Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: GAMBLE (04/14/16)
- TITLE: Bloody Toe Gabe
By Jeremy Kirby
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Once upon a time there was a pitiful gremlin who liked to trick little kids. Every morning the schoolchildren would walk to school and every afternoon they dispersed among the streets of the small town. As they neared the forest, the gremlin would awaken himself and take his perch atop a shadowy black log. The wretched little creature would hiss unnaturally at the young children when they walked past the edge of “Burglar’s Doom Forest”. This is where the cretin lived.
One particular Wednesday Gabriel heard the raspy cries of the tiny monster. Its voice sounded like an old bone that was trying to work its way up a sore throat in the middle of winter. It asked the gallant young man to go to Mighty Midget, a small nearby corner store, and steal him some licorice. If Gabe didn’t do this, the gremlin said he would come into his room at night and watch him. If Gabe’s toes slipped out of the covers, he would bite them. If he let his hands hang over the side of the bed, he would chew on his fingers as if they were the licorice that he never had.
The boy thought long and hard on this threatening proposal. The creature’s words horrified Gabe. He was already dreaming of an ominous presence staring at him from the dark recesses of his bedroom. Gabe’s fingers were starting to tingle with the frightening thoughts.
Suddenly a wind of courage blew through small Gabe’s heart. Wrong was wrong and right was right no matter how scared he was. Gabe always felt better doing the right thing anyway.
Therefore, instead of running to the store, Gabe ran home and told his strong, stately father who listened without any preconception as to the truth of Gabe’s words. His father rose from his seat and bravely began to search in every tree and under every log in the evil forest. They searched the woods even as the sun began to set. Soon an eerie fog crept in and stretched its pale fingers over the gloomy lowlands. The wind breathed as it were the breath of the forest and the trees in all their ancient girth swayed to and fro.
As they searched the forest floor, strange apparitions danced just out of sight only to be lost again to the shadows. Weary, they reached the far border of the forest finding nothing. Although hesitant, Gabe was satisfied that the creature indeed was not there.
The whole family said their good-nights and retired to their beds. Gabe rested happy and settled in the fact that he did the right thing and nothing was going to get him. He pulled open the curtain and let the moonlight shine in and then calmly drifted off to sleep.
The next morning Gabe woke up and was happy that nothing stirred during the night. But then he felt his fingers and they were slimy, and he looked at his toes, and they were bloody!
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