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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Shopping (03/01/07)

TITLE: The Shopper
By David Story


The car cruised quietly down the street…slowing from twenty…to ten…to five miles per hour…


Kathy closed the door to her one-room apartment and started down the stairs that led to the front of the building project where she lived. If she walked fast enough, and encountered no problems along the way, she’d make it to work on time.


The car stopped at a traffic light, and immediately a woman in a tight blouse and short skirt walked over. She leaned her head into the side window.

“You lookin’ for a partner tonight, baby?”

The man in the car never spoke. Instead he looked straight ahead.

“You deaf or somethin’?”

This time the man turned his head and faced the woman. “No, I hear you. Just not interested is all.”

The woman laughed. “What’s the problem? You lookin’ for someone else, maybe someone a little younger?”

The man straightened his hat before answering. “Yeah. I guess you could say that.”

The woman leaned in closer. “Suit yourself, Mister. Go ahead and shop around, but I gotta tell ya, ain’t nobody like me.”

The man nodded his head as the light turned green. He slowly began to drive away, and the woman jumped back from the car, curses spewing from her mouth.

The car continued down the street…


Kathy couldn’t believe how quiet it was. A young boy suddenly ran past her and Kathy almost screamed. He was out of sight before her nerves returned to normal.

Yeah right, normal. How can anyone’s nerves be normal living like this? Living in a filthy run-down apartment…no money…barely making enough to get by…

She came upon one of the many girls who ‘worked’ the streets in this area. She veered to the right so as not to invade the girl’s space, her territory. As she kept walking she noticed a car pull up to the corner…

Yeah, that’s what I should do. Maybe that’s my way out. The money those girls make in one night…more than I make in a week!

The car pulled away from the sidewalk. Impulse took over, and Kathy stepped to the curb.

She watched as the car slowed down and made its way over.


Max held back a tear as his eyes found her. The Master’s love for this young child suddenly overcame him and it was more than he could bear.

Father – that all of these would be rescued tonight.

Shaking off the feeling of hopelessness, concentrating instead on the sovereignty of the Master, Max continued with his mission…


Kathy nervously leaned into to the car. “You…” she cleared her throat, “…looking for a friend?”

Max shook his head. “As a matter of fact, I think you’re the one looking for a friend, Kathy.”

Kathy stepped back from the car. “Hey! How do you know my name?”

Max quickly got out of the car. He was fast in his movements…lightening fast, and before Kathy knew what had happened, Max was standing next to her, his arm around her shoulder.

At first Kathy wanted to cry out…but the warmth of Max’s touch, and the compassion in his eyes, convinced her this man could be trusted.

As these revelations filled her mind and soul, she began to smile. Suddenly a feeling of love overcame her like she had never felt before. She looked up at Max…he smiled at her, and as the smile continued to grow, a great display of white and bright surrounded them. Through the brightness she heard a still, small voice coming from where Max was standing…

He loves you, Kathy. He loves you…

And with the last He loves you…Max was gone.

Kathy looked at her surroundings.

Same street. Same corner.

No car.

No Max.

She lifted both of her hands to her face and rubbed her eyes. When her hands came down to her side, she saw an object between her legs on the sidewalk. She picked it up and looked at the solid black cover. She flipped it open to the first page and noticed some handwriting…

To Kathy,
- from Max.

Looking around one more time to make sure no one was there, she slipped the New Testament into her purse.

Kathy breathed a heavy sigh, and continued on her way to work…

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This article has been read 949 times
Member Comments
Member Date
julie wood03/08/07
This story haunted me. The characters came alive for me with their realistic dialogue and vividly contrasting personalities and viewpoints--though I found so many viewpoints in such a short story a bit confusing at first.

Am assuming Max is an angel--a wonderful twist that I was not expecting! He was very believably portrayed and I could feel with both him and with Kathy. Great job!

Jacquelyn Horne03/12/07
How many times,as a young woman, God has intervened for me when I got myself into areas of temptation! Good story. Well written.
Jan Ackerson 03/12/07
Gritty and realistic.
Joanne Sher 03/13/07
Oooh - a Max story! So compelling and real. Unique take on the topic, done wonderfully!
Sara Harricharan 03/13/07
This is beautiful! There is just something about the way you crafted both characters that leaves a strangely familiar feeling once you've read it. I liked the twist at the end and the conflict in Kathy. Great work! ^_^
Leigh MacKelvey03/13/07
OOh, we kinda thought along the same track this time! Yours is much better, though.
I liked the white light surrounding them, it was such a nice touch and really helped the reader to picture Max as an angel or as a messenger directly from the Lord. Great read!
Bonnie Way03/13/07
Great story! I liked the back and forth, showing where both characters were at the same time... also the twist at the end with Max's disappearance. Very well done.