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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: The Pen is Mightier than the Sword (04/08/10)

TITLE: Plastic Swords and Book Reports
By Sarah Elisabeth
04/14/10


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“Grammy, Sam’s aggravating me again!” Meg squealed as she grabbed Katherine’s hand.

Sam’s sigh was audible. “I was not. She won’t play with me!”

Katherine put a hand on each of her grandchildren. “Sam and Meg, you need to learn to get along with each other. All this fussing and fighting will bring nothing but harm. Now, what is the problem?”

Meg opened her mouth, but Sam was faster. “She’s been sitting in her chair all day reading and scribbling. I wanted her to play sword fight with me, but she just turned up her nose. There’s no one else for me to play with and she’s being mean!”

“Am not!”

“Are too!”

“Am not-“

“Quiet.” Katherine sent up a prayer for wisdom. “All right, Meg, let’s hear your side of it.”

“I’m trying to finish reading this book so I can write a report on it. I-“

“Why write a report?” Sam interrupted, “School’s out. You spend too much time reading and writing when we could be-“

“Sam.” Katherine managed to keep the edge from her voice. “Let Meg finish.”

Sam pinned his lips together, clenching his plastic white sword with both hands. Katherine knew he was ready to use it.

Meg lifted her chin. “I want to write a report for Aunt Mary. She gave me the book and I want her to know how much I like it. But I can’t get it done because Sam’s been pestering me all day. All he ever wants to do is play, play, play and he aggravates me, poking me with that thing until I finally give in. But I don’t want to play, I wanna read!”

Another prayer went up before Katherine spoke. “It sounds like you two need to find some common ground. Jesus said we should come and reason together. I think you two are old enough to do that on your own. Find something you both enjoy and agree to spend a certain amount of time doing it. Then you need to respect one another’s different interests and desires.

“Here’s what we will do. You two spend the next hour thinking of something you both enjoy. Then you will spend the rest of the afternoon doing that. And if I don’t hear any bickering during that time, tomorrow you both can do what you like – separately, no bugging each other. Agreed?”

The two children puckered their lips at their grandmother.

Meg spoke first. “There’s nothing we both like to do, Grammy.”

“Pray about it and I know you will think of something. You do have a whole hour.” Without waiting for further protests, Katherine rose from her recliner and went into the kitchen. The smell of cookies baking should give her grandchildren extra motivation.




Less than an hour later, a squeal called Katherine back into the living room.

“What is going on?” Katherine’s rebuke was sharper than she’d intended, but the sight of Sam thrusting his plastic sword at the paper waving Meg, nearly undid her. Would these children ever listen to her?

Two pairs of chocolate brown eyes turned to meet Katherine’s. “We’re playing, Grammy,” came the unison reply. They giggled.

“Meg wrote a play about a big sword fight between a knight and a dragon,” Sam said, a hint of pride in his voice, “And since I’m the sword fighting expert, I get to be the knight and she’s the dragon. It’s fun, especially ‘cause I know how it ends.”

Katherine could feel the muscles in her shoulders melting. “That’s sound very good. How does it end?”

Meg chimed in. “It has a happy ending, Grammy. The knight and dragon figure out that if they work together instead of fighting, they can overthrow the queen of the kingdom.”

An eyebrow shot up. “And who might the queen be?”

Two plastic swords turned on her.


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This article has been read 574 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Virgil Youngblood 04/15/10
Great writing with good dialog. This is on topic in a humorous way, with a good message on resolving sibling conflict.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 04/16/10
This is wonderful. I could easily see it as a children's story. I loved the part how the grandma let the kids find the solution. As adults, we often like to fix problems instead of praying and giving our support. A lesson I needed to be reminded of
Mona Purvis04/19/10
A day in the life of....
You made it interesting and fun. I like it when Grannys look so wise. LOL.
Good job, Sarah.

Mona
Gerald Shuler 04/19/10
So the pen and the sword can co-exist. Love the child banter in this well written tale.
Patricia Herchenroether04/19/10
awww...cute story. Very good dialog. Kids-ya gotta love 'em.
Kate Oliver Webb04/19/10
An original take on the topic, and a cute story. Well written with a good message.
Rachel Phelps04/20/10
Too cute! Great characters here, and such a fun ending!
Joan Campbell04/20/10
I really enjoyed this and found myself with a big grin at the end. Good writing!
Verna Cole Mitchell 04/20/10
I loved your wise grandma--made me wonder if you were the little girl who loved to read and write! I liked the solution, too, that the children came up with.
Beth LaBuff 04/20/10
I loved Sam and Meg's resourcefulness! Your ending is priceless (poor Kathryn). :) Fun stuff!
harvestgal Ndaguba04/20/10
Now that's good writing and so fun to read. I really enjoyed this.
Carol Penhorwood 04/21/10
Oh the delights of being a grandma!
Karen Macor04/21/10
What a wonderful story. I could really identify with the Grandma. The children were realistically portrayed and the story was easily believeable. If you hadn't asked for red ink I wouldn't mention it but I think you meant to say "That sounds very good." instead of "That's sound very good."

Marita Thelander 04/21/10
Overthrow the queen?? Hope they wait until the cookies are done. lol.

Some of your words could read smooth as contractions and save word count. (My secret shared)
Edmond Ng 04/22/10
Very interesting story! I can visualize the whole scene and especially “Sam thrusting his plastic sword at the paper waving Meg.” I like how the story is written in true to life setting with sword and paper, and the imagined knight, dragon and queen. It’s a pleasant read.
Amanda Brogan04/22/10
Awww! I love how the kids figured out how to get along and have fun together!

I must say, I know how the Gramma feels. (Wait that almost makes me sound old, haha!) I spend plenty of time sending up those silent prayers for wisdom and trying to convince kids to find some common ground. It's such a blessing when they listen like these two did. I truly love this story. :)

Congratulations!
Ruth Stromquist04/22/10
Made me laugh aloud at the end! Congrats! A fun read that really brought me into the scene you set with the kids.
Beth LaBuff 04/22/10
Sarah...super congrats on your ribbon!!
Noel Mitaxa 04/22/10
Sarah, a well-deserved placing. Your ending pulled the rug right out from under my feet! Brilliant stuff, though I always thought grandparents got on so well with grandchildren because they shared a common enemy!
Congratulations
Genia Gilbert04/23/10
This is a really cute story! Congratulations on placing in Level 3, but also doing so well on top 40.

Thank you, too, for your note to let me know about placing 6th in Level 3. I did know about the boards and had seen it, but it is so sweet of you to take the time to tell me. One of the many blessings of being a part of FW! Keep up the good writing.