Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: SURPRISE (07/25/19)
- TITLE: Sneaking By
By Betty Castleberry
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The woman knelt on a blanket. Bright colors and shapes littered the floor around her. There were things that moved, things that talked and sang, things that lit up, but Heidi had a choice. She could go away from the noise and lights, hoping the woman would not notice. Stealing away, she did an about face and pulled herself along the floor to the other room.
This room was one she remembered well. There was comfort here. Warm food came from this room. She felt hungry, but it seemed she always felt that way lately. Hurrying now, she scooted her way to a familiar place. Using all her strength, she pulled open a door and peered inside. There was a package she could reach. She pulled it out and tossed it on the floor. Reaching in again, she tossed another package, and another before she spied it. It was a cookie, or at least that’s what she thought it was.
Jamming it in her mouth, she looked again at the woman. She had stirred and was calling her name. Heidi headed in the opposite direction, making her way toward another door. The woman couldn’t catch up with her now. It would ruin her plans.
There was no way she could reach the doorknob from her position on the floor, but she knew that’s what it would take to open it. Still, she tried, stretching an arm up unsuccessfully. Holding onto the edge of a chair with both hands, she pulled herself up and stood, unsteady. Her fingers lost their grip, and almost instantly, she landed on her backside. The situation seemed impossible. She had to think of something else or the woman would catch her.
Giving up on reaching the doorknob, she went in search of more food. Most of the cookie had been spit out on the floor, but she was still hungry. A shiny object on the edge of the table caught her attention. She grabbed at it and found it was within her reach. It immediately went in her mouth. Yes. Now she remembered. This definitely had something to do with food. She gnawed on the end of it, but there was no taste; no satisfaction. It was so disappointing, she wanted to cry.
The lady’s steps pounded on the floor as she came toward her. Heidi sat up as straight as she could, knowing now there was no escape. The woman towered over her. Heidi noticed she had a red and blue hinged box in her hand. All around the edges were yellow polka dots. What a strange thing it was. In an instant, she felt herself leave the floor and end up in the lady’s arms. The woman examined her mouth and her hands and let out a sigh. She shook her head and said words like “No, no. Don’t cram a whole cookie in your mouth. That spoon is dirty. Don’t try to eat it. You’re so quick. We’re going to eat soon.”
Then she sat her on the blanket in the other room with all the colorful objects and placed the red and blue box before her. “Look, Heidi,” she said. The lady turned a crank on the side of the box and music began to play.
All around the mulberry bush
The monkey chased the weasel
The monkey said ‘twas all in fun
Pop! Goes the weasel.
When the little figure jumped out of the box, startling Heidi, she was quiet for an instant. Was it supposed to be fun? Then the woman laughed and kissed her cheek. Yes, everything was okay. This was indeed meant to be fun.
“Mama!” Heidi said, smiling back. “More!”
The woman did it again. This time Heidi laughed first.
~Isaiah 66:13: As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.
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