Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Flowers (10/03/05)
TITLE: The Roses of Angel Mountain
By Angela Saunders
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Brenda was young. At forty-six, she was in critical condition from pancreatic cancer. Her body had been through one procedure after another until the physicians had decided that nothing more could be done. Family had watched her body become a frail ghost of what it had once been. Her spirit, however, remained as strong and as vibrant as the rose that stood on the sill before her this morning. Through her pain she smiled.
Eleven days earlier, the doctor's had released Brenda into the care of her family. For the first time in nine months, she was wheeled out of the hospital and flown to the home she had never seen but had always dreamed of. Her bed was laid in front of the cottage window to see the beauty of the sun rising over the mountains to greet her. On these mornings, deer greeted her at the window, curious about the newcomer into the cabin. Wild turkey and birds of every kind gathered in the yard within her view. A collector of Angels, her home was on the final addition to her collection. Angel Mountain, bought for her in hopes that she would regain enough strength to enjoy it. For eleven days, Brenda enjoyed this beauty with every strained breath. For eleven days, her smile brightened the room. With each passing day, however, it glowed a little less. Each day, one rose from the bouquet bowed its head as though mourning her passing strength.
On the bright morning of the twelfth day, things were still. Wildlife seemed to dissipate into the trees beyond the house. The only living creature outside the house was a serpent seen crawling over the stones. Family began gathering around as Brenda continued to smile through her pain.
"Read to me." a quiet, forced voice came out of her mouth.
Her sister picked up Brenda's Bible, worn and ragged from days spent pouring over its words. Letting it fall open, she began reading passages Brenda herself had highlighted from Psalms 31. "My life is consumed by anguish and my years by groaning. My strength fails because of my affliction, and my bones grow weak." "But I trust in you oh Lord, I say You are my God."
At that very second, Brenda looked up toward the window, and sighed her last. Surrounding family looked up where Brenda had glanced with her dying breath. The last of the roses had begun to fold its petals downward. Brenda was home.
Prologue: This is the true summative testimony on the events surrounding the death of my Aunt last summer. Proof ever still that God demonstrates his love and mercy through even the toughest of times. He is always there!!!
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