MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “short story”

Forever alley

© Rowena Curtin

It was in that alley I realised I knew. And I told you too. When you asked me how I knew I loved you, I told you it was because I couldn’t remember what my life was like without you. Before you.

When you became a part of my world, you changed it intrinsically. I couldn’t recall what it was like without your long late-night calls, your random texts during the day to check up on me, our inside jokes, those silent looks that said everything, and so much more that made us ‘us’.

The alley’s name: “Rue de l’Éternité”.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

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Dinner is served

©Jennifer Pendergast

It was a dinner party I didn’t want to attend. But my friends pressed on. “Just put on a smile, as fake as it may be and come. At least you’ll eat well, it’s guaranteed,” they prompted.

I pushed myself to abide.

I had no expectations whatsoever.

And perhaps that was the best thing of all.

That was what made it so great.

Because he was there.

You don’t know it from the start, but all it takes is one person to change your life. To make you fall in love and to not remember how you lived without them.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Looks and truths

© J Hardy Carroll

It was once a tall, bushy tree this one”, he said as they were walking about old ruins.

In a princess’ castle!” she added all bubbly.

Analine was still young with a vivid imagination and the innocence of a sweet child. She concocted stories in her head about a dream world and retained the optimism that it could be realised.

She would soon grow and learn.

That the world isn’t always as prudent as it looks.

That not everyone is happy when you are.

That appearances don’t always reveal true intentions.

That intuition is usually always right the first time.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

The Reindeer Whisperer

He was Santa’s favourite gnome. And the only one the reindeer responded to. Perhaps because he sneaked extra carrots to them when no one was watching. And he listened when they complained they were being overworked.

So, when two days before the big job the reindeer protested and organised a strike, the gnome was the one who was urgently called to resolve the solution.

The reindeer had a list of demands, which included lighter reins, more food, and greater petting time.

The gnome listened carefully and took note. He promised Santa would compromise and fed each with a carrot marshmallow to lighten their mood. He vowed they would get an entire month of rest after the job was completed and that they could choose their relaxation destination themselves.

The reindeer conceded. The gnome was a good negotiator.

So all was resolved. The reindeer were content, the gnome was satisfied with a job well done and Santa was ready – he was actually so pleased he gave the gnome a promotion to Reindeer Counsellor.

Different is also good

© Dale Rogerson

It was going to be different. A destination none had even heard about before.

But that was the beauty of it. Exploring new places together. Boldly going where they had never been.

She didn’t mind, because she was with him.

He didn’t worry, because he was with her.

The important thing was that they would spend this time together.

And it is well known that unity makes force. With them united, they had nothing to fear.

It was different. But it was also wonderful.

Snowy and freezing outside, but warm and cosy inside.

With laughter and love to spread around.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Soulful soft toys

©Lisa Fox

It didn’t matter that they were old. They still encompassed the warmth with which they were given and received.

The soft toys were a symbol of affection. To those who loved them for their fluffiness and cuteness, they were so much more. A company for those moments when you want to be alone and say nothing, a consoling familiar ‘thing’ to hug and make you feel better.

They held within them the essence of the person who gifted them. Because the bearer knew well what to choose and when to deliver it.

They were hung out to dry. Refreshed, revived.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Getting lost

Have you ever sent someone in the wrong direction?

I stared at her, troubled, not knowing what to answer. Or rather, how to answer that politely.

Jenna was amazed at how many people would ask me for directions on a single outing. And that’s in a neighbourhood I don’t even know very well. Heck, I don’t even know my own neighbourhood.

What do you mean?” I responded perplexed.

I consider it an achievement if someone asks me something and I actually know where it is to tell them!

I’m the kind of person who gets lost two blocks down their house.

Yes, it happens.

When you have absolutely no sense of orientation whatsoever, getting lost is the easiest, simplest, and the most rational thing that can happen to you.

