SPF: You’ve Got Mail

 march-31st-20131

You’ve Got Mail

Words 202

Five-thirty! All of a sudden Rhea was energized. Her day at the office had ended. She couldn’t wait to get home and switch to her Rheal personality. Technically a copyeditor but relegated to proofreading, she had found succor in her secret alternate universe.

Scifi world here I come her heart sang as the whole weekend stretched before her. Quickly grabbing her weekly essentials so that she wasn’t forced to move out for supplies she let herself into her apartment. Shedding her baggage, kicking off her heels, plugging the kettle, she pulled open her laptop.

The notification button glowed like a welcoming beacon. Yes! Her blog was finally making waves. The act of writing itself was cathartic and fulfilling yet it was lonely. For fear of ridicule she hadn’t shared her newfound passion with her fellow beings and she was resigned to being unnoticed and unread.

But things were changing. Random page views blossomed to a like here and there. And even (gasp) a comment or two. Gerkle was a particular fan. Obviously a fake name but where on earth was Zeutron?

Hi! Could you tell Zoe on Earth that her Dave’s fine? We could arrange a one-way trip for her and you.

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

This story is a sort of a continuation of a previous flash 😀

Any fans of IPK but more importantly readers of Silver Streaks? Here's a little weekend gift - hope you like.

Brothers in Arms

stock photo, family, sibling, home, funny, kids, rivalry, patenthood

Photo from here

 

Brothers in Arms

Words 250

The only girl among three boys, I was mercilessly ragged and teased.

Their one stop entertainment channel.

Their unpaid servant.

Make me an omelet, one would say.

Coffee for me, another said.

Why me? Why always me? Make it yourself. I stamped my foot and threw a tantrum.

“Fine, I am off to tell Ma, that you went bike riding with…”

Okay fine! Thwarted, I stomp off in impotent fury. They double up laughing. I shake my fist at them. They laugh even harder.

I grow older, taller, and prettier. Besotted, I stare at myself – Mirror Mirror on the wall…

Snickers and muffled gasps from the window still haunt me. “Oooh isn’t she pretty – for a donkey?”

Skirt flying, I chase them around the neighborhood.

Mother catches me and thrashes me.

“Did you hear the poor lil donkey go heehaw heehaw?” They rub salt on my wounds.

They make me buy cricket gear with my Rakhi money. In return they allow me to fetch and hunt the ball from the undergrowth.

School and college bring distances and greener pastures.

I move on with my man, the love and light of my life.

All too soon, he showers me with curses, kicks and punches.

Sporting a black eye, I decline to go home for Rakhi.

I couldn’t face the boys’ howls of laughter.

They landed up to get their pound of flesh.

They whisked me back home even as he lay trussed up in a hospital bed.

***

Rakhi: An Indian annual festival wherein sisters of all ages tie a Rakhi (a decorative string) around the wrists of their brothers, while praying for his health and protection from all evil/mishaps. She in turn receives a gift from them and a promise to take the responsibility of her well-being.

 

 

SPF: Where Ever You Go

227-04-april-1st-2018

Where Ever You Go

Words 201

“Got your tickets? Your ID, your…?” I fussed.

“Relax Mom! That’s the nth time you asked me that.”

“But I didn’t see you check anything even once!” I flared up.

“I have it with me.” He patted his pocket. “It’s not going to disappear…”

“You could check it just to humor me.” I was resentful.

“Like I could not go just to humor you?”

Hurt, I stared at him. “I never told you not to go!”

“Maybe not in so many words,” he admitted, “but your dark dire predictions…”

“I didn’t mean to discourage you.” I was stiff. “I was just trying to prepare you…”

“By scaring the life out of me?”

I looked around the room. “Doesn’t look like it.” I sniffed.

“Would you have been happy if I was?”

Ashamed I shook my head.

“Aww Mom,” He put his arm around me. “Don’t worry so much. Remember how worried you were when I went to boarding school?”

“I wasn’t worried then!” I protested. “I knew what was going to happen, where you were going, what you were going to eat, but now…”

“Even now you’ll know Mom. They’ve promised to do a live telecast of our life on Mars.”

***

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for hosting the challenge and the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.

WPS: Into the Maelstrom

Screen Shot 2018-03-25 at 8.49.48 AM

Photo from Google Maps

Into the Maelstrom

Words 151

“Exams over?”

She gave an ecstatic twirl. “I am free!”

“Free?” I queried. “But what about admissions, career…”

“None of that nonsense for me,” she dismissed with her nose in the air. “I have my future all planned.”

“Let’s hear it.”

“First college for some graduation course…”

“Which course?”

