Disjointed, Short Stories – Part – III

I. A Beeping Reminder

Oh, how the beeping was fainting every day! Presbycusis was catching up with him. It was always 22:30, it seemed. A timer for something. He no longer remembers what he had set it up for.

22:30. The last time he had heard from his parents. Many years ago.

II. Hush up!

There is a stranger in the hallway. I have not talked to anyone today. They tell me that I go about deflating other people. I don’t know what that means. What if this stranger is actually looking for someone to talk to? Besides, his coat looks too big for his body. I should tell him.

III. Missing

I was enraged. All the A’s were missing from my cereal bowl. How I loved them! It is strange, but the A’s taste the best. I let my mother know about the missing A’s. She shows me my biology report card instead. There is a C there.

IV. Different

He works six days a week, goes on educational trips, attends seminars, and reads in his free time. He tells them that he has made it. He asks them to not waste a single minute of their lives.

He is her favourite motivational speaker. She listens to him while washing the dishes. Three times a day, for three hours. There are fifteen people in her house, and not enough money for a dishwasher.

V. Changing

My older brother has the best taste in movies. Every Sunday, I call him to get recommendations. However, I had not anticipated how different everything was going to be this weekend. I call him, and he suggests a documentary! My brother had his thirtieth birthday two days ago.



I felt like taking a break from poetry, and then I thought about writing flash fiction. I have shared such stories before as well. The previous ones can be found here and here. 😊

Image by Roman Grac from Pixabay

Short, Disjointed Stories – Part-II

Another attempt at Microfiction. These are borderline ridiculous.

I. Possessed

My phone vibrated itself off my desk one day. It was switched off.

II. Missing Person Flyers

Missing person flyers went missing too. Did the missing person take them?

III. Awake

I gave up on sleep once because I did not feel like waking up.

IV. Bake Sale

The cupcake batter we had made was quite runny. No pancakes were sold.

V. Singer

I could hear my neighbour sing. I was at my workplace.

VI. Directionless

She has lost her sense of direction. Wherever she goes, she is already there.


Disjointed, Short Stories

Being a fan of comic strips, I have been thinking about making my own comics since quite some time. Unfortunately, I lack the necessary drawing skills. Maybe one day I can collaborate with an artist and write the script for comic strips instead. Also, I have recently watched a good show on Netflix- Love, Death and Robots, and it has rekindled my fondness for short stories. With my sources of inspiration explained, I share here a few short-stories that I wrote about an hour ago:

   1. Losers

We did not win because three stones had remained unturned. Plus, one of them had shattered. Unturned pebbles are a complete deal-breaker.

2. Biked-in

I took my bike out for a walk one day. We went to the beach and heard some uncalled-for laughter. We came back home with sand in our feet and pedals.

The next day, my bike took me out for a ride. We went to the movies and attracted some unwarranted stares. We came back home with life in our hearts and handlebars.

One night, my bike and I decided against going out. We stayed at home and nurtured some unprompted sadness. We came back to our senses with a void in our minds and drive chains.

3. Scarlet’s Letter

Scarlet wrote a letter and forgot to post it. As the night darkened, Spirits of Unfinished-business descended and claimed the letter as one of their own.

Scarlet remained unaware of the aforementioned event. She even forgot about that letter completely.

Consigned to oblivion in her writing desk, the letter oozes out demented words into every single thing that she writes. Everything that she writes now, becomes the unsent letter!

4. June

June would look in the mirror and marvel at her own beauty. With sun-kissed hair, sparkling seas for irises and a brilliant, sandy complexion, she would scoff at May and July, oblivious to the fact that she was sandwiched in between those two. May and July, however, couldn’t care less. They often forgot she existed.

5. Grass

The grass was greener on the other side so he borrowed some. Two shades of grass then grew on his side. The other side immediately regretted sharing.

6. No Fight Left

I roll up my sleeves with a great effort and feel the thick, sticky sweat trickle down my forehead. As weariness finds a home in my bones, I am made aware of the fact that there is almost no fight left in me. With my sleeves now out of the way, I dip my arms in the lukewarm, stagnant water and a wave of nausea hits me. I cannot bear to look down. Or sideways. Or anywhere where there is a chance of me locking eyes with the unwashed clothes! I hate doing laundry!




