Posted in Fiction, Series

Forsaken- Finale

4

Lisa jumped with a start as she heard her name.

She turned around but no one was in sight. The windows were slamming against each other as the rain began to pour down. She snuggled under the thin sheets but was immediately woken up by the familiar voice. In a flash, she remembered the story of Samuel and how God called him in the night time. She heaved a sigh, knowing it was totally ridiculous for God to be calling her name. He had nothing to do with her-neither did she.

She slept back for a few more minutes, shivering from the cold of the dark cell.

“Lisa.” The voice was gentle, yet firm.

“You are right where I needed you to be. Finally, you can hear me speak.” The voice continued.

She sat up, a little scared.

“Who are you?” Her voice was a mere whisper.

“I am who you say I am.” The voice replied.

She knew without doubt who it was. There had been times she heard the voice back when she still believed in its existence.

“Why did you watch them die when they loved you so much? Why didn’t you stop me from getting hurt and imprisoned?” The questions came flooding in, breaking banks.

The silence followed.

“There you go again. Bailing out from the mess you’ve put me through.” She griped.

Immediately, she was drawn to the Bible she had barely noticed on the stool at the right corner of the cell. Reluctantly, she picked it up and flipped through the soft leaflets. Finally stopping at where the book marker was. She took a deep breath as she began to read the chapter.

Why do you confuse the issue? Why do you talk without knowing what you’re talking about? Where were you when I created the earth? Tell me, since you know so much! Who decided on its size? Certainly you’ll know that! Who came up with the blueprints and measurements? 

How was its foundation poured, and who set the cornerstone, while the morning stars sang in chorus and all the angels shouted praise? And who took charge of the ocean when it gushed forth like a baby from the womb? That was me! I wrapped it in soft clouds, and tucked it in safely at night. Then I made a playpen for it, a strong playpen so it couldn’t run loose, And said, ‘Stay here, this is your place. Your wild tantrums are confined to this place.’ 

“And have you ever ordered Morning, ‘Get up!’ told Dawn, ‘Get to work!’ So you could seize Earth like a blanket and shake out the wicked like cockroaches? As the sun brings everything to light, brings out all the colors and shapes; the cover of darkness is snatched from the wicked – they’re caught in the very act! 

“Have you ever gotten to the true bottom of things, explored the labyrinthine caves of deep ocean? Do you know the first thing about death? Do you have one clue regarding death’s dark mysteries? And do you have any idea how large this earth is? Speak up if you have even the beginning of an answer. 

Do you know where Light comes from and where Darkness lives; So you can take them by the hand and lead them home when they get lost? Why, of course you know that. You’ve known them all your life, grown up in the same neighborhood with them!

Word after word, line after line, question after question. Lisa’s eyes remained glued on the words that flew out of the book. Awestruck. Tears began to flow as she read on from chapter to chapter.

“Now what do you have to say for yourself? Are you going to haul me, the Mighty One, into court and press charges?” I have some more questions for you, and I want straight answers. Do you presume to tell me what I’m doing wrong? Are you calling me a sinner so you can be a saint? Do you have an arm like my arm? Can you shout in thunder the way I can? Go ahead, show your stuff. Let’s see what you’re made of, what you can do. Unleash your outrage. Target the arrogant and lay them flat. Target the arrogant and bring them to their knees. Stop the wicked in their tracks – make mincemeat of them!

Lisa imploded, falling to her knees, sobbing hysterically. She began to recall details she had neglected as a result of her myopic vision. She remembered the unusual menstrual cramps she had the day she was to travel with her parents. She remembered how she had reacted foolishly by blaming God for the reckless oil tanker  driver that had swerved to the curb where her parents were as against having a head on collision with a School bus full of kids on the next lane. The anger she had held for so long against God began to thaw as ice.

“I’m sorry – so sorry Lord” She kept saying in between sobs.

Her body vibrated as though a defibrillator had been used on her chest, sending shock waves through her veins. Jolted. Her Spirit came alive, as though it had been dead. “Forgive me Lord” She cried from her Spirit in total repentance. Words could no longer come out of her mouth as her lips only opened and closed.

“I have long forgiven you” The voice reassured.