I was once told to “just continue straight ahead down the road” to the Metro station, and I got lost somehow, having to ask Google, the GPS, and a passer-by for help, in order to reach the desired destination 15 minutes later.

It happens.

And it is absolutely natural.

We’re not all born with a tracking system or a compass inside our heads.

It’s not easy finding your way around.

It’s actually an accomplishment getting somewhere without a GPS, and if you manage to go alone (helpless) a second time around, it is really something to be proud of. Let alone if you take a different route to get there.

So, you can just imagine the confidence booster it is when someone asks you for directions and you genuinely know the correct answer to help them get there.

Of course, you’ll get a few people lost first before you consolidate the route in your head to be able to pass on the knowledge.

But that’s just something that happens too.

The many forms of love

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So what’s the secret to a love that lasts forever?

She sat cross-legged in front of their old armchair where grandma was sitting. Grandpa just arrived with their morning cup of tea and a rose on the tray. They were by far the most loving couple she knew. Their relationship counted decades and was filled with ups and downs. But they were always there for each other. Supporting one another all the way in their common life journey.

There’s no one answer to that,” grandmother smiled.

It’s all the tender things that show each other we care. The fact that we never stop laughing. Or having something to talk about. We trust in that we’ll always have each other.”

The not giving each other a reason to nag,” grandpa added poking his wife.

It’s the smallest of rituals like having dinner together, or going for a walk. Cooking or cleaning in turn. But it’s also about remaining attractive to each other.”

Keeping the spark alive,” he winked.

Love has many forms,” grandma stated. “You’ll know it in your heart. Because no matter how far you reach that cliff, your partner will never let you fall. We don’t give up in times of trouble; we become closer and fight it off as one”.

Grandpa kissed her on the cheek as he handed her the rose and grandma blushed like a teenager still in love.

Shine a light inside

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There are two types of people in the morning: the chirpy one, who chatters, sings, and is hyperactive from the moment they get out of bed; and the one who doesn’t want a single noise to interfere in the still sleeping zen phase they are painfully trying to get out of.

Miranda was the second type.

Alan was the first.

You can see the problem.

The worst was when the only chance they had to discuss about something was before going to work in the morning because often their shifts did not coincide and they could spend entire days without seeing each other. Despite living in the same house, they didn’t always have the energy after work to talk about anything.

This made it all the more complex.

Because she was also the type to keep everything inside. She restrained herself from expressing what bothered her, be it from the slightest of things – from their online presence, to his behaviour towards others, to her problems at work, or financial difficulties.

The body had a mind of its own, though, and it began to demonstrate its anguish and exhaustion in various forms. The signs were ignored and neglect led to stronger pain in every form.

He saw what she refused to.

How she faded her own light and began to personify that “what doesn’t transmit light creates its own darkness (Marcus Aurelius).

So he surprised her with a week away.

To a place she only dreamed of; where mice and ducks were favourite cartoon characters; where laughter was the only sound you could hear; where to feel the innocence and carefreeness of a child was mandatory.

Learn to believe

Life is not like a fairy tale; if you lose your shoe at midnight you’re drunk!

Oh come on, you’re exaggerating”, she confuted. “Sometimes, we do meet a Prince Charming. Life can surprise us pleasantly”.

Sure, but how often does that really happen?” Her pessimism was disarming.

The teenage girl grinned and lowered her gaze.

We need to believe that wonderful things can happen. You’re never too old to dream”.

Hm, but like Eugene O’ Neill once said, ‘obsessed by a fairytale, we spend our lives searching for a magic door and a last kingdom of peace”.

What’s wrong with that?” she questioned as she turned on the Disney channel. “We become intelligent through the stories we read because we cultivate our imagination, we learn to dream, and we are convinced that dragons can be beaten. Isn’t that the point, after all? To believe that we are as strong and confident as we set our mind to entrust? And that nothing is as impossible as we think? If we don’t try, we’ll never know”.

She left her interlocutor speechless. So much, that all she could do was get the popcorn and share the couch as the movie began.

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