Elizabeth is the kind of student that teachers, like me, called perfect. She always tops the exams—no matter how easy or difficult—then attends classes, even if it’s raining hard and she’s got a fever or flu, then she always comes on time, does every assignment and project you asked for, can answer questions during recitation, teaches her classmates who cannot cope up with the lessons, always has a warm smile for everyone, never cheats, and most of all, never proud. Continue Reading
She had never expected it to look like this. She had been to many other psyches (that is what she preferred to call it) before of different persons, and none of them had this kind of feel, this look, and this very peculiar archaic-like atmosphere. Although she knew at once (at the first time their eyes had met) that he is different from most people, yet she still just couldn’t believe this utter unrest, and chaos, and this archaic-feel inside his soul (or psyche, as what she really preferred to call).
“W-what are you?” was the first question that came to her mind when she saw the endless piles of old books, the overthrown chairs and wooden tables, the ancient portraits hanging on the washed-out walls, the unlikely trees that sprouted at the middle, and the green leaves that scattered on the floors. The air around was very dry, and still. It smelled just as you might expect from smelling an old book.
He smiled to her at the mention of her question.
Up until now, they were sitting across each other, with the table in between them, and she was holding his hands, palm-to-palm, and her eyes were tightly shut. He, on the other hand, was having a good time observing this young beautiful lady before him. “What a weird talent she has. If only her talent had been the usual singing or dancing, she would probably make it to Hollywood.” But of course, he didn’t say that to her. Instead he replied:
“Would I seek for your assistance if I knew?”
She was surprised with the sudden response, so surprised (probably even more surprised than if he would say that Hollywood thing in his mind) that she quickly gotten out of her trance; then she took her hands away from his, and shot him a hard look.
What he didn’t notice (an honest but weird mistake) was that the question she asked was a question she threw on her mind, not on him, therefore he couldn’t possibly hear her, yet he did (which later would puzzle him too).
“What!?” he said, also surprised by the sudden snappiness of the girl.
“Is there something that I should know Mister, before I proceed?” she said.
She was clearly referring to the fact that he had answer a question that she didn’t verbalize. But he didn’t notice at it was really an honest but weird mistake.
So he said, “What — have you found already something?”
“Apparently, yes,” she said, “besides the fact that you such have a cluttered soul, it also seems that you can read minds.”
“Oh,” was his only response. He didn’t know that he could read minds nor he has a cluttered soul, but now that the girl said it, he suddenly felt that she was right.
By the way, before I tell you what happen next, let me first tell you the reason why he came to her.
She was a soul reader, or psyche reader (as she preferred to call), and she has been doing this ever since she learned what ABC is. It was a one of a kind talent, a gift, or maybe a curse, that she could read and see the depths of anyone’s soul by the mere act of touching them, especially their hands. Because of her talent, people avoided her at all cost, except only if they needed her expertise.
He, on the other hand, was a traveller or more of just a mere wanderer since he has really no specific destination in his mind. Worst of it, he never knew himself. He didn’t know who he was, what his name is, or his age, or whether he has parents and information like that. He couldn’t even remember his first memory. He first learned about her through rumours at the city (he had unconsciously read their thoughts), that there was this young lady who lives at the heart of the forest that could read souls. And since he wanted to know something about himself, he set on a journey through the forest (with many unexpected difficulties he had ever encounter in his years of wandering— yet, this is another story) to see who this girl was. To cut it short, before he almost gave up, he saw the girl, and the rest was what had happened above.
So now that you have an idea who they are, what happened next was this.
“So, Mister, would you mind telling me who you are?” she said.
“I have told you before, I really don’t know. And I’m here to know. And I thought you would be of help,” he said.
She looked hard on his eyes, and even though she wasn’t touching him, she felt and just knew that he was telling the truth.
“There’s something wrong – I mean – different in your soul. May I know how old are you, Mister?”
“I—I have no idea,” he said.
“Well, this would be difficult. There was just so much inside you – so much clutter and chaos – and all those books! Do you know how many books a usual person has in there?” she said, while pointing in his head.
“How many?” he said.
