Heads Up! I NEED Your Vote!

My heart is racing. I want to throw up my hands and scream like the crazy woman I am.

My short story, “Sara’s Whistle,” has been shortlisted! It’s been accepted by the judges to compete for first prize in MASH magazine’s quarterly competition!

You guys, this is my first contest. And I need your support. I need your vote.

MASH magazine asks its readers weigh in on which story they like best. (Of course it’s mine. Do you even need to read the others?) These are 500-word stories. You will not be reading my magnum opus here. It’s quick; it’s painless.

Your vote means I have a chance of winning! That’s kinda fun, right? When I become a famous authoress, you can say, “I supported Rilla in her first short story contest. Yeah, I knew talent when I saw it, even back then.”

You’ll like my story! Read and vote on it here.

In case you missed the link, you can vote for my story here.

If you want me to quit begging, vote here: http://mashstories.com/shortlist/saras-whistle-rilla-zerbert/.

Leev – Ready to Attack

Story 1 – Stories of the Valiant

Forty-five years ago I was sent on a mission to scope out our enemy’s defenses. War with them wasn’t going to be easy–no point in lying about that. Many of my team returned completely convinced we were in over our heads. But that made it all the more appealing to me.

They call me Leev. It means ‘attack’ because that’s how I roll.

Forty-five years ago I didn’t get the chance to take a chunk out of the hill people. The captain called me to his tent to tell me we weren’t attacking that day…or any day in the near future. You can’t know the disappointment that shot through me. My blood had been roiling since I’d returned to camp. My captain saw my shoulders slouch, and he gave me the only good news that has sustained me up to this day:

“Leev, I know you are as crushed by this news as I am, but don’t give it up. You’re going to get Arba’s land. It’s yours, I swear to you. I have it on the best authority. And I mean every place your foot touched down on Arba’s claim–it’s yours.”

That’s been digging at me ever since. I’ve just been biding my time.

It’s been forty-five years now—and I was no young pup when we first went in. At eighty-five I’m just as strong and ready to attack. I’m champing at the bit to take down Arba’s descendants, three brothers. And get this: they’re giants. Arba’s cities and territories—my territories—are covered in fierce, armed mountains of men, all ready for war.

Forty-five years ago everyone in my company, except for me and one other guy, was intimidated by the giants and their grand, walled-up cities. I knew we were ready for them then, and I’m pumped for this campaign now! I know what the outcome is going to be because I know the One leading me into battle. Not only that, my new captain is my old teammate, the one who had my back forty-five years ago.

The whole territory is ours for the taking. Arba’s hill country is mine. Giants or not, just let them try and stop me!

Caleb (Kelev or Keh-leev) – means ‘dog’ in Hebrew. Sometimes associated with rabid dog. [So that’s why I went with the attacking nature.-Rilla Z]

Numbers 13:28, 30-33 However, the people who dwell in the land are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large. And besides, we saw the descendants of Anak there. But Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.” Then the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are.” So they brought to the people of Israel a bad report of the land that they had spied out, saying, “The land, through which we have gone to spy it out, is a land that devours its inhabitants, and all the people that we saw in it are of great height. There we saw the giants (the descendants of Anak came from the giants); and we were like grasshoppers in our own sight, and so we were in their sight.”

Deuteronomy 1:35-36 Not one of these men of this evil generation shall see the good land that I swore to give to your fathers, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh. He shall see it, and to him and to his children I will give the land on which he has trodden, because he has wholly followed the Lord!’

Joshua 15:13-14 According to the commandment of the Lord to Joshua, he gave to Caleb the son of Jephunneh a portion among the people of Judah, Kiriath-arba, that is, Hebron (Arba was the father of Anak). And Caleb drove out from there the three sons of Anak, Sheshai and Ahiman and Talmai, the descendants of Anak.