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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Kingdom of God (03/12/09)

TITLE: Where I am...
By Helen Murray



Great Eagle, his wings spread to their majestic full wingspan, flew over his huge nest. There was just one young eagle there, stretching his wings and preparing for flight.

Great Eagle soared higher and higher on the thermals, and his keen eyes devoured the landscape from horizon to horizon, absorbing its great beauty. There, in the middle of it all, was his wonderful habitation, high on the mountain, surrounded by rocks, and far from the valleys and forests that stretched below him. He could discern every animal that moved in this great landscape, every fish (his favourite food) in the streams, every wind that blew and cloud that rained. It was his playground, and his love for all of it expanded exponentially by the day.

Today he noticed heat waves rising from baked earth everywhere. He played in the sky, soaring higher and higher than ever before, diving and rising again. Then the lightening struck, and soon he could perceive brilliant little flashes of fire in many places, sending up white columns of smoke which danced and swayed in the sky, growing in a crescendo, billowing and covering everything, quickly turning black and threatening.

Great Eagle understood immediately what was happening, and that all the little animals of whom he was so particularly fond would be in panic, running from the all-consuming fires. He swooped upon a tiny rabbit that looked up to him, and took it soaring, soaring, to his rock, high on the hill, where he gently placed it near a hole into which it scuttled and hid.

Few animals called out to him as he flew, searching. “Little White Eagle,” He cried, “It is time for you to go among the animals and teach them to look up to me, so I can rescue them. “Go, now!”

White Eagle looked once, longingly at his father, and obediently soared, and then dived into the menacing smoke. He told the panicking emus, the leaping kangaroos, the raging cats and barking dogs, of the high rock where they would be safe from the fires and rest in the cool of his sanctuary. The cats and dogs pounced on him, tied him up and threw him in the fire. They told all the other animals he was a liar, and they should continue running down the hills to the lakes at the bottom. They didn’t understand that the lakes were all dried up and useless to combat these fires.

“Someone will come and stop these fires for us one day,” they screamed at White Eagle. “Who do you think you are?”

Great Eagle saw the travesty, and dived down to lift White Eagle to safety, undid the cords and released him again.

“Go back,” he said. “Some will receive you and come home with you. They cannot touch you again. You are fire-proof now!”

Together they partnered in the great rescue mission, White eagle talking to all the animals, telling them to look for his father, the Great Eagle who would respond and lift them out of the fires into the cool, rocky habitat above.

So many animals were rescued this way – Walter Wombat, Kylie Kangaroo, Iain the iguana lizard, Eric Echidna, and even Dado Dingo.

White Eagle built homes for each of them, far more beautiful than those burned.

Great Eagle breathed on each, gave them wings, so they could learn to fly home whenever they needed, and flying lessons, so the animals could use, and hear the messages of the great thermals at any time. They learned to call out to Great Eagle about everything, so they could handle any situation, and if they couldn’t, then he certainly would.

Then Great Eagle gathered them all together one day.

“You have been rescued from the fires,” he said. “Now you have a task.”

They gasped, and whispered together.

White Eagle took over. You must help me teach the other animals how to beat the fires. Together we can do so much more work, and reach so many more animals.”

“Ah, Oh, Yes, I see.” The animals panicked.

“What if we get burned?”

“They burned White Eagle. Did I not take care of him?” Great Eagle gazed intently upon each one of them, so that, one by one, gradually, they received the vision and the excitement, the great plan to save all the animals!

Many joined the task force and became heroes, but some, I’m afraid, just never came home again.


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Member Comments
Member Date
Marlene Bonney 03/19/09
I found this story stupendous and clever. The descriptive imagery and the parable are noteworthy. And, the way you tied it all in together at just the right point is awesome!
Fiona Dorothy Stevenson03/19/09
Imaginative. 'Exponentially' didn't work for me, and lightning has no 'e'. I enjoyed your story and wondered if you lived in Victoria? God bless you.
c clemons03/19/09
Sounded like an old Indian tale using animals for imagery. Overall good writing but I would have like more on topic.
Bryan Ridenour03/23/09
I liked the parabolic feel. Nice writing.