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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Red (10/01/09)

TITLE: Red's Redemption
By Genuine Suede


“Red, red wine... Stay close to me.... Don’t let me be alone...” Amy swayed, eyes closed, to the sensuous drone of Neil Diamond, completely at one with the husky voice crooning loudly out of her sound-surround stereo. She sang along, her voice breaking. The ache in Neil’s voice matched the one in her heart, perfectly. “But memories won’t go, no, memories won’t go...”

That had been "their" song; she was Red Wine. She’d always loved it that Stan called her Red.

Curled in an overstuffed chair, her long red hair tumbled over her shoulders into her lap, Amy hugged a pillow to her chest and allowed hot tears to flow down her face without wiping them away. She wanted to feel them. They were the only thing that felt real right now.

Stan, her boyfriend for the last three years, had broken up with her that afternoon. Since then, she hadn’t moved from her room. His words echoed and re-echoed. She tortured herself with them. “Red, I don’t want to hurt you... But I need what I need...”

“Well, you had better go then.” she had told him.

How could he do this to her?

What did he mean he wasn’t feeling it anymore? You don’t stop loving-- just like that! But deep down, she knew. Stan wanted more than just kissing and cuddling these days. Said a man had needs.

Stan wanted her to prove her love for him, and she did love him... They’d argued about that a lot lately.

She didn’t know what was wrong with her. She couldn’t be like other girls; she’d tried to explain to him but it was hard--he didn't believe like she did.

Nowadays, nobody cared. Unmarried couples slept together all the time. No one even talked about it when they did. But, as much as she wanted to, she couldn’t get past the nagging voice that wouldn’t be ignored. It always stopped her before things got out of hand.

The voice said that wasn’t the way she wanted her first time to be. Giving in, so that Stan wouldn’t be upset. She wanted her first time to be special. A gift to each other, with a lifetime commitment to each other. Not something taken from her, like it was a payment for the time he spent with her.

Whenever she questioned her decision, Mom’s voice floated through her mind. “I’ve taught you everything I know, Sweetie. So, if you’re in doubt; don’t. That little voice is God’s way of telling you something isn’t right. Always remember that. You’ll always know the right thing to do if you listen to what it’s trying to tell you. Don’t let anyone, girl or guy, pressure you to do anything you don’t want to do. You do what’s right for you.

Lately, Stan had seemed to be doing a lot of taking... And not a whole lot of giving. Amy had been annoyed a lot by his irritability whenever he didn’t get his way. What happened to the sweet guy he’d always been. Lately he just seemed so... self-centered. Selfish, even.

Amy got up and turned Neil down. She wasn’t in the mood for him anymore.

That’s exactly what was wrong, Amy realized. She’d been feeling used. Stan didn’t make her feel loved and cared for. He made her feel like she was responsible for his lack of “getting any” as the guys put it. And well, maybe she was, in part, but it wasn’t her problem. Not at this point in their relationship. He needed to figure out what he wanted.

She froze, momentarily stunned by her realization.

He had figured it out. And he hadn’t chosen her. The realization stung. A hot burning coursed through her. She felt her cheeks turning a fiery red, as they always did when she felt humiliated. Humiliation turned to anger. Anger that inflamed her, made her nostrils flare, her breath rapid and uneven.

Who does he think he is!

Mom’s voice floated again. “God said vengeance is His. Your job is to forgive and trust God to do the rest. He’ll deal with Stan.” Well, Mom hadn’t actually said that, but Amy knew she would have, had she known.

Mom was right. At last, peace came over Amy and settled. She was so glad she hadn’t slept with Stan. What a mistake that would have been.

She looked in the mirror and saw eyes red and swollen. She washed up. She’d done enough crying.

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This article has been read 627 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shilo Goodson10/08/09
this is a great story of the temporary pain that can come from making a the right decision when it's not something someone else wants from you. I am sure that Amy will find happiness with someone else, someone who deserves and respects her standards.
Ruth Brown10/09/09
This would be good for a teen magazine,So needed today.
Jan Ackerson 10/11/09
Excellent! Share this with your youth group!
Elizabeth White10/11/09
I definitely agree with what others have written that it would be really good if you could share this work with young people who need to hear it. I enjoyed reading this.
diana kay10/15/09
good story. I like the song reference. My song was "lady in red" by Chris de Burgh...... now why didnt I think of that idea for my writing challenge!
Philippa Geaney 10/15/09
No wonder you did so well. It is a lovely story.Congratulations
Genuine Suede10/15/09
I was shocked and thrilled beyond words to see Red's Redemption take first place. Thank you so much, Faithwriters, and to those of you who took the time to read and leave comments, I so appreciate it.
Lisa Johnson10/16/09
I loved the different ways you integrated the topic word into this very worthy entry. Congratulations on your first place win. Looking forward to more of your writing.
Lori Robbins10/16/09
nicely done...we have all felt the sting of love
Dimple Suit10/16/09
Good Job! Congratulations on first place. I agree with others, young people, and anyone who has questioned holding to their values, could benefit from Red's Redemption.
Charla Diehl 10/21/09
Congratulations on your win with this much needed message--for women of all ages today. Great job with the telling of Amy's plight.