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To Gain A Friend's Pardon

Title: To Gain A Friend's Pardon
Author: Kat Lee
Fandom: Original
Character/Pairing: OCs
Rating: PG/K+
Challenge/Prompt: My own challenge to myself to write a Christian story every month
Warning(s): Religious Themes, Unusual Writing Style
Word Count: 5,477
Date Written: 24 and 26 November 2017
Summary:
Disclaimer: This one, for better or for worse, is all mine.





God, what am I supposed to do? I know I’m supposed to honor my Father, but I can’t do what he wants! He wants me to kill Tom, and if I don’t do it, he’ll do it for me! I can’t let that happen! I can’t let Tom be killed! I know he’s supposed to only be animal, but he’s my friend! And You made the animals too! We’re supposed to protect Your creations, not destroy them!

I don’t believe she’s on the TV again! That’s all she ever does any more, watch TV and talk to her stupid friends! But . . . They’re talking about the President pardoning a turkey. Is that You, God? Are you telling me how to save Tom? The President can pardon anybody! If he can pardon one turkey, he can pardon another! He can save Tom! I just have to get to him!






I’m scared, but this is what You want, isn’t it? You want me to save Tom, and I can’t do it by myself! Of course we can only do anything through you! I learned that in church last Sunday. Everything good is because of You, and we can’t do anything on our own. We have to have Your help in everything to su...su...succeed!

But I’m still scared! Tom needs to be still in my backpack. Hey, there’s a truck slowing down! He looks friendly enough. You wouldn’t let a bad man pick us up, would you, Lord? There’s a cross hanging from his mirror! He has to be a Christian! He won’t hurt us! And he’s going to give us a ride! I don’t know how far up North he’s going, but at least we’re started now!

Daddy’s probably going to be scared when I disappear. Suzy won’t care. She doesn’t care about anything other than boys and her stupid friends. But Daddy’s going to be scared. Maybe I should have left a note. But I can’t go back now! Tom’s life depends on me going forward! Oh, well, I know You’re with me, Lord, and I know because of that, it’s going to be okay. Here goes!






God, what kind of monster leaves a kid that age on his own? And what was that thing he had moving around in his backpack? I know it wasn’t a dog. He said so, and I’ve raised enough younguns I can tell when they’re lying. It’s not a dog, and it’s not a cat. Lord, please, tell me, it wan’t no baby in that backpack!

I thought I heard a gobble once, but I know that’s gotta just be all these miles wearing on this old boy. But I knew there was a reason You let the company call me out this Thanksgiving. I was supposed to be home with my family, but You needed me here. You needed me for this little boy. God, I don’t know where he’s going, what his plans are, or what Yours are for him, but please help him, Lord.

Poor little tyke. He shouldn’t be alone out here, ‘specially not during the holidays. But he’s not alone, is he, Lord? None of us are. We’ve got you, and as long as we’ve got you, we’ve got everything we really need. But help him, Lord. I don’t know where he’s headed, what he’s doing, what he’s running from, but You do. Please help him. And please forgive me for not taking him further, but the company wants me in Minnesota by tomorrow. Help me get there, Lord, please, and help us both get where we’re going safely. And, Lord, thanks for the time I did get with my family. Help them to have a happy Thanksgiving without me.






This is a big place! Kinda scary! I don’t really like the way that guy across the counter keeps looking at me. I hope he doesn’t call the cops, see a lost kid and think he can help. That’s all we need! They’ll take Tom for sure and take me back to Daddy, and then both our lives are gonna be over for sure! He’ll kill Tom, and I’m sure he’ll ground me forever!

But You aren’t going to let that happen, are you, Lord? This is what You want me doing. You made me and Tom friends so I’d save him, and that’s what I’m trying to do. You’ll help me do it, won’t you, Lord? You won’t let Tom die. He’s my only friend, God, other than You. I can’t lose him! Not like I lost Mommy!

I’m gonna cry again! I can’t help it! I know Daddy thinks I should be strong and everything, but I miss Mommy so much! And I am strong! I wouldn’t be saving Tom if I wasn’t! But I miss her so much!

