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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Yellow (11/12/09)

TITLE: Highlights for Dr. Klink
By Sharon Laughter


“Do you have proof?” Dr. Klink settled his chin between the crook of his forefinger and thumb. His elbow was planted firmly on the large cherry wood desk, his expression intolerant.

Sandra resisted a primal urge to lunge across the desk at the counselor. If only she could grab the bright orange apricots he sported for ears and twist – hard! “I didn’t realize I would need proof that I caught my husband watching pornography!” she shrieked instead.

Dr. Klink regarded the raving brunette, purposely avoiding eye contact with her husband. After a moment, he lowered his brown basset-hound eyes and began scribbling on his large yellow legal pad.

This woman certainly lacked a “quiet and gentle spirit”! But, he wasn’t Director Director of Counseling Services for nothing. Of course, he could count on God's help. One more pastoral scandal would not bode well for the cause of Christ – or the denomination for that matter. Surely by showing Pastor Dredd Gamble grace, he would come around. These addictions just didn’t disappear overnight. Until then, he’d just have to convince this woman to avoid gossip and slander. Direct her to focus on forgiveness - perfect. Dr. Klink slid the pad toward the couple.

“Your homework this week is to have several thirty-minute conversations,” he announced, “on any subject. No negative comments allowed. He shoved a thatch of graying hair behind an ear and crossed his arms over a doughy midriff.

Sandra’s jaw dropped further. Her husband had scooted to the edge of his chair and feigned interest. The look of smug satisfaction creasing his face was more than she could take. She nodded silently and slowly lumbered out of her chair.

Crossing the large parking lot to her Celica outside, loud guffaws caused the defeated wife woman to turn. In front of the building stood her husband and counselor, both motioning to their respective gleaming motorcycles, slapping each other on the back like comrades-in-arms.

Once home, Sandra slung her keys toward the kitchen table and snatched the pile of mail. Soon, the cell phone company would have to ship the bill in a crate. Her misery increased at the idea of paying the full amount. Although almost totally ministry related, Dredd was refusing to pay any bills in her name since the separation. Conveniently, they were all in her name due to his “before Christ” checkered past. The denomination was no help, either. They continued to insist all funding be issued to her husband directly. He was the Pastor, after all, and technically still the “leader of the home.” Once her life savings had been depleted in establishing the ministry, so it seems her husband's regard for her. Like Jesus, she had been sold by Judas. In despair, she called out, “Where are you God?”

Suddenly, an idea dispelled Sandra's grief. She reached for a yellow highlighter and grabbed the cell phone bill. Sweeping across the pages, she began to highlight calls made between her husband and “girlfriend”. Yellow filled the pages to Sandra’s dismay but not surprise. She willed tears not to form in her eyes as she then grabbed her Bible and switched on the printer/scanner next to her computer. Flipping to certain pages, she began to make copies. I Corinthians 5: The apostle Paul’s rebuke of Corinth for ignoring a brother’sin. Malachi 2: God’s warning to the man for cheating on his wife and causing divorce. Ephesians 5 – Paul’s command to have nothing to do with the unrepentant brother engaged in carnal living. Sandra’s highlighter flicked across the passages.

“As you will see,” she announced stiffly the next week as she marched into Dr. Klink’s office, “my husband is pretty much an expert on communication.” Surprise flew across both men’s faces as their eyes trailed her stride toward the desk. She dropped the stack of documents soundly down with a thud. “It just hasn’t been with me.” Here's the proof - and also - highlights for your reading pleasure.” She whirled around to exit the office but couldn’t resist pausing in the doorway. "I thought yellow a most appropriate color, doctor,” she stated with syrup.

Dr. Klink glanced down at the papers as Sandra’s heels clicked a retreat on the tile down the hall. As Pastor Gamble cleared his throat, rivers of red snaked up from Dr. Klink's collar and splayed across his face.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Rachel Phelps11/23/09
I have a family member going through a similar situation, so I definitely felt the emotions throughout your piece. It felt a little vindictive, and the ending imagery threw me just a little. Overall, powerful work on a subject people don't want to talk about. Forgiveness is still key, though, and it might have been nice to see a little of that in your MC, or perhaps a hope for that.
Lisa Johnson11/28/09
I went to church in a denomination that brushed its minister's infidelity with the church secretary under the rug for years... all the while insinuating that his indiscretion must some how be his wife's fault...she was not submissive enough, she did not do enough to support his ministry...etc., etc., etc.... Sometimes a little righteous indignation is called for, and sometimes has to procede the forgiveness... I rather liked the ending. thanks by the way for your kind comment on my entry.