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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Hope (05/04/06)

TITLE: Lock Control
By Pat Guy


Hot anger turned icy cold when a faint whiff of alcohol brushed his face. He was losing her … she was slipping away. What was he supposed to do? Hostility flared as his daughter screamed frustration over his refusal of a ‘night out with friends.’

‘Just try and stop me daaaaad!’ she dripped with sarcasm, whipping her hair towards the door.

The room reverberated with the force of her fury leaving behind a devastated father. Billows of Magnolia Perfume fluttered through the curtains. ‘What’s happened to her? What about the Bible stories? The prayers? God … what’s going on? What do I do now? How can I help her?’




‘I don’t know where …’


He grabbed the keys and took off, his heart speeding beyond the limits allowed. ‘Where would she go? Which friend? Who …? Please God, keep her safe!’


Yes, Charissa. He had reservations about her. She seemed so lost and lonely; he thought his daughter could help, but maybe it had been a mistake.

The heat of day had turned heavy with mist as night grew black behind invisible clouds. He vaguely recalled the area where Charissa lived, but at least he had an idea – only a few more turns to the block of homes.

A corral of cars came into view and he slowed to see if his daughter was a part of this hoard of ‘friends’ mulling about. He slammed the brakes. ‘What was she doing? With that … that … who knows what?’ His chest heaved with rage, seethed with protective power! The couple jumped at the squealing tires close to their bodies.


He gripped the steering wheel to keep from pummeling this jerk! She kicked the car. Dad rolled down the window.

‘Wha’dya think you’re doin ole man? You ‘most ran over me!’

She grabbed Jerk’s hand to walk off but he pulled her close to defy an ‘ole man’s’ standard of treating a lady’s body.

Dad grabbed the door handle, ready to snatch his daughter and drag her home – to punch this guy in the face!


‘You Jerk!’ she screamed as she pushed away his groping lust, landing a good right hook, sending his jaw away from her neck. She ran off, alone.

Dad got out, every muscle trembling to be let loose, ‘Don’t ever, come near, my daughter again.’ he spit through clenched teeth. Jerk crossed his arms leaning against his own car … smiling. Dad made a move, so did Jerk – away.

Car still running, he revved down the street after his daughter, catching up with her two blocks over, ‘Get in.’

‘No! Just leave me alone!’

‘Get in. I’ll take you were you want to go. Promise.’

Hot anger turned icy cold. The night was still thick and black, absorbing an exasperated groan. She knew he would keep his promise. She hesitated at the window, struck by his luminous features … a mirror of her own – desperate.

He spoke to his little girl, ‘Please – get in.’

She flounced in the car slamming the door; her perfume mingled with the scent of defiance.

Lock control.

‘Hey! Whadya doin?’

‘Keepin us safe. I said I’d take you where you want to go, right? So, I will … after we talk. Promise.’

‘No way! I’m gettin outta here!’ she screamed, trying to force the handle. ‘Hey! What’s goin on? she kicked at the door. ‘Lemme out! Now!’

‘Lock control. We’ve got to talk. There’s a story I want to tell you … about a princess long ago. She loved Bible stories and prayed every night, we laughed and sang songs. Sometimes I held her for a little while before she went to sleep.’ I loved her then, I love her now – more than ever.’

‘Yeah, well, she’s gone.’


I don’t know ... she’s just gone.

Wait in hope of Me, I am your help, your shield. I am close to the broken hearted and save those crushed in spirit. My love and my faithfulness endures forever through all generations.

He reached over and touched fidgeting fingers, ‘That was a good right hook you landed. Wanna get a coke?’

… ‘I don’t care.’ she murmured.

Father and daughter rode in the silence of pain, each in their own world of questions with no answers. The one, longing to reach out; the other, longing to be held; God binding them together with His promises – threads of hope that will never break. Lock Control.

Psalms 33:20
Psalms 34:18
Psalms 100:5


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This article has been read 1083 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Amy Michelle Wiley 05/11/06
Wow. This had some great moments. There were a few spots that tripped me up, but overall very well done!
Val Clark05/13/06
'The one, longing to reach out; the other, longing to be held.' So true. What wisdom a parent needs to weather those difficult years. Realistically told. Loved this line: 'her perfume mingled with the scent of defiance.'

Jessica Schmit05/13/06
What a gripping read. I was 'there" the entire time. Great job was telling this one. I was soooooooo thankful that it didn't end with the girl apologizing or saying "I want God" or something cliche like that. You really had a true to life story. Very well told. I was confused in a few parts (wording seemed a little weak in a few lines), but I understand after a second read. But be encouraged. This is a great story.
Cassie Memmer05/15/06
Heart rending story. Reminds us that God is with us, participating in our lives if we are open to listen to Him. There is great value in leaving the story open ended like this. Leaves room for the reader to meditate on the meaning, think on solutions, "what would I do." Rather than giving us the ending and having a 'happy ending' ( me , who always loves happy endings!) Left this way offers hope that things can be worked out! Great job!
T. F. Chezum05/15/06
A well told story with a very good ending. Good job.
Linda Watson Owen05/15/06
Oh! What a gem this one is!! Great stuff...so true to life...beautifully told by a great writer! I tried to talk myself into going to bed instead of reading 'just one more', but you had me with the first two sentences, Pat! Super story!!
Dr. Sharon Schuetz05/15/06
You revealed the feelings of this father and daughter (and multitudes of fathers and daughters) beautifully. Great job.
Suzanne R05/15/06
I loved this line: "his heart speeding beyond the limits allowed". And the title was clever, especially the way it linked in with the story.

You brought us into the father's world very beautifully. Great job!
Rita Garcia05/15/06
Enjoyed this from beginning to conclusion. Hope revealed.
Crista Darr05/15/06
Heart-pounding, fast-paced read! Why do I feel like crying? It's just such a perfect picture of our Heavenly Father's unconditional love. It encourages me as a parent to fight for my children. Great, great work!
Karen Treharne05/16/06
The last half of your story is a block buster. You lost me at "he thought his daughter could help". Even when I reread it a couple of times, I didn't understand. But the overall story was compelling to read and the ending was realistic and uplifting. The teen years are indeed difficult and our only hope is in God for protection and guidance. Many need to read this. A great entry.
Beth Muehlhausen05/22/06
Lock control! You're so clever!!


Enjoyed the transparent emotions and depth of feeling all the way through this.