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Literature Discussion -


The Tishbite
The Untold Story of Elijah

By Kurt W. Schuller (USA)


Chapter 23

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This manuscript (currently titled "the Tishbite" but I am considering "A Man of God") is unfinished This Is a fictional account of the life of Elijah. It is raw and powerful reflecting the actual state of life at the time.It has a strong sexual theme which is necessary because of the story it tells. It is both inspirational as well as entertaining. It was written to entertain the reader first.` Your feedback is welcome I hope you enjoy.

Part one: A Man Of God

Chapter Twenty-three

Chapter 23

Benjamin stared out from the porch of his shop, his eyes squinting in the bright noontime sun. It was no less hot outside of his store, but at least there was a slight breeze that provided some meager relief. It was nearing the height of summer and still no rain had fallen in almost two months. He looked around the market square and counted the shuttered shops. There were less than half as many since that day he had traded his sandals and became a shopkeeper.  Between Elijah, the drought, and the now open warfare against God and His priests by the king of Israel, the turmoil was taking its toll on the economy. Soon he would be looking to sell as well.
He had given up punishing himself for not heeding Elijah’s advice, there was just no point in it. He had grown expert over his many years at never looking back. Perhaps if his wife had survived the birth of their son, things might have been different for him.  He had loved her as no other and she had always been good for him. When the midwife placed the child in his arms all he could feel was revulsion, as if the infant was some kind of parasite that had fed on his wife and left her bleeding and dying. It took him months before he was even able to look at the boy without feeling rage; rage at his wife for dying; rage at God for allowing it; rage at the boy for somehow being the cause of it all.
Through the years, this unresolved and repressed anger would periodically rise up out of the past and build a wall of mistrust between father and son. About the time the boy reached puberty things between them became intolerable. Between Benjamin’s resentment and his sons racing testosterone, the two were at war constantly. One fateful morning he woke up from a rather vivid and frightening nightmare. He jumped from his bed, covered in a cold sweat, convinced that he had just murdered his son. He remembered looking in horror at his hands, expecting his son’s fresh blood to still be dripping from them. When he saw that they were not he looked over at his sons bed and saw the blanket slowly rise and fall.
He had sat up in his bed and continued to stare at the boy as he slept for what seemed like hours. Benjamin knew that neither of them was happy, and now that the boy would soon be a man, the chance that one might kill the other in anger was becoming too real a possibility. Benjamin packed a few belongings and left his son and their home.
It would the first of many times that he would learn not to look back. Even when he crossed paths with an old neighbor and learned that his son had married and had a daughter he remained stiff-necked, refusing to even let them tell him where his son and his family now lived.
Somehow he had learned to live with all that, so the failure of a shop that cost him a used pair of sandals troubled him little. The heat however was a different matter. He sat down on the porch, fanning himself furiously, when he first noticed what appeared to be some type of nobleman leaving one of the few open shops. He watched intently as the man walked across the street to the next one.
Benjamin began to forget about the heat. Perhaps this stranger was a wealthy investor, looking to pick up a few bargains in this drought-depressed economy. Benjamin began to smile. He might even be interested in buying one of them. He thought to himself.
He scrambled to his feet and began to straighten himself up. Grabbing a broom he hurriedly swept the debris from the front of his store. He ran about fixing up the displays that he had of his merchandise, all the while glancing back at the shop the man had entered, watching and waiting for him to exit. He did not have long to wait.
The nobleman left the shop and turned in Benjamin’s direction, pausing for a moment. Benjamin stood up straight and smiled broadly, setting aside his broom so that he could wave to him. At first the man just stood there, examining all of the other shops in the square. Benjamin stopped waving and his smile turned to a frown, fearful that the nobleman had failed to notice his shop. It was then that the nobleman turned his eyes toward Benjamin. Looking directly at him he headed in Benjamin’s direction, and walked up to the stores entrance.
“Good day to you.” Beamed Benjamin. “It’s certainly hot today eh? What can I do for you? I have a full line of . . .”
“ I am not here to shop.” Interrupted the man.
Benjamin rubbed his chin. “Thought not. After all what could a humble merchant such as myself have that a great man such as you would even want to buy? Are you looking to make an investment? My shop is for sale you know and I am an extremely motivated seller. I can show you around if . . .”
“You and every other shop keeper in town.” Groaned the man. “ I’m beginning to think that this will get me nowhere.” he muttered to himself through clenched teeth. He took out a small piece of linen and wiped the sweat from his brow before continuing.
“Don’t tell me. You knew the name of Elijah the Tishbite shopkeeper, but nothing else, right! Of course! Alright, I’ll be on my way.” Frustrated the man turned to go.
Benjamin began to laugh uncontrollably.
The man stopped and turned, watching Benjamin hold his side as he battled unsuccessfully to control his laughter.
“Just what is so funny?” Said the man looking quite irate.
“He’s crazy you know.”
“Elijah, the Tishbite.”
“Thank you very much.” The man said with a disgusted sigh as he turned to leave a second time.
“ I’ve heard that from a lot of people here today. Have a good day.”
Benjamin was now fully composed and he called out after the man. “This was his shop you know. Did he tell you how he was going to be responsible for thousands- no wait. Tens of thousands- of deaths?”
The man turned excitedly.
“ How do I know you’re not lying?  I’ve been asking the other shopkeepers for hours. Why would no one here tell me this?”
“They didn’t care much for him.” Benjamin laughed. “ They are just glad that he’s gone. But I , on the other hand, didn’t know him long enough to learn to dislike him. But from what they tell me I probably would have hated him too. Who am I speaking to anyway?”
“My name is Obadiah” he looking left and then right. “And we need to talk.”

Continued Next Week

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