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Hide & Seek: Chapter 5

Bracha Rosman

The Renards decide to bear down on Idy and Jacob. Mr. Renard is offered an interesting business proposal that Mrs. Renard doesn’t approve of

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

"E scape?” Idy asked. “Are you kidding?”

Jacob looked his sister in the eye. “No, I’m not. I haven’t worked out all the details yet, but now that I know we’re far from civilization, I know what we’re up against.”

“What do you mean ‘far from civilization’?”

Jacob’s voice became animated. “While I was in the tree, I heard one of the men tell Renard that his place was far, and a hazard to get to. Seems the road is overgrown with brush from lack of use.” Jacob stopped to breathe. “Then he asked Renard why he chose this remote spot for his onion farm.”

“Remote spot?” Idy asked.

“Yes,” Jacob said.

“That must be the reason Fay doesn’t go to school. It’s too far.”

Jacob nodded matter-of-factly.

Idy’s shoulders slumped. “She’s as much a prisoner here as we are.”

“Don’t go feeling all bad for her, Idy. She’s not worth it.”

Idy bit her lip.

“What’s wrong, Idy?”

“It just seems like nothing is in our favor. We’re even too far for anyone to help us.”

Jacob’s eyes grew rounder than usual. He wasn’t used to this melancholy side of Idy.

“You said things were going to be okay. You said Hashem listens to the prayers of orphans.” He stamped his feet. “You said, you said, you said!”

Idy was stunned and humored by her brother’s outburst, and began to laugh.

“What are you laughing at?” he demanded.

“First you’re planning an escape like a grown man, and the next thing I know, you’re having a tantrum like a little three-year-old.”

Jacob instantly calmed down. “Sorry, it’s just that I don’t like when you get worried. It scares me.”

Idy put her arm around Jacob’s shoulder. “After your daring escapade today, I didn’t think anything scared you.”

Jacob grinned.

“Seriously though,” Idy said, “I’m not sure escaping is such a good idea. Who knows what we’d be up against? We could be a hundred miles from a town. We may have to cross a river … or worse.”

“I’m going to find out everything we need to know.”

“How?”

“I’m not sure, but I’ll come up with something.”

Idy looked intently at Jacob. “Jacoby. I’m glad you’re thinking big, and I’m glad you have something to take your mind off your troubles, but we have to be realistic.”

“What do you mean? I am being realistic. How much longer can we survive here?”

“We have nowhere to go,” Idy protested. “At least here, we have a roof over our heads.”

“A roof!” Jacob yelled. “You call this a roof?”

Idy grabbed him. “Shhh! You want the whole Renard family up here?”

Jacob shook himself loose from his sister’s grip. “I’m leaving this place,” he said, his voice steady and low. “Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but I’m leaving first chance I get.”

Idy saw purpose in her brother’s eyes. He was a ten-year-old man. “Okay,” she said after a moment. “We’ll plan it out together, but we can’t rush it. Our plan has to be foolproof.”

Jacob licked his lip. “It will be. You’ll see.”

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