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Saturday, May 25, 2013

May 25th Challenge

Hi, it’s Christina –


Sweatshirts and long pants on a relatively sunny Memorial Day weekend when we are not near the shore is unheard of! I cannot recall this occurring once, and this is my 48th Memorial Day weekend. Sure there were some that were rainy and cool, and there were many where we needed a sweatshirt at night, but during the day? No. It is ten in the morning and the heat is running in our home. This is beyond bizarre!

Yesterday I was so excited because I finalized the cover for the re-release of A Second Chance. Cal had done a beautiful job and I felt the cover truly captured the story, then last night I was flipping through the posts on Facebook and found another author was releasing a novel next week and she used the exact same models in the exact same pose on her cover. I felt ill! I sent Cal the link. He told me not to cry (and I was close), made me laugh when he suggested putting a mustache on the female model, but then he went to work on creating a new cover. We spent the next four hours going back and forth with various ideas. Mind you this was after I had given him the final approval and had paid for the work he had already done. The last email came a little before one this morning saying he would have a finished copy to me sometime this morning.

I cannot believe how fortunate I am to have found Caligraphics and Cal, and all from a reply from someone on LinkedIn on a question I posted on a completely unrelated subject. This is just another little sign to me that God does answer even little prayers by putting good people into our path who can help when we need them.


On to the challenge, but I want to preface my reply by stating, this is a fictional story with the exception of my husband and I did spend many years as EMTs on our local rescue squad.

 

Yesterday’s challenge was:

 

My heart was pounding…

 

I sat bolt upright in bed, my heart pounded, the noise still vibrated through the house. Because of many years spent as EMTs, my husband and I were in the habit of undressing for bed and leaving the clothes we had worn the day before next to the bed, so we could be fully dressed, shoes and all, and out the door in under a minute if an emergency ever arose.

 
Fully dressed, I opened the bedroom door and found my three bleary eyed children opening their doors. There was a faint burning smell starting to permeate the hall. I told them all to get dressed, told my youngest to get the animals in their cages just in case we needed to get them out of the house, told the middle one to find her phone, and told the oldest dad and I might need help. At this point we had no idea what was going on. Did lightening hit? There was a storm raging outside. Did a tree fall on the house? We just didn’t know.

 
I flipped on the outside lights and headed out the front door, my husband tight on my heels. We looked around and both noticed our lawn was marred. We followed the path of scars to the corner of our house, and there pressed up under my daughter’s bedroom window was a crumpled, smoldering car. My husband and I ran down the stairs and to the car. The roof had a distinctive crease from hitting the corner of our house. The window and windshield were shattered. There were two unconscious occupants and the smoke was getting thicker.


Years of training told us we shouldn’t move the people until they were stabilized, but the possibility of the car catching fire trumped that. We said a little prayer that we would be able to get them out and went to work. Through some small miracle we were able to get the passenger’s door open. I checked the woman quickly, unfastened her seatbelt then moved out of the way so my husband could scoop her up and get her to safety.


I crawled back into the car to access the driver who was in far worse shape because his side of the car took the full impact from hitting the house. I reached for the seatbelt, but it was jammed. I couldn’t get it loose. The smoke was starting to fill the car. It was burning my eyes and I was starting to cough. I struggled for a moment then felt a hand on my arm pulling me back. I resisted. I could not let this person burn to death. The grip on my arm increased and I was pulled out of the car. Through the smoke I watch son climbed in and cut the belt with a knife, freeing the man. Together we drag him


I got a lot done in ten minutes this time. Amazing how productive you can be when it’s quiet and the dog isn’t jumping on you looking for attention.

 

I think I may take a break from the blog tomorrow, but we’ll see. Because of the rotten weather, we have absolutely no solid plans for the weekend, so I may write more tomorrow. You will find your next writing challenge very timely and I really hope some of you will be brave enough to post your responses.

 

Your Next Challenge is:

 
 

What does Memorial Day mean to you?

 

You have 10 minutes (be honest). There is no right or wrong, just write. Spelling and punctuation don’t count and NO ONE is allowed to criticize what someone else has written. Go.