The King Proteas

The black sedan was cruising along the mostly empty roads of Hampshire. It was early summer and the sun was just out, bathing the English countryside in a graceful yellow. The golden tinge and the slight morning haze added to the beauty of the lush green fields and the occasional panoply of trees. Adam was behind the wheel, concentrating on the road ahead. Rachel, his wife, sat beside him on the front, busy with her phone. The only noise inside the car came from the back, where their daughter Iris was having an animated discussion with her grandfather.

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The dessert

It had been an unusually busy day at the Sagar restaurant. The inky blue sky showed no trail of the vibrant transformation it underwent throughout the day. The pleasant blue sky of the morning had metamorphosed into a large swatch of yellows and oranges and greyish-purples by the evening. All the while, the people kept coming in.

The restaurant was open well past its normal hours. The handful of workers, including the manager himself were kept busy by the incessant flow of patrons. The frantic activity in the restaurant was mirrored in the kitchen, where the cooks were working and coordinating like a well-oiled machine, albeit in a frenzied manner. Sankar anna, the senior most in the ranks was running from table to table, catering to the needs of the customers, and simultaneously giving orders to the other, less experienced workers. He was the linchpin that kept this entire system running smoothly.

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Conditional love

We hear about this a lot, don’t we? “I’ll love you forever* (conditions apply)” People who overlook the fine print ends up in a well of misery, atleast for a while. And then there is the oh-so-fabled unconditional love.

This following short piece is a fictional take on Conditional love written for the Write Tribe prompt. This was in part inspired by a 140 character fiction I wrote on Twitter some days back:


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A second between life and death

[Disclaimer: This is a work of fiction, inspired by certain tales of gallantry]

An year shy of half a century. Nearly fifty years ago, on this day, it was raining fire and blood on the treacherous passes of the Pir Panjal range. That day, in the midst of the ungodly blizzard of bullets and brutal weather, our lives took a turn none of us had anticipated. No, that won’t be right. Only my life took a turn; for the other two, it ended. No words can capture the seething undercurrents of emotion that haunts the survivors – the ones who won the war, yet lost everything.

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Life, pictured

It has been a hard day. That isn’t something new though. This sweltering heat has only made things harder. People don’t seem to be very helpful these days. Everyone is concerned about their own well being. But then again, I have learned that it is the norm. The uncertainty in my life is shocking sometimes. You have no idea how long I have to keep roaming around till I get enough for the day.

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The lunch

Little Amy couldn’t wait for the lunch break to start. Her Mom had prepared her favourite dishes for her. She opened her lunch box as soon as the bell rang. The aroma of the assorted non-veg platter was quite tempting . It was all she could not to drool over. God! How she hated eating vegetables!

A few blocks away from the school, Anne and her friends were having lunch in the office cafeteria. As she picked up a spoonful of beetroot curry, she couldn’t help but chuckle imagining Amy’s reaction when she finds the hidden vegetable curry beneath the rice.

This is a work of fiction (well, not entirely..this author has gone through similar situations. Several times.), written for the Write Tribe 100 words on Saturday prompt “She had the last laugh”.

By the way, who, do you think had the last laugh here? Amanda? Or Anne? 😉

The helping hand

A delirium. Total confusion. It was supposed to be a mellifluous melody gently wafting in, ever so slowly nudging one awake from the slumber. Instead, it was a barrage of high energy noise – albeit in rhythm, like the crescendo of a power ballad. Each beat felt like a pummelling by a pugilist. After a couple of failed attempts to cut out the cacophony by pulling the sheets over his head, Aravind sat up and rubbed his bleary eyes. Instinctively, he took his mobile and checked the time. 7:45 a.m. – still fifteen minutes to his third alarm.

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The free bird

Mind – arguably the most powerful, yet mysterious conundrum of nature. My mind takes me on fascinating journeys at times. On this lazy Saturday, I have been lying on my back on the sands of the Marina beach, seeing nothing but flocks of birds flying past. Like a video clip put on a loop, the birds kept coming. My mind kept humming the Lynyrd Skynyrd staple, Freebird. It’s been long since I visited Chennai. I remember coming here long back, for my cousin’s wedding. Now, years later, back again to fulfil a forgotten rendezvous with my longtime friend, Ramanathan.

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[Warning! Some blood and gore]

“Wisdom begins in wonder”, proclaimed the wooden board on top of the arched doorway of the library. Officer Patrick Wilson paused for a moment before stepping on to the magnificent athenaeum. The walls were adorned by rows upon rows of books, carefully sorted out and arranged. A huge stained glass window on the far end painted a kaleidoscope of colours on the oriental rug that covered the floor. Everything looked perfect, except for the big splatter of dried blood and brain matter on the stuccoed wall, below the stained glass windows.

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