Livin’ la vida Mocha

The last drop of water dribbled from the closed faucet on the empty kitchen sink, just as the quiet snoring of the kids began from next door. The dish washer stopped grumbling after what seemed an eternity and began the silent drying routine. The oven top was shining bright, the kitchen slabs were scrubbed anew and the wooden floor was squeaky clean.

She placed the carafe ever so lightly, the machine began with an understanding hiss like an old ally meeting after an exhausting day in the battlefield. She loosened here hair, leaned on the slab and took in the wafts of coffee rushing to embrace her.

Cradling her hands around the warm coffee mug, she walked towards the TV, only to stop briefly to marvel the neat and speckle free house around her. She dragged her feet gently as she walked, to enjoy the soft crispness of the recently vacuumed carpet.

The leviathan couch flanked by the throw beckoned like a patient lover who’s been waiting all day. Imperial and inescapable, it knew its time had come. She sank in its warmth, realizing full well that she was getting in a trap. She snuggled in the throw, reached for the remote and switched on the TV.

A long swig of the coffee and the invisible lines on her forehead began to disappear…

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My Entry for Inspirational Monday. To know more about Inspirational Monday weekly challenge, visit here.

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Of Men and Monkeys

“Aren’t they cute?” She squealed happily pulling her father’s sleeve to get his attention. Her father glanced absently in her direction and nodded only to get back to his book.

‘Look Daddy what they’re doing now! They are trying to copy me! Mmuahh! Oh look, they just gave me a flying kiss back!”

He sighed and kept the book aside, took off his glasses and turned to his daughter.

“I want you to stay away from them. It’s enough that your “scientist” mom gets work home, not in the form of files or laptop, but a cage of genetically modified monkeys that she then asks me to babysit on a Sunday afternoon. I can do without having to babysit you as well. Why don’t you play in your room and leave them be, let me know when your mom’s back, okay?”

“Oh look, they are listening to you so intently! Can they understand what we say?”

“Question is, do you understand what I say?”

She turned towards him, “What are you reading? Would you tell me the story when you’re done?”

“It’s called ‘Of men and mice’… I am close to finishing it, I might tell you the story if you’d be a good girl and go to your room…”

“What’s it about?” she perched on the side of his arm chair.

His wife entered the room just then. “It’s about a beautiful mad scientist and her lab-grown love”, he said amusingly.

“But it’s called men and mice, are there no men and mice in it?” the young girl pressed.

“Smart girl! I will find out once I finish the book” he laughed.

“All yours”, he winked at his wife and lifted his daughter in his arms, grabbed the book and left the room.

……………………………….

She closed the room behind them and took out a syringe filled with a transparent liquid from her briefcase. Almost on cue, the smallest of the monkeys walked towards the door of the cage with an outstretched arm. As the syringe thrust the last drops of liquid into her, she began talking in a familiar girl’s voice.

Aren’t they cute… Look Daddy what they’re doing now…they are trying to copy me…oh look…they just gave me a flying kiss back…

“That’s enough, thanks”. The monkey walked back to the rest of the group.

She took out a sheet of paper and began scribbling…

Sunday, June 17, 2029: Voice recorded albeit without emotions and expressions but with the right vocal modulations. Another step towards “Living Talking Toms”… still a long road ahead.


My Entry for Inspirational Monday. I used the prompt “lab-grown love”.
To know more about Inspirational Monday weekly challenge, visit here.

‘Shaky’ Sermons

She tip-toed out of the bed and into the kitchen almost on cue with her mom’s snoring. Putting one light foot after another on the kitchen stool she rested her hands on the kitchen slab and stepped on it nimbly. The cookie jar was in the cupboard right above her, she could brush her fingers against it. She just had to stand a little taller on her toes and it would be in her grasp. She crawled her fingers against its round corners and gave it a little push from the sides only to realize a second too late that she was in no position to support the falling jar and that it was heavy!

The jar smashed on the floor with a loud shattering noise breaking the stillness of the afternoon instantly. Mom seemed to glide into the kitchen at the speed of sound.

“What happened here?“ She asked pointlessly. The scene was self-explanatory.  Sarah was standing on the slab, guilty as a thief and the cookies were scattered between ruins of what was moments ago a fine porcelain jar of cookies.

“I, uh… I got hungry” Sarah said giving her cutest possible smile.

“And you didn’t want to eat any of the fruits or the sandwiches I made for you, but had to climb all the way up to the cookie jar?”

Not sure how to answer, Sarah stared intently at the jar as though she could will it back to life.

Mom sighed. “Stay put on the slab while I clean this up. Would you like to have a sandwich?”

Sarah nodded and sat down on the slab watching mom get to work.

Suddenly the windows rattled, and everything started shaking.

“Oh my God, what’s happening” Mom cried out.

“I didn’t do it!” Sarah said confused.

The tremors stopped. Mom picked up Sarah and rushed out of the house joining the rest of the neighbors.

“Mommy, what happened?” Sarah asked.

“Honey it was an earthquake.”

“What’s an earthquake? Why did it happen?”

Mom opened her mouth and closed it. She finally spoke, “It happened because someone got very naughty and didn’t listen to her Mommy”.

“Really, because I broke the cookie jar? But it didn’t happen when I made paper planes from Daddy’s files in the study or when I tried your make-up stuff?”

Mom thought for awhile.

“Well, when you used my make-up, I cleaned you up quickly so no one got to know and nothing happened. When you ripped out from Dad’s files, the paper police came but your Dad asked them to give you another chance. But this time…” Mom pursed her lips and shook her head slowly.

Sarah covered her gaping mouth with both her hands and stared at her mom wide eyed. “I did this! Everyone must be so mad at me!” She said teary eyed.

Mom felt sorry but held on. “Will you be a good girl now?”

