For the second time in as many days, Darlene was up to her elbows in greasy, fishy cat food. And again, no deposit box key. Instead, she found a note inside a sealed snack baggie:
Nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.
Darlene crumpled it and hurled it at the wall to relieve some frustration. It didn’t help. “That devious, lying hypocrite!” Darlene shouted. She then scrawled her response on scrap paper: If anyone gives a neighbor goods for safekeeping and they are stolen from the neighbor’s house, the thief, if caught, must pay back double.
Fueled by anger, Darlene half-ran to Dottie’s house. She pounded on the door until it opened.
“Can I help you, dear?” Dottie asked with fake kindness.
Darlene thrust the paper at her. “Since you communicate in scripture, here’s my response.” Darlene backed away and jabbed her index finger toward the old woman. “You won’t get away with this, Dottie Anderson!”
When Darlene arrived home, she found Myrtle perched on a stool at the island counter. “Myrtle! I-I’m surprised to see you.”
She shrugged. “I made bail.”
“Oh.” Darlene wanted to ask how she got half a million dollars, but decided not to.
“Did you find the key?”
Darlene contemplated lying. “Um…” She sighed. “Dottie stole the bag.”
Myrtle’s face paled and took on a bluish hue.
“I’ll get it back. I-I have a plan. Here, let’s get you home so you can rest.”
Myrtle didn’t fight Darlene as she led her across the street. Back at home Darlene paced, struggling to devise a plan to back up her words. She caught sight of the setting sun and felt the pressure of passing time. She grabbed a scarf and pepper spray from her dresser drawer. She paused at the door, then retrieved Jeff’s gun from her nightstand.
Her plan: scare the key out of Dottie.
Darlene surprised herself with the crude intimidation she imagined. She feared the darkness.
This is my response to the Trifecta weekly challenge, which is to write a 33 to 333-word response (mine is 333- after much cutting :() using the following word/definition: CRUDE: marked by the primitive, gross, or elemental or by uncultivated simplicity or vulgarity. Note: after publishing, I realized I used the wrong definition of the word. I edited the last few lines to fix it.
If you want to read other responses, or try the challenge yourself, click on the tricycle picture to view Trifecta’s site. Happy writing (and reading!)
Oh, and this is a community-voted challenge, which means that readers have the opportunity to vote on their three favorites by visiting Trifecta’s site after the challenge closes on Thursday, at 8PM eastern time.
This continuation of Darlene’s Story is still in Darlene’s point of view. Click here for Darlene’s Story page if you want to read the entire piece. Thanks for stopping by!