The horse flew ahead, eyes half-blinded by the fog. The exhausted soldier was in no position to command, though he led the horse with a weak hand. They had travelled for days, braving heat, storm and hunger. “Just an hour more” pleaded the soldier to a God he did not believe in. They reached the land of exile, at last. The horse slowed down at the sight of a boy. “Our country is free”, shouted the soldier with a last burst of energy, as he fell down, fatigued.
Thank you, Rochelle, for hosting Friday Fictioneers and thanks to Erin for the photo.
Steph adored oceans, rivers and even ponds. Apparently, water loved her back. That was probably why she was able to become a competent marathon swimmer. Starting with the English Channel, she was able to conquer the toughest of straits. Steph was called the ‘Queen of Channels’ until she encountered the Red straits.
Nobody had conquered ‘The Red’(as it was called) until then and the only teenage champion who attempted died mid-way in 1929. Surprisingly, her separated parents and old school friends came to see her off. Steph understood her enormous responsibility to her country and the hopeful crowd, as she dived into ‘The Red’ with a prayer.
After swimming for 18 hours, Steph was felt invigorated, instead of exhausted. She plunged on, with renewed energy, as she reached the middle of the straits. There were remnants of a wrecked ship. Steph ignored it and swam ahead, her goal in mind. All of a sudden, someone pulled her down. Seaweeds or sharks? Steph felt scared for the first time. As hard as she tried to rise above, she found herself going deep inside. There were further wreckages deep down- parts of an aeroplane. The last image she saw was that of a young man, wearing an outdated blue swimsuit. ‘The sea always claims its own.’ he said, shivering at the memory of 85 years.
This was written for Alastair Photo Fiction.
He stared at the ship, called Victoria. Now was the time to attack, he felt. The ship was surrounded by fog and his men were ready with weapons, just waiting for a word from him. He was about to turn when a moment caught his attention. An elegant woman, aboard Victoria’s deck, was examining something. He, with an eye for these things, could clearly see that the ‘something’ was diamond. Then she carelessly tossed it to the river, as he stared. Now she held a chain, examining it. In a thoughtless frame of mind, he jumped into the sea to retrieve precious jewellery.
The next moment, a squad from Victoria jumped into the nameless ship. “You are under arrest.” thundered the commander. He called a number as the dumbfounded pirates were handcuffed.
“Task done, ma’am”
The elegant lady smiled, “All for some trinklets.”
This was written for Alastair’s photo fiction.
“Somebody has been shot.” screamed Ron, bringing the cruise ship dance to a halt.
“Who? Where?” cried Walter. Then there began a hurried search amongst the dancers. Later, they discovered an old gentleman holding his heart and slipping down.
“Walter, treat him, man. Come along.” shouted someone. The reluctant doctor moved from the dancing room towards the dining hall. Walter, after checking his patient, ordered him to be moved to his room, saying that he would get back to him in a few minutes.
“Hasn’t he been shot?” asked his friend, disappointedly
“Nope. Apparently he had fainted from the commotion in the dancing floor.”
“But Ron said…”
“I know. I just repeated what my dancing partner told me.” said Ron
“Where is that girl? I danced with her, but had never seen her before. ”
“Me neither. She asked me for a dance.”
“I danced with her too. Hey, I am not able to find my wallet.”
Everyone complained of some loss. Ron hurried to the deck, feeling his finger for his expensive ring. He saw a helicopter flying close to the ship and a pair of red heels disappearing inside.
“Monday evening – Read up your biology from four to five. Chemistry lessons from five to six. Learn Physics from six to seven. Just spend half an hour each on English and Maths, since you are so good at these subjects. If you strictly follow these, you will be a class topper.”
Ruslan sighed, thankful that his father had missed the weekends. Just then, his father wrote the weekend timetable and circled them.
A few weeks later, his father breathed these last words before he passed away, “Study. Your future…” The next day, a tearful Ruslan and his mother were evacuated from the house by creditors.
Fifteen years later, Ruslan returned to his house. “Hurry up”, his boss shouted at him. The timetable was still there in the table, though the markings were faded. His father’s hollow voice rang in his ears. “Your future..”
Ruslan took his carpentry tools and slowly followed his boss.
This was the cheapest ornament he could find in the gift shop. However, it glittered and looked huge. So, Larry took it home. Mary looked at the ornament with shining eyes. She dangled it lovingly on the Christmas tree.
Everyday she went over to the living room to check if her precious glittering ball was still there. She touched it and even kissed it when she thought no one was looking. Larry noticed everything and felt envious of the ornament. He started buying expensive designer ornaments for the tree. Larry even went around decorating the house with lights and got a new Christmas tree. He decorated the tree with all ornaments, except the cheap ornament. Next day, he found it in a prominent place on the tree.
Exasperated, he unfastened the ornament from the tree and tossed it away. Mary picked it up from the rubble, “This is the first thing you bought for me in the 25 years of our life together. I would never throw it away.”
This was written for Alastair’s Photo Fiction.
I lay in the couch. A few people stood, still few wiping their eyes. My soul hovered around the room, restless, impatient and anxious. The man I loved stood on the porch, his face turned away from my body. Hardened by years, he displayed no emotion. My tortured soul was struck in the room, prepared to haunt the unloving earth for ever.
All of a sudden, he turned partly around. A lone tear, perhaps prompted by some distant memory, fell from his eyes. In that tear, my soul found eternal peace.
This was written for Ermilia’s Picture it & Write.