Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: GREED (03/08/18)
- TITLE: Guns Risk Excessive Emotional Desires Club
By Jack Taylor
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Selma stretched out her charcoal ponytail and gave her head a shake as she examined the menu. â€œWhat do you think is more sinful?â€ she asked. â€œThe Cinnamon Dolce Latte, the White Chocolate Mocha or the Espresso Con Panna?â€
The ginger-haired woman rocking up and down on her tippy toes answered without hesitation. â€œDefinitely the White Chocolate Mocha, but only if you get it supersized with a double whip.â€
â€œGood choice.â€ Selma pulled her gift card out of her jeanâ€™s back pocket and took a step toward the counter. Only one person was ahead.
Selma turned around to face Norma-Jean who was waggling her credit card near her cheek. â€œI got this. Now that we women are taking our rightful place we need to be settling some of the issues which are killing our kids.â€
Norma-Jean furrowed her brows and cleared her throat. â€œWhat about us women? Five women a day get killed by guns in the land of the free and the brave. The chances of getting killed go up 500% for a woman in a domestic dispute.â€
â€œHold your flintlock, Annie,â€ soothed Selma. â€œLetâ€™s get that super-sized White Chocolate Mocha with sprinkles and chocolate chips so we have something to fuel that passion of yours.â€
Selma announced their selections to the cashier, handed over her card, then stepped away to await her order and make room for the next customer.
Norma-Jean backed up to lean against the counter holding the cream, sugar, stir sticks and napkins. â€œGuns are the number one cause of murders and suicides,â€ she hissed.
Selma stepped closer. â€œDid you know that 80% of gun owners say that having a gun around makes them feel safer.â€
â€œNo wonder. Theyâ€™re all paranoid.â€
â€œThere are over 270 million guns in this country and that one fact means that we donâ€™t have to fear anyone out there taking us out.â€
â€œHey, our drinks are up. Wow, thatâ€™s a lot of whip.â€
As Selma reached for the drink a young man, a foot taller than her, grabbed it and licked off a large swath of the whipped cream. He turned and smiled, white smeared generously along his upper lip.
Selma made a grab for the drink. â€œYou wretched beast,â€ she yelled. â€œGive me that drink or Iâ€™ll have the police take you out so quick you wonâ€™t know what hit you.â€
The young man stepped away and held the drink up over his head, out of her reach. â€œBack off lady. Get your own.â€
â€œHow dare you contaminate my drink like that,â€ Selma snarled, looking back at Norma-Jean for help. â€œDo something, Iâ€™ve been waiting for this fix all week. Call the police!â€
Norma-Jean glanced at the manager hovering in the background. The heavy-set man was reaching slowly under the counter. â€œGun!â€ she yelled, flattening herself on the tiles.
Selma dove to the floor at the same time the young man released his hold on the large paper cup. The whip cream and coffee hit the floor and erupted out of the container, finding a perfect bulls-eye on Selmaâ€™s starched white â€œKeep America Freeâ€ T-shirt.
The hot liquid elicited a scream of pain and terror from Selma who didnâ€™t know what caused the searing sensation across her back. â€œIâ€™m hit!â€
Customers all over dove for the floor screaming. Several pressed their emergency response buttons. Selma continued to yell.
The young man, realizing what had happened, bent down and touched Selmaâ€™s shoulder. The manager, playing the hero, dove out to tackle the man and both tumbled to the ground in a heap.
An old woman in a booth calmly reached into her purse, pulled out a handgun and fired it into the ceiling. The resulting silence inside the coffee shop was deafening. She grabbed her walker, wheeled over to Selma and announced. â€œSweetie, that wasnâ€™t your drink. Yours was next. Now, youâ€™re going to have to wait while the ambulance takes care of that burn.â€
Norma Jean raced to the side of her friend as the manager and young man got sheepishly to their feet, wiping off the whip cream and coffee on their pants.
The senior put her gun back in her purse. â€œGreedy bunch. All I can say is that itâ€™s a good thing no one else has a gun in here.â€
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