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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Brown (11/26/09)

TITLE: Outside My Window
By Amy Richie


The scenery slipped silently by my window. I sat in the backseat, unmoving. Mom and dad were in the front talking in worried whispers. Did they really think I couldn’t hear them?

“I don’t think we have much choice,” that was mom. She always thought she had no choice.

Dad sighed heavily. “Honey, we’ll be there in just a minute.” Was he talking to me?

The hospital was large and extremely institutional. I said nothing as they led me down the deserted hallway. “It’s lunch time now,” the man was explaining to my parents. They nodded as he went on and on about doctors and medications.

It took hardly no time at all before we were in a small room. It was a plain room, with only a bed and a small stand. “A nurse will bring you clothes each morning,” the man told me. He was careful to keep his distance. I looked away from him, to the far wall where there was a tiny window covered with bars.

“She thinks she has been possessed,” my mother whispered to the man, unable to wait for privacy, “by demons.” She covered her mouth with her hand, embarrassed by the admission.

“That was months ago Margaret,” my father came to my defense.

“Yeah,” she was angry now, “and now she just doesn’t say anything.” She raised her eyes to the ceiling and shook her head.

“We’ll help her, we are here to help,” the man touched mom’s arm comfortingly.

Unable to watch any more, I went to look out the window. There was a large tree right outside. It was completely bare of any greenery. It was just a dark brown reminder of death. “Alice.” I heard my name called and looked around expectantly. The room was empty. The door was still open though.

I chewed my bottom lip and started towards the door. Maybe dad was calling for me. Halfway across the room I felt the coldness. I shuddered and tried to take a breath. The door banged shut loudly. No! I turned back to the window but of course it was no use. I couldn’t escape.

All of a sudden my body slammed against the wall as if someone was shoving me. “No,” I screamed. I was pulled backwards and pushed violently to the floor. Every muscle in my body tightened painfully.

“Alice,” dad called. I heard him pounding on the door, but he couldn’t get in. My head pounded against the floor again and again. The last thing I saw before the darkness pulled me under was that brown tree outside my window.

When I opened my eyes again I was laying in the bed. I could hear voices talking above me. “suicidal,” I heard.

“No,” Dad said loudly. “Something else is going on here.”

“Has she ever been checked for epilepsy?” another voice asked.

“Epilepsy?” That was mom, clinging to a medical explanation she could tell Father Abbot. She didn’t want him to be right.

I decided to pretend I was sleeping, really what was the point in trying to tell them what had happened. Maybe I was crazy.

“Alice.” My eyes flew open.

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This article has been read 505 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Jim McWhinnie 12/06/09
Powerful story.

I believe most of your dialog is strong enough that it can stand alone without the explanatory qualifiers.

Also, trim the adverbs.

I am looking forward to more fine writing from your hand.
Sunny Loomis 12/09/09
Very descriptive. Good job.
larry troxell 12/09/09
looking inside your window, i see a wonderful writer beginning to carve out beautiful stories.
Ruth Brown12/09/09
This was very intersting. You left us wanting to solve the mysterious malady.Good dialogue etc.
Karlene Jacobsen12/09/09
Very interesting, indeed. You captured my attention, and left me wanting more.
As stated above, some trimming of adverbs and tightening up, you'll be sailing forward in no time.
Sara Harricharan 12/09/09
Oooh, very interesting! I want to know more about it, great job! ^_^
Henry Clemmons12/09/09
Interesting to say the least. very good read. Kept me glued to the page.
Pamela Kliewer12/09/09
Verna Cole Mitchell 12/10/09
You have a strong sense of mystery here. Well done.
Verna Cole Mitchell 12/10/09
Your sad story is told very well by monologue. I think if you'd begin with "Pastor Jack," it would be clearer that the monologue is directed to someone.