“Yes. Just one, and that one book contains all info about that person since birth till present. Usually, I learn about the person depending on where his or her Book is located, or how big or thick the Book is, the color, the quality of pages, the things that you will see inside, how many blank pages, its heaviness, the aura of the Book, and whether it is titled or not, and a lot more!” she said, “But you!”
“Why? What’s different with my Book?” he said, wondering how his ‘book’ could be different from others. Then he said, suddenly realizing, “Oh! Don’t tell me you didn’t find any book?”
“Silly. It would be much easier if I haven’t found a book, because it only means that the Book is hidden. But in your case, I have found a lot of books – more than a dozen or hundreds!”
This time an “Oh” was his only response again.
“What now, are you willing to go on?” she said.
“Can you…,” he said, and stopped. He did not know what he really wanted her to do.
“I can. I can find your Book. I can find you. But it will be difficult. And of course, as with all others, it would come with a great price. How much can you give me?” she said, this time she smiled for the first time, a beautiful cunning smile.
This time (and this was the third time) an “Oh” was his only response again.
Actually, I was just really so bored and wanted to write anything, just anything! (I just realize that writing stories can be addicting.) And I wanted to practice too! So you might find that the whole story, although long, is pretty much chaotic with really no definitive plot.
I looked at him and I saw in his eyes the feeling of frustration. It was slowly creeping into his being, he might not know it yet, but I’m sure, sooner or later, he would give up and think that all of it was just a worthless and crazy pursuit.
I first saw him just this afternoon, and as I conversed with the Tree, I learned that he had been sitting there since yesterday—not moving a single limb, and he was perfectly doing the secret ritual only known to nature, and to us, Beings of nature.
“What are you up to, young mortal?” I asked—more to myself than to him, while pacing in front of him.
In fact, I’d been doing a lot of pacing ever since the Wind whispered to me that somebody had found the Enchanted Tree—the tree that had been hidden since the beginning of time, the tree that could only be found by mortals with pure unbreakable great desire—and was attempting the secret ritual.
It had been such a long time since someone had attempted to do the ritual, and when I said long, it’s more than any mortal could imagine. Our time frame is different from mortal’s perception of Time, because Time is nonexistent for Beings who know Eternity.
I even thought that the Wind was kidding me in saying that, and then I remembered that it was foolish for me to think so, because the Winds are one of the most serious beings of nature and they never lie even if most of the time, what they say are almost unbelievable and even hilarious.
The sun would soon be down. And if he would continue in doing the ritual, the Enchanted Tree and I would soon be left with no choice but to grant his wish, any wish—no matter how wicked or noble.
I sat in front of him, studying his face. His gaze was directly at me, as if he could see me, but of course that is impossible. He has such a fine-looking face, and his skin is as white as clouds, and his presence stood out like a sparkling star from the darkening forest.
“I wonder what you’ll be wishing for,” I said, wondering out loud. “Judging from your looks, you surely must come from a very affluent family, so maybe it can’t be wealth. Is it love? But you have such a handsome face to even have a problem for capturing any girl’s heart! Power? Hmm, maybe not, for you doesn’t have an air of greediness. How about health? For you or for your love ones? Or maybe you’ll be wishing for immortality? Well, that is the only exception for only the Maker of all things can grant that! What are you seeking for, mortal?”
He let out a long breathe of sigh, and closed his eyes. The ritual was finished. The sun was down. To officially end the ritual, and to have what he desire, the first word that should come out of his mouth should be his wish.
I leaned forward, and everything else in the forest seemed to listen for his wish, not even the Wind dared to move.
Seconds had passed, but he was still not uttering anything, and for the first time I felt what might Time means, for Eternity seemed to have passed.
So even though I knew that it wouldn’t be possible for him to hear me, I still said, as I always said to others who attempted but not succeeded, “Tell me, what are you seeking for, mortal?”
He opened his eyes, and I could swear that he could see right through me.
And he said, “You.”
:: This is my entry for Indigo Spider’s Sunday Picture Press: Twistless (using the third picture prompt) and BeKindRewrite’s Inspiration Monday XXX (using “hidden since the beginning of time” prompt).
At first, I had extremely difficulty time conceptualizing and building up a story for that third picture prompt. Although I have almost fallen in love with the beauty of the picture, I still couldn’t come up with a decent story. I guess, for the first time, I experienced what they called the Writer’s Block!
