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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Lock (03/06/06)

TITLE: Lock (i)
By Sue Dent


     Lock, lock, why won’t it just lock, her mind screamed as she fidgeted with the little thingy on the door handle. He’s coming, I can hear him coming. Heavy footsteps made there way up the stairs, slow methodical footsteps. He’s gonna be mad! I just know he’s gonna be mad! She worked with the lock a little longer. Wisps of golden blonde hair carelessly fell about her angelic face as she did. Maybe I could just move the chest. . .no, too big! The bed, she thought. Same problem, too big. Yet she had to do something. Hide, I’ll hide. . .under the bed. No, that was too obvious. She always hid under the bed. The closet! No, that was too messy. I’ll just close my eyes and pretend I’m invisible. She actually did this for a few seconds. No, she decided, too stupid.
     He was in the hall now, drawing closer. The door wasn’t locked. There was no place to hide. She must stand tall and face her fate. . .
     “Anne Marie!”
     The door opened, her father took a step inside, held a small rat terrier in one arm.
     “It’s the oddest thing,” he said with that look, the look that told Anne Marie she was probably going to regret not being able to find a hiding place. “Sir Richard had hair this morning. Would you know anything about this? I thought you might since I found Daddy’s electric razor in your room. . .and this.” In his other hand, he held what used to be on the dog.
     “But Sir Richard was suffering.”
     The dog had been scratching all week and there was no sign of fleas. As of yet, Dr. Sanders had no real answers about how to make things better for the animal either.
     “Yes, we’re all aware that Sir Richard has been suffering—”
     “And God said to shave him.” There, she’d said it. And she didn’t care if he did give her that other look, the one that told her he wasn’t happy with her explanation.
     “How many times have we told you that you can’t use God as a scapegoat?”
     Another rush of footsteps up the stairs saved her for the moment.
     “John,” her mother called out, raced down the hall. “That was the vet’s office on the phone. Dr. Sanders says Sir Richard has a skin allergy and we should bring him in tomorrow to be shaved.” She stopped cold, stared at Sir Richard, the hair, her daughter and then her husband.
     “God told her,” John said matter-of-factly. “She used my electric razor. A little direction would be nice.”
     Anne Marie shrunk back at her mother’s look, the one that told her she’d now be held accountable. “Did God tell you to use Daddy’s electric razor?”
     “Well, that’s the funny thing about God,” she said as only a six-year-old could. “He’s real good about telling you what you need to do but he’s not always clear on the how part.”

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This article has been read 1090 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Kate Wells03/13/06
Good story! I could see everything clearly.. Especially "Sir Richard"! I absolutely LOVED the last line, and laughed outloud! Thanks...Kate~
Linda Watson Owen03/13/06
Oh, so cute! Yes, I could see it too! Very well written! One teensy thing..unless I missed it...an indication that she was six earlier would have given me clearer picture of the little girl. Great job!!
James Clem 03/13/06
Yes, the last line is a winner. : - )
The age thing would help. "Daddy's footsteps" would be simple enough.
Blank lines between paragraphs do not add to the wordcount.
Fun story. : - )
Lynda Schultz 03/15/06
Yes, knowing Anne Maria's age earlier would have helped to make more sense of her comments. But this was hilarious and well-written. Great stuff.
Jan Ackerson 03/16/06
Funny! It got me thinking about "misunderstanding" God--what if instead of saying "Save them", he was saying "Shave them?" Oh, my...
Pat Guy 03/16/06
A smile on my face as I comment! I could visualize every moment and attitudes! Loved it! (especially the last line - great stuff!)
Jessica Schmit03/16/06
This was too funny! I loved it. A few punctuation problems, but nothing to lose sleep over. Great!
Helen Paynter03/16/06
When it started I thought this was going to be a child abuse story - guess you set it up that way. Relieved it wasn't - loved the humour. Thanks
Sue Dent03/16/06
Yes,Helen! That's exactly what I wanted someone to think when they started reading. I'm so happy you made that comment and even happier that you liked the story. Hope I'm not doing something wrong by posting on my own article. Not sure if we're supposed to do that. but thanks!
Amy Michelle Wiley 03/16/06
I got the 'save'-'shave' thing, too. Toooo funny! Well done!
Shari Armstrong 03/17/06
Very cute! A nice, intense beginning. Loved the ending :)
Cassie Memmer03/18/06
A fun read. I enjoyed it. Poor dog. LOL!
Val Clark03/20/06
You certainly set this up and got me wondering. Child abuse? Hide and seek? Big chuckle at the end. Loved the girl's perceptive interpretion of her parent's expressions. 'Angelic face' indicated to me that she was a kid.