Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Telephone (07/17/08)
By Christabelle Allestad
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Why had Ed insisted on leaving this week? She'd begged him to postpone his trip, maybe until summer, when her mom would be up and she wouldn't be alone. She'd begged and he'd refused saying he needed to go, needed to talk to his clients now before he lost them completely. So she'd reluctantly watched him leave. And now she needed him. She clutched the phone tighter and began to pick it up. It was silly, really, being so afraid of the dark. Her brother accused her of being afraid of her own shadow. How could she help it if she'd had nightmares every night since she was eight? Nightmares of being alone and something...she heard footsteps in the kitchen. Her mind urged her to call, to just do it, but she was afraid. It was nothing. There was no one. Oh how she'd hear it if she called the police. A false alarm. Something else to toss at her in the heat of an argument. But maybe if she just called Ed.
She willed herself to think of something, anything besides her present circumstance. She thought of the cottage where she grew up. Lovely pink rose bushes lined the walk. Pink were her mom's favorite. She could see her gardening now, carefully holding the talks as she pruned them. Safe, Lily had clutched to her momma's skirt and breathed the scent of her. She'd never had to worry with Momma around. She willed herself to feel the calm now and for a moment it almost worked, but then she could feel him behind her. She smelled the stench of burbon and unwashed clothes. She could sense his dark eyes peering into her skull. Instinctively, her hand grabbed the receiver and lifted it to her ear. He forced it from her palm before she could dial the numbers, but it didn't matter, she'd gotten it close enough to her ear to know the line was dead.
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