Tom’s feathers are nice and soft, Lord, makes me think of that old, blue blanket Mommy used to tuck me into on cold nights like tonight. And it is cold, Lord! I know it’s Winter and all, but can’t you warm it up a little? Please? Just until Tom’s safe and I’m back home?

I hadn’t thought about that! He won’t come home with me, will he, Lord? The President’s going to pardon him and save his life, but Tom won’t be able to come home with me! The President’s probably got some kind of fancy ranch or something where he turns loose the pardoned turkeys. I wonder if he’s ever pardoned more than one? Oh, well. This year he’s gonna!

I need to get moving. There’s a bus coming in thirty minutes. I know thirty minutes sounds like a long time, but it really isn’t. But I’m so tired. I just don’t wanna get up yet. Just a few more minutes . . .




God! Oh, God! How could You let it happen?! How could You let my boy go missing?! And over a stupid turkey at that! I better find him, Lord! I better find him! I’ve gotta! I can’t lose him too!

But what am I doing talking to you, huh? I’m desperate, yeah, but I was desperate with Johanna and that didn’t do any good. You didn’t save her. You didn’t care about my wife. Why should You care about my son?!

But, please, God, I’ve gotta find him! Gotta find him!






Lord, they keep getting younger and younger! Wonder what this kid’s on the run from. His clothes aren’t torn. He ain’t dirty. He must not have been on this life for long. And he didn’t look beaten. But he’s gotta be on the run from something.

And with a turkey of all things! Heck, they kinda look like Janey and her cat, but it’s a turkey for crying out loud! Jesus! What’s this world coming to?!

But he needs my help, don’t he, Lord? That’s why he’s here, after all, why you had me stop here instead of down the road. He needs help. I hope he doesn’t run from me.

Can’t call the authorities. I’ve seen what they do. Poor kid belongs to some asshole of a dad somewhere, they’ll just send him back to him and the boy’ll keep getting beat. Or worse. There are some real sickos in this world, Lord, but I know they ain’t yours. They all belong to the Devil. But this child doesn’t.

Lord, he looks so scared! Please help him to know I ain’t gonna hurt him. I just wanna help him and his crazy bird. Do turkeys bite? Lord, don’t let that thing bite me -- or the kid!






Oh, Lord, I didn’t mean to fall asleep! But you kept me safe, Lord! Here in this dirty bus station with God knows what on the floors and walls and all kinds of strangers around, you kept me safe. And this is the guy you finally let wake me. Is he one of yours, Lord? Please give me a sign. Let me know if he’s one of yours.

He’s not calling the cops, not to me or Tom. He really wants to help us. He’s gotta be one of yours, Lord. God, I’m so tired, but I know Mommy was even tireder and she kept going. She kept going all the time for me and Daddy and Suzy. Please help me to keep going for Tom. I can sleep when this is over, when he’s safe, when his life is saved. I can sleep then.

Thank you for sending this guy, Lord. He seems real nice, and he doesn’t even care that Tom’s a turkey, which we’re not supposed to care about. We’re all Your children after all, right? Hey, he’s gonna take me all the way up to Virginiaxxx! We’re getting closer! We’re going to save Tom yet! Thank you! Thank you, Lord!






Lord, I’m getting desperate! I know I blamed you for Johana passing, and it’s not like You bothered to save her, Lord, but, Lord, please, I can’t lose my boy too!! I can’t!!! Please help me to find him!!!

Oh, Lord, and there’s Suzy, tears in her eyes! She’s been thinking about her momma again, and now I have to tell her her little brother is missing! Please, please help me to comfort her! Comfort us both!!! Help Ralph to show up! Or at least let him be okay and let us find him! Help us to find him! Please!!! I can’t lose my boy too!!!






NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! NO! How could You?! You took Momma, and now Ralphy’s missing?! NO! This can’t be! You’re not a fair God! You’re a mean God! NO! NO! NO! Ralph’s gotta be okay! I can’t lose my brother too!

And he just wanted to talk to me earlier. He just wanted to talk to me, and I was so mean! I told him to get out of my way! I called him squirt! If only You give him back to me, I’ll never call him a squirt again or take him for granted ever again!! Oh, please, God, don’t let me lose my brother too!!!




