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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Day's End (01/01/14)

TITLE: Sleeping Like Angels
By Shari Armstrong


“So sorry to stop by so late, Betty, but I just missed seeing my babies so much!” Her mother-in-law stood in the doorway, smiling. “I tried to call, but you didn't answer your phone.”

“Sorry about that, but I was chasing the boys all day and didn't notice the battery was dead on the phone. Come on in. Don's not home, he had to stop at the store to pick up more diapers and a few other things after work. They are finally asleep.” She sighed. “Would you like some tea?”

“That'd be lovely, dear. But, you sit down. I'll make it, the least I can do.”

“Thanks, Shirley.” Betty sank into the chair, closed her eyes, and didn't realize she had fallen asleep until she heard Shirley set the cup of tea on the end table beside her, in what seemed like a split second. “I guess I was more tired than I thought.”

“Raising kids will do that.” She sipped her tea.

Betty laughed. “Yeah. All those years of praying for a family, who knew God would give us our miracle twins? But what one doesn't think of, the other one does.”

“That's what two year olds do. Have you gotten a final date for the adoption?”

“Not yet. They said they have to see if any other family members step forward. Being a foster parent isn't easy, but it's so worth it.”

A small cry echoed down the hallway and Betty started to get up. Shirley put her hand out. “Let me get them. You rest.”

By the time Shirley got to the boys' room, they were both asleep. “Must have been fussing in your sleep again, Joey.” She glanced at James and grinned. He was sleeping with his little backside up in the air. “Funny, your daddy used to do that, too.”

She joined Betty in the living room again. She was laying with her head against the back of the chair, snoring softly. She curled up on the couch and finished her now cold tea.

Headlights flashed through the front window. Don was home. After a few moments, she heard him come in the back door. “Hey, Mom.” He popped around the corner.

Shirley put her finger to her lips and motioned to his sleeping wife.

“Oops.” Don gently kissed his wife on the forehead. She stirred a little, but didn't wake up. He whispered, “I'm going to take these to the boys' room.” He dropped the package on a chair just inside the door, peaked at the boys and went back out to the front.

“Are they still sleeping like angels?”

“Out like lights. I'm not sure they sleep like angels. I'm pretty sure their angels can barely keep up with those two, so I'm betting their angels are glad for the break. It's a race from sunup to sundown every day to beat them to whatever they are trying to get into.”

“Well, their angels were already working overtime to keep them safe when the house caught fire. The foster people said the firemen couldn't explain how the rest of the house was so badly damaged, and the boys' room was untouched. The only thing they know is that the fire started in the kitchen.” He shook his head. “It's a shame. They were a good family, from what we've heard. They just have no extended family.”

Shirley stretched. “I need to get home before your father sends out a search party for me. Kiss those babies for me. Tell Betty I said good night and to call me if she needs help.”

“Night, Mom. Thanks.”

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This article has been read 303 times
Member Comments
Member Date
C D Swanson 01/10/14
I enjoyed this well written piece. The ending said it all. Nicely done.

God bless~
Judith Gayle Smith01/12/14
Happy to see you back! Always enjoy your stories, and this is wonderful . . .
Matt Guddat01/12/14
Huh, really enjoyed it. Didn't personally see many red ink moments, but could throw this in... Just be careful of adding too many characters in too short a story. No need to interact with the boys here, develop your other characters in what little space you have. That's what we relate to more than a storyline. Saying that I don't really think it was an issue here, but it could easily have be come one. Just be aware I guess.

Bless you heaps!
Beth LaBuff 01/12/14
The fatigue the mother felt transcended to this reader (trying to keep up with two two-year-olds! -- phew!) You had some touching moments throughout. I could see these two little "angels" sleeping in their beds. :)
Virgil Youngblood 01/12/14
Your descriptions ring true. I enjoyed this slice-of-life story. Well done
Virginia Lee Bliss 01/12/14
I enjoyed this story and I was engaged from beginning to end.

Your description of the fire left me with questions---which might not have been your intent.

Otherwise it is a good story.
Danielle King 01/13/14
A well written story with lots of detail to bring it to life. Enjoyed it.
Graham Insley01/13/14
A great story and very moving. I loved the dialog which was very realistic.

Blessings, Graham
Jody Day 01/15/14
A special moment in time well written. Good job.
Bea Edwards 01/15/14
Fabulous re entry into Challenge land!
Amelia Brown 01/15/14
So simple and so captivating. I enjoyed it.