Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Orange (the color) (11/19/09)
TITLE: TRADING COLORS
By Adetokunbo Oluwasanjo
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I had written several letters but got no replies. Not that I expected any. My life of crime, drugs and violence had left ugly, jagged scars on her body and even more on her soul. My brother, Sean, told me about how she and the children had been kicked out of the apartment weeks after I got convicted and how he had lost touch with her after that. I feared for her safety. I feared T.Y.’s boys may track her down, kill her and waste my children. I feared their blood would be on my head. Ten years of hopelessness, guilt and pain brought me to hell’s gates. With an overdose and a shank, I attempted to go in but as I now know, Christ saved me. All the boys said it was a miracle I survived. I had painted my cell walls red with my blood. A few weeks later, the prison chaplain, a middle-aged, no-nonsense, but kind-hearted lady named Jackie (or Jack as we all called her) led me in the sinner’s prayer. Six week after that, I got baptized.
I got off the train at Redwood Station. Jack had told me that morning I was trading colors. My orange suit for a smart gray one I hoped Anna-Marie would like. I unscrambled a rough piece of paper on which I had written Anna’s address. With Jack’s help I had tracked Tony down. She had visited with him to tell him about my changed life since I met Christ. He couldn’t come visit but spoke with me twice on the phone and said he’d let Anna know I was being released. He was formal but courteous and offered no promises for a celebrated prodigal father’s return. He only mentioned he was glad to hear I was saved and let me know they had all been praying for me. I’d been overwhelmed and asked God just for an opportunity to make amends where I could and to help them forgive me as He had. I knew I was asking for a lot but I hoped…..just kept hoping.
Suddenly someone tapped my shoulder.
I didn’t need to reply. He threw his arms around me and held on for what seemed like an eternity. Tony finally let go and waved. Samantha came running towards me just as Victor reached me and wrapped a scarf around my neck. In the distance was Anna-Marie walking slowly towards me with tears streaming down her face. Tears welled up in mine and poured down my cheeks as Samantha kissed my cheek and whispered “Welcome home.”
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