determined to go there. It was Mira.
Mira, my little sister, was 6 years old the last time we saw each other. Our shtetl had been attacked by big men with flames and sticks and rocks. My older brothers, Avramel and Mevorach, were killed. Mamas youngest sister, my Aunt Ruth, had enough money to get to America with her husband and two kids... and Papa had enough money to send me with them.
How could i leave my sister in such a dangerous and hateful place, though? So I asked-- Begged them to take Mira instead. And that is just what happened.
As I hanged the laundry up on the line that stood crooked in the back of our house, I tried to imagine my little sister in New York--- the land in America where she had gone. It had been ten years since I saw her pretty round face. Maybe her big brown eyes had changed gold over time, as mine had, or they had remained brown, like Papa's. I wondered if she still loved to kick off her shoes and dance on the soft grass, until someone scolded her for taking them off. She had always been so free spirited--- I hoped nothing had changed that.
The sun was tucked away in the grey clouds, and a cold wind swept through, almost removing the scarf that covered most of my long, black hair.
"Lena!" I heard a familiar voice call.
I glanced behind me, and there behind the old, wooden, fence, was Lila Reznik.
"Lila! What are you doing here?" I asked, making my way to her.
"Well, I wanted to stop by for a second. Did you know that you're uncle invited us over for Shabbat?"
"What? Uncle Yaakov?"
"Do you have another uncle living with you?"
"No, but... why?"
"I don't know. But, my mother seemed very happy when she told us, and I can only think of one reason."
"One reason that your mother might be happy?"
"No!" She laughed, "One reason that your uncle may be inviting us over."
I thought for a minute, then gasped. "You don't mean..."
Lila nodded. "Yes, that is what I mean."
"But... between who?"
"Lena, think about it a moment. I am already married, and you are already married."
"And it wouldn't be Tula, because the only two boys here are under 12," I said, referring to her younger sister.
"So, it would be your cousin, Abira," She explained.
"But Abira is only 16! Your brother is 25, is he not?"
"Lena, you know things like this happen all the time. Just think about Marva Brodski! She was only 14 when she married a man who was 30!" Lila pointed out.
"Yes, but her father was worse than anyone in the village. Her mother only arranged that for her own well being!"
"Thats true. But, whatever you do, do not say anything to Abira. It may not even be happening, and we don't want to make her nervous."
"Alright. I---"
"Lena! What are you doing!" I heard Mama yell from the back door, "I thought I told you to hang the laundry on the line, not look at the fence... Oh, Lila! How... wonderful to see you here. You are coming for dinner tonight, yes?"
"Yes, Elisheva, we are. Im sorry, I didn't mean to interrupt Lena from her work," Lila apologized innocently.
"Oh, no, its fine. We don't need clean laundry, anyway. We can shlep around in dirty clothing for months, really," Mama replied sarcastically, and returned inside to continue her work.
I sighed. "Married or not, Mama will tell me these things until the day she dies... G-d forbid it happen soon,"
"Yes, well, I am a mama, and still my mother tells me what I do wrong," She snickered, "But I should let you get back to your work. I will see you tonight, Lena."
"Alright. And I won't say anything," I promised, turning back to the laundry.
Suddenly, my stomach twisted. Abira stood right behind the line, hanging up one of Mamas skirts.
How much did she hear? Had she been standing there the entire time? Would she be upset with me?
"Abira?" I choked out, detecting the nervousness in my own voice. I half expected her to look up with anger in her eyes, not wanting to even speak to me.
But when she heard me, she met my eyes with her shining, grey (almost silver) eyes, a big smile on her face, revealing her perfectly straight teeth that made her smile famous in the village. "Hi! Your mother sent me out here to help you with the laundry. She seemed annoyed," she shrugged.
"I was talking to Lila instead of hanging the laundry," I explained.
"Oh? Of what?"
"Not much, really. Just about dinner... I guess they're joining us for dinner tonight."
"I wonder why?" She said, brushing a loose strand of her brown hair from her face.
"I think they just... like more company."
That was an understatement.
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