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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Vision (08/03/06)

TITLE: A Sign of Peace
By Jesus Puppy


Jason walked nearly blind as dense smoke rolled across the city, trees and buildings set fire in the latest attack. The sun's meager light cast dim shadows around him like demons haunting the living world. Choked with every breath, he stumbled along and prayed for a landmark in the haze. Any sign he that he close to safety and needed rest.

Each sound magnified by fear as sirens in the distance or the occasional car as it drove by was all he found of life in the surroundings of his vision. Only minutes before, crowds of people passed in the streets, until the bombs began to fall and chaos broke loose. Now; the near silence was frightening.

Slowly, a breeze stirred the air as the wind picked up and blew the smoke away behind him. Jason knelt at the back of boarded-up building, as he strained to hear if anyone followed, he said a short prayer for thanks in getting him this far.

Used to such long days of running, he was still thankful for the brief rest he gained, wherever he found it. A dog barked off to his right and he jumped at imagined threats. Again he ran on in hope of safety. His steps quickened as the air cleared for a few moments, nearly at a run as he crossed a small park he remembered from before, then down the alleyway on the North side.

Somewhere in the alleys ahead was a safehouse, if he reached the building by nightfall. Jason had made his way as secret as possible and spoke to no one but those he met in the past -- others like himself who tried to understand God's will, though now mainly on the run or in hiding.

Precious years had slipped passed in a world gone mad, where laws were set up not for man's safety, but to gain power for the wealthy and condemn the weak. The few people who remained that sought peace -- cast out and hunted as animals for wanting a Godly life.

Until the disappearance of all he knew as Christians, even his own wife, Jason had doubted the words of the ministers, not realizing the truth of the Lord's salvation. After the loss of friends and loved one, living day-to-day in a shadowed existence, now he found his strength in God, and those who followed Him.

Personal nightmares haunted his sleep with visions of the end time, seen all too real in his waking hours. Dreams of a battle that raged on the Earth, not to win, but to destroy one another. Yet in the last glorious moments, his one true hope -- the mighty return of the Lord and the coming of His great army, angels and martyred saints of long ago.

People from all walks of life, standing witness to the awesome power of the Lord in His final triumph over evil. Those blessed to live out the trial, overcoming the grief of the world's hatred, would shine in the new light of God's glory, living on in eternal peace with the Lord of all creation. This was his only dream, both the nightmare of death, and the hope of unending joy in the arms of a loving King.

Years had passed since Jason truly felt safe, every face he saw possibly a hunter that sought to cast him in chains, for nothing more than what he held in his heart. As he neared the back of the old shop, he prayed he might find rest at last, if just for a night. A weathered stain in the wood panels of the door was a mark many would overlook, but those who wanted freedom from the world's chaos saw the cross for the truth it was. A sign of peace.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 08/10/06
Great ending, and this was an effective way to tell this story; we're in Jason's head all along, and you did a good job of "showing, not telling." There were a few run-ons, and a few fragments, but all in all, a captivating story.
Dolores Stohler08/10/06
I liked your story but some of its impact was lost through failure to do a careful edit on its completion. Many writers think this unimportant but I edit my work 4 or 5 times before submitting because I know that even a misspelled word can cause my editors to stop reading & toss my work in the E file.
Sue Dent08/11/06
Captivating story! Now make sure and let someone else read over it the next time before you submit so it can be the Masterpiece it screams to be!!! Trust me, I know!!! Someone with a fresh eye can make all the difference. Yet even without further edit, it speaks of someone quite capable of writing a grand story!
Jesus Puppy 08/11/06
Bad entry, should have stuck with Poetry. Or learn to copy and paste right..
Sue Dent08/11/06
That a way to tell 'em Pup!!!