Anyway, after I saw the writing prompt for BeKindRewrite, I suddenly had this idea. Actually, I wasn’t sure what is it at first, I just let it flow on me and voila, a story is born! And I am satisfied and happy with the outcome!
I’m glad for those two prompts. I wouldn’t be able to come up with anything if even one of those two prompts is missing. 🙂
We’ve never been friends. But I admired her.
She’s beautiful—though she always denies that—and she’s very intelligent yet never boastful. She’s down-to-earth and very shy despite of what she is. She’s the kind of girl who you would love to respect. Back then, I always opened the door for her whenever I found an opportunity. I sometimes wished that I could help her carry her bag. I know it was weird, but she’s that kind of girl, a girl that for some reason, you would love to help. Continue Reading
(A poem on suicide)
Red, puffy eyes
No one cares.
Sucked up life
A living dead
No one cares.
No one cares.
Still, no one cares.
A slit in the wrist
An overthrown chair
Or a high-rise escape
It doesn’t matter, no one cares.
A grey afternoon
The dead doesn’t.
They always loved and liked the same things, from dresses to toys, down to their dreams and ideal boyfriends.
Tara closed her eyes; she found that listening to the repetitive clickety-clack of the moving train was soothing her nerves. It has been a long day for her. She felt like she’d already learn all the lessons that she needed for a lifetime in a single day, and to think that the day isn’t yet over.
She wanted to think about her future life, but her mind betrayed her. Instead, her thoughts wandered through the time she was still a skinny reckless eight-year old girl.
During that time, the rain had just stopped, and the floods in their suburban rose up to the knee level. Their mother had already warned them against playing outdoors for fear that they might catch flu especially that weather conditions were very unpredictable. But they didn’t listen; instead, both of them went out with their father’s boat replica.
“Isn’t it this fun?!” Zara was delighted.
“Fun? This is amazing! We don’t have to wait for father to bring us to the lake!” Tara said.
She and her sister Zara played until dusk, while they ignored their mother’s reprimanding. In the end, their mother’s threat for them came true, and both of them caught the flu, yet they never regretted it.
She wondered whether they would regret it this time. What she and her sister did now, was no mere reckless decision. They had thought through this for numerous sleepless nights, studying the pros and cons, the what-ifs, and trying to patch and think of all possible holes.
“Zara,” a voice called.
Tara wasn’t really paying attention, and she hadn’t perceived that Seth has already called her. She was still lost in her thoughts.
“Zara. Zara.” Seth tapped lightly her hands.
Tara opened her eyes, and her gaze fell on a handsome man beside her, Seth, her best friend and Zara’s boyfriend.
Seth kissed her forehead. “We’re almost here, Zara.”
If only he wouldn’t call me Zara, she thought.
“I love you Seth.”
“I love you too, Zara.”
Now, maybe it wasn’t hard to get used to that.
The train came to a halt. She felt like a new person. Her sister must be enjoying her new life too with Conan.
Now, this story isn’t what I had originally in mind. Even I, was surprised about the sudden turn of events! What I had in mind was some kind of a conspiracy murder story, but midway, I suddenly found myself writing about a swapping story of twin sisters!
This is my entry for Indigo Spider, Sunday Picture Press: Travelations. I used Visual Prompt 1 and 2, and I have no idea whether I have really incorporated any of the twist prompts, though, I guessed I have, indirectly.
By the way, I used only 384 words for this story! The shortest I had ever written, as far as I know!
When the darkness from above reigns,
and the silver princess and her trinkets dance,
when Eyes from the North
and Eyes from the South
meets without meeting
A precious wish is granted.
A precious wish is granted
when Hands from the East
and Hands from the West
commands without commanding
and two silver pennies journey
to the darkness from below who surrenders.
The One cannot exist without the One
and the two must be One,
not in body but in mind
and heart and in soul
even for a single twinkling
Only then can a wish be fulfilled.
For when One wished, and One doubted,
when Eyes from the North looked
but Eyes from the South slumbered,
when Hands from the East commanded
but Hands from the West faltered,
A precious wish would remain a wish but never granted.