Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: This Side of Paradise (not about the book) (07/14/11)
TITLE: Basket Cases
By Kim Hamlin
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Ginger had dodged the Master's Chief Foreman all day, and now her frustration showed. "Well, nosy parker, I'm writing, that's what I do, and I'd like some privacy!"
Gabriel raised his eyebrows, "Well, it's obvious to me why the Master named you Ginger, and it doesn't have anything to do with those red curls. You don't need to be on this side to write, so I suggest you be careful, whatever you're up to. I'll leave you alone, but Mike and I are dividing up teams for soccer, you sure you're not in?"
"Yes, I'm sure, maybe next time...thanks Gabe."
Gabe smiled, "No problem, just stay off the bottle!"
Gabriel moved fast with his huge, powerful wings. Before Ginger could scowl at his laughter, he was a speck in the clouds over Jordan. She sighed with guilt, thinking about that bottle. It was supposed to land in the inlet where the Kingsbury's boat was moored. Unfortunately, Ginger didn't account for the wind, so the bottle landed on a fisherman's head, giving him a concussion.
Gabe had been sent for her, "You know how the Master feels about the Christian humans! What were you thinking?!"
She was taken off Writer-Inspirer duty for a full Earth year and put behind a desk at Arcadia Archives. She became so depressed, she had received gifts. Ginger knew it was the Master. A notebook with a jasper closure and a pen overlaid with pearl were too extravagant to be from anyone else, not without a special occasion.
Ginger shook herself from her reflection and whispered a thank you to the Master. No mistakes this time! She rapidly emptied the contents of her wing satchel and started blowing up balloons. When the basket was ready, she began scouting a release point, low enough to hit the target, but not too low. Most humans cannot see angels, but you can never count on it. Headquarters frowns upon unscheduled angel sightings. She had witnessed St. Peter having a conniption, it wasn't pretty.
Barbara laid on her blanket beside her tattered notebook. She saw the balloons in the air and was thinking they must have escaped from a child. She stood up when she realized there was something attached to them. It's definitely a basket, she thought as she reached up and caught it. Curious children wandered away when they realized it was only carrying a piece of paper. Barbara pried the paper out of the weave. When she opened it, her mouth fell open. It was what she had started writing yesterday, but worded so much better. This was the confirmation she needed to go forward with the scene she was working on. Oh Lord, I know you've heard me, thank You, thank you!
After watching the end of the soccer game, Ginger headed over to Cloud Nine for a snack. Michael joined her and asked if she saw the game. "I saw the end, you guys were great! Where's Gabe?"
"He's licking his wounds", Michael laughed. "You know how he hates to get beat!"
Neither Michael nor Ginger heard Gabriel approach, "I should've known you'd be bragging! Just wait 'til next time, old friend!" More quietly, he addressed Ginger, "the Boss wants to see ya, Gin. You better get going."
Ginger flew straight to the temple, anxiously wondering, what could have gone wrong this time?
"Master, I can explain. I just...
"I received a special message today Ginger, concerning my child Barbara. Answering prayers without me again, I see?"
Ginger breathed a sigh of relief when she realized the Master was smiling and His eyes were dancing. "I'm so proud of you, Ginger. I'm glad you didn't let the bottle ordeal hold you back from these hard cases! Be careful though, this over-the-top kind of message will not go unnoticed. We could end up with parks full of writers waiting for baskets.
Ginger smiled, "That's okay Lord, we'll call them our basket cases!"
The Lord laughed heartily and patted her head, "I love it, basket cases it is!"
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