Poor fella! He tried so hard to stay awake, but he’s completely tuckered! And that crazy bird’s still looking at me all beady eyed. I should do something more to help him, Lord. I know I should, but what can I do? He won’t tell me where he’s headed except that he’s on a super secret mission. Boys that age, they’re always on some mission or another! But they don’t always carry turkeys with them! What is that bird about?!

Lord, help me to help this child! Help me to help Your child! I know calling the cops ain’t the right thing to do, not this day and age, but he needs help. He needs somebody! Why’d You send him to me, huh? Why not to somebody who can better take care of him?

Hey! That’s just the woman! Rhoda, that taxi cab driver I talked with the last time I was here, that’s the one I need to take him to! She said she was always helping the inner city kids, the orphans. She can get him where he needs to go!






What is this, Lord? I thought I could trust this guy. I thought he was one of Yours! But I know even the Bible says not all the people who claim to be Yours are. You’ll turn many of them away at the end of time and tell them You never knew them because they pretended to be yours but never were any good!

But, Lord, what do I do now? They’re gonna wanna take me home, and then Daddy’s gonna kill Tom! Should I trust them? Should I tell them what our super secret mission is? Or maybe just demand to see the President?

No matter what I do, if I make any mention of our plan, they’re going to laugh at us! But it doesn’t matter if somebody laughs at me if I’m doing the right thing, does it, Lord? And I know I’m doing right. This is what you’d want me to do, saving Tom and all.

I can’t just let them take me home! I’ve come this far! We’ve got to go the rest of the way! Hey, Tom pecked her! He knows what he’s doing! We’re outta here!






Oh, Lord, I thought taking that little boy to Rhoda was the right thing to do, but now he’s loose somewhere in this awful city! He’s running scared, and now he’s out there without a friend! Did I do wrong, Lord? Did I do choose the wrong person? Oh, Lord, help us find him again! Don’t let him get hurt -- or -- or worse! Help us find him!





God, why do you put so many people in my path who I can’t help? ‘Specially these kids, this kid and his crazy turkey! All I wanted to do was help the boy, and now he’s long gone! And my hand’s throbbing like heck! I’m gonna have to go into the ER.

I wonder, do turkeys get rabies? He wasn’t foaming or anything, but . . . Please, Lord, don’t let me have rabies, and please don’t let that kid down! He needs somebody! Even if it’s not supposed to be me, he needs somebody!






I’ve gotta be going crazy, God! Ralph wouldn’t have taken that stupid turkey and gone all the way to DC! He can’t be that crazy! I can’t be that crazy!

But the turkey’s gone too, and there’s no other sign of anywhere he might’ve gone. Suzy said his eyes got real big and he seemed to be paying attention to the President pardoning that turkey. And my boy is a little crazy. He’s gotta be. He is mine! Lord, I don’t know if that’s where he went or not, but wherever my baby is, please help me to find him!!






I’m here! I’ve gotta be here! This’s gotta be it! It’s such a big, white house! It looks like it does in all the pictures I’ve ever seen! This has gotta be it! Oh, yeah, and there’re guards standing guard too! How’m I gonna get pass them?

Nah. That’s a crazy idea! I can’t just let Tom loose! They’d just shoot him!

HEY! OW! OW! OW! Lord, help me to -- OW!!! OH, NO! TOM JUST GOT AWAY! LORD!!!! GOD, HELP!!! PLEASE HELP!!! PLEASE!!!






I can’t believe Ralph ran away and took that stupid turkey with him! And now Daddy’s got us going crosscountry after him! It’s a wonder we ain’t got every police car in the nation chasing us at the speeds he’s going! It’s not safe to drive like this!

Oh, great, now he’s got one! And . . . What?! The news is talking about a boy and a turkey! No way! Ralph?! Oh, Lord, what has my stupid brother done now?!

Lord, let him be all right. Please let him be all right!

Why isn’t Daddy stopping?! Oh, Lord, he’s definitely gonna have every policeman in the state on him now! ‘Course it’s a wonder we haven’t been stopped before now! And all of this because of Ralph! Just wait until I see him again!!!

I will get to see him again, won’t I, Father? Oh, please please please please please please let us all get through this okay somehow!! You already took Mom! I can’t lose my brother too, or my Daddy! God, please help us!!






