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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Angry (08/02/07)

TITLE: For Better for Worse
By c clemons


“I am going to smash that bell!” Janice screamed.

The day had been going from bad to worse. Janice had gotten up this morning with a bad headache. She knew the lack of sleep was the culprit. All the tossing and turning, trying to get comfortable on her cot was leaving her sleep deprived.

“Lord, Why me?” she asked looking upwards.

The question was put to the ceiling daily. At least that is as far as Janice felt her queries went. Life was so unfair. Here she was at 23, newly married in a brand new home and with an incredible new job. Everything should be perfect, but it was not so. After her storybook wedding with all the bells and whistles, doves flying, horse draw carriage etc. Janice had always had a flair for the dramatic; everything had come to a crushing halt.

The honeymoon which she had painstaking planned every detailed did not happen. Bradley, her husband who was fifteen years her senior decided to have a stroke on their honeymoon, in the South of France of all places. After the initial shock, and doing what had to be done to get Bradley back home, she found herself thrust into the role of provider and nursemaid. At first her main concern was getting Brad well so that they could get back to the life that she had envision for herself. But the process was slow and for her arduous. He had paralysis on one side and it was hard for him to speak, hence the bell when he needed something.

A good idea three months ago, but now every time Janice heard that little tinkle it made her angry. Angry she never got to experience the honeymoon phase that all newlyweds experience. She was angry that now she had to make major decisions regarding the household that she had no experience in. Bradley had married a true prima donna and she was proud of being “daddy’s little girl.” Her father had always taken care of everything, which might be part of the reason she fell in love with Brad. He had a take charge personality and he promised her she would never want for anything. She was trying to show everyone that she could take care of her husband and keep it all together. Fortunately her new job had given her a leave of absence but Janice was secretly upset that she was not able to start her dream job of being a buyer for one of biggest department stores in New York.

The bell rang again. “Coming honey” she yelled. She tried not to show how she was feeling around Bradley.

“Good Morning” Janice tried to sound cheery as she entered the room.

Bradley scribbled the word “morning” on the little chalkboard that he used to communicate with when he found it difficult to form words, especially in the mornings.

He wrote, “You look ticked.”

“No I’m not, just a bad headache today, but I’ll be fine. How are you feeling today?”

“You’re not sleeping well.” Bradley wrote. “I want to tell you something, please come closer.”

Janice came over to the bed and leaned down close to Bradley. “What is it Brad?”

Bradley croaked out two words that somehow made Janice’s day better and she felt a little less angry by her lot in life, it was something that she had longed to hear. He said “thank you.”

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Member Comments
Member Date
RuthAnn Cornelson08/15/07
Good story. I really felt for this poor girl, but it was great how you showed that her anger was toward the situation and that bell, not towards him. The ending was great. Amazing how big a difference those particular 2 words can make. Thank you for writing this.
Dee Yoder 08/16/07
This is a beautiful story, Clarissa! I love your characters and the reason for the MC's anger. The ending is lovely, too. Glad I found you!
Joanne Sher 08/17/07
Congratulations, Clarissa. Your entry has placed 8th in Level 2. The Lists for the Top 15 in each Level and the Top 40 overall are available in the Weekly Results and Highest Rankings forum of our Faithwriters Message Boards.