MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “fiction”

Mishaps to fortune

https://us.123rf.com/450wm/Prometeus/Prometeus1508/Prometeus150800012/43156028-venetian-masquerade-carnival-elegant-lady-wearing-beautiful-lush-dress-and-venetian-mask-stands-in-a.jpg?ver=6Carol had purchased five tubes of glitter. It was silvery-blue, like the one she had so often imagined adorned the bodies of fairies. She was going all out this year. It might seem as an extravaganza of a costume, but she wanted to feel good and in doing so, she wanted to breathe life into a fantasy. That entailed living it out in full.

But karma has it that some things don’t always turn out the way we imagine them too.

The first clue was when the heel of her shoe broke, while she pranced around the house in her fairy dress to make sure she could walk a sufficient amount of time as a few inches taller than her natural height.

The second was when the hem of the dress got caught at the corner of the living room table, while she was spinning, tearing a very noticeable hole at the bottom of the transparent tulle.

The third was when she noticed that most of the glitter tubes had for some reason cracked open, filling the inside of her shopping bag with a splutter of gluey tinsel.

Carol gave up. She sat on her bed crying at her misfortune. All that time and energy she had spent; all those images she had concocted in her head of her entrance to the masquerade party; it all vanished in a few seconds.

She now no longer had a costume to wear and had lost all desire to join the carnival this year.

A cup of tea and an hour later, nerves calmed and rationale restored, Carol decided to search the attic for a costume. Surely there was something forgotten up there.

She wanted to dress as a fairy, but found something even better – a Venetian princess costume. And with just the right amount of glitter on her chest and shoulders, she embodied the essence of the renaissance itself.

Some things indeed don’t always turn out the way we imagine them too. But sometimes this happens for something even better to occur.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Glitter

The perfect gift

http://5pz91qmfi1-flywheel.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Screen-Shot-2015-09-03-at-1.49.24-PM-640x250.jpgWhat does anyone really want on Valentine’s day? What does anyone want on any day, really? Because 14 February, in essence, is just another day. But it happens to be one on which couples suddenly remember they’re in love, and singles feel the need to demonstrate why they’re better alone.

Susy and her husband had agreed that they were in love all year round, and they would show it to each other as often and as much as they could. For them, this was just another day on which they had an extra reason to go out and enjoy themselves.

Jonah was racking his brain for days trying to find the perfect gift for his wife. He wanted something special. Something different. Something memorable. Apart from the standard flowers and chocolates in a heart-shaped box, that is. So he decided to take her for dinner to a restaurant they had never been before, but one which was acclaimed and seemed to match her liking. She was the person who would get excited with the little things, so she was bound to be thrilled.

Susy, on the other hand, had difficulty in planning the perfect gift. Because what amounts to perfection? She thought of a framed photo of them, but couldn’t chose just one. And she didn’t want to fall into the commercial trap that took over this specific day.

So she did something different.

She took the day of work on the eve of V-day and stayed home to surprise him. She prepared his favourite dessert and planned a relaxing walk along the beach at sunset. The sparkle in his eyes and the smile that stretched across his face when he found her home, unexpectedly waiting for him, was all she needed as an acknowledgement that sometimes the perfect gifts aren’t things; they are moments, people and actions that show us we are loved and cared for.

Something to hide

gondola08She was tired. In fact, she was exhausted. But he refused to acknowledge it. He failed to see how she strived to make her daily routine seem so effortless, while she was camouflaging the pain in the smile she always wore.

He worked hard. And she worked even harder. She tried to support him as much as she could, without asking for anything in return, other than a simply gesture of appreciation, a humble ‘thank you’, a hug and a kiss.

She was sick. But he failed to see it.

Not even when her light was dimming, could he see that he was losing her. She didn’t speak out, of fear that she would upset him too much and that he would overreact, as he usually did when trying to gain control of a situation.

Instead, she allowed herself to wither in the silence of her progressive departure. He was too fixated on his own beliefs to see that something was wrong. And it was only when she left that he realised what had happened. That fateful morning when she was no longer there. When the sky darkened and clouds brought on a tremendous storm.

But it was too late. He had allowed her to drown in her own secret, alone, because she loved him too much to make him worry.

She left with a photo of their last trip together hovering over their bed as an eternal memory.

The loudness of insecurity

girl-umbrellaIt was the first time Max had found himself in a psychologist’s office. He was postponing it for too long; he needed someone to listen to all the things that had accumulated inside him and were causing him stomach aches. The main problem he had to face was that he cared too much – he over-thought and over-worried about anything. Maybe this doctor would be able to show him how to care less, or at least how to not allow things to affect him as much.

