You never were one for parties, but your wife insisted you come. It was to be one of the biggest parties in Philadephia's winter season, and she didn't want you to miss it. After much pestering on her part, you obliged, and on the day of the party the two of you set off to Benedict Arnold's mansion, who was the military governor of the city, appointed by the Continental Army's own General George Washington.
You weren't quite certain why your wife insisted on going, considering you both were Tories, and Arnold was an officer of the rebelling faction. Your wife waved the problem by saying it was the Christmas season, and so for the time being all animosities should be forgotten and to simply live in peace and joy for the remainder of the season.
"Besides, once Twelfth Night has passed, we can all begin hating each other again soon enough," she says, smiling.
You and your wife arrive at the mansion, both in your best outifts to impress others and to show that your welath has not diminished from Philadelphia's siege. You talk pleasantries with your friends, and take time to look around the mansion. It is magnificient, as befitting a governor. Everything is immaculate for the festivities in store, and you can't help but be impressed with Arnold's taste. Even when you are told the ornaments were mostly picked out by Peggy Shippen, you still think the man has good taste.
After a hearty dinner, you and the rest of the guests waltz into the dance hall. You dance a few waltzes and quadrilles, mostly with your wife. You tire of it, and go to the side, watching other partiers carouse. You like to be on the sidelines and watch others, figuring out their personalities and lives. You scan the room, finally focusing on a group of men talking. You can't help but notice that the group's main feature is an unusually tall, pockmarked man with powdered hair. You think you've recognized him somewhere, but you aren't too sure. You make your way to the group, hoping to be unnoticed.
"I'm not surprised that the British are moving south," you see a young red-haired man say. "There's nothing left to fight here. Besides, the Tories there are much more obliging than up north."
"I hope Greene handles it well," another young man says. "What do you think, General?" He turns to face the giant, expecting an answer.
The giant was not one to speak much. Even when he did, he was a man of few words.
"Laurens, I have full faith in Greene's and Gate's abilities to hold off the British until more men can come. Even with the bombardment of Savannah, I think we might just win."
"You mean with French aid, of course."
"How could I forget. Of course with their aid!" The man smiled.
By now you have realized that the giant is no other than the esteemed General George Washington.
He notices you. "Hello, sir. What is your name? I haven't seen you before."
You tell him your name.
"I have heard of you," Washington says to you. "You gave General Arnold a very beautiful silver tea set. I'm very impressed with your work."
"Thank you." You give a slight bow. "I heard that the British are moving south. Where exactly are they going? I heard you mention Savannah..." you trail off, hoping either Washington or his fellow officers will be willing to give you information."
"The British have moved south after the Philadelphia campaign, and are currently attempting to capture Savannah. I am certain we will be able to curtail the British though."
You are skeptical, but do not speak your mind on the matter. "I have family in South Carolina, near Charleston. I hope they will not be harmed if it comes near them." You truly are worried for them, as they are also Tories. You hope that your family there will not be harmed by either side of the conflict.
"I hope that the war ends swiftly," Washington says. "But I can't help but think that the war will be fought through the entire country, and South Carolina will be a part of the conflict."
You notice how he uses the word "country" instead of "thirteen colonies." You can't help but admire the man's tenacity.
"I hope that even when the war ends, whether it be an American or British victory, that both countries will continue to have a close relationship," Washington adds.
"I'd rather we win - I don't want to hang!," the giner says, which cause an awkward laughter to emit from the circle. That is the unspoken knowledge - that if the Americans fail, all of the officers, dignitaries, official, Congressmen will surely die.
You admired these men, these rebels, who had a 50/50 chance of winning their War of Independence, and even then those odds were slim. What they lacked in the begining with materials and men they made up in stubborness and hope - which has paid off it seems, as the French and now the Spanish were aiding these men. They're so full of hope, it's somewhat sickening to you. Even when they speak of ill news, they think - nay, they know - that they will be triumphant in the end. They are either very foolish or very clairvoyant, you say to yourself.
You continue to listen to their conversations, listening to the rebel side of the conflict. You hear these men speak so passionately, that for a moment your are lost in their fervor and are a Patriot. You shake yourself, saying you are a steadfast Tory. It must be the wine you've drank, because normally you are a steadfast man in your convictions, hardly ever budging from them once they are set. Yet, tonight you feel..open minded. Perhaps it is the Christmas season that is loosening you up, or again, the wine; every passing hour you become more intrigued with the rebel's affairs - a sign of boredom, you think.
When you finally return home, you reminisce on your evening. Perhaps now you've changed your tune.