Linda Wood Rondeau

Snark & Sensibility

THE MASTER'S PLAN
Friday, August 30, 2019 by STEPHANY TULLIS

PLEASE WELCOME

STEPHANY TULLIS

TO

FLASH FICTION FRIDAY

 

 

EXCERPT FROM THE MASTER’S PLAN

PROLOGUE

WOODY cursed as he slammed on the brakes to avoid hitting the car in front of him, his now semi-out-of-control vehicle veering to the right in response to his sharp, unplanned tug on the steering wheel. Accelerating, then braking again quickly, he pulled off the road, skidding to a stop just before fishtailing into the guardrail. Trucks barreled by him, blasting their heavy-duty horns as if he were the culprit.

Close call, Woody thought.

With his head resting on his hands, their grip firm on the steering wheel, he could feel the speed and intensity of the traffic. As big as it was, his Escalade vibrated from the steady flow of ten-ton trucks zooming past him.

Shashoomm. Shashoomm.

The noise from the engines echoed loudly through the otherwise silent early morning. As he slowly lifted his head, Woody didn’t know if the sudden quaking in his limbs was caused by the vibrating ground beneath him or the tumultuous pounding of his heart.

C’mon man, this has got to stop. Enough is enough. How did I let those dudes talk me into this?

The wind echoed his thoughts. What am I doing? Who would believe it? He dared to exhale. I barely made it out of that mob scene.

Rain pelted against his windshield making it hard for him to see the road. He pounded the steering wheel. As if in cahoots with fate, tears now streamed down his face, freely flowing, synchronized with the raindrops that, with increasing fervor, slid from the top of his windshield to the hood of his SUV.

Why didn’t I just walk away from that kid? Man, how stupid can I be? Jake, the bartender and his homeboy of sorts, had helped him escape through a side door when the cops broke through the front of the club. Everyone else headed en masse to the back door, hoping to avoid the bust that was sure to follow if they were caught.

The whole setup was illegal—illegal liquor, illegal women, and illegal gambling—but lady luck was on his side. He had made it out of the club and to his truck without getting caught up in the madness. He restarted his truck and slowly crept along the side of the highway. Gradually building up his speed, he pulled back onto Interstate 85.

It was still dark.

He had to get moving.

If he could make it back to his hotel, he might miraculously escape from the latest of what had become a series of catastrophes. Without warning, he sighted a set of flashing blue lights in his rearview mirror.

He cursed and floored the accelerator.

The speedometer hit 100. Sweat and tears simultaneously co-mingled as the squeal of the siren behind him overpowered the sound of his screeching tires.

“God,” he prayed, “please help me. I know—I know—a great time to be asking. But You are all I have right now.”

CHAPTER 1

SELENA BEATRICE JONES, aka ‘SB’ by her BFF, Dr. Sondra Trotter, ignored the ‘Hallelujah’ ringtone of the downstairs home office phone as she rushed to complete her usual ten-minute (but for today 15-minute) makeup routine. She felt the need to devote a little more time than usual to her makeup this morning if she wanted to look her best for her appointment. As usual, she was running late. And although it was only 10:30, it felt like it was noon.

She had been up since five—a necessity if she wanted to have private time for her morning prayers and devotion.

Her day would not be the same if she didn’t personally touch base with her 21st-century prophetic heroes—TD Jakes, Charles Stanley and, of course, her heroine Joyce Meyer. It seemed like they all had a daily word from on High—one specifically designed by God, and for her ears only. She was currently reading one of Joel Osteen’s books and couldn’t put it down. She just knew Joel was preaching to her ‘cause it was her time.

Thirty minutes on her treadmill, a glass of juice, coffee, and    the usual early morning send-off to her husband, Woody—better known to most as the Right Reverend Woodruff T. Jones, pastor of Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church, Smoothville, Georgia—and she was ready to officially begin her day.

“Right Reverend. Ugh.” Selena worried at times about her personal condemnation of some of the traditional religious practices still common to many churches in the area. She shared her feelings with her husband and inner circle of friends and they laughed at her constant references to the ‘highfalutin’ titles, protocols, and procedures that were so totally unnecessary from her perspective.

Does my Lord and Savior really require all this decorum and religiosity? If I hear one more, ‘Giving honor to God who is the head of my life,’ I will just scream, she thought.

“Oh, Lord,” she mumbled under her breath as she brushed her hair. “I’m so sorry. I’m doing it again. Darn it. Gotta stop it. I keep forgetting, I am the first lady of Mt. Sinai. And I have to accept… that there are still a few things as Pastor’s wife that I have to put up with. Okay, I’ve convinced myself. I can do this.”

She chuckled and continued her one-on-one with the mirror. “I refuse to go to hell over the small stuff, though. I’ve got to pull out my book…what is it? Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff, that’s it. Anyway, I’ve got other priorities right now. The Right Reverend and God are depending on me.”

 

ABOUT STEPHANY TULLIS

Stephany Tullis is a USA Today and Amazon Best-Selling cinematic writer of edgy inspirational fiction. Her books cross several genres including Women's Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense, and Satire.

Stephany currently lives in Metro Atlanta.

Her readers write: " As is the norm with this author, she has a firm grasp on human nature and what makes people tick.”

 

ABOUT THE MASTER’S PLAN

SB is NOT your typical preacher’s wife. She STRUTS her stuff in five-inch stilettos, TOSSING a honey blonde lion’s mane even BEYONCE would envy. 

Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church members are less than enchanted with their Pastor’s new wife, and his daughter blames him for marrying much too soon after her mother’s sudden death.

Weary of dodging her daughter-in-law’s southern comfort punches, SB launches her master plan, a plan of life purpose where she depends on the Lord to order her steps and save her marriage. But her best-laid plans go awry when her husband suddenly goes missing, and a local politician devises a plan to suit them both – and get himself elected to the state legislature.

Unusual and atypical relationships form between government and church officials. Old and new friends, past and present family, make The Master’s Plan a ‘must read’ for everyone struggling to find purpose!

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