“Whatever I qualify for.”

“Okay. Next?”

“Prince Charming will find me and sweep me off my feet. I will lead him to a merry dance, before agreeing to marry him.”

“Wow.”

She smiled dreamily. “A stupendous destination wedding with both Shah Rukh and Salman Khan dancing and then go abroad for our honeymoon.”

“Where abroad?”

“Anywhere! The States to do lots of shopping.” She giggled. “Visit all the famous tourist spots, go trekking, camping, just him and me.” She clasped her hands. “It will be the most romantic time ever.”

“Nice.” I said. “And then what?

“I haven’t thought further than that.”

***

Written for What Pegman Saw – a story in 150 words or less based on locations chosen from Google Maps. This week we are off to Yellowstone National Park in the US and on my bucket list. Thanks to K Rawson for hosting the challenge. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt, click here.

Enough of Double Standards

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Photo (c) Bjorn Rudberg

 

Enough of Double Standards

Words 100

“Belated happy birthday!” Shipra greeted Deeksha.

“Thanks.”

“How did you celebrate?”

“We didn’t. We are still in mourning.”

“Oh I am sorry.” Shipra offered her condolences. “Last year too you couldn’t celebrate as your father-in-law was unwell.”

“Yes.”

“It must be over six months since he passed away?”

“Yes.”

“Yet your husband attended his cousin’s wedding last week?”

“It wouldn’t have looked nice if he hadn’t gone.”

“So only you’re expected to mourn?”

“That depends.” Deeksha said. “As I am integral part of their family, they made sure I participated actively in the wedding festivities soon after my father’s death.”

***

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Bjorn for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

Of Moms and Sons

dale-rogerson-snow-photo
Photo (c) Dale Rogerson

Of Moms and Sons

Words 98

Do I have passport photos?

Ma

Maaaaaaa!!!!!

Yes. Did you have lunch?

Where are they?

In your wallet. Lunch?

Checked. Not there.

Check again. Did you wish Dadu?

They’re not there Ma.

They’re behind the pocket for coins.

I used those up last time.

There are 4 more. How many do you need?

Two. But they aren’t there.

How will you find them if you are busy texting me?

Did you have lunch?

Don’t forget to call Dadu

Did you find them?

Found them.

It’s freezing today.

Dress warmly.

Zip up your jacket.

Eat something.

Are you listening?

 

***

A/N I tried a new style today, do let me know if it worked. Thanks!

Written for the Friday Fictioneers – a story in 100 words or less. Thanks to Rochelle for hosting the challenge and Dale for the photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.

SPF: An Entangled Mess

22-dawnmiller-february-4th-2018

An Entangled Mess

Word 201

I took a deep breath and rang the bell.

There was no answer.

I let myself in. “Mom?”

Silence.

My heart thudded.

“Mo…”

“Boo!”

I shrieked while Mom laughed hysterically.

“You almost killed me!” I grumbled helping her sit.

She giggled. “It was fun!”

My eye fell on the table. “You didn’t have lunch?”

Pushing me away she stood up.

“What’s wrong Mom?”

“Do you think your Daddy’s having an affair?” She burst out.

“Mom!”

“I wouldn’t mind! He’s never home.” She fussed. “Will you talk to him?”

“I will.” I choked. “I’m going to make poha*.”

“No! You make terrible poha.”

“You remember!” I was pleased.

“I never forget anything.” She suddenly winced and clutched her belly.

The next instant wonder flooded her face. “My water broke.”

I stared at the pool on the floor. “Mom!”

“Mom?” She frowned. “But you aren’t born yet!”

“Mom please,” I bit back a sob.

“My baby’s going to call me Ma,” She sniffed. “I’m going to the hospital. Go call Daddy.”

“Ma…”

Her face crumpled. “But…you aren’t born yet. And…and your Daddy…”

“Shh Ma. It’s okay Ma.” I rocked her like a baby, relieved that Dad wasn’t around to see her like this.

 ***

*Poha: An Indian snack with beaten rice.

A/N. The connection of the flash to the photo is probably obscure. The chopped chunks, garbage trolley, the clear paths, thick foliage somehow reminded me of the complexities of the human brain and its neuronal pathways. I find it terribly fascinating how we hoard so much garbage in our thoughts, some things crystal clear yet others are pushed away, denied or simply re-interpreted. Does that make sense? What about the story? Did it strike a chord? Do let me know either way. Thanks for reading.

Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – a story in 200 words or less. Thanks to Alistair Forbes for the challenge and Dawn Miller for the beautiful photo prompt. To read the other stories inspired by this prompt click here.