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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "It's No Use Crying over Spilt Milk" (without using the actual phrase or literal exampl (02/07/08)

TITLE: The Apology
By Maxx .
02/13/08


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Chill from the doorknob penetrated my fingers and palm, amplifying the sullen weight that already pressed upon me. Air escaped my lungs between flaccid lips, a remorseful prayer for guidance.

I pushed the door, leaden feet stumbling forward.

Our hand-stitched bedspread lay disheveled across the rutted mattress, littered with tissues crumpled and twisted. My wife’s lavender pillowcase condemned me through tear-sodden lace.

I hesitated.

Heidi’s delicate shoulders bowed against drawn knees; her auburn hair tangled and mussed.

I had been the cause of this.

“Look,” I swallowed, the motion tearing my constricted throat, “I didn’t mean …” My voice trailed away, lost among boulders of shame.

She rocked to the uneven rhythm of sequestered agony; her moist gaze buried, withdrawn.

I stepped near, trembling. “It wasn’t like I …” But the words flickered and died, an insufficient candle in a midnight gale.

She blinked, eyes darting to the floor.

I sat on the bed next to her unyielding figure. “Honey,” the utterance struggled past a swelling anguish in my chest, “I …” My cheeks were damp. “I’m sorry.”

Her breath shuddered, sniffling. She placed a hand on my arm.

The warmth was healing.

She laid her head on my shoulder.


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This article has been read 916 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lynda Schultz 02/14/08
Proof that 750 words is not always necessary to get a point across—and to do it well. Good work.
Sally Hanan02/15/08
Very nicely done. This would be a great start to a book.
Verna Cole Mitchell 02/15/08
Very well done and in a sparse number of words. The reader's task to read between the lines made it as interesting as what was written.
Peter Stone02/15/08
So few words, yet so much emotion and content, and so true to life. An apology achieves so much more than a myriad of excuses. Well done.
Patty Wysong02/17/08
Short with a powerful punch. Very well done!
Sharlyn Guthrie02/19/08
Yes, it works! I think we've all been there, and the lack of detail (names, features, specific offence, etc.) makes this extremely relatable.
LauraLee Shaw02/19/08
simply beautiful. Moving. Anointed.
Debbie Wistrom02/19/08
More MORE! Thanks for showing us that breivity can work, but still, more please.
Dee Yoder 02/19/08
Simple, rich, beautiful.
Jan Ackerson 02/20/08
Hey there, Maxx--not only do I think this story is excellent, I also featured it on my "Jan's Master Class" thread as an example of effective use of alliteration in prose. Now I'm curious...was it intentional?
Leigh MacKelvey02/21/08
Okay, Maxx, who are you ...really? I know you have to be some famous author using a penn name on FW! Your writing is so mature and it should win 1rst place every time!