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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Charade (08/14/08)

TITLE: Just a Game
By Rachel Burkum


“So why are we going here?”

“How many times do I have to tell you? The boss wants us to keep an eye on things…in case they get out of hand.”

“It’s a high school youth group…none of them have brains enough to get out of hand.”

Conceit cackled. “Yeah, but you know the boss. Always worried someone’s gonna crack.”

“Can we at least get some munchies?” Chaos nodded to the quick-mart as he and his partner slinked through the shadows.

Conceit rolled his yellow eyes. “Alright, but make it fast.”

Shannon tried to catch her breath from all the laughter brought on by the silly acting done by herself and her five friends. “Tyler, I thought you were a goose!”

Tyler grinned and lowered his lanky frame from the park bench. “How could you think that?! It wasn’t that bad.”

“Yes it was.” Liz giggled. “Best goose I ever saw though.”

“Okay, smarty, you go next then.”

Liz sauntered to the box on the grass and pulled out the next card. Rolling her eyes, she took a moment to think before she performed in silence.

“I thought he was a goose, too.” Chaos munched on another mouthful of popcorn, reaching up with a claw to pick his fangs.

Conceit leaned back in the bench and let a puff of smoke seep out through his nostrils, boredom setting in. “You would.”

“Hey look!” Chaos pointed to Liz as a haunting laugh escaped. “She looks like a penguin!”

Conceit slapped Chaos upside the head with his wing. “You’re enjoying this too much.”

“Well what else am I supposed to do?” Excess popcorn spilled from Chaos’ mouth. “This is pointless.”

“Yeah, I know…” Conceit stared off into nothingness. “Hey, remember that job we pulled on Betty Hughes a couple months ago?” He snickered. “That was a fun one.”

“Oh yeah!” Chaos straightened and pulled his crooked wing out from under himself. “The boss was happy with that one. She went straight to his collection after we convinced her God didn’t really exist.”

The two demons involved themselves in their sadistic conversation, entertaining themselves at the expense of the lost soul…

Renea stood tall and spread her arms straight to either side, her head hung solemnly.

Liz jumped up with excitement at knowing the answer. “Jesus!”

Conceit shrieked at the sound of the Name. Chaos jumped, his box of popcorn flying through the air. “Wha…how…who…?”

“What happened?!” Conceit pointed his talon at Liz. “She’s the new kid! She’s not supposed to know any of this. This was just a stupid game!”

“Well stop her!” Chaos fumbled to get off the bench, tripped over his own wing and sprawled face first onto the ground.

“Yeah!” Renea clapped her hands.

“Didn’t Jesus die though?” Liz asked.

“He did.” Breathless from the game playing, the six friends plopped down onto the grass, and Renea situated herself by Liz. “But He rose again, three days later.”

Liz’s eyes widened. “Really?”

“Stop her! Stop her!” Conceit stumbled over Chaos’ downed form.

“I’m trying!” Chaos tangled himself in his tail. “How did you let this happen?”

“Me?! You were the one stuffing your face!”

“But you were supposed to pay attention, too!”

“This is all your fault!”

“Mine! But I…”


Before the scrawny demons could even react, they were no longer in the park, but on the cold stone floor of the lair. They quaked with fear, too cowardly to look upon the master demon.

Lucifer paced in front of them, his eyes ablaze with the very essence of anger. “Of all the stupid, idiotic…” He stopped in front of his two demons as his tail stirred the stale air. “It was supposed to be an uneventful night, and what happens? They took one of ours to their side.”

“But we…” Chaos dared to peek around his own wing. “I mean…they were playing a game…that’s all it was! A charade!”

“A game?!” Lucifer gave Chaos a backhanded slap that sent him reeling across the floor. “They’ll use anything to latch onto those souls and drag them into that despicable light.”

“We…we took care of Betty for you before…remember?”

“I don’t care about Betty! I cared about Liz! And now I can’t have her because of you! Idiots!”

Liz couldn’t help but smile as she soaked in everything she could about Jesus. It was incredible. And all she had thought she would do tonight was play a game.

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Catrina Bradley 08/23/08
Great job on the demons' characters! They cracked me up. :) Calling the group a "youth group" made me think it was a church group, so I was a little thrown off that some didn't know about Jesus. But once I caught on that they were just high school youths, I got back into the story. I loved this! Fun AND a good message.
Joanne Sher 08/24/08
Great characterization of the demons especially. This felt like it was fun to write - great message too. Nicely done.
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/26/08
You had a great characterization with the demons. Their names fitted them perfectly.
Marlene Austin08/27/08
Good descriptive details of characters and events. Dialogue was very natural. Really glad to see those demons get knocked down. :)