Rebecca opened her eyes. She saw the metal bars dividing her and the other prisoners. She saw in her own cell a few of the Christians. Octavia, Josiah, Kaila, Kaila’s family, and Pastor Andrew. Many other Christians were in the other prison cells. She looked out of her cell to see a soldier, staring at his sword in boredom. Octavia and Josiah sat next to each other, talking. Rebecca smiled. Octavia and Josiah were an inseparable pair, and if they were not in jail, Rebecca was sure they would be married. Her eyes moved to the next corner of the room to see Kaila wide eyed, staring out in the distance. Her family seemed no better. Rebecca knew why. Today was the day. Their fate was to be sealed, or unsealed, depending on what they did. Rebecca feared her decision. Her family wanted her to burn the incense, and Rebecca wanted to be home with her parents. She closed her eyes and fell into a restless sleep.
Rebecca’s eyes immediately opened as she heard the bars being opened. “It’s time to go.” Octavia said gently. Rebecca just nodded and got up, half dazed. “Octavia, what are you going to do?” Rebecca asked.
“I won’t burn the incense. God will protect me.”
Rebecca felt her head begin to hurt, and she groped for a wall to lean on. Octavia grabbed Rebecca’s shoulder. “Here, hold my hand.”
Rebecca never thought that Octavia would help her in the moments that would decide her fate, but there she was. Octavia showed no signs of worry or fear, only sweet peace. Rebecca longed for the peace. She looked at Kaila, and Kaila seemed to be more fearful than Rebecca. Rebecca finally made up her mind.
“I’m not going to burn the incense either.”
Octavia smiled. “Then we will die together.”
All of the sudden they were at the temple. There sat a fat man of great wealth, asking the Christians in front or Rebecca if they would burn the incense. Many who Rebecca did not know said no. A few burned it out of fear, however. Finally Kaila and her family were questioned. Rebecca held her breath.
“Burn the incense or die.”
Kaila’s father sighed and burned the incense. Rebecca gasped.
Kaila’s mother did the same. Then Kaila’s sister. Finally, the man asked Kaila the same thing. She began to cry.
“I will burn the incense…”
Rebecca felt a sad weight on her heart. Octavia squeezed Rebecca’s hand. Rebecca closed her eyes.
“Rebecca, it’s my turn, I’ll be back soon.” Octavia whispered in her ear. Octavia and her family stepped up. Her parents would not burn the incense. Neither would Octavia. Josiah followed her example. Pastor Andrew would not burn the incense.
Other Christians were asked.
Rebecca turned around to see if she could see any familiar spectators. One face she drew out clearly. Her father. Then she saw two other familiar faces, her mother and brother. They looked at her with pleading eyes. Rebecca’s heart sank. All of the sudden a soldier shoved Rebecca up to the man.
“Burn the incense or die.”
Rebecca felt time freeze. This was a decision that would affect not only herself, but her parents and Kaila. She turned around and looked at the spectators. Her eyes went from her parents to Kaila. But then she looked at Pastor Andrew, Josiah, and Octavia. They all seemed so firm and brave.
“I don’t have all day, burn it or die!” The man roared. The priest reached out the incense to her. Rebecca felt a surge of anger at the false god. “No!” She finally said. “I won’t do it! I won’t betray Jesus!”
The man rolled his eyes.
Octavia watched Rebecca. She felt sorry because Rebecca was to be separated from her family. Octavia had Josiah and her parents to help her, but Rebecca was all alone. She was about to walk over to Rebecca when Josiah grabbed her mouth. “Don’t breath a word.” He whispered. She frowned as he dragged her farther and farther from the rest of the Christians. They walked quietly through the crowd, and soon, they were out of sight.
“How did you do that?” Octavia asked.
“I just don’t think it’s time for us to die. I think we have a future… together.”
Octavia began to cry. Josiah wrapped his arms around her. She was surprised but felt at ease.
God didn’t feel that the time had come for me to die… She thought.
Rebecca felt all the weight of her sadness right at that moment. She looked for Octavia, but could not see her. Rebecca decided that there were just too many Christians to see Octavia. Rebecca felt lonely. She couldn’t see Octavia, and Kaila had burned the incense and gone home. But she realized she was not lonely. God would help her through the hard time. And the games, which were in two days.
Even though I wrote this book, I am shocked at what happened (even though this story isn’t actually true). Anyways, to fully understand what I am describing, I would strongly suggest to watch this:
And on the escape of Octavia and Josiah, they only escaped because God helped them. I don’t think they could’ve done it without them. Also, don’t worry, I will come back to them and tell more of their story. Chapter 6 is the last chapter. I know! One more chapter and I’m done. I will begin working on my new book, “Failure.” After that, I’m going to be doing a little story on my best friend and I. We have always wanted to share our story, so I’m going to do a little “biography” of my life. After that, I’m going to work on the second book in the series of “Failure,” and then the third. After that, I would be open to either writing a completely new story, or even just doing a second part of When the Time Comes, showing Octavia and Josiah’s life. Anyways, I hope you guys enjoyed! Leave some questions down below for Josiah and Rebecca’s parents! Thank you for reading!