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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Home (01/09/06)

TITLE: Eddie's Choice
By Leslie Lamb
01/09/06


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We watched in silence as each labored breath pulled at his lungs. Tears filled our eyes as we took in his swollen frame and pale skin; this was not the Eddie we had grown up with. As we held his hand I found myself going back to those days of sunshine and play, the days where none of us could have seen ourselves here.

“Sarah, Audrey! Where are you?”

Snickering we hunkered further down into our covering of tall grass so he wouldn’t see us.

“I know you are there!”

Trying not to give ourselves away, we laid down flat on our backs while our bellies shook with the fun of adventure and disguise. Audrey’s curly auburn hair fell in coils on the ground while my own blond locks seemed to fade into the straw that lay beneath us.

“Mammaw told me to tell you that you have to come home now!”

We could hear Eddie thrashing through the grass and the air that filled his lungs in an exasperated sigh when we wouldn’t be found.

“I am telling!”

Audrey, finally having had enough of her pesky brother stood straight up revealing our hiding places, our rescue from his boyish pranks.

“Fine tell her, and tell her this too while you’re at it: We will go home when we want to and not a minute before!”

Eddie laughed and called back over his shoulder as he ran to the house, “Yeah right, like I am going to say that to her and make her get the broom after me! Dream on!”

Audrey yelled back, “Get back here! I am your big sister, and we will go when I feel like it!” There was fear in her voice when just minutes before we were lost in innocent play.

“No, Audrey, don’t. Let him go home.”

“Not until I say so!” She yelled back at me desperate to gain some control.

Eddie continued to run toward the house. She frantically called after him while we watched him slip farther and farther away, “Not until I say so, I said!”

I barely noticed the long beep as it began to invade my conscience. All that I could hear was Audrey’s shaky, desperate voice as she whispered over and over, “Not until I say so, not until I say so…”

I held her closer and we stood there, each of us holding tightly onto his steadily cooling hand, and the words of those brighter days, those days of sunshine and pastures came drifting back in as I reminded her what I had always known was the right thing to do.

“No Audrey, don’t. Just let him go home.”


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This article has been read 763 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Christl Boyd01/16/05
Really wonderful. The initial thought flowed so well from beginning to end. Thank you for this wonderful piece.
Ann Darcy01/16/06

Wow, very, very powerful!
Sharon Singley01/16/06
Wow. This was very moving. It is difficult to find eloquent words to describe the brutality of death, but you have succeeded.
Christine Rhee01/16/06
Beautifully chilling...
terri tiffany01/18/06
I loved this. I liked reading about the past as it made the present situation more bearable and real. Good writing! Oh, also loved your descriptions.:)
Candice Kettell01/19/06
I was grabbed right away. I like that in a story ;) The read was fluid. I felt like I was there with the kids. The transition from past to present was beautiful. The ending filled me with emotion. Very well written!
Marilyn Schnepp 01/20/06
Well written; but then I expect Advanced to be without error or blemish...and it was. Beautifully done, and a masterpiece filled with real emotion...Great job!
Shannon Redmon01/22/06
Soooo good! The transition to childhood play back to the hospital room was smooth and gripping!