Outside in the waiting room was a sign on the wall, a blue canvas with the inscription “Confidence is silent. Insecurities are loud.” It resonated with Max, as he thought about all the people in his life who annoyed him the most and who he wrongly permitted to distress him – they were all people who claimed center stage, those who thought that everything should be about them, who adopted an attitude close to that of a bully, and who pretended to mask their low self-esteem in (often overly) socialization.

For an hour, Max poured out his feelings to the person he had just met sitting across him in the small, yet cozy, room. He found himself telling him stories and emotions that he had never even admitted to himself. Psychologists, he realised, have a way of making you feel comfortable enough to share your inner most thoughts without dwelling too much on what you’re saying.

When the psychologist’s turn to talk came, Max took out a small notebook to write certain things down. They may have been just phrases, but they would help him in changing his own attitude and facing the situations he was forced to deal with on a daily basis.

“Insecurity is an ugly thing. It makes you hate people you don’t even know. More so, insults are the last resort of insecure people with a crumbling position trying to appear confident. Insecure people seek approval. They try to talk everyone down so that can feel superior. Don’t allow yourself to fall into that trap. Try, as much as you can to ignore them. Just don’t interfere in their lives so that they won’t interfere in yours. Remember, you only give them more power the more attention you devote to them. So simply turn the other way. Demonstrate your own confidence by shying away from the spotlight; let it chase you, not the other way round. Do something different instead: build people up, remind them they’re worthy, tell them they’re incredible; be a light in an often too dim world”.

Max left the office feeling uplifted. Sometimes, all it takes is some words of encouragement to view the situation in a different aspect.

The things that matter

pink-rose

@MCD

The day she met him she had found a penny on the way to the store outside of which they were to bump into each other. She thought it was good luck and gave it to him for their three-month anniversary. She told him it might be silly, but she enjoyed looking out for all the small details that for her made a difference. She kept souvenirs and memories of their outings, even dried-up flowers he gave her, in a small box in her nightstand. She felt they granted a special energy to their relationship and strengthened their bond.

He didn’t really pay attention to the penny and it got lost. Or he might have even spent it somewhere; he didn’t remember. He wasn’t the type of person that gave attention to material goods. He felt people and the time spent with them were more important. He tried to offer her as much of his free time as he could. And he tried to please her as much as possible.

But something always seemed to go wrong.

On the day they moved-in together, she found a penny outside his door gate. She gave it to him as a token that it would bring them luck in their new endeavor and in sharing their lives. She found it a few days later still on the TV table where he had left it. She smiled, thinking that he valued it too much to spend or lose. But a few days later, the penny disappeared. And so did her optimism.

He wasn’t too much of an organiser, often leaving things lying around the house for days, even scattered between tables and drawers. He complained lack of time was the perpetrator. And he could not understand why she made such a fuss over insignificant stuff.

She felt he didn’t care enough to cherish the things she brought him.

He felt she was becoming too quirky, too hard to satisfy.

She was about to leave in tears, when he walked into the bedroom, opened the top closet door and brought down a rectangular silver frame. He handed it to her and said, “I pay attention to the things that matter; and that means having you. That’s all I need. That’s all I want”.

He had framed the note where she first wrote to him that she loved him.  She had given it to him the night of the day she gave him that first penny.

Every story has two sides, you just have to have a mind that is open enough to see them both.

The homeless keyowner

http://gretchenrubin.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/keyswhere.jpgWhen Oralia was a young girl, her grandmother had given her a set of keys as a present. She told her that she would spend all her life trying to find a lock, so she might as well be prepared. Oralia didn’t really understand what it meant, but she was proud to own something so significant.

When she grew up, she had the habit of carrying with her sets of keys – be it for her home, the storage room, the office, even her closet doors. For some reason it made her feel important, granting her a sense that she was responsible for something so significant.

When the economic crisis broke out and homeless people began to appear more abundantly in the city streets, Oralia was saddened by the thought that apart from not having a roof over their head, these people didn’t own any keys.

One day, however, the unimaginable happened to her. She got locked out of her own house. And she couldn’t find the keys.

She had left her precious set of keys on her desk at the office that evening, when in a rush to get home, change and meet her friends at the movie theatre. The office door locked automatically and she was not the last to leave, so she was not concerned about that. But when she reached the front door of her apartment building, she felt her blood freeze in her veins.

City life was so asocial and distant that she didn’t even know any of her neighbours who could buzz her in. But even if she did get into the building she couldn’t enter the apartment. And she would have to call a locksmith to change every lock, from the apartment door, to even the closets so she could access her belongings. It was a nightmare she would rather not even think of.

So she decided to go back to the office instead and retrieve her original set of keys.

On the way, she saw two homeless people, one snuggled in a quilted blanket on a park bench and one sitting at the steps in front of another tall apartment building.

She no longer felt sorry for them not having a set of keys. It wasn’t the keys themselves that made them important; it was what they unlocked. And that is what her grandmother meant all those years ago.