Sarah hugged her mom tightly and nodded.

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My Entry for Inspirational Monday. I used the prompt “Paper Police”.
To know more about Inspirational Monday weekly challenge, visit here.

The Alien Exit

‘Cows have four legs?? I thought they were three legged!’

I frowned, but walked on. We were in a park on a weekend, trying to gel in – take in the behavior patterns of humans, and this imbecile!

Thankfully, it didn’t attract much attention. There were a few amused glances. I could hear a girl talking about this comment to the rest of her group as they walked past us. They laughed, she linked it with the falling standards of the education system.

Humans have opinions about everything, they can’t mind their own business. On our planet, we meditate, talk less, live in the present, don’t let our thoughts go astray. But this race epitomizes randomness. There’s so much energy ebbing out of them and getting scattered in the air. It’s only the discipline of thousands of years that’s controlling us. We could weaken them, just the four of us could soak in all this excessive energy and leave them bereft of all their ideas and imagination. We could then dictate and rule this planet. But that’s not who we are. ‘Do unto others as you would have them do unto you’ . Humans call it the ‘Golden Rule’. We have lived by it for millennia, not disturbing the balance of the universe – nurturing, looking after each other. That’s what Voluntia stood for. We voluntians were beacons of peace, benevolence and love. Until those Infelicitans, those liars who came for our help, cheated us, made our planet their own and ousted those of us who objected. The four of us chose to come to Earth. There are others, reconnoitering the fringes of the universe, gathering support against the misfortune that has befallen us.

I am giving up on Earth. They are so divided within, with continents and countries and states and borders, so consumed with the pleasures of money and wealth and so zealous about their outward differences, that they have forgotten what binds them together. They have forgotten the ultimate, fundamental truth that is the very reason for their existence – the life force, the common thread that binds all the lives on a planet. It is all but forgotten, its pulse so weak, I can barely feel it. In such a scattered, divided place, there is no common ground where I can reach out to one and all. What’s worse is that all this is beginning to affect us too. We are becoming impatient, greedy, feisty like them. We can’t stay here any longer, for our own good. We will leave in two days, when we get a signal from the others.

From One to Another (Voice 5 of 5)

Dear Anita,

Hope this letter finds you in good spirits.

Jake handed me your story last week. I really enjoyed it. It took me to a different world, I swam in its waves –  sinking with its troughs and surfing with its crests. You have the gift of imagination, and an eye for detail. Hold on to your dream, Anita, it is a beautiful one – one that will come true if you persevere with it.

You asked for my advice in your letter. I could say many things, but would it be wise? I could, as you asked, tell you how I would have written the story, but then it would not be your story anymore. 

You draw inspiration from your surroundings; I can picture you writing a story before you even touch a pen. That’s how I too was once, before success acquainted with me. With success came its close pals caution and conformity. There will come a stage in your life too, when these three will follow you closely, guiding your every step. Until then, my only advise is experiment, discover, let your imagination run wild and somewhere amidst those wonders… find yourself! 

You have my best wishes and I would be happy to read your stories in future as well. I am sorry if my letter disappoints you, if you were expecting more concrete answers. Writing is a journey and takes its own course. There will be a stage when you will be ready with different, more pertinent questions – I will be happy to help you find your answers then. Until then, try your heart out and write whatever catches your fancy.

On a different matter, and I am taking some liberty here, Jake mentioned you are reclusive at school.  While it is said to be typical of writers to be aloof in their dealings with the world, it is nothing but a sorry stereotype.  Reach out to people, open up to them. You will be surprised how that would impact your writing. You could start with Jake, he dabbles in writing too, you two have something in common.

Looking forward to more stories.

My Best…

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356 words (!)

I decided to write a longer entry this time… About 250% more than my usual… 😛

I have come to the realization that writing longer than 100 words has become as difficult for me as trimming to 100 words used to be once! Who would have thought! :/

This is my final entry for Voice Week 2014.

Voice week is a writing challenge hosted by Stephanie of BekindRewrite to experiment with different voices.

Previous Voices:

Voice 1

Voice 2

Voice 3

Voice 4

The Obliviously Attentive (Voice 4 of 5)

There is so much to write, so much to capture.

That couple by the side-walk… How the girl’s eyes waiver as this other guy passes by…

Oooh, I should write about the old man from the cafe, should he be happy or grumpy?

Wow, look at the shape of the cloud! Almost like a dragon! Perhaps, I could spin something Game of Thrones like?

Maybe a historical drama inspired from the Victorian times… or Greek Mythology?

Even Fantasy is nice, vampires and damsels… Teen drama maybe…

I want to write something that’s never been written before… like JK Rowling!

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99 words

This is my fourth entry for Voice Week 2014. I tried to get in the mind of the girl herself this time.

Voice week is a writing challenge hosted by Stephanie of BekindRewrite to experiment with different voices.

There will be 5 installments coming, one each day, from Sep 22nd to Sep 27th.

Previous Voices:

Voice 1

Voice 2

Voice 3

The Quiet Grumbler (Voice 3 of 5)

There comes the little lassie.

A 3$ cappuccino and takes the table with the best view for hours at end. Never tips, never returns a smile, and never even looks up from her little notebook to enjoy the view! Such mousie handwriting, I write better when I can barely write.

No such policy to ask her away the owner says. I say, we make one overnight. She and her likes will drive us out of business!

“Can I have a small cappuccino, please?”

Sure you can. I have no say in the matter.

I should change my job.

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98 Words

This is my third entry for Voice Week 2014.

Voice week is a writing challenge hosted by Stephanie of BekindRewrite to experiment with different voices.

There will be 5 installments coming, one each day, from Sep 22nd to Sep 27th.

Previous Voices:

Voice 1

Voice 2