They’re gonna put me under the jailhouse, Lord. I know it. I can see it happening now! They’re going to lock me away and throw away the key, and then nobody will be there to help my kids! Oh, God, how’d You let us get into this mess?!

Ralph’s only nine years old!!! How in the world did he come up with coming all this way to see the President and getting him to pardon a stupid turkey?! God, how did this become my life?! Things like this never happened when Johanna was alive! Why’d You have to take her from us, Lord? Why?!

They’re just gonna have to put me under the jailhouse. I ain’t stopping! I’m not stopping until I blow that White House wide open! My kid’s in there!

God, that was close!! Too close!! But I can’t stoop!! Ralph needs me!!






Lord, this night just keeps getting crazier and crazier! First that kid and his turkey, and then the news that they were planning some kind of secret attack on the White House! And now this!?! Farmer Brown and a pickup truck that looks like it’s a hundred if it’s a day old?! It’s a wonder that thing was even able to go as fast as it was!

Wait a minute! He’s saying something about his boy being in trouble! That’s the father!! Oh my God!!! You sent the father to me!! You really do want me to help that boy, don’t you?! Oh, well, here goes nothing but my license and my job and my life and I’m totally screwed! They’re going to lock me up and throw away the key for helping this fellow escape the cops!

But we’re doing what You want us to do, right, Lord? I’m helping him get to his boy before it’s too late, and that’s what You want, isn’t it? Just don’t let us get fried doing it, Lord!!! Please, please save us!!! I’m not ready to die!!!

‘Course it’d be nice to see my folks again, and my own kids, and my Grandpappy and Grandmaw, but I’m not ready to die!!!

I always knew there was a reason why You taught me to drive so fast but I’ve never been able to enter a race. Here we go! Lord, stay with us, please!!!






Oh, God! Oh, God!! Oh, God!!! I don’t believe the trouble Ralph’s got us all in! But I’m not going to just let Daddy go by himself! I let my Mama go, and now she’s gone! I’m not letting that happen with Dad! Wherever he’s going, I’m going, even if it’s straight to jail! And this is all Ralph’s fault! You’re gonna punish him, right, Lord? You’re gonna punish him good for all this, right?!

. . .

But not too good, okay? I still want my brother alive! Oh, Lord, get us out of this! Somehow, get us out of this!!! Help us to save Ralph, but save us too!!! I don’t want to go to jail! I’m too young to go to jail! I’m too pretty to go to jail!

And Daddy would never survive jail, and we’d never survive without him! Oh, Lord, we need each other! Please save us!!






I’m so tired of this life, Lord. I just want to run away. I never asked for any of this. Daddy didn’t ask my opinion when he wanted to run for the President of the United States of America. He just did it. Momma didn’t ask either! She said she’d never not have time for me, but she doesn’t have time for me now! I hardly ever even see them! I know Butch tries, but please, he’s an old man! And it’s not like he’s really my Grandfather!

I just want to go home, Lord! I just want to go home, and this isn’t it! This place is big and cool but lonely. The other kids at school think I can have everything and anything, and maybe I can -- anything that money can buy, which is not what I want! Money doesn’t matter! You even tell us it’s the root of all evil! I just want my parents back! I just want --

Is that a turkey?! What in the world is a turkey doing here?! Lord, what kind of crazy have You put in my life now?! And there’s a boy chasing him! He looks to be about my age, but where are his parents? What have You done to him, Lord?






Lord, what is that?! Is that a turkey running?! What have You thrown at me this time?! You always think I can handle so much, but I don’t know any more! I can’t give this kid what he needs, and here comes another little boy, possibly even more lost than the President’s son! I know the kid’s lonely. What’s this boy’s excuse, his story?

Oh, well, there’s only one way to find out. I can’t exactly let the guards shoot ‘em! Naive whippersnappers! Some of these boys’ll shoot anything that moves, and that turkey’s sure moving fast enough!

We’ve got ‘em cornered now. We’ll know the story in a moment. Lord, please help me to do what You would have me to do! Whatever that kid and his turkey’s story is, whatever’s brought ‘em here, please help me to help them as You would have me to do!

Poor kids. I don’t know who’s shaking more, him or the turkey!






