It happened one day

I hugged my little girl tight and fought the urge to scream. It had become a mid-night routine. I dreaded going to bed. The vision of the wrinkled man seated on the wooden bench in the park,  revealing his blood-soaked tongue, chased me throughout the day. I would make mistakes in cataloging the books and  put my car keys in the refrigerator. Stuck, I bared my mind to my mom. She gave me a convincing reassurance, advised me to meditate and break the long spell of social slumber. I obliged. Faisal was beautiful. Only my mother’s disapproving glances owing to our religious differences, worried me. On our second day, we went for a drive. The park looked familiar, the winter barrenness lending it an air of intimidating darkness. To my horror, I saw the wrinkled man appear  on the rugged wooden bench, his blood-soaked tongue glaring. I turned back, Faisal was nowhere to be seen. I ran as fast as i could. The only sound i could hear was that of rapid footsteps following me.

Word count – 175

Written for flash fiction for aspiring writers based on this week’s photo prompt . Thanks to priceless joy for hosting the challenge.

This week’s photo prompt is provided by Fandango. Thank you Fandango!

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High and free

Through the colorless window of his yellow bus, Adam caught a glimpse of the park with its intimidating rides and eager vendors.

His ‘yes’ to  cousins regarding the visit to carnival was more in self- defense against his father’s routine  inebriated punishments.

The lively world of the carnival  was far removed from his mother’s mechanical supervision and his spotless test sheets.

‘Rrr riideess?’, they asked imitating Adam’s speech.

Disregarding Adam’s ‘fear of heights’ and coating it  with their selfish laughter, they dragged him to the Ferris wheel.

The wheel took off to the sky. Adam soared, free like a bird.

Word count – 100

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by the talented author and  artist Rochelle Wisoff-Fields .  Many thanks, dear Rochelle.

PHOTO PROMPT © J Hardy Carroll

Time and again

Shuffling between a demanding job, evening classes, household chores and a million tasks over the weekends, something had escaped me for three long weeks, until her aching voice wove a serpentine  web of guilt.

She had steadied my hands at the steering wheel, never re-married despite all the rumors on her heart, always gestured ‘you can’ and ‘after you’.

With the residual gratitude in me, I rushed. To her.

Grasses stood tall in her once impeccable lawn,  the cobwebs hung like showpieces from the ceiling.

Beside her withered pots, she sat smiling giving me yet another  chance to err.

 

Word count – 99

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by the talented author and  artist Rochelle Wisoff-Fields. Thank you, Rochelle.

PHOTO PROMPT © Victor and Sarah Potter

 

A white hell

Munni had never seen a more lavish place or guests more lavishly dressed.

She witnessed cascading smiles in every corner as though it were a happiness garden.

In the distance resonated the tireless wail of her little sister. She grew impatient. She had to return before it was too late.

Ill-at-ease in the elegant place, Munni dragged her shy feet through mocking, scornful rows and pleaded for some food for her famished, little sister.

They named her a beggar and drove her out.

Minutes later, Munni’s battered body was found on the street with the mob hurling the word ‘thief’.

Word count- 100

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by the talented author and  artist Rochelle Wisoff-Fields .  Grateful for your kindness and support, Rochelle.

PHOTO PROMPT © Roger Bultot

Spin a wheel

Mesmerized by clouds floating on the mountain, she paused. She closed her eyes to inhale the holy air and soaked in its peace. The dream flashed again. His eyes were calm and affectionate, as ever. Wiping her tears, she walked on. Smiling little monks greeted her  at the monastery’s entrance. The Buddha and the holy chants transported her to  another universe. She took a deep breath, spun the prayer wheel and waited for the dream to transpire. As the holy prayer wheel came to rest, like clouds floating on  mountains, he appeared. She wished for the moment to never fade.

Word Count- 100

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by the talented author and  artist Rochelle Wisoff-Fields .  Many thanks, dear Rochelle.

PHOTO PROMPT © Ted Strutz. Thank you, Ted.

 

The reunion

‘Such a wonderful surprise’, Rose hugs the lady sitting behind the hat stall.

The worn-out lady looks clueless, making the warm hug a lost cause.

‘Shireen, I am Rose’

Rose takes Shireen down 25 years to their serene school chapel, the vibrant playground and the animated  classrooms. Ripples of recognition fill Shireen’s exhausted eyes.

‘Did you knit these lovely hats?’

‘No, I order seasonal items in small batches. Business has been really slow with my husband gone.’

Rose feels guilty about her posh resort and full life.

‘I am going to be that friend in need’, Rose decides.

Word count – 97

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle. Thanks dear Rochelle for hosting the challenge.

PHOTO PROMPT © Björn Rudberg. Thank you, Bjorn.

 

 

 

A whole new meaning

You would probably find it totally ordinary, plain, pointless.

It amazes me how irrelevant and trivial my life snippets are, yes, to even those who claim to care.

Take for instance, the picture of this lamppost. I had captured it near the Cathedral, on my way back from the University.

What makes the picture and the evening memorable is that I had a gentle, warm hand to hold mine, to add meaning to the otherwise bleak photo series.

You see, how  we are celebrating life under the same lamppost.

There’s a certain contentment in asserting ‘I have lived and loved’.

 

Word count -100

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle. Thanks dear Rochelle for hosting the challenge.

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook. Thank you Sandra for our photo prompt.