She felt an overwhelming sense of peace wrapping its warm hands around her like a blanket. She couldn’t remember when last she felt this safe. Cozied in the Father’s arms, she slept like a baby.

Photo credit: lovethispic.com
Photo credit: lovethispic.com

Two months later…

The criminals had been arrested and Lisa was exonerated with all charges dropped. She had returned back to church with a new sense of belonging.

In no time, she had turned her family home into an orphanage home which she called the “HOME FOR THE FORSAKEN”.

With every new life she saved, she felt more fulfilled than ever.

Photo credit: fotosearch.com
Photo credit: fotosearch.com

 (Excerpts from Job 38-41, MSG version in bold italics)

For further reading; Job 38-41 and Psalm 27

© Mfon Etuk, 2015

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Posted in Fiction, Series

Forsaken 3: Diamond Heist

Lisa woke up with a start, unsure of where she was. She looked around and noticed the grey curtains draping down the open windows. The strong stench of distilled cocaine mixed with the smoke from burning cigarettes that littered the floor hit her conscious sense like a mighty wave. It looked like a crack house. A sharp pain in her head left her in anguish as a flood of memories rushed in. How long had she been gone for? She couldn’t make out.

‘She’s awake!’ One of the guys exclaimed with a sigh of relief.

The second guy walked towards her, his 6 ft. statue towering over her.

‘What’s your name?’ He thundered.

Fear began to creep into her and she felt nauseous. She wasn’t sure if it was from the fear or from the hangover. She opened her mouth to respond but threw up on his white shoes instead.

‘What the heck!!!’ He yelled, plain disgust lacing his features.

‘I’m sor-‘ Lisa began to stammer before another load of vomit spewed out of her mouth.

Irritated, the man hit her hard on the face as he turned around to go clean up.

‘We should have killed her when we had the chance’ He spat out to the first guy.

‘We still need her. But if she does not cooperate, we can kill her.’ The first guy responded.

Lisa trembled. Her face stung from the slap the surly man had given her.

‘You need to cooperate with us if you love your life.’ The first guy snorted. ‘My name is Sam and he is Paul’ the man continued, motioning to the door where the second guy exited from.

‘My name is Lisa.’ Her voice was a mere whisper.

An evil grin played across his face as he handed her some wipes to clean up the floor.

Lisa remained motionless, pondering what they meant by ‘we still need her’

What did they need her for?


Lisa strained to hear Sam and Paul as they whispered behind the door.

‘It’s going down tonight’ Paul said with gritted teeth.

‘The girl will drive the getaway van while we both go in to get our diamonds’ Sam responded with undisguised excitement.

Were they planning a diamond heist? Lisa pondered. She momentarily glanced around the small house which had only a small window and a single door which she could not get to without passing through the men. She had never stolen anything before and the mere thought of it sent her belly twirling.

As though reading her thoughts, Paul emerged with a silver gun in his hand.

‘Here, you would need this tonight.’ The cold steel dropped on her sweaty palm sending shivers down her spine. She had never held a gun before but had watched enough action movies to know how it was used.

Paul’s back was facing her as she lifted her trembling arms in an attempt to pull the trigger. Snap! The trigger snapped without discharging any bullet. With a sneer, Paul turned around to see her holding the gun aimed at him.

‘You think I’m stupid enough to give you a loaded gun?’ He snarled as his fist united with her cheekbone. Lisa fell with a loud sound.

‘She is trouble’ Paul said to his partner who had just appeared through the door at the sound of the blow.

‘It’s just for tonight and we will eliminate her’ Sam replied reassuringly.

Lisa could taste blood in her mouth from the hard blow she had been dealt. She shivered.

Darkness spread across the sky like a wet blanket. The once busy streets lay deserted as the Van pulled up beside the Jewelry store. Lisa got to the driver’s seat as ordered and her wrist was handcuffed to the steering wheel. She was to be on the lookout for the police and call them if trouble arose. The instructions were clear and curt.

The masked men ran into the store with their duffel bags. With one earth shattering blow, the glass on the front door gave way to the robbers who doggedly rushed in.

