In the Midst of the Storm

Whewweee. It’s been an interesting week, to say the least. For most of it I was consumed with writing, researching, more writing, editing, and posting the four parts to my A Christian Woman’s Stance on Firearms series. Thank you, to all of you fine folks who read it, and a special hat-tip to all who were so inclined to leave comment(s). Needless to say, once miss Kathy Jackson of The Cornered Cat linked to the series, my site readership soared for that series. For that I am very thankful. And guess what? Something pretty exciting, and only in God’s perfect timing, happened because of it …

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A friend who read the series, a woman new to firearms and concealed carry, but in the process of learning and practicing all she can before obtaining her permit, was at her local range with her husband when she was approached by a television news crew. She said that because she had read this series, she felt courageous and knowledgable enough to be interviewed! Wowzer, talk about timing. Pretty cool, huh?

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I subscribe to the Point of View action alerts. I literally just received an email from that conservative group that outlined the proposed firearms legislation. “Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-California) is planning to introduce new sweeping gun control legislation.  She was the author of the previous assault weapon ban that was passed into law in 1994 and ended in 2004.  This new legislation will be far more restrictive than her previous ban, banning a wide range of firearms, including handguns.” Uh, yikes. Actually, it’s a double dose of lowdown dirty dogs yikes. Folks, if you haven’t already contacted your elected officials, do it today! If you are unsure of how to find them, go to Point of View and click on the “Action Alert” button on the upper left side of the page – it has a image of the Bill of Rights. Fill out the form and viola! your note will be sent to your state’s officials. I urge you to add a couple of (respectful) lines the note too.

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In the meantime, I am still here, plunking away at the keyboard, because I can’t not write. I am in a quandary about going forth with my (potential) non-fiction piece, the one that I placed in the top ten in the nation for a Re:Write/Tyndale contest this last summer, or for running headlong, forward with one of my fiction ideas. To muddy the writerly waters, here is a snippet of a fiction story that started whilst I was down-n-out (or nearly so) due to a serious horse-riding injury that I sustained March before last…

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“How much longer, momma?” asked Mary as she opened the bottle with the edge of her belt buckle, just like she’d seen her momma do.

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”Just a couple more hours, darlin’. I reckon we’ll be at Grandma Flora’s in time for supper. Now you go on and open your sister’s soda too.”

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“Yes, ma’am, I’m working on it.”

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Before Sally pulled the station wagon onto the highway, she reapplied her lipstick, and smacked her lips together. She met her eldest daughter’s eyes in the rearview mirror.

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Mary said, “Momma, tell us again about how Grandma Flora came to live at your granddaddy’s farm.”

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Little Sonya stopped swigging her orange soda long enough to say, “Oh yes, momma, do it. Tell us!”

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“Okay, you two. If it’ll help pass the time and you both promise not to ask how much longer we have left.”

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“We promise!” both girls shouted in unison.

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Grateful for the mental diversion, she told the story, same as she had heard it so often over the years, and just the same as she already had told it to these eager girls three times so far on this trip. Since she was heading home, she thought they ought to at least know something about the kin they were fixing to meet for the first time. With only one look in the rearview mirror, she told the tale.

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Accustomed to screen door racket and how it slammed hard in the wind, Sally Beth paid no attention to the noise it made that morning. She didn’t even hear the stranger enter her kitchen until the man muttered something incoherent and he touched her shoulder. As she gasped and turned, Sally followed the direction of his hand as he pointed a shaky finger toward the enclosed porch.

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He then swayed, grabbed at the air, and his dirty hand caught the edge of Sally Beth’s apron as he fell to the ground. It all happened so fast but she tried to break his landing as she dropped to her knees with him. He looked into her eyes and for a second she felt as if she had seen into his very soul. Despite Sally Beth’s attempts, the stranger smacked his head hard on the corner of the wood cookstove. Blood trickled across his forehead from his greasy, dark wavy hair and he passed out.

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stormStartled as she was, the yell that cut pre-dawn’s early morning air and sliced through the sounds of the summer storm, was not her own.

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Sally Beth scrambled out from underneath the man, flung open the window and yelled for her brother, Joe. Even though he was in the milking shed he heard his sister’s hollering. Only later did he realize that all the screams were not hers.

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He leapt from his short stool and overturned two buckets as he made way for the house.

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In the meantime, Sally Beth cranked the hand pump hard and fast. The yellow gingham curtain snapped in the window that she had forgotten to shut while a stream of cold water soaked the frayed-edge towel. She took wrung it out and knelt next to the stranger’s pale, sweaty face. As she swiped blood from his brow, her brother urged a frantic little girl into the kitchen.

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As the child stepped into the room, the weather front came to a head. Thunder cracked. Rain beat the tin roof. And although nobody noticed as water pelted through the kitchen window, both Sally Beth and Joe watched lightning jag across the face of a dark-haired, dark-skinned child as she screamed right into the midst of the storm.

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So, whaddaya think?

7 thoughts on “In the Midst of the Storm

  1. I confess;I love a good story. I enjoy learning new things, but I like the facts tucked into a great novel . I’m with Susan – more please!

  2. Thank you for placing the link to Point of View…. went to the site and contributed my good thoughts to my senator.
    This story looks and reads great Darlene… I agree with our good friends above… keep it coming!

  3. Good reading…. good commenting from Susie and others. That’ll keep you movin’ on.

    Also, re: the gun issue. I’m pro-gun, so far as people have them registered. Our main problem here is gangs and the guns are given from other leaders in other places, so the young teens and up are the most dangerous. But to not allow people to have guns who are not out-of-line is NOT OK! Protection is a “good thing”.

  4. I think it’s a go. :-) [the story....]

    Thanks for the link on the firearms. We’re at a pivotal point, it seems, in our country on so many issues.

    And, thanks for your eloquent words on the topic.

If you have somethin' to say, I reckon this is where you should do it. And sometimes the blog wranglers hold comments out by the hay bales 'til I can approve 'em...

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