Not Making A Statement


I saw her wearing a beautiful and very intricate gold anklet. It was a remarkable sight. Was it on her left or right ankle? I don’t remember that particular detail, but what I do remember is a strange, blue feeling that had originated in my head precisely at the moment my eyes had acknowledged its presence. One of my friends used to say that it was wrong to look at people’s feet, and that a person who held a grudge against someone would look at that someone’s feet. I must have so much hate to give because I tend to look at feet a lot. In fact, one of the first things I notice about someone is their feet. Maybe it’s because I look down a lot or maybe, I do hold grudges! Anyway, the ankle-girl had messed with my head quite a bit and for a few nights afterwards, both my dreams and nightmares had featured things that I could never wear!

I skipped combing my hair for a day and then it became a habit. I realised that I could save at least five minutes from my morning ritual that way. The time I had saved helped me to not leave for work on an empty stomach. I got myself ugly hats to hide my unruly hair and big, dull scarves to wrap around my head, making them disappear altogether. When someone would complement my hat or scarf with suppressed grins and twitchy eyebrows, I would feel a twinge of embarrassment, but that was all. Soon people got bored and stopped hurling praises and it had gotten easier to carry on with that “look”. Sometime afterwards, I found out that if I washed my face properly before going to bed at night, I could save more minutes from my morning ritual. This idea, however, had backfired, because it had added five more minutes to my bedtime ritual and that had meant less reading time. I simply couldn’t keep up with that. Deep down I knew there was a better way to do things. I could wake up a few minutes earlier to be able to style my hair and wash my face with some fancy liquids, but deeper down, I didn’t want to do any of that! I was choosing comfort over beauty. Or something like that.

One not-so-fine morning, I got into a heated argument with my roommate. We had never fought before and I was running out of mean stuff to say pretty fast. She, however, showed no signs of weakness and then out of the blue, she said something that had helped replenish my stock of nastiness as well.

               “I can look right into your little, eyeliner-less eyes and tell you that I am moving out!”

That had hit home, collided with the ceiling and broke free! Why would my eyes feature in our petty feud? How dare she insult my harmless, all-natural eyes! I doffed my scarf, folded it into a ball and threw it right in her face. She didn’t move out by the way, but my temple often throbs at the point where her sneaker had hit me that day…

Coming back to that anklet-girl who had stirred up a storm inside me; it took me quite some time to figure out why the whole thing had bothered me so much. I was jealous! Yeah, it was so simple. I was jealous that someone could wake up that early in the morning to dress nice, fix her hair and don an anklet (she must be skipping breakfast)! I could not make peace with the fact that someone could be happy with being so uncomfortable. I knew if I wore an anklet, I’d actually start having trouble walking. It might sound totally bizarre to some that something as delicate as that anklet can weigh me down, but it sounds very normal to me, and I bet it does to a lot of other women as well (okay, not a lot, just a few).

There are people out there who think that women who do not wear make-up or dress up pretty are trying to make some sort of statement. That might be true for some. Not for all of us, though. Some of us are just downright lazy!

Mended Shoes

He had left them there! Right at the entrance of the house (if you called it a house anyway) over the heap of gravel, and I had had it! Sometimes a little thing can act as a last straw and you just marvel at how patiently you had been dealing with the bigger piles of trash all along. I could no longer control the anger that now felt ready to burst through my body. They had been right calling the body a vessel for a vessel does have a fixed volume and if overfilled, it could simply break. Mine was about to.

              “I can’t believe you are talking to me like that,”he said in a saddest possible voice. His eyes were bloodshot and I couldn’t help but look at his nails. Chipped, yellow, caked with dirt. Something snapped in me. He was not supposed to look so dejected. Not when it was entirely his own fault. Not when I wasn’t doing anything wrong.

“I am sorry father but I just don’t get it. I am trying to earn us a decent living. We can move up in the society but you just go about mending dead, weather-beaten, filthy shoes. You don’t have to do that anymore!” I tried my best to conceal the anger from my words. I had done a lousy job. He looked more doleful than he had looked before and I realised that I could not go on. Talking to him was futile. He was just going to crush me by looking so wounded. Fortunately, I had saved the vessel from breaking. Yet again.

“Okay but please don’t bring any of those shoes to the house. We don’t need them. I just bought you a good old pair few days back. Why don’t you wear those?”

