Book of the Quarter

Dancing During The Storm is a collection of short stories that represent people dealing with the storms of life. There are times when we have to decide are we going to lay down or fight. All of these stories tell of people who are either coming out of, in the middle of or going into a storm. In this second volume, the stories deal with justice, women’s issues and deception.

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Sample Chapter

He liked it. It was soft and sweet, but it didn’t seem to catch on.  He showed it over-and-over how to do it, but it didn’t get it.  It was a small white creature that walked on four legs and followed him everywhere he went.  When the dark came, he would take it back to the others who were like it.

That was different.  All the animals were in twos except for the ones he called Sheep.  A third one had shown up one day.  He wasn’t quite sure where it had come from, but he was starting to suspect some things.  He would talk with the Master about it in the new beginning.

At the first break of light, he would get up and begin his work with the animals.  He would lead those to water who needed water because they waited for him to lead.  He would lead those to food who could not find it on their own.  He would play with those he liked, and run the others away.

Each new beginning, he always found new animals, ones he had never seen before.  This new beginning was no exception.  He had been running with one of his favorite animals when something hit him in the head.

It was a plum.  The tree that held the plums was not close so how did he get hit?  He was hit again. Then he looked up to see something fuzzy, red, and swinging in the tree across from him.  It was laughing at him.  He decided to call it a leaper.

He chased it for a while, but never caught it.  It swung by its arms from tree-to-tree.  He wondered if he could do it.  He tried it and fell out of the tree.  He decided he would keep using his feet on the ground.

As he made it back to the place where he slept, he noticed the animals bedding down also.  The cheetahs purred while they slept.  The horses were standing while they slept.  He thought that was amazing because he couldn’t stand and sleep.

His thoughts were interrupted because something shaped like an ox, only bigger and blacker, was standing between him and his sleeping place.  He had never seen anything like this before.  It had things coming out of the side of its head that had sharp pointy ends.

The two creatures stared at each other.  The large horned creature then turned, walked over, and laid down on the man’s bedding.  He sat defiantly staring at the man.

The man chuckled.  He walked over to the animal and pulled him by the horns.

“Okay, you can’t sleep here. This is my space,” the man stated.

The creature began to snort.

The man walked away into the woods.  He walked back with a long stick.  The creature stared at him with a confused look on his face, but the man approached him with the stick.  He whacked the horned creature on the nose with the stick.  The creature charged the man, and he stepped out of the way.

The man, who was satisfied, sat in his bedding and watched the creature run into a tree.  Dazed and confused, the horned creature came back and fell at his side.  The man gently petted the bruised area and began to explain how he was in charge.  He spoke calmly and quietly to the horned creature until he fell asleep.

When the man woke the next morning the horned creature was gone.  He got up and went to look for his Master.  He always met with his Master at the new beginning.  It was the first thing he did when he woke up.  The man met with his Master, and they walked around the garden. He would talk and listen and delight himself in his Master.

After his time with the Master, he decided he would call the horned creature bull.  He was going to find the creature to tell it.  Before he found the bull, he got caught up with some of the other animals.  The one he called cat was trapped in a tree and the others were laughing at it.  He liked being in charge of the animals.

He fussed at the cat for climbing so high in the tree.  He let the cat go and was about to sit down to rest when he felt the ground shaking.  He wasn’t sure what it was, but he didn’t see the elephant near.  Before he knew it, he was flying across the clearing then landed on his head.  He had never felt anything like it before it, but it was not good.

It hurt.  He stood up, brushed himself off, and looked over to see the bull standing there smiling at him.  He walked over to the bull who was preparing to charge him again.

He looked the bull in the eye, and commanded, “Don’t!”

For reasons the bull could not explain, he didn’t.  He stared at the man with fear.  The man pet the bull’s nose and began to lecture him on why he should not do that.  The man walked the bull over to his favorite tree.  The man climbed the tree and brought down some fruit.  He shared it with the bull.  While he was sharing with the bull, the little lamb showed up.  He loved this particular fruit tree.  The lamb skipped over to the man.

The bull watched the man feed the lamb the fruit, and then the man went off to see what else was happening in the garden.

The bull really liked the fruit from the tree.  One day he went to the tree.  He wanted some of the fruit, but he could not reach it.  He tried to climb the tree, but it did not work.  He rammed his head into the tree, but none of the fruit fell.  Frustrated, he rammed the tree again-and-again.

The little lamb that had been playing in the clearing near its herd saw it and knew something was wrong.  The lamb began to bleat, and the bull rammed the tree.  The bull’s head was starting to bleed.  He was losing consciousness, but he refused to stop.

Suddenly the man showed up.  He stopped by the bleating lamb then saw the bull ramming the tree.  He called out for the bull to stop.  The bull stopped.  The man walked over and tended to the wounds on the bull.

“You are a stubborn one,” the man told the bull.

He spoke softly to the animal explaining the order of things again to him.  Afterwards he climbed the tree and brought down the fruit.  The man and the bull became good friends.  The man fed the bull many good things from the garden.  The bull displayed his gratitude in his strength.  He helped the man whenever he needed heavy things lifted or moved.  Next to the sheep the bull had become his favorite animal.

As the man walked back to his bedding area at the end of another new beginning, he watched the animals bed down.  He noticed they slept in groups.  He noticed there was nothing like him.  A feeling came over him that he could not explain. He felt set apart and different.

When he awoke on another new beginning it was different.  He felt different.  Something had happened to his side.  It hurt, kind of like when the bull hit him and knocked him across the clearing.  There was something on him.  He touched it.  It hurt.  He decided not to touch it again.

The nose of the lamb touched him.  He looked up to see he was surrounded by animals.  They were staring at him strangely.  As he started to get up the pain in his side hit him so he decided to move more slowly.  The animals backed away, and he caught a glimpse of something on the other side of them.  The cat was sniffing it.

As he made his way to his feet, he noticed it was like him.  It didn’t have fur or claws, but it was like him.  It was smaller than him, but it looked like him.

“This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. This one shall be called woman for out of man this one was taken.” When he woke her up, she was amazed.