“Now, now men; she’s a good worker,” the slave trader explained. “She’s just a bit tired from the boat ride over. You know Africa is a long ways away. She just needs a little conditioning, that’s all. Now, you see, I’ll bet I can get her to lift those barrels of pitch and load them onto the back of this wagon and do it without the whip. See, she hasn’t eaten in three days or had anything to drink since yesterday morning so I’ll wager…”
“What will ye wager?” Benji asked boldly as he walked up from the back of the all-male crowd. He looked over and got a better view of the subject of the gathering. He could tell by the talk that it was a woman, a big female slave, they were discussing. What he hadn’t realized was that a human female could actually be that huge. She was nearly as tall as he was and had a broad, sturdy frame, not reedy or lanky. But she definitely had been deprived of food. He could see her ribs and just about everything else: all she was wearing was a little leather apron and a dirty and frayed rag around her head.
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