Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: CALENDAR (10/20/16)
- TITLE: System of Reckoning
By Rachel Rudd
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Fingernails, bit to nubs, drummed the tablecloth. She dumped her cold tea in with the dirty dishes and snatched up a stack of envelopes. What did it matter anyway? Why should I care?
But each piece of folded paper loaded her mind with a weight larger than she could bear. How could something so light weigh her down so much? A little bit of fun here and there had really added up. All that amusement along with the necessities of life had accumulated quickly. The bright yellow and red letters stamped on the white paper seemed to mock her. Late. Unpaid. Collection.
Her eyes sneaked another glimpse at the wall. Why did she not buy one with comforting pictures of flowers? This particular calendar had been on clearance but only boasted vocabulary to learn. The word of the month now WAS calendar and its origin seemed appropriate for her situation. From "calends" the first day of the Roman month -- when debts fell due and accounts were reckoned. (1)
Debts. She knew those well. Every time she had tried to make enough to pay off her debts, they just seemed to pile higher. Lavender could work all the hours remaining in her life and it seemed it would never be enough.
A knock on the door interrupted the depression hammering on her heart. She peaked through the peep hole. Shady business suit, slick hair, skewed tie. A desire to hide forced its way upon her, but she opened the door anyway.
The man looked up, "Lavender Doil?"
Her nod was barely perceptible, but he still thrust an envelope in her direction, "Here. Have a nice life." His back was to her immediately and he sauntered off snickering to himself, "At least what's left of it."
Lavender's hands shook while opening it. Two words stood out like red warning lights on a dark night. Court summons. In three days, she would face the judge. She looked at the numbers on the calendar again. They seemed to be dancing to her doom.
Attempting to throw off the unwelcome thoughts, Lavendar shook her head. I need a smoke! But then she remembered she had used her last pack.
Another knocked disturbed her thoughts. Why can't people just let me hide?
Business suit number two stood outside her door, but with a sizable book covering most of his face and chest.
"According to our records you owe quite a considerable amount. If you can not, or do not, pay these debts, you will be locked away."
Lavender tried to see the expression on his face above the edge of the book. "Can one be put away for not paying? I thought that was something they did a long time ago."
The man lowered the book and sneered, "What do you think happens to those who don't measure up?" He turned away faster than the last visitor and smirked as he walked away.
Lavender wondered where where she could get help when every time she opened the door more burdens came piling in. This time she took a pen and formed bars on the square that would see her shut in. I already feel imprisoned by the burdens of this life anyway.
A third knocked sounded in the quietness of the little room. This time Lavender did hide, but the insistent knock gave her no choice.
Her eyes seemed to deceive her when she looked through the peep hole. A friend stood at the door!
Anna smiled as the door was opened, but all Lavender noticed was the black leather book her friend held with the words, Alpha and Omega, stamped on the cover.
"Hi Lavender, I have some good news to share with you. Can I come in?"
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