Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Bloom (11/22/12)
TITLE: The Rose Fight
By Ken Ebright
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"Dave, my roses didn't bloom this year due to the drought. I had to use carnations instead."
"Bill, that's not acceptable. The family wanted red roses. Can you call around?"
Bill shook his head. "You don't understand. Because of the drought, there are other people that are having the same problems I've been having. Roses are hard to find, but there may be some around town. I didn't have time; I knew you needed them quickly, so I didn't want to disappoint you."
Dave's smile went away. "I have owned this funeral home for 20 years. You've been my only flower vendor. I need an arrangement with red roses. You’ve have always worked through these type of problems before. I want you to succeed in your business. It seems as though you don't care."
"Dave, I do care. We've been friends for years. We go to church together. I can't believe you're saying this."
Dave sprayed spit as he got near Bill's face. "I'm saying this in your best interest. You don't care. I know you can do better than this."
"I'll do what I can." Bill stomped away and banged the back door. He vaulted into the driver's seat, slammed the door, and squealed the tires as he left.
Two hours later, Bill backed his truck up to the garage door and walked over to a side door. His hands shook as he rang the doorbell.
Dave rolled his eyes as he answered the door. "You've got those red roses; don't you?"
Bill glowed as he opened the back of his truck. "Yes, I do."
Dave‘s face tightened up. "Well, it's about time."
Bill gently lifted the floral arrangement from his truck. "I found someone across town. It wasn't easy, but I found some. Like I said before, my roses died this year because of the drought. The grower I purchased them from was able to water his rose bushes. I don't have that luxury. I have been in this business for 20 years, and never had a problem like this before."
Dave took the flowers from Bill. "This arrangement is for a lady who died. The husband told me that red roses were her favorite. The man had been married to his wife for 50 years. This would have been the final blow."
"Dave, do you remember what Pastor says every Sunday? Your grave flowers could‘ve bloomed today. That statement has always made me take my job seriously. We're dealing with death every day. We don't know when we’ll take our last breath. I value our friendship. If my grave flowers bloom today I don't want to go to the grave knowing you thought I didn‘t care."
"Bill, I am sorry; I know you were trying. I shouldn't have flown off of the handle like I did."
Bill handed Dave a clipboard. "Please sign on the bottom line. Dave, it was so last minute. I didn't know what else to do. I thought carnations were better than no flowers at all. I'm glad this flower thing didn‘t get in the way of our friendship."
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