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Monday, September 17, 2018

M³ WHY?!?!?!

            So, when I first became of aware of this story in grad school, my professor asked the entire class a very simple, very crucial question: “Why is this story in the Bible?”

Friday, September 14, 2018

F³ Off With Her Head

            At the forty-five minute mark, hell broke loose in the form of a screaming girl. She drew every eye on the plane, and a flight attendant immediately rushed over. It was the little girl across the aisle from me. The mother was frantically trying to shush her, but she sobbed and wailed, holding most of a doll. The doll was missing her head. The head was in the possession of the boy, who bounced it like a ball from hand to hand until the mother snatched it away from him.
            “Ma’am, is everything all right?” Amanda, the flight attendant I had seen when I boarded, asked. It was a question she was required to ask, bu tit was clear that there was very little a flight attendant could do.
            The mother had stood up and physically separated the two kids by sitting between them. The boy protested to being manhandled by Mom, but she wasn’t having any of it. The girl’s wails became muffled as she climbed up her mother and buried her face in Mom’s blouse.
            “Ma’am, is there anything I can do?” Amanda asked again.
            The mother’s head whipped around, completely startled by Amanda’s presence. “What? Uh, I don’t know. God, I wish my husband was here to help. Tommy, don’t kick the seat!”
            The boy stopped, but he had a look, a look I knew too well. This wasn’t over.

            “And how do you know this?” Nikki interrupted. “I apologize, but you are not exactly up for parenting awards.”
            “Hah! Well, you’re right on that. I know it because I was a boy who grew up and I had a brother who could be a real pain. We fought a lot. We had a flight once to a family reunion. On the flight out we sat as close together as possible to be a family. On the return flight, Paul sat with Dad ten rows away from Ma and I. You can’t lock a couple of boys in a tin can for hours without trouble.”
            “I see.” She smiled into her coffee. “I did not appreciate your propensity for attracting trouble from even an early age. It does much to explain who you are now.”
            “Yeah, well, I notice that my being a trouble magnet brings you by, too.”
            “Oh, but I am not near you because I am trouble, far from it. I simply delight in the excitement generated by its attraction to you.”
            Her smile had become sweet innocence, while my face had become annoyed because she had gotten the better out of that volley.
            “Anyway, the kid was trouble. . . .”

Monday, September 10, 2018

M³ The Solution

            Okay, so Israel puts Jabesh-gilead to the sword, including women and children. But! But, how does this solve the problem? Benjamin will die out, so what does this accomplish? We’re not done yet with the worse.
            See, there were more instructions.

Friday, September 7, 2018

F³ WIP Creative Expenses

            The drive from DeGradi to the office wasn’t very long, and I mostly thought about what I would say to Cassie. No inspiration came, though. In the end, I had to just shoot for raw honesty.
            “I’m going on another stakeout,” I told her.
            “Cool. Where we going?”
            “Me, not we,” I said.

Monday, September 3, 2018

M³ Yes, It Got Worse

            So, we have to set the wayback machine before the war on this one, which is exactly how chapter 21 of Judges begins. See, it feels the need to tell us some of the details regarding the (air quotes) “justice” (/air quotes) they swore against the Benjamites. In particular, the beginning of this chapter wants to call out how all of those who gathered to strike back against the Benjamites swore, “no one of us shall give his daughter in marriage to Benjamin.” Cuz, y’know, they done bad.

Friday, August 31, 2018

F³ An Offer of A Good Time

            After getting off the phone with Collins, I made one of my own.
            “Dumpling, what a surprise,” came Nikki’s musical voice.
            “I need you tonight.” As soon as the words were out of my mouth, I winced.

Monday, August 27, 2018

M³ War Machine

            So now that Israel has God on their side (at least claiming to), victory is assured. And, yeah, they win. Decisively. Israel won hard. They pwned the Benjamites that day. Seriously. Tens of thousands of Benjamite armsmen were slain.
            But Israel didn’t stop.
            They went after cities.
            They killed civilians.

Friday, August 24, 2018

F³ Pain Relief at Terminal Velocity

            After three more zaps, Moron finally figured out he should listen to me instead of scream.
            “So,” I said calmly as we descended at approximately 120 mph towards the ground. “I need you to follow my instructions, all right?”

Monday, August 20, 2018

M³ Asking God

            As improbable as it sounds with the numbers in the respective armies, the first time the Israelites went up against the Benjamites, they suffered 22,000 casualties (Judges 20:22). While tactics are important, a lot of warfare comes down to numbers. With the numbers the Israelites have, they shouldn’t have had any trouble squashing the Benjamites. Somebody screwed up. However, we don’t have any kind of record of the actual battle to determine what went down aside from splitting up their forces as “Judah shall go up first” against the Benjamites (Judges 20:18).

Friday, August 17, 2018

Trust Issues

            “Now,” Flynn turned back to the woman, “we are here to escort you out.”
            “Or you could lead us straight to the Nicks to end us in one shot. I don’t trust you, especially you.”
            “If I was with the Nickel Guild, I would simply give your position instead of coming in here. There are enough tanks in the street to level this building from three blocks away. Now, Doc,” Peter made out the medical corps insignia on her collar, also Alliance, “my ship is trying to slingshot around the moon to come back and pick us up, but we’ve only got one shot before orbit gets too crowded.”
            “I still don’t believe you. Not you.”
            “Mr. Reese, would you please reassure our host by giving your voice print?”
            “Certainly, Captain. I’m afraid we never worked out any kind of code phrase to give. The transmission was unfortunately cut short after we received the coordinates. Jamming, no doubt.”
            “Lita, that’s him,” said a man behind her with a machine pistol. “That’s the one I commed.”
            “Doesn’t matter, I still don’t trust him. You don’t know what he did.”
            Flynn’s semblance of patience evaporated, and he said harshly, “I don’t intend to leave people to be slaughtered, so if need be Eltie will wing you, and we’ll carry you out despite your protests.”