This is going to be easier than I thought!! That’s the President’s son, and he’s making friends with Tom! Tom’s even letting him pet his feathers, and he’s only ever let me do that before! He must know who he is, know how important he is, know he can save him.

And he can save me, too, right, Lord? I know I’m in trouble now. We both are. But this is what You wanted us to do, right? You wanted me to save Tom. That’s why we’re here! We’ve come all this way to see the one man who can save him! And that’s his son!

It’s going to be okay, isn’t it? You’re going to make it okay! That’s why You had that boy show up when he did! I can’t remember his name! But I know he’s the President’s son. That’s what matters, right?

Oh my God!! That’s the President himself! He’s talking to his son, and he’s talking to his men and getting them to lower their guns! Oh, thank You, Lord! Thank You, Lord! Thank You, Lord! Tom’s going to live!!






Of course Daddy shows up now! Why can’t You make him understand me, Lord? Why can’t You make him see what his new job is doing to us all?! And now he’s going to try to take the turkey away! Don’t let him take the turkey away! Don’t let him kill him! I know he only pardoned that one because he pretty much had to! He’s always saying he can’t disappoint his voters. But he disappoints me. Why does he disappoint me, Lord? Can’t You stop him? Can’t You make him be the father I need him to be? Can’t You make him love me?

Oh, God! What is that?! Oh my God! Oh my God! Oh my God!! How many police cars are after that taxicab that just broke in here?! Oh God, it’s not stopping! It’s not stopping! It’s not stopping! It’s not --






NO! God, anything but that!! Take me! Take me, not my boy!!





Daddy just stopped it! He stepped in front of the taxi before it could run me over! He just stepped out in front of it, in front of me! He saved me! He does love me, doesn’t he, Father?! That’s what You’ve been trying to tell me all along! My Daddy does still love me!!

I’m crying now. The press will have a field day with this! But I don’t care! My Daddy loves me! Oh thank you, Lord!! Thank you!!!






I swear, any time anybody moves around here, all these nincompoops can think of is gunning ‘em down! I know these people are crazy, but there’s gotta be a reason why they came in like that! In all my years working security at the White House, I’ve never seen taxi come through the gate like that!

And it’s driven by a woman! Oh, what a woman!!

Yup, just like I thought! That man’s the boy’s father! Poor guy, he’s terrified! So’s his boy. And the President’s son probably just about messed on himself. Prez is scared, too. Only the turkey and I are calm.

And that woman! Lord, what a woman!

The President’s taking control of the situation. You know, I think he might do all right after all, Lord.






SUZY!!! Oh, God!!! Oh, God!!! I knew it was a mistake to let her come along! But nobody’s shooting at her. Nobody’s shooting at me, at us! I didn’t vote for the guy, but maybe I should have!

Oh, God! Not now, Ralph! Not now! You do not break into the White House, and with all the President’s guards just waiting for an excuse to shoot you, ask him to pardon your stupid turkey!!

Maybe I should’ve just let the bird live when I had the chance! Or maybe I should’ve shot him right away instead of telling Ralph he had to do it or I was going to do it.

Maybe I shouldn’t have said that at all! Is that it, Lord? Did all this craziness happen because I was stupid enough to let my kid make a pet out of that bird and then tell him he had to kill him for our Thanksgiving dinner? Is that it?!

Holy -- God!! He’s saying yes! He’s saying he’s going to pardon that stupid turkey!! And he -- He’s laughing! He’s hugging his boy, and he’s laughing! But I guess . . . I guess this is all kind of funny, having come through all this, gone through all this, survived all this, for a stupid turkey!!! HA!







Daddy’s laughing! I totally don’t get it, but he’s laughing! He’s laughing like I haven’t heard him laugh since before Mama got sick! He’s laughing so hard he’s crying! And the President’s laughing and the guards are laughing and -- and -- All the adults are laughing! What’s so freaking funny?

Stupid adults! And they say we kids are stupid! At least we don’t laugh when everybody almost gets killed! But we didn’t get killed, did we? The President’s ordered all the guns down, and he’s even pardoned the turkey my stupid brother caused all this mess over!

My brother is such a nut! But he is my brother, and You saved him, didn’t You, Lord? You might have took Mama, but at least You saved my brother! Thank You, Lord! Thank You for that! Thank You for him and for giving us another chance! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!