Sam and Paul quickly scanned the empty store in search for particular diamonds they had gotten information on. There they were, carefully sealed in a glass case under security protection. Paul impatiently shot at the glass case until it cracked open. They quickly packed the diamonds into their bags along with stacks of money.

Sam’s cell phone rang and he picked it up.

‘We’ve gotten it.’ He answered excitedly.

‘Meet me at the back door.’ The man on the other end replied.

‘Yes boss.’ Sam responded as they quickly packed up the bags.


‘Did you hear that crashing sound?’ A puzzled look played across the policeman’s face as he asked his partner.

‘Yes I did. Let’s check it out.’ He replied as they got into their car.

The sirens of the police car pierced through the stillness of the night skies as Lisa squirmed in her seat, waiting for the guys to come out. She called but no one answered. Using her free hand, she grabbed her gun and shot at the handcuff with the bullet blazing her skin. Dang! She felt the burn on her skin. She quickly started the car in an attempt to run away.

Soon the policemen pulled over and ran into the store which had shattered glass in front. A store personnel emerged pointing at the van driving out of the bushes.

‘There!’ He exclaimed. ‘Don’t let her get away’

In no time Lisa was stuck in a police chase.

Busted!

She stopped.

‘I didn’t do anything.’ She muttered as the policemen got her out of the cuffs into another. They did not hesitate to press charges including the possession of a gun and cocaine which was found in the back of the van.

She couldn’t believe Sam and Paul had left her as the fall guy. It was clearly a set up. Her heart slumped as she watched from the barred room what had become of her life.

If ever there was a God, he obviously did not care. The darkness seeped through her soul like water through cracks in the pavement. The one whom she once loved went to sleep and in came the thief, stealing away everything-including her very soul. Cold. She coiled up like a ball on the bunk bed, embracing her fate.

© Mfon Etuk, 2015

Photo Credit: istockphoto allanswart
Photo Credit: istockphoto allanswart
Posted in Fiction, Series

Forsaken 2: Night Falls

Lisa tried to adjust to the neon lights in the club a friend invited her to. She quickly spotted her friends who beckoned her to the bar. Sensitive parts of her, silently whispering enduring memories of the accident that had claimed her parents. Memories, writhed in a thorny knot inside her, struggling for expression, persistently stretching out through her mouth up into her mind so much that she didn’t need to be told to battle them back down with alcohol.

‘Give me your hardest drink!’ Lisa said to the bartender as she grabbed a stool. Throwing caution to the wind, she was set to drown her sorrows with alcohol.

Loud cheers from friends as she took the first two shots of tequila. In no time, she got into a drinking challenge with Andrew who had been watching her for a while.

‘Ten shots!’ he screamed at the bartender pointing to Lisa. ‘You win I pay’, he challenged. Shot after shot they drank with Andrew who gave up after only six shots and paid for the drinks as the challenge required.

Lisa gave a loud shout as she dropped the tenth empty glass. Her friends roared with excitement at her victorious conquest. ‘Here, take this. It takes away your worries’ Gordon, Lisa’s friend handed a pill.

‘What’s this?’ Lisa asked naively.

‘Just call her molly.’ Gordon replied with a wild grin.

The other friends laughed, knowing molly was another name for ecstasy. The drug that kept them on an all-time high.

Lisa hesitated at first until the crowd started cheering her on. Mouth open, she threw in the pill, and pushed it down with another shot of tequila which had suddenly become a pal to cherish. Grimacing, she squeezed the lime into her mouth savouring its sour taste. ‘Let’s get this party started!’ Lisa exclaimed with so much energy and enthusiasm. She had soon forgotten about the sorrow that had weighed her down for the past weeks.

Amazingly, Lisa came up with fantastic dance moves which left the crowd cheering and dancing along.

After a while, she felt lightheaded and everything seemed blurry.

‘I’ll be leaving now’ Lisa yelled across the room to her friends who couldn’t hear her against the blasting stereo.

‘Are you sure you can go on your own?’ They responded without an iota of concern.

Lisa gave a blind nod and headed toward the door. Unsure if it was a yes or no response. Bumping through people, she set out.

Lisa staggered her way home. There was no taxi in clear sight and the club wasn’t far from home she thought.

