Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: The Pen is Mightier than the Sword (04/08/10)
TITLE: The Great Pen Caper
By Sherry Curtsinger
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“Certificates? Check. Attendance? Check. Calligraphy pen? Check. Inks? Check. Okay, I am ready to begin.” I gently pull my chair out and begin to ease into my seat. The kitchen explodes with activity. Suddenly, all empty kitchen chairs are represented by someone with a deep interest in my Bible school certificates. My husband, who lives to agitate his family, is sitting to my right. My teenage son, who lives to agitate his dad, is sitting to my left. I am agitated!
“Hmm hmm,” I clear my throat. They did not pick up my signal. “Okay guys, you know what, you all are going to have to find something else to do; in another room. I cannot finish these with anyone at the table, so please just go on.” As my husband was mocking me he picked up my pen. “Well, would you looka there. This is a spiffy pen.” Looking at my son with one eyebrow cocked upward, and the corners of his mouth turned down. He said sarcastically, “Want it?” With that my son grabbed the writing end of the pen.
I said nothing. Though my frustration grew crushingly I only stared at them. I crossed my arms, sat motionless, without emotion, fixed my gaze, and stared them down. They teasingly continued to play tug of war with my thirty dollar calligraphy pen. If they bent the razor sharp tip it would no longer create the fine lines I had grown accustomed to. Everyone at the table was laughing. I continued to sit in complete silence. Just as I had put both hands on the table to push myself back to take my leave, they both released the pen simultaneously. The pen seemed to be moving in slow motion, but not slow enough for me to react.
There was a hush come over the room. Everyone’s mouths were open with their hands covering them. I felt blood trickling down my face and dripping first to the table then my lap. My husband reached over, plucked the pen from between my eyes, positioned it in front of me, and said, “I’m finished.” My son moved at the speed of a hunted animal to escape any immediate backlash. As quickly as the kitchen had filled - it emptied. I tended to my wound; between one fourth to one half inch long down to the bone.
“Certificates? Check. Attendance? Check. Calligraphy pen? Check. Inks? Check. I feel my husband’s presence behind me, “You alright?” I do not look up from the task at hand, “I will be.” He gently squeezes my shoulders and kisses me on top of my head, “Good.” He walks to my right and pulls out the chair, sits quietly for a short while, pulls a pencil from above his ear, “On guard?"
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