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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Fearful (08/23/07)

TITLE: Banished to a cold, hard land
By Josiah Kane


The farmer went over his field for the seventeenth time, making absolutely sure that there were no weeds or weak plants to remove invaluable nutrients from the poor desert soil. He trembled as he recalled the previous year of hungry stomachs. This was a poor state indeed for the man who had been called the only worthwhile gardener in the oasis. Indeed he had survived this far only by eating the wild fruits, seeds and all, and by gripping to the hope of a harvest so fervently that he might crush it.

As the blood-curdling roar rose from a purple-striped head that blasted out a wall of smoke and flame, this man turned. He began contemplating whether to fight the desert dragon with his stave and pebbles in the hope of saving his meagre fields, or whether to run back to the cave with his wife and abandon them to the flames. Upon the second blast, he decided that his potato plants were not worth his life.

His wife, who had brought him his berries was clad in furs to defend herself against the cold, thorny desert. But she tripped over them about 200 yards from the cave. The great beast reared, snapped forward its head, and encountered a mouthful of wool. About a minute later the woman finally crept into the cave, and draped a mat of nettles over herself.

“So much for defending me come what may. You have been hopeless at doing anything, even down to providing food. On the first day that we met, you swore to help me through everything. I am fed up,” yelled the woman.
“Eve, Dear, it is quite obvious that I was just as helpless as you.”
“DON’T YOU CALL ME DEAR! The only things that you could call dear are your farms and stomach. I want to leave.” Screamed the fuming, red-faced woman who had suddenly replaced his wife at the back of the cave.
“What exactly do you intend to do?” asked the man.
Your life would be very precarious indeed without my help at farming. And you could not even fight off a wolf.” said the man in his nonchalant voice which served so effectively as a curtain to hide his thoughts and feelings.
“My remaining alive could hardly be less certain than when you are always using me
as a human shield.”

This made him mad. He drew himself up to his full height, pumped up his muscles, and in this intimidating pose began a string of curses and swearwords, advancing a step with each one. “I am not going to be accused of this by the wretch who forced us into the desert in the first place. If you had not taken one of those sour, curly blue fruits, and threatened to tell God that I took it if I refused to eat, then we would still be in the oasis.”

Eve fled.

Adam felt terrible as if he were burning up. His logical mind was trying to unravel the emotional soup of guilt, longing, love, pride, self-pity and fear. Especially fear.
He lived continually looking over his shoulder in case another wild animal might be near. He was beset by terror whenever he realized how many of the sins that he had recently learned of had already been recorded by history. He fervently wished, but knew it to be in vain, that his descendents might not look upon him as the source of their troubles, and he was always praying that God might allow him to re-enter Eden.

Suddenly he noticed a new factor emerging from the soup: grace. He understood that though he had made a mess of his job as overseer, God’s grace was never-ending. And with that thought, Adam went out to help Eve see off the wolf cub.

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This article has been read 568 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Allison Egley 09/02/07
Oh, this is great. I love how you described the fruit as something OTHER than an apple. :) It seems we are in the "same boat" in believing that fruit is no longer around, but who knows?

The only suggestion I have would be to attach "Eve fled" to the paragraph below it. It doesn't need to be a separate paragraph, but it works that way too, so it's really up to you.

Great job in taking us beyond the story a bit. Keep writing.
Brenda Welc09/03/07
Interesting perception to the daily life of Adam and Eve. Maybe a little too strong for my liking but very well written. Very descriptive writing; painted a nice picture of the situation for the reader! Keep up the good work.
Joanne Sher 09/07/07
Congratulations, Josiah. Your entry has placed 13th in Level 1. With so many entries in this level, you've really done well. The Lists for the Top 15 in each Level and the Top 40 overall is available in the Weekly Results and Highest Rankings forum of our Faithwriters Message Boards.