He shuffled in his chair, ran a hand through his sloppy,sun-burnt hair, and said, “I don’t like the feel of new shoes. I can’t imagine walking about in shoes that don’t pinch you; the shoes that aren’t stitched in all the right places or all the wrong ones; the ones that don’t produce a stridulous noise when you try walking briskly-the shoes that can’t keep you glued to the ground. The ones that you got me didn’t do any of those things. They were too comfortable, son. Too good to be real. Mended shoes never are…”

I sit here and look at my feet now. They look swollen, as if they had been kept in a tight container all day long. The small bones in my feet hurt as well. I don’t know what I am supposed to feel, but I don’t feel really bad about it. Maybe I’ll sleep well today for I feel quite fatigued. I wore my dad’s mended shoes to work today.

(Inspired by a friend’s captured photograph)



Little Things

      My brother and I loved running errands for the man who lives in the old, shabby house at the end of the street. He used to set up a bookstall at the Sunday Market, back when he had a family and his house wasn’t old and shabby. I don’t know what happened to his family, or his house, but he stopped setting up that bookstall my brother and I were so fond of. He hardly got out of the house anymore and me and my brother would ring his doorbell coming back from the school, and would ask him if he’d wanted anything. He always did! Two onions, a bottle of cooking oil, a loaf of bread, toothpaste, a bar of soap-little things like that. We would bring him all those things and he would give us the money and four honey-coated candies. He was a nice man.

  Every year, when the sun starts losing some of its will to burn away, and the trees feel like losing most of the foliage on their outstretched limbs, the folks in our street get embraced in a festive spirit. They end up celebrating small things like good harvest, fair weather, disappearance of mosquitoes and often as simple a thing as a clear blue sky! Autumn can do that to some people. It makes them all excited, or perhaps it instills the fear of impending doom that gets them behaving as if there isn’t going to be any other chance to be happy. Anyway, the folks in our street gather in the Town Hall and play music and stuff their stomachs with sweet, home-baked cakes and cookies. It is generally a good day and a pretty genuine way to make merry. The man who lives in that old, shabby house, however, doesn’t seem to think so. He believes that happiness is always short-lived and it doesn’t do one any good to run after things that aren’t even going to last. He has never been seen at the Town Hall celebrating life!

  Today I heard a very strange thing at the pastry shop. There was a middle aged woman talking about the man my brother and I loved running errands for, with another young woman. The older woman said that the man had been taken to the hospital the day before because he had tried to ingest a poison of some sort. He would have died if it hadn’t been for a boy, with dark hair and a scary scar on the right cheek. The boy had come to visit him and got worried when he didn’t open the door. He summoned the next door neighbor and together they had bust open the front door and found him lying unconscious on the kitchen floor. This has to be the strangest thing I have heard in a while. I am rushing to tell every thing to my brother but there is something gnawing at me. My brother has really dark hair and that scar on his right cheek is pretty nightmarish!

       My brother tells me that we shouldn’t see that man who gives away honey-coated candy, anymore. He didn’t like the way my brother had “interfered” and doesn’t want us to visit him from now on. This makes me sad and I tell that to my brother. He says that it is useless being sad for people who detest happiness. People, who don’t pursue something as extraordinary as happiness only because of it being momentary, cannot appreciate the temporary nature of life itself. I suppose my brother is right. I hope he is!

Not many people survive the bone-crushing, flesh-biting cold that engulfs our town every year. They do end up alive in spring but they usually aren’t the persons they were at the start of dreadful,cold season. They either get inflicted with chronic cough or have to get their toes amputated after horrific episodes of frost bite. The worst of all, according to my brother, is cabin fever. If you stay stuck inside the four walls for good five months, it is a miracle if you can retain the ability to think rationally! I cannot help but worry for the man who used to set up a bookstall at the Sunday Market. He lives all alone and is prone to get hit by cabin fever. Somehow, he never gets it. I think that this year, he wouldn’t be so lucky. This year, he does not want to be safe…

      Isn’t it strange how some of us eagerly wait for the winter, only for one of those quiet, melancholy nights when we can huddle around the fireplace and let fire consume our worries? My father tells me that it is no use looking forward to little things like that and one should always have bigger and better things to look forward to. I don’t agree with him!

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