Salem was a small town. Everybody knew each other, whether they hated, tolerated, or liked each other, the community was tightly knitted together. Everyone knew the shopkeepers, the farmers, and the members of the church.
Sonic was just one farmer. He was well-known, of course, as he did have a lot of friends...and a couple of enemies, but nonetheless he was heavily respected. To him, his reputation was important to him. Without it, he couldn't go onto the streets every day and buy at least a few things from the shops. Some people would admit that his attitude brought joy to the small town, even if several did find him quite annoying. He was arrogant, but he was still a kind fellow. Sonic did have a close friend, however, and that was Tails, the one he trusted the most, and even a lovely wife, Tiara. They were closest to him. Others seem to tolerate him just so they can at least not starve to death, especially after last winter when famine struck the small town.
However, Sonic often had trouble with food. He feared that, if he did not make enough food, another famine would strike. So, he bought a slave, Chip. It made his work easier. He didn't have to work so hard!
The same slave, however, attempted the escape multiple times. It annoyed Sonic, a lot. He always did find him, either in the woods or hiding in the well. Chip never seemed to enjoy being a slave, but to Sonic that didn’t matter. Chip was his property. He was suppose to work in the fields.
Despite this, Sonic always seemed to feel at least a little bad for Chip. Chip did seem like a nice guy. He ignored it, however, as it was a ridiculous thing to think. He was a slave. Slaves are suppose to do work.
But he did always try to run away. He wanted to know why, but he also wanted to keep him inside. Sonic wanted to keep him here.
Sonic walked to the building of Shadow, the town founder. He was around 50, maybe a little gray around the quills. Shadow called Sonic in for some odd reason. Sonic wanted to find out. More land, perhaps? Maybe some plans for his farm? He had no idea.
Sonic knocked on Shadow's door and waited for a response.
Sonic opened the door and walked inside. “What did you want to see me for, sir?”, Sonic asked, trying to be as respectful as possible.
“It's about your slave.”
“Oh dear God, you named him?” Shadow sneered, “Do you really want to humanize property?”
“What else am I supposed to call him? That's what he said his name was.”
Shadow changed the subject quickly.
“Your slave. You said he keeps trying to escape?”
Sonic quickly mustered a response. “That is correct, sir.”
“If you don't keep your slave at bay, you could be responsible for another famine-”
“It's not my fault,” Sonic interrupted, “I try my best to make enough food, but Chip keeps-”
“Don’t interrupt me!” Shadow snapped back. He regained his composure before speaking again, “If your slave keeps trying to escape, we may be in danger of yet another famine. Try keep him at your property, and maybe we won't starve for another winter.”
Sonic realized how quickly winter was rolling around. With all the times Chip tried to escape, he and his slave hardly had enough time to gather enough food.
“Do you understand?” Shadow asked.
“Yes, sir. I'll, uh, try my best. We do not want another famine in our hands.”
Shadow sat back at his chair. “Good. Do not fail me, or else...you might have to speak to the court.”
The court. Lead by none other than the richest in the town, Bartleby. He was one of the few people Sonic would never respect. The vibe he gave off wasn't pleasant at all.
Shadow interrupted Sonic's train of thought. “You are now dismissed.”
Sonic walked out of the town hall, trying hard to keep his cool. Another famine would ruin his reputation. He cannot let these people down.
Sonic started walking back to his home, hoping that at least today would be the ONE time Chip would stay. Just...at least one month of him staying. Then maybe he'll set him free…
Set him free? What was he thinking? He couldn't… he can't…
Sonic shook his head. Chip was property. Not a person. That was fact.
At last, Sonic finally reached his home. It was small, but liveable, at least. It gave him enough land for farming anyways. He opened the door and stepped inside, spotting his wife.
“You’re back so early?” Tiara questioned.
“Yeah…” Sonic replied, “He didn't say much, he basically just told me to ‘hurry up’ and keep Chip in check...speaking of which…”
“He’s well,” Tiara answered quickly, knowing what he was about to ask, “He’s working right now.”
“Thank the lord.” Sonic thought to himself.
“Although, you might still go check on him though. He's pretty unpredictable…”
Sonic remembered the times of trying to catch him again and again. He was small, yet fast, but Sonic somehow always knew how to capture him yet again. Chip was important. He wanted to keep his reputation. No famine this winter. He promised that.
“I might as well.” Sonic said, heading towards the backdoor to the farm. Before he could open said door, Tiara spoke again.
“By the way, have you heard about the recent rumors?”
Sonic turned to his wife in confusion. “Rumors?”
“Rumors of rabid wolves in the woods. Shadow has advised to not go there.”
Sonic cocked an eyebrow, then chuckled slightly. “Nonsense. I'm not afraid of any wolves.” Sonic turned and headed out to his farmland. It was oddly dark out. It was dusk just a few moments ago. The sun set already? He looked around.
No sign of Chip. Did he run away again?
Then, Sonic spotted something. A portion of his fence seemed to have been destroyed, creating a large, gaping hole.
He ran over to the destroyed part of the fence.Sonic immediately assumed Chip escaped yet again, right into the woods. Except...how would someone like him make a hole this big? A man of his stature…
Sonic stared at the woods nearby.
He suspected that something was in there. Maybe his wife was right. Or was it…
“No. Witches do not exist,” Sonic said to himself, heading towards said woods, “Wolves or not, I need to get my slave back.”