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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Write in the HUMOR genre (04/12/07)

TITLE: Night of the Flying Possum
By Rhonda Clark


“Honey, honey, wake up. Elvis is barking.”

“Huh? What?” Fred asked as he stirred to life.

“Fred, wake up.” Claire demanded as she elbowed her husband. “The dog is outside raising cane and I just got the baby to sleep.”

Fred stumbled out of bed, and with every heavy step he took to the back door, he became angrier at that hound dog. He jerked open the patio door and yelled in a loud whisper, “Shut up, Elvis, You’re going to wake the whole neighborhood?”

The dog ignored him.

Since it was pitch dark, and the dog was black, spotting him in the yard was impossible. Fred flipped on the patio light. A dark shadow at the back of the yard bobbed around near the fence. Once again, he said, “Elvis, pipe down.”

“Why don’t you go out there and see what’s going on?”

Fred turned and saw Claire standing behind him with her arms crossed and one eyebrow cocked. He knew that look. It told him he wasn’t sleeping tonight until he found out what had Elvis all upset.

Fred trudged barefoot across the dew-covered grass. He expected to find one of old lady Matthews’ cats balancing the top of the chain link fence. They liked to tease Elvis. When he reached Elvis, he saw the dog’s fangs bared and the hackles on the back of his neck were raised. Elvis was ready for a fight.

“What’s wrong, boy?” Fred asked as he tried to soothe Elvis with his hand, but Elvis didn’t back down. Fred peered at the fence. This was more than a cat. He regretted not grabbing the flashlight.
Fred saw movement on the fence and heard an unnerving hissing sound. He focused on the movement and discovered it was a possum. Its tiny mouth bared sharp, pointy teeth. It was ready to take on Elvis even if he was twice its size. Suddenly, Fred realized he was directly between these two animals—and in his skivvies.

Fred looked back and forth between the animals. Thinking quickly, he grabbed Elvis’s collar and headed for the house. If he was going to be able to do anything, he had to separate the two animals. Plus, with the dog out of the picture, maybe the possum would leave. Fred grabbed Elvis’ collar and dragged him to the house. He opened the door and shoved him in. Before he could close the door, Elvis bolted past him and back to the fence. Once again, Fred trudged across the yard—barefoot and in his underwear—to retrieve the dog. This time, he didn’t let him go until the door latched closed.

“Is it gone?” Claire asked.

Fred looked at his wife. Breathing heavy from dragging a hound dog across the yard, he answered, “No. But it will wander off now that Elvis is in the house.”

“Oh, no. We can’t leave Elvis in the house all night. He’s dirty and he smells.”

Fred looked at his wife. All he wanted to do was go back to sleep, but Claire wasn’t going to let this go. Fred grabbed a key off the key minder and headed for the gun cabinet. He pulled out his pellet gun. He unlocked his ammunition case and discovered he had no pellets. For a moment, he considered his shotgun, but decided that would be too messy and too hard to explain to the police.

Feeling defeated, he thought of one last option. He threw on some clothes and shoes, grabbed a pair of work gloves and a shovel, and headed out the door.

Fred eased up behind the possum and WHACK! smacked it just hard enough to make it lose its grip and drop from the fence. He picked it up by the tail and spun it around over his head, aiming for the front yard.

He let go of the possum too soon and instead of it sailing over the back gate, it headed straight towards his neighbor’s bedroom window. THUNK!

For a moment, he stood there, frozen. After a few seconds, the neighbors’ bedroom light came on. Fred quickly turned and jogged to the house, hurrying inside.

“Is the possum gone?” Claire asked.

A silly smile filled Fred’s face. “I don’t think we’ll be hearing from that possum anytime soon.”

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This article has been read 942 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Catrina Bradley 04/19/07
Love the title of this piece - funny in itself! The story got funnier as it went along - my favorite part was when the possum hit the neighbors window. I would have run too!
Julie Arduini04/20/07
This is a humourous delight. A dog named Elvis? Wife that can't go back to sleep? Husband in skivvies? Possum hitting window? The THUNK noises were a nice touch. This story flowed well, had good dialogue, and was just funny!
joe hodson04/20/07
I laughed when the possum hit the neighbor's window! I could picture it perfectly!
Edy T Johnson 04/20/07
Oh, the poor possum! Why didn't he run away? (Well, that's for another story.)

This sounds so believable, I have to wonder if it is a memory or fiction. Regardless, it is a good story that is well designed to entertain. Your title is certainly a "grabber." I had to read the story!
Verna Cole Mitchell 04/21/07
You made the funniest pictures with words. A really humorous entry!
Joanne Sher 04/23/07
Great detail, with just the right amount of humor. Love your ending, and your title.
Jan Ackerson 04/23/07
Wonderful title and funny, funny story. Love the visual of hubby in his skivvies. (By the way, possums REALLY creep me out--they're like giant rats!)

Only one tiny correction: raising Cain.

I burst out laughing when the possum hit the window. One of the best images this week.
Sheri Gordon04/23/07
This is funny because it reminds me of a few nights at our house -- but without the neighbor's window. That really made this funny.

I did see a misplaced '?' at the end of paragraph 6.

Good writing -- so easy to read.
Val Clark04/24/07
A delightful read. Solid sence of place and the realtionship between the characters in real. yeggy
Joanne Malley04/24/07
It was so easy to place myself right in your story! Loved the line, "Pipe down, Elvis!", funny! The whole story had perfect tempo with the right dose of humor. Great job! Blessins, Jo
Jacquelyn Horne04/24/07
Such a fitting title. Loved this humor. Good writing.
Cheri Hardaway 04/25/07
I could just see this happening! Good job! Blessings, Cheri
Ed VanDeMark04/26/07
Fred is a patient man...he deserves an award...especially after being informed that Elvis was dirty. In many house holds Claire would have resembled the flying nun long before the critter did. Thanks for telling us about this kind man.