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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Truth or Dare (08/28/08)

TITLE: Monday Bloody Monday
By Johnna Stein
09/03/08


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U2 covertly blares into my ears in the school library.

Sunday, bloody Sunday (Sunday, bloody Sunday)
Sunday, bloody Sunday (Sunday, bloody Sunday)
(here I come!)

And its true we are immune
When fact is fiction and tv reality
And today the millions cry
We eat and drink while tomorrow they die

The real battle yet begun (Sunday, bloody Sunday)
To claim the victory Jesus won (Sunday, bloody Sunday)


My long, wavy black hair camouflages the thin black wires attached to my earphones. I’ve tucked my IPod inside my shirt where it can’t be detected. I’m not one for breaking rules, but the lyrics inspire me while I write my persuasive essay.

My thesis revolves around the central idea that Bono, the lead singer of the band U2, a rock legend who affects world opinion, is motivated by his heart for Jesus. Outwardly, he’s all fame and fortune, but he understands his celebrity status equates to currency. God has placed him in a position of power and influence and he’s utilizing it for the glory of God.

My pen flies across the paper as the arguments flow from my brain to my fingers. One after the other, the next stronger than the one preceding it. This must be the easiest paper I’ve written this year. It’s only Monday and the deadline is Friday. Piece of cake.

I whirl around when I feel the grip of strong fingers pressing into my shoulder. It must be my crazy brother playing a trick on me. I whip around and my jaw drops open when I see a ski-masked man, dressed from head to toe in black leather. What kind of sick joke is this?

I yank my earphones out with one smooth tug and discern only static noises coming from his walkie-talkie. I think I hear muffled crying somewhere in the room. Like a slow motion replay, I scan the library as far as I can manage and see no one else. What happened in here while I focused on penning my argument?

“Are all subjects subdued?” I hear the words come in over the walkie-talkie.

“Some escaped to the front exit, but the rest are under the desks or behind the shelves hiding,” He answers.

Fear is fueling my energy level now. Like a drug, adrenaline pumps through my veins making me feel hyper, yet stronger than I can imagine. I feel the pulse in my neck rhythmically beating out it’s own song.

“Follow procedure. Don’t back down.” His partner reminds him with a stern tone.

“To the end. I won’t back down.”

What does he mean by procedure and not backing down?

He still has my shoulder clamped tight, but I can check in the periphery and spot a few students indeed hidden under computer tables. Is that blood I see?

He grabs my hair at the nape of my neck with his right hand and pulls me to a stand. Tears escape from the sides of my eyes. I know my crying is involuntary, but I feel like a coward. What does he want with me?

God? Jesus? Where are you? Help me!

“So little Miss Christianity. Who’s gonna save you now?” He says with sarcasm as he yanks at my hair again and I feel the sting as hairs rip free. My lips are trembling and I grind my teeth together instead of answering him.

“Come on Emily. This is your chance. I dare you. Can you do it? Just say you don’t believe. You get to live if you do. It’s time for truth or dare. Are you gonna back down?”

“Why are you doing this? Why are you picking on me?”

“Emily Thompson, President of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. We want to see what kind of example you truly are. We heard your talk on Friday about living your faith out loud and dying for Jesus.”

“Dying to yourself doesn’t mean really dying. It means leaving behind a life of sin for a life of freedom with Jesus, the Savior ”

“Where’s your Savior now when you need Him most?”

“He’s right here with you and me. Jesus loves you, too.”

“Last chance Emily. What’s it gonna be?”

I feel the cold pressure of the gun barrel on my left temple.

I dare to not back down. “Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. I believe He is the Son of God."

A hear a metal click and I whisper, “I love You, Jes...”



Sunday Bloody Sunday by U2 1983


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This article has been read 832 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lynda Schultz 09/04/08
Unhappily these days, no one knows when something like this just might happen—even in our "safe" first-world havens. A scary tale well told.
Catrina Bradley 09/04/08
I'm so glad she answered that way. I was as shocked as she was when she saw the masked man. Great job on this story.
Joanne Sher 09/06/08
Very engaging and masterfully written. Edge-of-my-seat reading.
Jan Ackerson 09/07/08
Excellent and timely writing.

My only problem with this story (and many others like it) is...who's writing it? How?

A gripping story, important to read. I'd love for this to be part of a teen curriculum.
Carole Robishaw 09/08/08
This is a very good take on a killing that did happen, I tried to find the story, couldn't remember the name of the girl, or when it happened. I wish this story wasn't this good, it's so sad, but so beautiful, that she was willing to stand up for her beliefs.
Carole Robishaw 09/08/08
Found the news story, it was Cassie Bernall at Columbine that was sot in the library. Still a very good take on the story. No one knows what really happened that day.
Sheri Gordon09/11/08
Congratulations on your EC. This is written very well...chillingly well. Nice job with the topic.
Jason Swiney09/14/08
While the idea for this obviously comes from the Columbine incident, you did a great job fictionalizing the scenario and weaving in the message of staying faithful to the end. I too have a problem with a first person narrator not surviving his/her story, but this was very thought provoking, which I assume was your primary aim. Congrats on the EC.