A Lost Love
The New World.
Place of Dreams and Conquests.
A new chance.
A new beginning.
The sea was angry, the night was dark, yet there was a ship sailing
determinedly through the troubled waters. A ship full of dreams, of hopes,
of truth. A ship that would take its troubled passengers to a New World,
one with freedom and chances. America. On the back of this ship lay a young
girl of fifteen years. She had beautiful curly blond hair and gray eyes.
She was the most beautiful girl in the small town in Latvia where she had
lived. Now she was ready to make a new beginning. To find the man that she
had loved. The man who had never known her. To explain to him what she had
only just found out. She sat up and looked about the raging sea. It
wouldn't be long, she thought. She lay back down and tried to fall asleep.
This young girl's name was Myra Menke.
* * *
Twenty years ago Boris Menke was the happiest man in the world. He was
going to be married to Marta Jacobs, the prettiest girl in the village, and
the cleverest. As he watched her walking down the aisle, with her pretty
white dress, her chestnut curls, and her stunning gray eyes, he decided
that he would do anything for her.
They moved to a small town in Latvia where Boris bought a farm. They were
extremely happy. They prospered and lived happily for four beautiful years.
Then something happened to enhance their joy even more. Marta was pregnant.
The couple rejoiced and prepared happily for the arrival of their first
born child. Their happiness was not meant to last. Soon after, Marta gave
birth to a beautiful baby girl named Myra. As the baby wriggled and cried,
her mother lay limp and cold. She was dead. Yet she held onto the baby
until the midwife managed to take the child away from her poor dead mother.
Boris was so angry that God had taken away what had been most precious to
him. He went to see the child, and then Myra opened her eyes, and Boris saw
his Marta's eyes staring out at him. He flew into such a rage that he
locked himself into his room.
Boris Menke went from being a joyful, generous, kind neighbor to being a
cruel, heartless, greedy man. People soon knew that it was best to leave
him be with his pigs and his cows. Boris soon attained the reputation as
the meanest person in the village. Myra, however, lived happily, tending to
the animals and her father. Strangely, even though she looked so much like
Marta but with golden hair, Boris loved his daughter. She was his only
reason for living. But there was more tragedy planned in Boris' sad life.
One day, when Myra was five years old, Boris and she rode into town to buy
some sugar and flour from the store. While Boris was in the store Myra
toyed with the reins. Three older boys saw her sitting in the carriage all
by herself and decided to have a little fun. They began to throw rocks at
the horse while Myra cried out at them to stop. They didn't listen and
threw more rocks with more vigor and violence. Soon the poor horse whinnied
and began to gallop, and with a shriek Myra fell out of the carriage and
fell to the ground unconscious. The boys, scared, began to run away for
fear of getting into trouble. Just as Boris was coming out of the store,
the horse turned around and ran straight at Myra. The horse ran straight
over Myra, crushing her head with a resounding crack. Boris yelled and
leapt forwards to stop the horse and then rushed to see what had happened.
Several people who had seen what had happened rushed forwards as well,
gasping and crying.
Myra was taken to the doctor's office, where Boris soon learned the awful
truth. Myra was not dead, but it was almost as if she was. The crack in her
head struck quite a few nerves, leaving Myra in an awful state. She lost
most of her brain functions, making her appear extremely stupid and
lightheaded. She couldn't think properly, and couldn't connect certain
things, like sentences and ideas. She became a lifeless, stupid, heartless
creature who could only talk but could not think or love.
Yet the years continued even though Myra's state of mind did not improve.
The once clever, intelligent, sly little girl with the enchanting gray eyes
became someone who did not love or think. Myra became a lovely young woman
of fourteen besides the fact that her brain was severely damaged. Boris
became more sullen and sad, for he did not have his sweet fun child
anymore. Only a housekeeper.
One day Boris decided that he was getting old and that he would need
someone to clean the barn. He hired a young man of fifteen, named Elya
Yelnats. Elya went to work immediately, with enthusiasm and vigor. Then
came the day when he saw Myra. Myra was going past the barn carrying a
bucket of scraps for the pigs. Elya did not see her empty eyes or her
lifeless walk all he saw was her beauty. He was in love. All Myra thought
when she saw him was:
"He has mud on his knee. He should clean it."
Elya went straight away to Boris to ask for his daughter's hand in
marriage. Boris was appalled. Elya was but a boy, and how could he take
care of Myra? Igor Barkov, the pig farmer had already asked to marry her.
He offered a fat pig for her. Boris wanted a fat pig, but he didn't really
like the look of Igor. But he did not want to seem unkind, so he asked Elya
what he had to offer for her. Elya responded confidently:
"A heart full of love, Mr. Menke."
At this Boris laughed aloud, for even he had paid something for Marta, whom
he had loved with all his heart.
"Igor Barkov has offered me his fattest pig. I'd rather have a fat pig!"
Boris laughed and laughed as Elya left heartbroken to see a gypsy to help
him. Madame Zeroni.
Madame Zeroni helped Elya. She gave him a baby pig, and told him to carry
it to the top of the mountain and sing to it while it drinks from the
water. The pig grew, and on the final day he went back to the Menke Farm to
offer the pig to Boris. As it turned out, both pigs weighed the same and
Boris asked Myra to choose. Myra couldn't choose, and asked them to pick a
number between one and ten. Elya was disgusted, and he left for America
soon after. This is what you know, what everyone knows, and it is true. Yet
you do not know what happened to poor Myra Menke afterwards...
End of the First Chapter
Author's note: Thank you very much for reading my story, and as always,
please review! Tell me what you liked best, what you didn't like, what you
would like to see happen, and that sort of thing.
Disclaimer: All of the characters (besides Marta Menke) are creations of
Louis Sachar, but the personalities, the plot, and anything else not read
in HOLES belongs to me.