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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Achoo (04/11/13)

TITLE: The Allergies
By Pauline Brakebill
04/16/13


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April 11, 2013
Faithwriters Challenage
Topic: Achoo
Title: The allergies
Sorting out in his mind, all the things which had transpired that evening, Alex decided that he should get a good night’s sleep. Tomorrow will be Sunday and he felt he needed to talk to God.
While Alex was not a very religious person, he did believe in a higher power. If he felt he was going to be in danger, he desired God to be on his side. So Alex wanted God to be aware of this danger and give him a hand.
The next morning, Alex pulled himself out of bed, did a few exercises to get his blood flowing, grabbed the phonebook and found the address of the local Christian church.
Alex took his shower and got dressed. He wondered if the ‘Montreal Underworld’ was going to watch him go to church. Alex smiled to himself and thought of different ways to throw a spy for a loop.
Alex hailed a cab and told the driver to take him to the First Christian Church. Upon arrival, he saw a large crowd filing into the main building. Stretching his neck up and out, Alex was sure he saw someone he recognized. Weaving his way through the mass of people, Alex finally reached the side of a beautiful lady. Why it was none other than Alisa, the girl who sat next to him on the plane.
“What are you doing here”? They both laughingly exclaimed at the same time. Alex was really glad to see Alisa. Her’s was a friendly face in an unfriendly environment. She had a fragrance about her that reminded Alex of another time. He kept trying to remember when.
Then it suddenly came to him, as they chatted about their life since the airplane. It was the note that was in his shaving kit! Alisa and the note had the same fragrance! “ I wonder if she could have possibly put that note in my shaving kit? No, that’s not possible, she’s a counselor at that teen camp,” thought Alex. “ I must be imagining things. This assignment is getting to me . Now I’m seeing problems where there are none.”
Upon entering the church, the two friends shook hands with the pastor. Suddenly, a strange looking young man, who wore a turban over his head, ran up to them and grabbed Alisa’s purse. Then he brandished a switch blade at Alex, telling him to stay away from Alisa.
The two were so startled, that they could only stare at one another, speechless. Then Alisa screamed and yelled ,” He stole my purse, catch him, Alex! Alex suffered from Asthma and when he got upset he would start sneezing. “Achoo, achoo, achoo. There it comes, now I will sneeze the rest of the afternoon. I’m certainly glad I brought a handkerchief with me,” sniffled Alex. There was that fragrance again. The handkerchief had been stuffed next to the note in his pocket. While Alex was sneezing, the thief got away.
Alex just had to ask Alisa about the note. “What if she laughs at me, or worse becomes angry . Then I might never see her again,” thought Alex. “We were just getting to know one another. It has to be a coincidence. There I go again, imagining things that aren’t real.

Alex and Alisa sat in the balcony of the large church and listened to the great music. Alex had never been what you might call a ‘deeply spiritual ’ person, but he knew there must be a higher power watching over the people and seeing that the world ran properly. To have what you would call a close relationship with God , seemed unrealistic. But he said to himself that he would listen and try to understand.
As the pastor stood up to deliver the message, Alex looked over at Alisa and noticed some tears falling on her cheeks.”What’s wrong? Why are you crying? Alex queried .” “I’m sad because I like you and we might not see one another again. There is too much going on that will keep us apart.”
“Achoo, achoo, achoo. There go my allergies giving me trouble again,” Alex felt the tension growing in his lungs. “You must tell me why we won’t see each other again,”
“When we get out of church, I’ll try to tell you why I can’t see you anymore.”…………..


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This article has been read 153 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Judith Gayle Smith04/19/13
You ARE putting together a book! Good for you! This part was gripping, and I look very much forward to the rest of your story. Great idea, incorporating the Challenge - methinks I have an idea where you will go with "click". Don't prove me wrong . . .
Joanne Sher 04/22/13
Definitely intrigued by what is going on here. Enjoyed the read!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 04/22/13
You have a delightful way of telling stories. I like how you involved all of the senses and pulled the reader right into your story.

I think you tried to fit too much of a story in such a short venue. There is so much that I still want to know about. Perhaps if you took some of the unnecessary information out like his showering,etc. I almost think you could have started with something like: Alex stretched his neck, his eyes darting through the crowd while his heartbeat echoed in his ears.
Something like that would show that he is nervous and that some conflict is about to begin. In this age of instant gratification, it us vital to grab the reader's attention and introduce the conflict right away.

I did like your characters and could feel the underlying tension. You do have a grasp of the writer's dilemma of show don't tell, which can be extremely difficult. The ending would be a perfect ending of a chapter. It makes the reader want answers to the many questions. That is a good sign that the reader wants to read more.

I sense this might be one of your first challenges, and if so you have a great start! You may want to read stories in this level and leave comments. It doesn't matter if one is new to writing, for it is the reader you must impress, not other writers. Finding out what works or doesn't work for you in other stories is a great way to adapt those things in your own writing. I'd encourage you to read a few stories in other levels as well.

You have a nice grasp of writing on topic. The reader knows the sneezing fits and the mysterious perfume are vital parts of this story. If you are looking for more feedback, you may want pt to go to the message boards and leave a link to your story. You do have to wait until the judging is complete and I know it is now so here's the link you can copy and paste into the URL line:
http://www.faithwriters.com/Boards/phpBB2/viewforum.php?f=56

Overall, I think you did a nice job. Suspense is one of my favorite genres and you definitely have a knack for that. I hope this will blossom into perhaps a novel or a longer story. I look forward to reading more of your work. Good job.:-)