Photo credit: onlyjust21.tumblr.com
Photo credit: onlyjust21.tumblr.com

She had not gone half way when she heard deafening sounds of gunshots blazing through the dark shadowy night. For what seemed like eternity, she was frozen in her tracks. Her eyes widened as the head lamps of a getaway van flashed across her face. Piercing through her inmost consciousness. She was in trouble and her drunk head could barely think of an escape route as the Van pulled up aggressively beside her. The screeching sound of the tyres clenched by the tooth of the brakes seemed to have woken her from a distant slumber.  The back door flew open right beside her.

‘Get in!’ he yelled pointing his gun at her. His masked face got Lisa uneasy and her mind flew at a sight of his bare brawny arm. Sweat trickled down her face despite the cold wind of winter as she sat still in the back seat of the old wagon. Everything was hazy, then blank- she fell unconscious with a thud on the back seat of the van.

© Mfon Etuk, 2015

Posted in Fiction, Series

Forsaken 1: The incidence

Lisa woke up to see the time way past what she had expected. She couldn’t even remember when she had slept off. Weary from the tempests of life, she laid with her back on the ground. Blankly staring at the smoke stained ceiling till she fell asleep.

Grabbing her coat from the rusty coat hanger, she stepped out for an evening stroll to clear her head.

After walking two blocks, she met some Christian fanatics who insisted on giving her gospel tracts. “Oh, please!” she thought. “God doesn’t want to have anything to do with me” she muttered as she politely collected the piece of paper from this rather aggressive group, screaming and yelling out lots of religious stuffs she couldn’t make out. She glanced at the paper which had boldly written ‘THE CROSS: YOUR ONLY WAY OUT’. How would there be only one way out? Even airplanes had at least 2 exit doors, she shook her head as she absent mindedly promenaded along the streets leading to the park.

Lisa hadn’t always been so unbelieving. There was a time she belonged to that group of fanatics, a time she believed in God, a time she even wore robes and sang in the choir. She gave Him her all, until…she tried to swallow a tight knot in her throat as she relived the most painful part of her life-he took her all. Some tears escaped her firm grasp and freely flowed down her high cheek bones. It still felt like it had just happened, every time she recalled mom and dad strapped in the flaming car with no exit whatsoever. The car doors were slammed, as the policemen told her after the accident with an oil tanker. Where was God when she sat in the hospital, praying, crying, praying again, and singing? With the stabbing pain that rushed out from the depths of her heart, she squeezed the little paper with all her might. They didn’t deserve to die. They were good people. If He could save others in the Bible she once loved reading but couldn’t save the two people she loved the most in the world, then there was no need to go on with Him.

She climbed a little hill located at the east side of the park they loved going to. It was their favorite picnic spot. Mom and dad always took her there on Saturdays, along with the freshly baked cookies mom loved making because she knew it was her favourite. She took in a deep breath, relishing the aroma from mom’s kitchen. Mom and dad really loved God. They always said she should trust in Him. She wiped a straying tear and looked up to the skies and whispered ‘are you there?’ A part of her wanted so badly to feel his presence envelope her and his love overwhelm her heart. She desperately needed answers to the why questions; why did they die? Why couldn’t he save them? Why did he abandon her?

It had been a year since she last stepped into church or said a prayer or even read her Bible. She suppressed every thought that reminded her of his presence. He didn’t love or care about her and most likely never existed. He was probably just another figment of her imagination.

Mustering all the strength within her, she screamed ‘God, are you there?!’ The thunder roared, the lightning flashed and the rain began to pour down but Lisa was unperturbed by the elements. She wanted closure so bad. She needed to know if He took her parents away just to hurt her or for the fun of it. She imagined He would bellow from the Heavens and give her answers. But He didn’t.

The silence that followed overwhelmed her as the tears began to flow uncontrollably. She had never felt more alone in her entire life. Soaking wet, she began to trudge downward, oblivious to the heavy downpour.

Of course, he had abandoned her. No doubt. The rain mixed with the tears on her face, flowing in torrents. She made a decision. There was no going back. Closed up from love, she picked a new path for her life. A path dark as the night. Cold as ice.

© Mfon Etuk, 2015.

Photo Credit: waitingforbabybird.com
Photo Credit: waitingforbabybird.com