When it's right to do wrong  
The Slave - a novel by Andrew Sanger




Andrew Sanger

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Chapters 1 & 2

The true story


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THE SLAVE is about freedom, and what it means to three different people.

At first unknown to each other, Neil Chapman, Liliana Petreanu and Bernard Kassin are neighbours in Golders Green, a quiet district in north London.  

Neil, 31 years old, is a reckless young loner and drifter, recently split up with his girlfriend.  He's into jazz and old films, rides a bike and works as a van driver.

Bernard, nearly twice his age, is a devoted family man, practising Jew, and a respected member of the local community. Bernard is in constant battle against the wrongs, large and small, that he feels are blighting his neighbourhood and his country.

The two men have little in common. Yet Bernard too loves jazz and a sort of friendship springs up between Neil and his older neighbour.

One night, Neil is tempted to visit a prostitute and impulsively calls a number in a local newspaper ad. The prostitute he visits is Liliana.

* * *

Liliana is 22 years old, Moldovan and doesn't speak English. She's locked in a room with boarded windows, in a house just minutes away.

She slips a note into Neil's pocket telling him she’s “not a whore, but a prisoner” and asking for help. She warns that her captors “will kill”.

* * *

Neil feels impelled to help, but understands it's no exaggeration that her captors would kill to protect their property. Gradually though, he prepares himself to free her.

Whether what he does is right would be hard to say. It's brave, foolhardy and wild. And as a result he is wanted by the police as well as being pursued by Liliana's captors.

Neil desperately calls on other people for help. Among them is Bernard, who, against every instinct about what is best for society, must decide whether to break the law to serve a greater good.

© Andrew Sanger



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