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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Ohhh…. (02/04/10)

TITLE: The Dirty Note
By Sharon Eastman


The Dirty Note

Jenna stared out the kitchen window at the snow-dusted trees and waited patiently for Katlyn to come home from school. She prepared Katlyn’s favorite after school snack, Oreo cookies and a glass of milk. It was Katlyn’s habit to separate the chocolate cookies and lick the creamy center like she did all the thirteen years of her life. Jenna couldn’t believe that Katlyn was thirteen and in her first year of middle school. She marveled at how fast time flew. Katlyn was her baby, her forever child.

As 3:30 drew near, Jenna pondered the success Katlyn had achieved as a student and as a citizen of school. She had all A’s and excelled in English and history. She was a member of the student council, the Madrigal chorus and had attained the honor of best citizen of her elementary school’s graduating class.

The slam of the back door awakened Jenna from her reverie. Katlyn marched in stomping her feet and crying. She didn’t touch her snack.

“What’s the matter, Katlyn? Why are you so upset?” Jenna asked.

Katlyn wiped her tears on her sweater and said, “I’ve got a detention. I have to stay after school for one hour tomorrow.”

“Oh, no, what happened? That’s not like you,” Jenna replied. She wrapped her arms around her daughter and stroked her chestnut brown hair.

“Well, Justin and Aiden were passing notes. They happened to pass one to me to give to Camden, and Miss Sinclair caught me with it. Then she read it and got really mad.”

“What did the note say,” Jenna asked.

“I’m embarrassed to say.”

“Come on, Katlyn, you can tell me anything. I’m your mom.”

“All right. It had a drawing of Miss Sinclair naked and some swear words,” Katlyn blushed.

“Oh, no! Did those boys get a detention, too?”

“Yes. Miss Sinclair gave all of us one. Now I have to sit with those brats for one whole hour in study hall after school.”

“Are you sure you didn’t have anything to do with the dirty note because I’m going to talk to your teacher. I don’t want anything to ruin your reputation as a good citizen and student.”

“Of course not, Mom,” Katlyn declared.

“Okay. Tomorrow I’ll meet you and Miss Sinclair in study hall, and I’ll talk to her. This trouble is totally out of character for you . . . and our family,” she paused. “Now go wash your face and rest.

“Thanks, Mom. I knew you’d understand.”

The next morning when Katlyn went school Jenna gave her a kiss good bye. Katlyn was flushed with embarrassment, but Jenna had assured her that everything would be okay. As she donned her best red sweater and fluffed her ebony hair, Jenna remembered those awkward days of middle school – finding friends, raging hormones, and first feelings for boys. She could identify with Katlyn and her troubles. She knew that God would lead them through this difficult time, and she trusted him for it.

Jenna arrived at the school at precisely 3:00 p.m. and caught Katlyn in the hall while she was racing to study hall for her detention. “Hi, Honey, are you okay?”

“Yes, I’m fine, just a little ashamed of all this.”

“Well, let’s find Miss Sinclair and talk to her.”

“She’s in study hall. She’s the attendant today.” Together they walked to study hall, and there, at the desk, Jenna saw one of God’s most beautiful feminine creations. No wonder the boys were enthralled with Miss Sinclair. She was perfectly proportioned with long, blonde hair, and sapphire eyes. Her cherry lips looked like Cupid had kissed them.

Jenna approached her at the desk. “Miss Sinclair,” she said. “I would like to talk to you about Katlyn and her detention.”

“Of course,” Miss Sinclair replied. “Katlyn’s one of my best students. I hated to punish her. I knew that the note was none of her doing. But, she was involved in the act by reading the note. I had to give her a detention along with the boys.”

“I understand,” said Jenna. “All this was because she was associated with ‘bad’ boys. Next time, Katlyn, be more careful of your friends.”

“They really aren’t my friends; I just sit by them. And they’re a part of the popular crowd,” said Katlyn.

“Keep your eyes on your studies, and keep company with godly kids,” advised Jenna.

“Okay, I’ll try,” and Katlyn served her detention.

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This article has been read 412 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Mildred Sheldon02/11/10
Thank you for your story. The lesson it taught was very true. Bad company corrupts and can cause others to fall into its trap. The oh moments of life are hurtful but also teaching experiences. Keep writing and God bless.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/11/10
A good lesson for all, no matter the age. When you described Katlyn as a "forever child" I thought she might have been mentally challenged.
Other than accidentally leaving a word or two out, you did a great job. I could empathize with mother, daughter and teacher.
Thank you for sharing.
Judy Wood02/11/10
Middle school is difficult and you did a good job of portraying the problems of teens. Also, thought of the scripture - bad company corrupts good morals. Good lesson here.
Jan Ackerson 02/17/10
Middle school is such a difficult time!

Some of your dialog seemed a bit stiff--if you're interested, stop by the forums for my lesson in writing natural dialog. Look for "Jan's Writing Basics".

Glad you gave this such a positive ending.