Roots: The Saga of an American Family Chapter 84 Summary

Alex Haley

Chapter 84 Summary

Kizzy is sold to a slave trader immediately. That trader sells Kizzy to her new master, Tom Lea. The first night on the run-down Tom Lea plantation in North Carolina, he appears at Kizzy’s ragged cabin door. Smelling booze on his breath, Kizzy can tell what he plans to do. Sure enough, he subdues her by force and rapes her brutally until she blacks out. When she comes to, a black woman is cleaning Kizzy’s private parts from the soiled mess. Kizzy lies there, spent in despair.

Kizzy wonders about her mom and dad. Would Bell and Kunta remain on the Waller plantation? Had their disregard for the rules in trying to save Kizzy caused them to be sold, too? Then Kizzy wonders about Noah. She wishes she had allowed Noah to make love to her before he ran away. Has Noah been killed because of his infractions, or just sold? Kizzy remembers that Noah demanded the traveling pass from Kizzy to prove her love for him. Suddenly, Kizzy wonders if Missy Anne might come to the rescue when she hears about this. Kizzy’s heart sinks once again, however, when she realizes it has been four days since Noah has been caught. Surely Missy Anne would know about it by now.

Miss Malizy, the blacked woman who helped clean Kizzy, now returns to Kizzy’s cabin with some soup. Miss Malizy tells Kizzy, point blank, that Master Lea is one of those masters who loves women, especially young black women. Malizy tells Kizzy to expect him nightly, whenever the master isn’t off fighting his chickens. Tom Lee breeds chickens to participate in cock fighting. This is how he was able to work up from being a “poor cracker” into a meager plantation owner. Unfortunately, his manners did not improve with his living situation.

Kizzy tells Miss Malizy a bit about her former life. Miss Malizy’s jaw drops when she finds out that not only did Kizzy have a good life as a house slave but also lived with both parents. The latter fact is so rare in the South that Malizy can’t believe it. Kizzy is even more scared and saddened when she finds out that Tom Lea purchased her to work her to the bone in the fields. Even worse, most likely Tom Lea purchased Kizzy to breed and create more slaves he doesn’t have to buy. Kizzy is speechless.