Here's a story I wrote for my English class. In it, a girl living in the reservation recalls her mother's story of the origins of their home and why they aren't like those from the outside. Please note that some of the details are purposely different from what's said in the novel, due to this story being past down generations by word of mouth. Please enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Brave New World by Aldous Huxley.
Word Count: 1,053
The Origins of the Reservation
According to my mother, it had all started with a simple protest. Of course, that had been generations ago, but the story had been passed down from parent to child all the way down to me, the only daughter of my parents. It was an important story, one that marked the history of my people and the reason that we lived as we do today.
My mother had told me the stories many times. I still remember the reminiscent look in her eyes as she spoke softly to me, running her fingers through my long hair as I lay in bed. I still remember the salty tears that would fall down her cheeks, and the hard tone that her voice took when it reached the harder parts of the tale. But most importantly, I remember the way she told me the story: every intonation she made, every stumble in her words, every tear that fell. It's a tale that always lingers in my thoughts, especially whenever I cross paths with Linda and her son John, whenever people come to stay in our village, and whenever we are threatened by the controllers of the reservation.
"Long ago," my mother would say, "everyone lived together. The world was divided up into countries and each country had their own way of running society. It was a wonderful place. Then, Henry Ford came along. He was a handsome man, a man that brought the beginnings of change to the world. He introduced technologies that made the older devices seem obsolete."
"What's obsolete?" I would ask, never remembering the meaning of the word.
"It means that it's outdated and doesn't work as well as it should," my mother would explain patiently. "Anyway, with the start of the assembly line, came forth the people's urge to rally behind him. However, there were a number of people who were against this newfound change."
"Our ancestors, right?" I would say.
Mother would laugh and tickle me. "Exactly! Our ancestors, as well as a few others, saw through what the government was trying to do. They realized that as law after law was passed, and change after change was made, that they didn't want that kind of controlled life. That's why Great-great-great-great-great-great-grandpa Jerry started the protest. He didn't want to live a life based on technology, and there were quite a few people that agreed with him." Here she would smile at me. "Do you know what they did?"
"What?" I would respond back eagerly.
"They brought the argument to Ford himself!" Mother would say cheerfully. "And do you know what Ford did? He said that it was alright if they didn't agree with the new course of life. There would be plenty of room on the planet for people who were protesting. That is when our village was first set up. It was to serve as a sanctuary for those that refused to get involved." She smiled at this point, gazing out the window in memory of when her mother had told her this story.
"A few generations passed like this," Mother would continue after a moment. "Our two societies grew apart until no contact remained between the two, which was perfectly alright with us. However, at this point, those Outside started getting curious. Their lifestyles had changed so much that at this point, none of them remembered Ford's deal with us in the first place. Great-great-grandpa Joseph was the village leader at this point. He was the first to meet the Outsiders. He often spoke of that day, about how the visitors had treated him like a savage; like he had no right to be there, or even exist. After a few days of arguing, those from Outside finally left and Great-great-great-grandpa Joseph calmed down.
"It was only a few months later that we noticed that large wall that had been built within a close distance to our village. It completely barricaded us from the outside world, only allowing those that the Outside people deemed fit to enter out lands, but never allowing any of us to leave. It was a dark time, where food supplies dwindled from the lack of open hunting and the clans argued every night. Despite this though, not much changed. People continued living just like they always had.
"Then, there was a period of time where none of the Outsiders ever set foot on our lands. It baffled our people, terribly so, but they paid little heed to it and continued living like normal up until one faithful day: the day when the Outsiders returned. My grandmother was but a little girl at this point, but she always remembered it clear as day. Those from the outside stormed our village with weapons, threatening us with gas bombs and other dreadful fates if we didn't comply with their demands. Ever since then, we have lived in fear of the Outsiders, and cursing Henry Ford for putting us in this situation in the first place."
My mother would then cease her stroking my hair, having finished her tale and being left to her own memories of the Outsiders. I would snuggle deeper into my covers, falling asleep almost instantly and always missing my mother's gentle kiss that she would place upon my forehead.
That story is one of the finest memories I have of my mother, who passed on a few years ago. It is why I hold those vacationers in such disdain, and why I refuse to interact with John, despite how his is my age. It is my inspiration to keep strong, and my reasoning to find a way out of this so called "reservation" and into the normal, old world that seems to have been blown off of the map. It is my sole reason to keep on living.
Quotes I found inspiration from:
"These," he said gravely, "are unpleasant facts; I know it. But then most historical facts are unpleasant."
- Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, Ch. 2
"We can make a new one with the greatest ease-as many as we like. Unorthodoxy threatens more than the life of a mere individual; it strikes at Society itself."
- Aldous Huxley, Brave New World, Ch. 10
Pretty good for a school project, if I do say so myself. Please review with any critiques you may have and I hope you've enjoyed this!