Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Bouncebackability (06/05/14)
TITLE: Chicken Copping Cupid
By lynn gipson
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He gazed at the vegetable garden that he had planted earlier in the season. It was coming along quite nicely with green sprouts growing bigger every day, yet Sam had no real desire to live to see it come to fruition.
Sam also had four chickens. He loved scrambled eggs, so he built a chicken house and bought some prize laying hens. He found that he liked owning chickens, and allowed them the finest feed he could find.
His friends and brothers balked when he sold his nice home in Savannah and bought this old relic of a cabin in the country, but Sam had taken an early retirement as police chief and moved out here to be alone after his wife, Mary, passed away last spring.
Sam had no children. He and Mary tried for years to conceive, but after a while they gave up and adopted Thunder. Thunder was a beautiful German Shepherd that passed away two months after his beloved “Mama” died.
Mary and Sam were both Christians, and he knew without a doubt that Mary was in Heaven. When he was a young man he was wild, but meeting Mary took care of all that. She tamed him down and led him to the feet of the Lord. For fifteen years now, that was the only place he wanted to be.
Sam did love his cabin. He could be alone to think about Mary and relive their life in his dreams. The camping trips, fishing and ballets. Mary didn't care for camping, but she went just to please Sam, and likewise, he attended the ballet with her.
Adjacent to his property line was another cabin about two hundred yards away. Sam had seen a slender woman about his age coming and going outside the house, but he had never seen anyone else there, not even a visitor.
On Sunday mornings, he would see the woman leave in her car around nine o'clock and return just after noon. He rightly suspected she went to church. Sam had not even looked for a new church. He prayed every day, but only for God to let him die.
Some mornings his next door neightbor would walk her dog, which happened to be a German Shepherd, down the road in front of his cabin. She would wave, and Sam would wave back. Sam often wondered what her story was, but had no desire to further the relationship by conversing with her.
This morning he saw her from a distance on the road with her dog. The dog seemed interested in Sam and started his way. The lady waved as she shouted, "Stay, Harley, stay!" Harley immediately stopped in his tracks and sat.
Sam waved back but paid little attention to his neighbor. The dog was beautiful, though, and made him think of Thunder. Thunder adored Mary so much that he grieved himself to death, just as Sam was doing,
Sam spent another lonely day working in his garden and went to bed early, He was almost asleep when he heard a ruckus coming from his hen house. He had never heard such squawking in his life.
He rushed outside to see Harley with a chicken in his mouth. He tried to grab the chicken, but the big dog ran away. Sam chased him to the woman' s cabin and began to pound on the front door.
"Come control your dog! He's got one of my prize hens!" Sam shouted.
The woman quickly opened the door wearing jeans and an old flannel shirt, and Sam was momentarily stunned. Her long silky hair glistened in the moonlight. Her sad blue eyes spoke of her own grief, and all he could think of was how beautiful she looked.
“I'm so sorry!” she cried. “Come, Harley! Come!” Harley raced up to her and dropped a mad, wet hen at her feet. Suddenly, the beautiful lady surprised Sam by bursting into tears.
Instinctively, Sam's arms went to comfort her and he forgot all about his prize bird. He felt her pain, and his heart melted.
“It's okay. Please don't cry.” Sam whispered softly.
At that moment, he heard Mary's voice. Sam, it's time to live again!
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