Daddy won’t let go of me, but it doesn’t feel bad. All the adults are laughing. I don’t see what’s so funny except that this was all caused by a crazy turkey, but at least Daddy’s touching me again! He’s hugging me again! He’s holding me again! He . . . He does still love me, doesn’t he, Lord? Thank You! Thank You so much for showing me he still loves me!





Oh, Lord! Oh, Lord! Oh, Lord! You saved me boy! You saved us all! Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!





Daddy and Suzy have never hugged me like this! They don’t wanna let go, but I’m not complaining! It feels so good to have them hugging me! Their hugs are different than Momma’s, but they still feel so good! I love them, Father!

I love them, and I love Tom! And You saved us all, didn’t You? Everything could’ve gone so wrong, I see that now. Maybe it was a mistake to come all this way to save Tom, but no, no, it wasn’t, not really. It’s what You wanted me to do, and You made Daddy and Suzy both realize that they still love me and You saved Tom’s life and You saved me and I’m guessing, from the way the President’s son was crying, You probably saved him too and maybe even his daddy! Maybe even this country!

All of this because I came here to save the turkey You wanted me to save! The Bible’s right! You do work in mysterious ways! Everybody’s smiling. All the grown ups are laughing. Daddy and Suzy still won’t let me go, and Tom’s just gobbling and eating all this up! He always has been a ham for attention! That’s why I’ve been able to teach him so many tricks.

But You taught us all a trick these last couple of days, didn’t you, Lord? You taught me that Daddy and Suzy still love me and that I’m doing right whenever I do want You want me to do and that things will be alright as long as I hold to You. Momma always said that. I didn’t believe her after she died, but I guess . . . I guess it is true. And, you know, I can kinda feel her now. I imagine she’s up there with my Grandparents smiling down at us.

She’d be proud of me. Are You proud of me? I hope so. I’m proud of me! We saved Tom! We saved Tom, and we saved my family, and everything’s going to be all right!

Oh, wow!! The President just asked us to stay for Thanksgiving dinner! He says Tom isn’t on the menu, and he really wants us to stay! You really do reward us for doing what You want us to do, and what a reward!! Tom gets to live, and we get to eat a feast!! And I am STARVING!






“Lord, Almighty Father in Heaven, we want to thank You this holiday season for all the blessings You have bestowed upon us. You have placed a heavy burden on me, Lord, by allowing the country to choose me to lead them, but I know through Your light, wisdom, and mercy, I will be the leader they need -- and I will not lose sight again of what is most important not only to the country as a whole but also that which is most important to me as a man, a husband, and a father. I will not lose sight of my family, or of our new friends.

You have blessed us, Lord, in so many ways, but most of all, You have blessed us with Your eternal love and Your greatest sacrifice so that we may live forever with You. And the second greatest blessing You have placed upon us is each other, our family, our friends, our loved ones. Thank You, Father, for children who are too smart and loving to be blinded by prejudice, rather that prejudice is caused by a difference in skin color or a difference in species. Thank You, Father, for people with good, strong hearts who are willing to help strangers and help those of Your children who need it the most as they encounter them, the lady Rhoda and my son’s loyal guard being chief among those.

And yes, Lord, even that truck driver who first gave little Ralph a lift to come our way, who we hope is with his own family now, and the officer who saw a child in need and instead of calling people who would have ultimately stopped Ralph from succeeding in his goal and meeting all of us called Rhoda to help. And thank You for Tom, Lord, who ultimately, through Your love, mercy, and kindness brought us all together and reminded us of why we are a family and that love always is our greatest blessing. Please help us to never lose sight of that not today or any day throughout the year or however long we each may live. Please help us to always remember to put each other first and to keep You first in all things always, because only by doing that can we succeed in the mission You have for each and every one of us.

Thank You, Lord, for these and all other blessings. Thank You for a happy Thanksgiving shared together and a feast not only of fine food but love that will last far longer than any mere meal. Thank You, Lord, and thank You, Father, for giving me my boy and our bond back. Thank You. This and all other things we ask in Your name, and may we always remember to give You the love and honor You so richly deserve. Thank You. Happy Thanksgiving. Amen!”

The End

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