“I…no others. I….all…” He shook his head, and spoke again. The Companion switched to its female voice, speaking for itself. “I do not have the vocabulary to translate what Ponter is saying.”
Mary nodded slowly. “The word you’re looking for,” she said gently, “is ‘alone'”.
p. 196, Hominids, Robert Sawyer
“When his slaves began sneaking away to nearby Yankee camps, a Vicksburg planter asked the ‘patriarch’ of his slaves, Silas, if the elderly man and his wife were planning their escape as well. Oh, no, ‘Uncle Si’ reassured his owner, they were too old for that and they were going to stay right where they were. That night all the remaining slaves on the plantation slipped away, including the aged couple. When the planter rode out after them the next day, he found Uncle Si in the woods, bending over the lifeless body of his wife. The planter asked, not unsympathetically, why the old man would subject her to such a strenuous journey, one she clearly was not strong enough to endure. Silas replied simply that it couldn’t be helped, adding pensively, ‘But then, you see, she died free.’ “
p. 166, A South Divided: Portraits of Dissent in the Confederacy. David Downing.