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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Police (10/12/06)

TITLE: Pint-Size Patrolman
By Betty Castleberry


The traffic was heavy and Sherry was already late for work. It didn’t help that an SUV cut her off at her exit. “Idiot!”

No sooner had the words left her mouth, than a figure six inches tall appeared on her shoulder.

It startled Sherry, and she clenched her hands around the wheel even tighter. She glanced back at the tiny being. “I wish you would stop just popping in like that! You scared the daylights out of me.”

The little being looked her square in the eye. “Ya need to cool off. You haven’t even got to work yet, and you’re already steamin’. You’re gonna blow like Granny’s tea kettle if ya don’t cool down. Watch what you’re callin’ people too, will ya?”

Sherry stared straight ahead at the traffic. “You’re right, as usual, even though I hate to admit it. What’s with the cop uniform anyway? Yesterday you looked like my pastor.”

“Boss said whatever it takes.”

“Well at least drop the phony Irish accent, okay?”

“Will do.”

Sherry reached down and turned the radio on. A blast of rap music hit her in the face.

“Eh, eh, eh,” her shoulder buddy said, waggling his finger at her. “That song’s got a lot of bad language in it.”

“I was going to change the station. Just give me a second.”

Sherry flipped the radio off and pulled up in front of her office building. “Are you going to sit on my shoulder all day?”

“I might. We’ll see how the day goes. Only you can see me anyway.”

“Just try to stay out of my way while I’m working okay?” I have a really important report to finish.”

Sherry stopped in the break room to grab a cup of coffee before going to her office. Rebecca was there, helping herself to a doughnut. “Hi Sherry. Love that skirt.”

“Thanks. I just bought it.”

“Hey, did you hear about Ellen?”

Sherry dropped a sugar cube into her cup. “No.”

“She’s on involuntary leave from work. She called in sick again, but somebody saw her out having lunch. Sitting with John, no less.”

Sherry felt a solid yank on her earlobe. “I’ve got a lot of work to do today, Rebecca. Catch you later.”

Rebecca looked disappointed. “Okay, just thought you might be interested in what was going on around here.”

Sherry just smiled and walked down the hall to her office, closing the door behind her. “You didn’t have to yank so hard. I know you’re there.”

The tiny figure on her shoulder folded his arms and raised his eyebrows. “Well, you took your time leaving the break room. You know Rebecca was trying to get you to gossip with her.”

“Yes, but I didn’t, did I?’

“Thanks to me.”

“Whatever. I’m going to start on this report now. Please be quiet so I can concentrate.”

“I’ll just disappear for a little while.”

“Excellent idea, shrimp.”

Sherry had barely started on the report when the secretary buzzed her. “Sherry, Mr. Billings is calling a staff meeting in half an hour. I’m to tell everyone attendance is mandatory, and no excuses.”

“Great. Do you know what it’s about? I’m really swamped here.”

“Sure don’t, but you better be there. He sounded serious.”

“All right,” she sighed.

She looked at the formidable mountain of work on her desk. She’d be at work till midnight. Frustration started to bubble up from somewhere down in her gut. It threatened to rise up and spew out as angry words. She wadded up a piece of scrap paper and threw it across the room.

A shrill whistle sounded right next to Sherry’s ear. The little being reappeared. “Now did that solve anything?”

“Knock off the whistle. You’re not really a policeman, you know. Besides, you really annoy me.”

“You’re right, I’m not a cop, but I’m whatever you need, whenever you need it. My job is to keep you in line. You humans can be awfully weak, you know.”

“Does everybody have one of you to contend with?”

“Actually, they do. Not everybody can see us, like you can, though. Sometimes, we are just a feeling, a hunch, or an instinct. The Boss wants us to protect our humans. Not just from evil and dangers, but from themselves, too.”

Sherry grinned. “I know your boss. He’s awesome. Come with me. I’ve got a boring staff meeting to attend, and I just might need some policing."

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This article has been read 1075 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Kaylee Blake 10/19/06
Cute. Makes me wish I had a "Pint-Sized Patrolman" sitting on my shoulder all day telling me what to do, annoying me, bossing me around...OK, well, maybe not. ;) Loved the dialogue between the little dude and SHerry. It made it seem very realistic.
Jan Ackerson 10/19/06
Joanne Sher 10/20/06
Oh, did I EVER adore this! SUPER job with dialogue, characterization and storyline. SO creative! I have a feeling this is going to be a favorite of mine - I'm gonna save this one to read over and over!!
Karen Chatham10/20/06
I have a little guy too. He sounds more like a Texas Sheriff though. This was really good. Keep writing.
Catrina Bradley 10/23/06
Great story, great writing! (I tell my own little guy to "shut up" way too much. :) )
william price10/23/06
A very enjoyable read, kool. I liked the stories pace, and that you let the reader define who the "lil" guy is. God bless.
Donna Haug10/24/06
Loved it. And your title was so appropriate!
dub W10/25/06
Loved your dialogue work, the conversations moved well. Cute way of handling the subject.
Sara Harricharan 10/25/06
Creative writing! This is definitely a favorite! I really enjoyed reading it, and you did an excellent job of bringing the 'pint-sized patrolman' to life. I especially liked the dialouge between the two of them!
Donna Powers 10/25/06
This was really adorable and I enjoyed it very much! Thanks so much for sharing this!
Cassie Memmer10/26/06
This is great! Wonderful dialogue and a great take on the topic. (Reminds me of my Conscience police piece). Your writing just flows and is so lighthearted and enjoyable. I'm glad I had opportunity to read this fantastic entry!
Joanne Sher 03/29/07
I told ya before, and I'll tell you again - I LOVE LOVE LOVE this one! I wrote "way back when" that I'd come back to this often - and I just wanted you to know that I was absolutely OVERJOYED to be pointed here again.
Patty Wysong03/29/07
How fun! :-) I have a bird that sits on my shoulder and is about as much fun as that patrolman is!! *groan* I love your stories! Thanks for sharing them! :-)
Julie Arduini03/29/07
This is creativity at its best. What a fun read that I know I'll remember long after I shut down the computer for the day! Excellent!!!!
Tabiatha Tallent03/30/07
Great story. I giggled all the way through.
Sherry Castelluccio 06/24/08
Betty, I loved your main character in this one :D
What a fun story! Now if I listened to my little police man as often as this Sherry did I might have less "issues" to work on. This was so delightful to read. Thank you.
Loren T. Lowery06/25/08
Loved it and it reminds me of an all time favorite Bible verse, Isaiah 30:21 “And you will hear a voice behind you whispering in your ear: ‘No, this is the way, walk here.’”
Joanne Sher 06/25/08
hehehehe This MAY be my all-time favorite of yours, Betts. What a fun read, with an excellent message to boot (thanks for not making me "hunt it down.").
Gerald Shuler 06/25/08
Any time Joanne Sher likes something as much as she does this one.... wow.

Of course, I agree.
Catrina Bradley 06/25/08
Loved it all over again!!! Thanks for the repeat. :)