Challenger: Larry Young
Length: 200 words exactly
The youngster looked up at the tall, grey haired man as the latter loomed over him. After six similar exercises, it had come to this.
Hands shaking, he gave his work to the gaunt unsmiling figure, who accepted it with a grunt and gestured to the young man that he should sit.
Seeing nothing upon which to plant his behind, he stood uneasily, until a long thin hand angrily indicated the dirty, dusty floor, in which he sat, eagerly.
He was rewarded with a scowl. A short time later, he saw a raising of eyebrows and could detect upset and, dare he suspect, anger?
The sheets of work were thrown at him with great force as the other man rose up. And up. And up, seemingly huge and deliberately self-important.
There was a brief silent pause, before The Scathing began. Merely vituperative and vicious at first, it rapidly got worse.
And then, suddenly, it was over.
He was ushered from the great man's presence and left to contemplate for a while, as tradition demanded.
A short time later, he was taken to receive his qualification and certificate to become A Writer, having been through The Ordeal Of The Bad Review.
© Lee Barnett, 2005