The Christmas bell

https://dorkdaddydotcom.files.wordpress.com/2013/12/polar-express-bell.jpgDenis was a child who grew up with stories and fairy tales of fantasy worlds that had no association with reality. He was a child who enjoyed the fiction, yet as an adult became too rational to endure the magic that they entailed.

Denis, however, loved Christmas. The sparkles, the lights, the optimism and joy of the season. But he never liked the fact that his birthday happened to be on the exact same day. It made him feel wanting, as though he lacked something everyone else had – a day for himself.

It was only when he met Nancy that his view changed.  She was a girl who worked in a toy store. They had met by chance at a coffee shop one day, when she was in such a haste that she nearly spilled her coffee on him. As karma has it, one talk let to another and soon they were dating. The good things always happen when you least expect them to.

Nancy loved the winter holiday season too. She dressed up as an elf for almost an entire month for her job and experienced it all so intensely. She was the kind of person who believed that fairy tales do come true if we believe in them. She was convinced that Denis was one of the luckiest people to have the privilege to have a birthday on such an important date. He just had to see it too.

She gave him a small golden bell as a present. She told him it was similar to those on Santa’s reindeers. He shook it but no sound came out. Nancy took it from his hand, shook it a little and said, “can’t you hear its sweet chime?” Denis heard nothing.  She got up and wrapped him in her arms. The snow was falling gently outside, and wood was crackling in the fireplace. “This is all magic what we’re living,” Nancy said with a huge smile. She tossed the tail of her Santa hat from in front of her face and added, “magic happens when you don’t give up. You just have to believe. Believe that things happen as they’re supposed to; there’s a reason for it all. And you are lucky to be who you are, at this very moment, at this very place.” She winked and Denis glowed. He took a deep breath, closed his eyes and tried again. He shook the bell gently and all of a sudden, a harmonious sound echoed in the room.  He could hear it now too.

The wrong turn

https://debuggirl.files.wordpress.com/2013/03/img_43081.jpgElaine knew it the moment she stepped in the door. It was the wrong turn. The wrong decision she had taken. A bad choice. But she had now crossed into it and there was nothing she could do to change it. She just had to survive not being perfect for once.

All her life she was raised to live up to other people’s expectations. And more. She was the one who had to know how to dress right, to behave properly, to be kind and courteous no matter the person or the occasion.

But today, she had chosen unwisely. She chose to go against her instinct and it turned out to be wrong. But she had to experience this too. It would be the only way she would go stronger and wiser for the next time she encountered a similar dilemma.

We often take the wrong turn so that we are more certain when the choice comes in the future to take the right one instead.

Do something more

lucy-sol

©Lucy Fridkin

“Do something every day that scares you”. Her grandmother’s prompt echoed in her ears every time she felt her heart grow sore with exhaustion. She needed a change. Routine was turning out to be lethal after all.

She woke up determined to take that extra step. So that day she went to the café with a view to the port.

It was cloudy, but ships were sailing.

She had time if she really wanted to do it.

She connected to the Wi-Fi and loaded the website. Tickets were booked in less than a minute.

She would finally go to him.

 

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

The biscuit thief

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/1b/eb/a2/1beba29125e4538a9d5eab3a85739e00.jpgHe was pint-sized and looked much younger than he really was. But that actually helped him because no one really took him for a thief.

Simon was a strange type of burglar. He would sneak into kitchens – be it of houses or of shops – and steal biscuits. Freshly-cooked-still-hot-deliciously-smelling-so-tasty cookies were his favourite.

He couldn’t help it. As soon as he sensed even the slightest smell of just-baked biscuits he had to go in. And he took a whole bunch of them with him. Simon had a sweet tooth. But he also had a compulsive urge to steal cookies. He didn’t eat them all at once. Some he even shared with other people – family, friends, even with people on the street.

In his neighbourhood, people began to search for the biscuit thief; then his activity spread throughout the city, and the news was even broadcast on TV.

But Simon was not obstructed. He continued unhindered, and un-caught. This was his thing. To find freshly made cookies and steal them to enjoy on his own time.

One day, however, he ran into the chef just at the time when he was sneaking out of a patisserie kitchen with a bag of biscuits in his hand. Both froze on the spot and stared at each other, the chef’s eyes rolling from Simon’s eyes to the bag in his hand.

“So you’re the infamous biscuit thief?” the chef finally said in a French accent.

Simon gulped. Could he go to jail for stealing biscuits?

The chef had a better proposition, though. He offered Simon the position of official biscuit-taster in the patisserie. Soon, the shop elevated to becoming the city’s best biscuit-maker and was renowned throughout the country.

Sometimes things do happen for a reason; and even if the initial reason is unclear, life has a strange way of working itself out.

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